Director, Content Marketing
Up to 250 people can join a webinar on Google Meet—that’s a ton of leads. Online experiences like webinars are great for building up a pipeline of leads, but not every webinar registrant is interested in buying your solution.
Whether it’s from an in-person conference, online webinar or through content marketing, you have to qualify every lead that comes through to your sales team. Otherwise, you’ll spend hours of unnecessary energy chasing down leads that just aren’t that into you.
So instead of pursuing every single record in your CRM or pipeline, you can begin to discern if someone is a good fit before your sales reps reach out. Lead qualification is a must any time you collect potential leads from a Google Meet webinar. When you ask the right questions, you’ll quickly find out whether a lead is a potential customer or if the relationship likely won’t go any further.
Every sales pipeline requires some form of lead qualification. Learn how to qualify leads and the 3 ways you can qualify the leads collected from a Google Meet webinar.
What is lead qualification and why is it important?
Lead qualification measures how likely it is that your webinar leads will become paying customers. This is usually expressed as a number or percentage that you track in your CRM.
When a lead reaches a certain threshold of engagement, you can pass them to a sales rep to seal the deal. The purpose of qualifying leads is to help you filter out potential leads who are the most likely to become a customer based on their data and engagement with you versus those that are clearly unqualified leads.
Lead qualification might sound like a complicated extra step, but it saves your team so much time that it’s worth the investment. When you qualify leads, you’ll:
- Improve close rates: Sick of low close rates? Stop forcing leads to engage with you. When you qualify leads first, you might see a reduction in the number of leads you’re working on, but the quality of the leads will improve significantly. This is because lead qualification helps you reach out only to qualified leads who want to take things to the next step.
- Personalize at scale: Sales can increase by 56% when you add personalization into the mix. Solutions like Copper integrate with your Calendar, Gmail and other apps to make it a breeze to personalize messages for your leads. When you need to humanize relationships at scale, lead qualification through Copper makes it possible. Copper’s marketing automation feature also helps you scale easier.
- Save time: Your webinar leads are all good people, but it doesn’t mean they’re good leads or the right customers for you. Lead qualification saves you time because it helps you identify leads that actually want your solution.
What is a sales-qualified lead?
“Lead” is a pretty generic term. When your webinar leads first come in and you document them in your CRM, they’re considered “unqualified leads.” This means they haven’t done anything—aside from signing up for your Google Meet webinar—to indicate they’re the right customer for you.
Once customers engage with you, you can either qualify them and advance them through your sales funnel or disqualify them and remove them from the sales cycle.
In the world of marketing and sales, you’ll see either marketing-qualified leads (MQL)s or sales-qualified leads (SQLS) come through your pipeline:
- MQLs: All of the leads from your Google Meet event will start as MQLs. If they opted in to engage with you, your marketing team should send them emails, videos or social media posts. This top-of-funnel content warms up leads with valuable information and engages with them. Ideally, you should document customer touchpoints in a CRM so you know when it’s time to push leads from marketing and over to a sales rep.
- SQLs: Marketing might get the ball across the field, but it’s up to your sales reps to make it across the finish line. At this point, a new lead knows about your solution, wants to implement it, and needs to chat with sales to set everything up.
Be sure to document the difference between MQLs and SQLs in your own customer journey so you route the appropriate leads to the right team.
How do you qualify a lead? Follow these 3 steps.
Got a list of leads? Great! Find the best leads for your biz by following these 3 steps for qualifying leads.
(1) Create an ideal customer profile (ICP)
It’s much easier to qualify leads when you know what you’re looking for. Not everyone who signs up for your Google Meet webinar will be an ideal customer, either, so it’s up to your sales team to sift through the leads.
For example, if you’re a steel-toed shoe company and a pharmaceutical rep attended your webinar, they probably aren’t your ideal customer.
This is why it’s important to define your ideal customer profile (ICP). Unlike a buyer persona, an ICP details your ideal target company, not an individual person or contact. If your team is going all-in on account-based marketing (ABM) for your B2B sales, you should create ICPs instead of buyer personas so you target the right accounts.
What are you looking for in a client? Use your ICP to make a checklist of the different attributes your target company should meet. This should include their:
- Niche, industry or product
- Funding source or revenue
- Geographic location
- Company size
- Corporate structure
- Customer base
Describe in depth the type of company that would benefit most from your solution. Your CRM will track each new lead and help you do the research to see if they match up with your ICP. If it’s a match, you can qualify the lead and pull them through your sales process. Easy enough, right?
(2) Gather data in a CRM
You know your ICP now, but you need more data on your webinar leads to see if they’re a good fit for your sales team. Maybe you could do this with a spreadsheet if you have 5 leads, but if you’re collecting leads at scale, you really need a CRM to track all of the information.
Data makes lead qualification go ‘round. You need data profiles on every webinar lead in a trustworthy, singular hub where you can make smarter decisions, faster.
A CRM like Copper logs each leads’ interaction with your team, attaching that information to the record, and giving your team more context for each contact. Copper even tells your team when it’s time to interact with a lead — and when to leave them alone.
(3) Follow a proven lead qualification model
Now that you know the target account matches your ICP, you’ll need to engage with them to see if it’s a true fit. Every business is different, but we recommend coaching your sales reps on a proven lead qualification model. This way, they can use the model as a checklist while they’re on the phone with the client, quickly qualifying or disqualifying them.
The BANT model
BANT stands for:
- Budget: Start by asking the lead for their budget. If they say $0, it’s time to move on.
- Authority: Is this lead the right person to make a decision?
- Need: Can your business actually serve this person’s need? You can’t sell a good product if a customer doesn’t need it!
- Timeframe: How urgent is the lead’s problem? Are they just browsing or are they interested in kicking things off ASAP? This will give you a lot of insight into your sales pipeline.
Train your sales team to go through BANT with every client call. This framework will help sales quickly realize if a lead is going to work out or not.
Oh, but your sales team doesn’t have to keep track of everything with Post-It notes. Use the Copper Chrome extension to display CRM data within Google Calendar. With more context on every call, the Chrome extension makes BANT a breeze. (Read all about BANT here).
The SPIN model
Unlike BANT, SPIN doesn’t start by quizzing a lead on their budget. SPIN helps you gather more contextual information about the lead’s pain points. SPIN stands for:
- Situation: What is the lead’s situation? What are they looking for?
- Problem: Help the prospect see that they’re saying they have a problem that needs solving.
- Impact: Emphasize the impact that this problem has on the lead’s business.
- Need-Payoff: End with how your solution will alleviate the negative impact on the lead’s business.
The ANUM model
ANUM prioritizes talking to the correct decision-maker, which is a big task if you’re doing ABM. ANUM stands for:
- Authority: Are you talking to the right person? Sometimes a low-level employee won’t know the brand’s need, urgency or budget, so who you’re speaking with matters.
- Need: Does the lead actually need your solution? What’s their problem?
- Urgency: Is the lead looking to solve their need relatively soon?
- Money: Finally, do they have the budget for your solution?
Close the deal with confidence
Sure, qualifying leads at scale sounds a little intimidating. After all, engaging with 250+ leads from one event definitely puts a lot of work on your plate. But with the right lead scoring and lead qualification process, you can sell more efficiently, show up for better customer relationships, and preserve your resources.
Follow these 3 steps to give your team the confidence to close more deals with higher-quality leads. With a platform like Copper as the backbone of your marketing strategy and sales strategy, you’ll have a well-documented system to track sales and capture critical information.
Want to close more sales? Try these 6 tactics to get a “Yes” from more of your leads.