The Anatomy of a Lead - Patricia Friar
"Having someone's email address doesn't make them a lead for your business."
What is a lead?
A lead is a person who has indicated interest in your company’s product or service. Online, a lead is traditionally defined as a person that completes a landing page. A landing page is a webpage with a form through which a person supplies contact and business information in exchange for free information provided by a company, such as an ebook, whitepaper, webinar, product consultation, or product demonstration. Having only a person’s email address does not make them a lead for your business. Instead, view that person as a contact. Because they have provided their email address, possibly as a subscription for your blog or email newsletter, you now have the opportunity to use targeted and relevant email marketing efforts to convert this person into a lead.
How Much Information Do you Need to Call it a Lead?
Since information transactions through landing pages generate leads, one of the first questions a marketer is likely to ask is, how much information should I ask for from a person visiting my landing page? This is a challenging question to answer. The more information you ask for, especially sensitive information such as a persons age or phone number, the lower the likelihood that a prospect will complete and submit your form.
The old-school is to think that you should only ask for a couple of pieces of information such as name, address and phone number. The problem with this is that too little information can burden your sales process and make it difficult for sales and marketing team members to prioritize leads. Contacts that are researching or shopping may be less hesitant about providing their information so that your sales team can reach out to them. Thus, the solution to this problem involves compromising.
When planning or updating your lead generation strategy, talk with your sales team. Ask them what information they NEED about leads in order to have a smooth and productive sales process. If certain information isn’t actively being used by either sales or marketing, then don’t ask for it. This simple compromise can ensure that you get the landing page conversion rates you want and the information that your sales team needs to close deals.