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The Expert's Guide to Lead Scoring

A guide to using lead scoring to increase your revenue and deal velocity

Cayden Meyer
Cayden Meyer
Founder & CEO
August 9, 2023
The Expert's Guide to Lead Scoring

What is Lead Scoring for​

Lead scoring is the process of ranking based on a specific outcome, usually their likelihood to convert into a customer. They may also be ranked on the largest predicted revenue opportunity, best fit for a specific plan or most appropriate for a specific market specific team. Some companies will end up using multiple different scores for these different cases or for different teams.

By effectively scoring leads, businesses can prioritize their resources, engage with the most promising leads and increase their revenue and deal velocity.

The Basics of Lead Scoring​

The essential principle behind lead scoring is straightforward: every attribute associated with a lead is assigned a numerical value, which can be positive or negative. By summing up these points, a total score is derived. Leads can then be ranked and prioritized based on these cumulative scores, taking into account both the positive and negative attributes.

Attributes for Scoring Leads​

Effective lead scoring requires combining a number of attributes to accurately score a lead. Missing key attributes can lead to leads not being ranked correctly, time being wasted and lower deal velocity.

Let’s dive into what the types of attributes you will want to use in your lead scoring system.

1. How they found you​

  • Channel: Whether they discovered you through organic search, paid ads, referrals, or social media can indicate their level of intent and interest. The scoring should be based on successful outcomes from those channels.

2. Their company​

Does this company match your ideal customer profile? Has something happened recently that make this company more likely to have high intent?

  • Firmographics: These are characteristics of companies like their size, industry, and location.
  • Growth rate (headcount & revenue): A rapidly growing company may need your solution more urgently.
  • Hiring: If they're hiring in areas related to your solution, it's a good indicator of potential interest.
  • Funding: Companies with recent funding often have budgets for new tools and solutions. A total amount of funding may help identify what stage the company is at.
  • The products they use: Companies using complementary or competing products may be more interested or you may have systems which your product only works with that you will want to prioritize.

3. Who they are​

Who the lead is can matter a lot as to whether they have the position that matches what you product is designed for and whether they have the ability to make a purchasing decision or influence a roll out.

  • Their role: A decision-maker will have a different score than a junior employee.
  • Their seniority: High-ranking individuals often have more purchasing power.
  • Their social connections: Connections with your existing customers or industry influencers can be a positive signal.
  • 4. Their behavior
  • Behavior, especially in product behavior is one of the strongest predictors of conversion.
  • Previous interactions with sales and support: Past positive engagements can be an indicator of interest. Complaints or support tickets can be signals of reduced likelihood to convert.
  • Interactions with marketing emails: Opens, clicks, and replies can reveal their level of engagement. Unsubscribing can be a signal of a lack of interest.
  • Their usage of your product: Active users or those who utilize premium features are high-potential leads.
  • The pages they visit on your site: Interest in pricing or product details often signifies higher buying intent.
  • Email type used for sign up: Users signing up with a company email are more likely to have commercial intent, while users signing up with disposable, fake or incorrect emails .

5. Intent signals​

  • Searching for solutions: Leads that are actively looking for solutions in your domain are high-potential.

6. Their predicted impact​

Talking to the biggest opportunity first makes sense for maximizing revenue so taking into account the opportunity size both immediate and long term is useful for scoring leads.

  • Predicted LTV (Lifetime Value): Leads that are likely to bring in more value over their lifetime as a customer are prioritized.
  • Predicted virality: If a lead belongs to a network or has the influence to refer multiple new clients, they have a higher potential score.

Turning it into a system​

The theoretical framework of lead scoring is valuable, but its real power lies in operationalizing it into a robust system.

A practical lead scoring system generally has 5 key steps Collecting the leads as they come in from various sources be that marketing, prospecting, product, social media interactions or referrals Enriching the leads to have the full set of attributes needed for scoring Scoring the leads Delivering the leads to sales

Measuring if your Lead Scoring is Accurate​

Once you've set up your lead scoring system, it's crucial to evaluate its accuracy. Here's how:

  1. Monitor conversion rates: High-scoring leads should have a higher conversion rate.
  2. Monitor deal velocity: High-scoring leads should be faster to convert.
  3. Track sales feedback: The sales team's input is invaluable in refining the scoring model.
  4. Monitor revenue impact: A lead scoring system should have a positive impact on deal velocity, conversion rates and as a result top line revenue

Evolving the scoring system is important to make sure you are achieving the outcomes you set out to and that the score is accurately ranking leads

  1. Regularly review the scoring criteria: The market, your product, and customer behavior change, so your criteria should evolve too.
  2. A/B Testing: Test different scoring models and compare which one identifies the most promising leads.

Lead scoring is not a simple process to setup with each step being challenging to do well, from pulling all the disparate sources of leads together to creating a scoring system that accurately ranks leads.

Upollo aims to solve these challenges with AI driven scoring, automatic enrichment and one click connection to the sources of your leads. Upollo’s AI driven scoring bases scoring automatically on revenue and conversion outcomes and constantly monitors and updates as your users, their behaviour and your product changes.

It also includes signals that are well beyond what typical lead scoring covers and models that have learnt from across our entire network of customers.

Get scoring leads in minutes for free with Upollo.

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About the Author
Cayden Meyer
Cayden Meyer
Founder & CEO

On a mission to help millions of businesses understand their users and grow faster!

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