User data can help chart the progress of potential leads.
There's no silver bullet to create content that leads to big sales, but there is a way to use user data to see if your content is producing sales. You can use these metrics to find out who is a qualified lead in addition to charting the progress of how initially unknown users can become good leads. We'll explain these metrics and which ones your sales teams should consider when judging the success of your content.
See also: How Content Helps Accelerate Deals & Build a Pipeline
How Should Sales Teams Define Leads?
Leads are all the people that have a reason to interact with your brand. Some will quickly make a purchase, some will take their time and peruse, while many others won't buy at all.
It's important to remember before you find which category these leads belong to, they begin as strangers -- unqualified leads.
In order to turn your unqualified lead into a qualified lead you need to collect some information. When an unqualified lead views content on your site without logging in and providing valuable data, you know relatively little about their needs. This is why you need to gather that data in a sign up form. If the information they give you shows their needs and desires align with your company's products, then you have a marketing qualified lead. Once they make a purchase, they become a sales qualified lead.
Don't forget to continue marketing to your sales qualified leads. They've made a purchase before, so they're far more likely to do so again.
See also: How to Measure the ROI of Your Blog Content
Lead Progress Defined
The movement from unqualified to marketing qualified to sales qualified leads is defined as lead progress. Lead progress can be a complicated thing to measure if you don't know which metrics to focus on.
Key Performance Indicators for Measuring Leads
Which metrics can you depend on to let you know that a lead is progressing? Page views, bounce rates, conversions, or click-through rates? The answer: all of the above. Here's how each fits into the lead progress:
- Page views measures unqualified leads.
- Bounce rate accounts for content relevancy (high bounce rates signal irrelevant content, poor keyword choices, or both).
- Conversions marketing describes qualified or sales qualified leads (if the conversion is a sale then the lead is sales qualified, otherwise they are marketing qualified).
- Click-through rate helps determine marketing qualified or unqualified (if the click-through includes contact information then the lead is marketing qualified, if not, then they remain unqualified).
Measuring Lead Progress
How should I properly implement this strategy? Easy, the leads waterfall.
This is a daily-updated graph that shows the progression of leads through each of the stages of your sales funnel. As people become unqualified leads, move to marketing qualified leads, and generate sales to become sales qualified leads, their progress is charted on the leads waterfall. This is an important resource that your marketing and sales team can use to monitor the progress of your leads and to take action accordingly.
Photo Credit: newchaos via Flickr.
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