Have a healthy funnel

2021 is almost upon us, are you ready for the new year? 

A new year, new opportunities. Time to take a good look at how effective certain marketing and sales actions really have been and how your pipeline is currently looking.

In this blog, I explain how we keep an overview of our marketing pipeline. We use the Demand Waterfall 2.0 from SiriusDecisions for this purpose. Through this funnel, you can easily see where your leads are in the pipeline, how far they are qualified and where you need to take action.

The funnel is divided into four phases: Inquiry, Marketing Qualification, Sales Qualification and Close. Where the qualification moves vertically downwards.

Phase 1: Inquiry

These inquiries are divided into ”inbound” and ”outbound”.  This includes all inbound (completed contact forms, direct website visits, whitepaper downloads, newsletter subscriptions, etc.) and outbound (sent e-mails, clicks on advertisements, media publications) actions. We have attached different scores to all of these actions. When an employee of an interesting account (within your target group) executes such an action, it ends up in the document. We only classify people with the roles marketing, sales new business/development and C-level because these are the people who make decisions about our products/services and use them primarily.

Each time an organisation completes one of these actions, the points are awarded to the account. When the company reaches more than 15 points, it becomes an AQL (Automation Qualified Lead). However, there is an exception when awarding points, a completed contact form is of such importance that it receives more points and automatically switches to TAL or SAL”.

Phase 2: Marketing Qualification

When an account moves into the marketing category, it is up to marketing to qualify it even further. When these accounts have gained more points as a result of actions that have been taken (i.e. 40 points have been gained), these are shifted to the telemarketer.

The telemarketer will then start working with these potential leads in order to further qualify them. In addition, the telemarketer can also carry out his/her own acquisition on accounts that are important but do not originate from the AQL box. When these leads are qualified, they are transferred to sales.

Phase 3: Sales Qualification

Once the telemarketer has qualified the lead, it moves on to sales. If the lead meets the set requirements, it will be accepted by sales. Subsequently, sales will talk to the contact person.

If a proposal is issued, a sales opportunity is linked to it and this lead receives the status Sales Qualified Lead. Here, too, it is possible for sales to take action themselves on the accounts selected for this purpose (named accounts).

Phase 4: Close

Based on the proposal, it is, of course, the intention that the proposal should be signed, but unfortunately, this is not always the case. If the proposal is lost, it will go back into the funnel, depending on the reason for the failure to sign the proposal.

In the context of conversion measurement, you naturally also want to know which offers have the highest conversion ratio. Are these leads generated by marketing, telemarketing or sales? Measuring is understanding!

In addition to the funnel, the specific numbers, we also measure the conversion from step to step, so that we too realise our potential.

Just a few more questions to bring focus to your funnel:

  • What are the steps and strategies to measure lead shifts in the buying process?
  • Can you estimate how the buying process is going for a prospect?
  • Is this process also clearly defined and consistent?
  • How can you continue improving the collaboration between marketing and sales with effective lead management?

Would you like to download the funnel as an excel file? Click here!