No matter how friendly your sales & marketing departments are to each other, you may occasionally find yourself in the midst of a controversy about lead quality .  Marketing envisions providing sales with the Taj Mahal of leads, while sales thinks they're getting leads from a van down by the river.  If you're on the marketing side of this argument, you'll quickly realize that your first priority is to improve your lead quality--pronto!  But how do you go about doing that? One of the best ways is to go through this process of digging deeper:

  1. Improve your lead quality Why do your leads stink?   It's time to put your ego on the shelf and get to the bottom of the sales complaints.  Are all your early funnel leads unqualified?  Have they never ever even quoted someone from PPC?  Does everyone put in a fake email address?  Take your sales team out for lunch if you need to, but get to the bottom of their complaints.
  2. Where do the garbage leads come from? One of our customers discovered that PPC was providing her with low quality leads. Or perhaps it's the leads you're buying that aren't converting.  What channels are you concentrating on?  What channels haven't you considered?
  3. What offers & calls to action are you using?   Have you covered your entire sales funnel, or are you only offering early-funnel conversion opportunities?  Are your offers for free materials that have nothing to do with your business?  Do you have calls to action on your website ? Are they shiny and compelling?
  4. What do your landing pages look like?   Do they conform to best practices?  Does the text actually describe the offer?  Does the text help to qualify WHO should be filling out the form?  If the answer to those questions is "yes", you should consider adding more qualifying fields to your forms.  Find out from sales what their top 3 qualifying questions are, and put them on your forms!
  5. Execute, test, rinse, and repeat.   Going through the above steps should give you some concrete action items.  Implement the ones that seem most promising, and measure what happens.  If you still need to improve your lead quality, go through the exercise again and keep trying. 

Make sure your lines of communication with your sales team stay open while you go through this process--their feedback is really invaluable to you!  It may cost you a lunch or two, but providing quality leads that convert into awesome customers is worth it!

Image courtesy of Tommy's Surfshack .

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Originally published Jul 14, 2010 11:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016


Lead Generation