Have you ever gone on a hike and lost your way? It can be easy to get turned around after taking a wrong turn. Everything looks familiar, but you could be going the opposite direction of the correct path. After a few minutes, being lost can be quite scary.
The best way to avoid getting lost is to have a guide. A guide could be a simple map or it may include a person who’s intimately familiar with the territory. The same is true when you align your marketing and sales teams around a lead management program. If marketing and sales get lost, it becomes quite scary for everyone. Often, marketing and sales may turn on each other like a modern day “Lord of the Flies.”
While much has and continues to be written on aligning marketing and sales, the current problem simply should not be that challenging to solve. Being proactive is critical for success.
Marketing and sales leaders should gather together to collaborate on creating a lead guide. The guide will serve as the ultimate resource for helping marketing and sales navigate their lead management program. When questions arise among team members, they can refer to the guide to determine what’s correct.
What should the guide include?
- Lead definitions – how does your organization define prospects at different lead stages, such as inquiries, nurture, marketing qualified leads (MQLs), sales accepted leads (SALs) and sales qualified leads (SQLs)?
- Lead contact – determine who contacts prospects at each lead stage (e.g. marketing contacts inquiries and nurture leads, while sales contacts MQLs)
- Lead content – determine what types of content should be sent to prospects at different lead stages (e.g. thought leadership content to inquiries and feature/function content to MQLs)
Additionally, if you’ve done your buyer persona analysis and understand your buyers and influencers well, then you can create the appropriate content that will resonate with your buyers at each lead stage of the buying cycle.
Obviously, this initial guide is overly simplistic, but that’s the point. Start simple and add complexity as you go. For example, you can add lead scoring to the guide once you’ve mastered these initial steps.
Overall, having a lead guide will give your marketing and sales teams confidence as they navigate through the spooky forest of lead management to close business and generate revenue.
Do you have a lead guide? If not, then please contact us, and we can help you develop one.