Getting a consistent pipeline of new leads flowing into your business is a great feeling – but it’s not enough. These leads need to be nurtured and moved through the funnel, or else you’ll end up losing them altogether, and all of the effort your team put in to bringing them in will go to waste.
Are you making some of these common mistakes that cause B2B companies to lose vital leads?
Mistake #1 – Waiting too long to make contact
If you are seeing a number of inbound leads fall out of your pipeline, it might be because you’re delaying initial contact. After someone fills out a form on your website, it is imperative that you reach out quickly – ideally within an hour.
Mistake #2 – Failing to score leads
Not all leads are created equal. Some will be more valuable to you than others, because they align with your buyer persona, they have behaved in a way that indicates that they are closer to making a purchase, or they exhibit professional information that would be a good fit for your company.
Not scoring leads means your sales team will waste valuable time on leads that were never going to progress in the first place, and they may not spend enough time on the leads that are most promising.
Mistake #3 – Failing to segment leads
While lead scoring is essential in determining which leads are most valuable, lead segmentation will provide information about each lead’s characteristics. There are six traditional segments, from Marketing Qualified Leads to Opportunities in Demonstration Phase to Opportunity Won, that B2B and enterprise companies use, although your own may differ.
Without segmentation, you won’t know which actions are best to take with what lead. Have they had a demo already? How did they respond? Are you in negotiations with them? Or have they slipped back down the funnel and require more follow up?
Mistake #4 – Not communicating internally
Your marketing and sales teams should be fully aligned if you want to plug those pesky leaks in your lead funnel. If they are not communicating properly, it will be difficult for your sales team to know which MQLs are most valuable and score them appropriately. It also makes it harder for your marketing team to target the right leads, since they won’t have a clear understanding of the type of leads your team is looking for. This can cause leads to become stale and fall out of the pipeline, simply because they weren’t actually valuable in the first place.
Mistake #5 – Not following up
Lastly, if you’re not following up appropriately with leads that have expressed some interest in your product or service – either through inbound or outbound activities – you’re going to lose out. We’ve written before about the importance of following up, but it bears repeating and integrating into your sales team’s daily habits.