How to Manage Your Leads? The 6 Stages to Convert Leads into Customers

Infynd-4.0

Ever notice how kids will plead for something, but once they get it, they're like, "Now what?" That kinda sums up what lead generation would be without a lead management strategy.

Capturing leads alone is not going to grow your business, converting leads into customers and retaining those customers will. And how do you do that? With lead management. You need to strategically manage a lead throughout the lead lifecycle.

It’s impossible to plan your customer journey without it. But it’s not a one-step process, it’s one of those lots-of-steps-under-one-branch term (like marketing). So, let’s get into what is lead management and it’s six stages.

What is Lead Management?

Lead management is the process of capturing leads, qualifying them and eventually converting them into customers.

Why is it Important?

Because you don’t want your service to become a distant memory for potential customers. You want them to transition from being potentials to actual customers. Lead management streamlines that path. It’s THE backbone of your sales process.

It’s all about getting qualified leads that fall under your Ideal Customer Profile and moving them into the lead lifecycle smoothly. You need to be quick with follow-ups, sort them properly, pass them to the right sales reps and ensure timely check-ins. We know it's a lot. Hey, we’ve warned you, it’s a very active and continuous process.

The 6 Stages of Lead Management

Instead of wondering with all the “now what?” questions, follow this step-by-step process to execute lead management effectively.

Lead Generation

Before you build the lead generation funnel, you need to find the leads (more like their info). You need to create a clear pathway for leads to enter your funnel. The obvious place to collect your leads' info is your website. You will need their contact info like emails (for starters), phone numbers, job titles, and company. In exchange, you can share value-added content in the form of a newsletter, e-book, product demo or any other form. It’s called organic lead generation.

You can also use social media ads, email marketing or any other B2B lead generation tools. InFynd is one of the leading tools in the United Kingdom with over 30M+ B2B contact data in the country. And the reason we are on the frontline is,

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Once you acquire the leads data you can organize this information in your CRM to manage the next process of the lead funnel.

Lead Segmentation

You got the leads and their information, “Now what?”. We can’t say every lead is the same, each lead falls into different criteria. So, you need to segment these leads into groups based on shared criteria. It’ll ease your lead pipeline generation process.

Some of the potential criteria to segment leads are,

The more leads you collect, the more crucial it is to refine your segmentation criteria. You can target better only if you segment your list right.

Lead Qualification

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Do you know 67% of sales are lost due to improper lead qualification? It can significantly reduce your lead conversion rate.

Not all leads are worth pursuing. Some might just be curious and not genuinely interested in your product or service. To prevent wasting your sales team's time, it's essential to vet leads before engaging extensively.

Lead qualification ensures your team focuses on those who are genuinely interested and ready to buy. If you haven't implemented a lead qualification checklist yet, it's time to invest in developing one.

Lead Nurturing

Most leads are not in their ready-to-buy phase on their first interaction with your product/service. You need to constantly nurture them along in their customer journey. So that when they are ready to buy, your brand will be on top of their mind. How can you do that? With valuable content again via inbound and outbound marketing.

Provide them with content to understand you and how your solution is right for them. It’s a long game, but once you build the trust, it’ll help you stay in the market longer. So, what kind of content you can use to nurture your leads? Some of my suggestions are,

You can work out lead nurturing with team effort. Your marketing team can create the content and the sales team can provide their feedback and the pain points of leads.

Lead nurturing does not stop once the lead converts into a customer. You should continue to nurture the customers to upsell, cross-sell and retain.

Lead Scoring

You generated the leads, qualified them and continue to nurture them, but how do you find out how interested they are (as in, to what extent)? This is where lead scoring comes in.

The higher the score, the more interested they are. To make the most of your lead lists and create detailed lead profiles, set up a lead scoring model.

This model automatically assigns points to different interactions based on the criteria you set up. For example, opening an email can be worth 5 points, clicking the link in an email can be worth 10 points, and checking out your pricing page can be 25 points.

Remember, lead scoring isn’t a one-time deal; it's an ongoing part of the lead nurturing process. By creating separate segments for leads with higher and lower scores, you can send targeted emails and content to each group.

You can set up an automation workflow for lead scoring (in your CRM or any sales tool). Once a lead reaches a certain score, the system can move it along the lead funnel for more personalized outreach.

Lead Distribution

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Once the leads pass the lead scoring, they’ll be sent to a sales rep for personalised assistance. This is where your leads are transferring from marketing-qualified leads (MQLs) to sales-qualified leads (SQLs).

Here’s a typical lead distribution workflow:

Recognise sales-ready signals - Identify actions like visiting pricing pages, requesting demos, or attempting to access premium features in a free plan. Set up triggers for these actions.

Distribute the sales-ready leads - When a lead shows sales-ready behaviour, move them to a "hot leads" list and assign them to the appropriate sales rep.

Create a new deal in the sales pipeline - If your sales and marketing teams have defined a high-quality lead profile based on high-intent website actions or product interactions, automatically generate a new deal in the sales pipeline.

Eventually, the “hot leads” assigned to the sales team convert into customers.

Remember, as we said for lead nurturing, lead management is not a process with a start and end point. Even after a lead converts, you’ll keep on managing them to retain and keep them with your business.

Lead management does not have to be complicated when you generate the right leads. Try InFynd to find your ICPs' contact data and build the perfect and effortless lead management strategy.

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