One of the trends in sales and marketing is the accelerating use of “Big Data” to increase sales effectiveness. According to IBM CEO Ginni Rometty, “Every two days, we now generate the equivalent of all the data that existed up to 2003.” With so much data constantly being generated, it was only a matter of time before innovative sales and marketing teams began to use that information to their advantage. One of the increasingly popular methods for doing this is known as “Predictive Lead Scoring”.
What is Predictive Lead Scoring?
Predictive Lead Scoring is a data-driven process built upon traditional “lead scoring”. With traditional lead scoring, companies take information about their customers or potential customers – such as the industry the company works in, the number of employees, and many others – and determines how likely it is that the company in question will be willing to purchase a particular product or service. In essence, lead scoring is a way to “rank” the quality of leads. With data-driven lead scoring models, some of the factors that could be used in the scoring included engagement levels (e.g. with social media pages and sales emails) and other online behaviors).
With Predictive Lead Scoring, however, sales and marketing departments extrapolate information about a potential customer by using statistical and historic information about other, similar companies in an effort to predict the future behavior of a sales lead. Predictive lead scoring also utilizes internal historic trends and behaviors from a company’s CRM system to generate predictive lead scores. At the end of the day, Predictive Lead Scoring is about turning the sales process into more of a scientific, data-driven approach, with less of an emphasis on intuition.
Where Predictive Lead Scoring falls short
There is no question that Predictive Lead Scoring provides important information to sales teams. What it lacks, however, is the actionable data necessary for your sales team to significantly increase sales. Predictive Lead Scoring often also relies on statistical information that doesn’t always reflect the individual situations that your sales team faces in the field. Fortunately, the Insight Sales Process™ works very well with Predictive Lead Scoring to fill the gaps and make both systems significantly more effective.
How the Insight Sales Process™ helps fill the gaps in Predictive Lead Scoring
The Insight Sales Process is designed to provide your sales team with actionable information that is easily stored and accessed later on when it is needed. The Insight Sales Panel™ is a set of metrics customized by your company and sales team that helps turn qualitative information, that your sales team acquires during the discovery process, into quantitative data that can be used to rank the quality of leads, find gaps in opportunity development, and to align value and strategy. This system, in conjunction with Predictive Lead Scoring, will provide your sales team with significantly stronger forecasts than either system could provide alone, and will also help your team prioritize which leads to pursue.
Over time, the database of information that your sales team builds using the Insight Sales Process™ and Predictive Lead Scoring can be normalized, and will result in much more accurate sales forecasts and filtering algorithms for your sales team to use.
While sales will always be an interpersonal activity, the proper use of insight data will provide opportunities for sales teams to be far more effective. The Insight Sales Process™ is and will continue to be an integral part of combining interpersonal sales skills with data-driven approaches such as Predictive Lead Scoring.