Lead Scoring: Don’t Set Yourself Up for Failure

By | November 5, 2013

We are hearing about lead scoring more and more these days. As print providers and their customers grow increasingly comfortable with personalization and multichannel marketing, those programs are becoming more sophisticated and automated. That is opening the door to lead scoring, lead nurturing, and trigger-based content delivery.

As you begin to develop automated lead scoring and lead nurturing for your customers, there is a critical point to remember. Lead scoring is typically based on information people input into online forms and triggers the appropriate lead nurturing path that follows. However, people lie.

It’s not necessarily that they are awful, horrible human beings setting out to mislead you. It’s that those online forms are often monstrosities unintentionally designed to frustrate. Respondents just want to get to the information they are looking for (watch a video, download a white paper, access a presentation). They don’t want to spend 10 minutes filling out an endlessly long, frustratingly complex form first. I know I don’t. Consequently, they will often select the first thing on the list — accurate or not — just to be able to move on.

I was reading a great post on Eloqua’s blog this morning that made this very point:

How many contacts have you generated from those who have selected Afghanistan in the country dropdown menu? It’s the first country available in most dropdown lists, and frequently selected to bypass necessary information and proceed to the next option to access gated content.

Amen! If you try to gather too much information, if the level of depth and complexity of those forms is inappropriate to the target audience, you can set yourself up for disappointing results. So when setting up lead scoring for yourself or your clients, don’t just think about the information you want to gather. Think about what respondents are most likely to actually provide . . . and provide accurately. Balance your goals with the likelihood of getting what you want.

The goal with lead scoring isn’t to get it done. It’s to get it done right.

Got any lead scoring disaster stories to share? Sometimes the best lessons are learned while laughing . . .

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One thought on “Lead Scoring: Don’t Set Yourself Up for Failure

  1. Moe Farsheef

    Thank you for your blog.

    Scoring or grading a response solely based on web response form might lead one to draw inaccurate conclusions. One needs to include other responses channels (Your website, email, SMS) as well as historical behavior (what did they do before).

    Form response should be only part of the Scoring mix.

    However, the score that is based on the combination of a respondents answers to a form plus their historical navigation of your website (did they download a case study, view your price sheet, etc), their historical interaction (did they attend a recent webinar, etc) will yield a more accurate score and a leg on your competition.

    In fact, not using such marketing capabilities (marketing automation) might place you and your company at a great disadvantage. The marketing world is evolving at feverish pace. Find a partner who can help you get started.

    Thank you again for your thoughts.

    Moe Farsheed
    For a FREE trial of our software, visit us at

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