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10 Ways to Create an Effective Lead Qualification Process

Written by Raza Kazi

31 | 12 | 18

Through no fault of their own, a lot of sales teams are having to waste valuable time chasing leads that are a terrible fit. All of that time and effort goes to waste, so it’s no surprise if some of the team loses motivation. To create an effective lead qualification process to set up sales teams for plenty of success, it’s important for sales and marketing teams to come together at last.

Here are some tips on how to actually do it so your sales team can close those sweet, sweet leads.

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Tips on Getting Better Qualified Leads

Not all leads are good leads. It’s important to know who your organisation should work with and who you can succeed with. Along with that, it’s important to actually review every single lead that reaches out to your sales team so that you can identify some top qualification questions to determine if they’re the right fit.

1. Identify Some Top Qualification Questions

  • Review whether your review is a startup. While it might work for some sales teams and organisations, it might not be effective for yours in particular.

  • Check out the turnover of your leads.

  • The location of your leads might also be important.

  • Also, question if they have a considered buying process.

2. Create Another Sales-Specific Process

To create an effective lead qualification process, it might also be worth working with your sales team to put together another process for your sales team to work through once a lead is generated. If through the sales process, you find that a lead is not the right fit, your sales team is in a better position to provide actionable feedback to the marketing team so they can tweak from their side.

A process like this then allows your marketing team to change their offering, such as content, to then attract the right type of leads. This way, only the best leads are reaching your sales team which they can close.

3. Implement Lead Scoring

Lead scoring helps your sales team focus on high-quality leads and saves a lot of valuable time they usually lose when chasing poor-quality leads. When lead scoring is done right, your sales team will know which leads need more marketing materials, if they’re ready to talk to the sales team and more.

That all depends on the score they’ve been assigned, depending on specific actions they’ve taken so it’s important to analyse both positive and negative lead scores. This saves a lot of time as your sales team will only be presented with leads that should be pursued while the ones they shouldn’t bother wasting their time on are filtered out.

For that, though, a sales automation platform like HubSpot is needed. With the right HubSpot package, your sales team can even use the predictive lead scoring tool which has even more added benefits to assist your sales team’s lead qualification process.

To find out more about lead scoring, tips and tricks when setting scores and how-to guides on how to actually do it on HubSpot, then check out this blog.

joe on mac

Tips on Sales and Marketing Working Together

One of the major reasons why lead qualification processes are often inefficient is because sales and marketing prefer to work separately - they’re more Batman and Joker rather than Batman and Robin.

For a lead qualification process to become effective, that needs to change for your teams so that they can come together as one with a shared vision on goals. Everyone needs to be on the same page. Although many sales and marketing teams might not trust each other, emphasise that they’re both on the same team and need each other to achieve their goals.

4. Service Level Agreements

A common way to align your sales and marketing process so both teams work together is to create a Service Level Agreement (SLAs) between both departments which affects both teams.

For example, an SLA lets your sales team follow up with every lead which has been provided to them by the marketing team within 24 hours and provide feedback on them.

5. Constant Communication

Constant communication between both teams is important so your marketing team knows that the leads they’re generating are the right fit and if they’re not, they can amend what they’re doing.

This also includes hosting weekly or monthly meetings or collaboration sessions and even discussing updates to make both teams’ lives easier.

6. Get Sales Involved in Campaign Planning

Sales and marketing can work together from the very beginning - when your marketing team is creating impactful campaigns. Your sales team will have a good idea of what is and isn’t working, so sitting on campaign brainstorms gives them a prime opportunity to throw useful suggestions about based on their experience.

This bridges the gap between both teams and helps marketers to create campaigns and other marketing materials that stand the best chance of succeeding.

7. Create a Sense of Connection Between Both Teams

Once your sales and marketing teams understand that they are working towards the same goals, it’s important to build a sense of connection between both teams so that they develop a sense of shared purpose. It can be anything from celebrating joint wins to having both teams shadow each other so they know how each department works.

This makes them both understand each other better (such as by understanding the problems or challenges they face) and with that trust, they can all come up with genuine solutions.

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8. Adopt an Account-Based Marketing Process

Other than your marketing team helping your sales team by providing content to assist with the sales process to attract the right-fit leads, it might also be beneficial to use the account-based marketing process.

This is where a certain industry is targeted with a selection of companies being shortlisted and then targeted through inbound campaigns. Both teams can work together to nurture leads down around the flywheel to convert them at the earliest stage possible.

9. Integrate Sales and Marketing Software

Integrating software so that both sales and marketing are using the same tools is something that definitely needs to be implemented so that you have an effective lead qualification process. This gives both of your teams a powerful overview of the entire lead lifecycle so that everyone has access to the bigger picture.

All of this is part of a bigger picture called sales enablement. Sales enablement is the processes, technology and content which empowers sales teams to sell efficiently at a higher velocity.

Have your sales and marketing team use effective sales enablement software. Sales enablement software from HubSpot helps sales teams to make the most of the latest generation sales technology and embrace inbound sales.

Questions That Need to be Asked

To actually kickstart an effective lead qualification process, your sales and marketing team need to ask each other several important questions so that content can be tailored around the types of leads that the sales team can actually close.

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Example Questions That Should be Asked

  • What’s your ideal prospect and why?

  • What’s the sales cycle?

  • What are the most common questions that you get asked by prospects?

  • What are the biggest challenges you come across?

  • Which materials do you currently use that works?

  • Which materials do you use that impacts the leads?

  • Which sales materials do you need when selling? Case studies? Videos?

  • What factors cause us to lose leads?

  • What information is being repeated to prospects and leads?

  • What questions are they asking at each stage of the buying process?

  • What are the emotions they feel? How do you want them to feel and how do you engage with them?

  • What makes one lead more qualified than another?

Questions like these allow your sales and marketing team to understand each other more and realise what’s required from both teams to make the entire process run smoothly.

By implementing the tips above, you’ll be well on your way to creating an effective lead qualification process as part of a wider sales enablement process to secure better quality leads and save a lot more time.

Find Out More About Sales Enablement by Downloading Our Free Guide

Sales and marketing coming together is now more important than ever. Creating an effective lead qualification process is just one piece of the sales enablement puzzle but there’s a lot to consider and action, so we’ve created a comprehensive eBook that will answer all of your questions.

The eBook covers a wide range of topics from how you can align your sales and marketing teams right through to how marketing teams can help sales and how sales enablement actually works. To download your free copy, hit the button below.

It's not quite ready yet but it's nearly there. While you're waiting, why not join our private Facebook group, Inbound After Hours? We'll be discussing all things sales enablement, HubSpot and more. 

Request access to the group below and ensure you don't miss out.

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