Lead Nurturing and Lead Scoring: The Differences and Benefits
There’s no magic formula for marketers to make your sales increase to another level. A well-defined 360° marketing strategy will help you attract and garner qualified leads that can turn into a potential buyer for your business. Leads enter your database at different stages of the customer journey, so you’ll need to know the stage they’re in and create content to help them move along in the process. That’s where lead nurturing, or cultivating leads, comes into play and lead scoring, or qualifying those leads, is what you implement using marketing automation strategies.
These concepts don’t go against each other but are complementary parts of an inbound marketing strategy that seeks to turn these leads into customers for your digital business. Before we go into what they entail, and how they differ, here are some interesting stats:
Those leads treated with lead nurturing strategies end up completing purchases with 47% more spending (The Annuitas Group).
Those firms that bet on marketing automation to manage their leads see a 10% increase in earnings in six to nine months (Gartner Research).
37% of marketing professionals see an increased number of more qualified leads through applying marketing automation and lead nurturing and lead scoring techniques (Liana Technologies).
Thanks to lead nurturing, we get 50% more qualified leads at a 33% lower acquisition cost (Forrester Research).
Nurtured leads generate an average of 20% more purchasing opportunities than non-nurtured leads (DemandGen Report).
What is lead nurturing? What is lead scoring? Let’s define them
As we’ve already mentioned, lead scoring and lead nurturing are part of a marketing 360º strategy. While lead scoring classifies your leads based on their interest in your product or service, the second focuses on creating campaigns that boost your database’s interaction and interest in your firm to speed up their purchase process.
Lead Scoring is a methodology that the marketing and sales teams share to try to automatically classify prospects by grouping them and identifying where they are during the customer journey, or their willingness to buy. This methodology establishes a grading system that we use to score them based on the actions they take on our website and their reaction to our marketing actions.
Lead nurturing is the process that establishes a relationship with users by offering them a constant flow of useful, quality content through marketing automation actions and campaigns. The robustness of this relationship is firm in the statistics. According to The Annuitas Group, those firms that feed their prospects with specialized content see a 451% growth in the number of qualified leads they have.
Plus, lead nurturing, as Pardot points out, aims to create a trusting bond between a user and an enterprise to position itself as a relevant information source and build the relationships those customers desire. It also aims to guide users through the purchasing process and position the company as the best option when deciding between its competitors.
The benefits and differences between Lead Scoring and Lead Nurturing
Once we have both of these concepts clear, there's one more thing we need before we're ready to send out effective lead scoring and lead nurturing strategies into the world. We need to make sure we distinguish between them through the benefits they can bring to our companies.
The benefits of lead scoring
1. It’s a methodology that Sales and Marketing both share, making it easy to flow prospects towards sales.
2. It boosts the Sales team’s efficiency since it only focuses you only contact and identify the most qualified leads.
3. It helps us take data to analyze the quality of leads and determine who’s closest to buying from you.
4. It lets you segment your database but also classify new users coming in through your lead generation efforts.
5. Increase the efficacy of your targeted marketing actions since they’ll be based on the customer journey you crafted for your target customer and focused on what they need at all times.
6. It’s useful for activating marketing automation actions since we can deploy workflows that nurture leads based on users’ interest in our products or services.
The benefits of lead nurturing
1. It serves as a filter to ensure that only those leads that are suited to sales (or MQLs) reach the Sales team.
2. It’s based on content and personalizing it to offer people the messages they need at the right time.
3. It lets you activate automated workflows with marketing automation software, like HubSpot or Pardot, to serve personalized content according to the stage of the customer journey.
4. It’s a multichannel strategy with social, your blog, and other supports playing a role, withemail marketing playing a starring role.
Lead scoring and lead nurturing are both critical pillars to your inbound marketing strategy and offer you competitive advantages when it comes to attracting new contacts to your database and landing new customers. These tactics will help you convert more consumers basing your tactics around their behavior. Segmentation of your audience, trust, and optimizing your sales strategy are the three factors you’ll improve on to apply these methods in your organization.
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