In the field of sales and marketing, time is of the essence. The faster you connect with a lead, the greater the chances of converting it into a deal. This is the area where an effective lead routing strategy comes in handy. Lead routing is a critical step that involves routing leads to your sales team.
You need to pay attention to lead routing to avoid draining your resources without getting any desired outcome.
If you are interested in learning about lead routing rules and its best practices, please continue reading.
What is Lead Routing?
Also referred to as a lead assignment, lead routing is a process where incoming leads are assigned to the sales representatives. In simple terms, lead routing is a systematic way of distributing the leads among the sales representatives of an organization.
If done correctly, lead routing can ensure the best possible outcomes. On the contrary, the absence of a well-crafted lead routing strategy could negatively affect overall the sales and marketing teams. For instance, if leads are assigned to sales reps who are not the right people for the job, it could result in losing the leads.
Why is Lead Routing Important
Lead routing helps save time and resources. It also lowers the chances of errors by streamlining the sales process itself. Besides, here are some other reasons why you should consider relying on an effective lead routing system:
- Lead routing system can assign leads to respective sales reps without wasting precious time.
- With effective lead organization, it is possible to order all the leads correctly depending on factors like location, communication channel, or behavioral patterns.
- Lead routing helps sales reps improve their performance and convert maximum leads to sales.
- With a perfect lead routing mechanism, it is possible to utilize the resources for better lead management.
Key Aspects to Consider When Crafting a Lead Routing Strategy
Creating a well-designed lead routing strategy is essential. This is so, as such a strategy could help reap the maximum benefits out of a marketing campaign. So, make sure to consider some of these key features and aspects when making a lead routing strategy:
- Pay Attention to the Quality of the Data
- Create Rules for Reassigning the Leads
- Create a Form to Collect Data
- Choose the right lead distribution software
Pay Attention to the Quality of the Data
No doubt, accurate data is the foundation of an effective lead routing system. Incorrect or incomplete information could lower the performance of even a team of seasoned sales reps. Hence, it is imperative to create and maintain the rules for data collection. You can either handle the data maintenance activities manually or use a marketing automation software tool.
Create Rules for Reassigning the Leads
Usually, most of the lead routing tools or software assume that there is always a suitable sales rep to handle a lead. However, this isn’t always the case in the real world. For example, if a sales rep already is assigned a sales pipeline, reassigning the leads is the only viable option.
In this situation, it’s essential to define some rules for hassle-free reassignment. Each business must devise a particular criterion depending on its specific requirements. Furthermore, the process of reassigning the leads should also be transparent and well-managed.
Create a Form to Collect Data
It is also beneficial to create a customizable or editable form for collecting data. Although lead scoring is done on the demographic and technographic data of the leads, asking some additional questions to a potential customer can make a huge difference.
For this purpose, try to create a form with editable fields. Collecting the data from a customer can allow the sales team to prioritize the workflow. As a result, sales reps could narrow down the potential deals by implementing the best possible strategies.
Choose the right lead distribution software
When choosing lead distribution software, look for one that easily integrates with your existing systems, allowing for swift and seamless lead assignment. Customization is key, so the best lead distribution software should let you set rules to assign leads based on your unique business criteria, such as lead score or location.
The software should have strong automation to capture and distribute leads efficiently, ensuring your team can focus on high-priority tasks. It’s also important that it can scale with your business, handling more leads as your company grows without a drop in performance.
Analytics are vital for tracking your sales funnel, lead management success and areas for improvement. An intuitive interface is a must for quick adoption by your sales team, and robust security measures are non-negotiable to protect your data.
Selecting the right software will help optimize your lead routing process, making it more efficient and effective in connecting leads with the right sales rep.
Step-by-Step Guide to Lead Routing
Below are the most important steps to follow when performing lead routing:
Step 1: Enrich Leads Data
This step is all about lead enrichment, which involves finding and adding relevant information like company name, location, and contact. By doing so, you can speed up the lead qualification and routing process. Lead enrichment helps to update the contact information of existing clients.
Here are the most widely used data types for lead enrichment:
- Firmographic Data
- Technographic Data
- Intent Data
- Demographic Data
- Social media Data
- Geographic Data
- Account Data
- Behavioral Data
Obtaining accurate and fresh data to qualify leads through the lead enrichment process offers a strong data foundation for lead routing. Enriching the lead data also allows marketers to analyze whether a lead falls within the criteria of a qualified lead.
Lead data enrichment could be beneficial in the following ways:
- Sending customized messages
- Building long-lasting relationships with existing customers
- Offering reliable data analytics
Step 2: Score Leads
Lead scoring is a process of assigning scores to each lead depending on predefined criteria. A higher lead score suggests that the lead is likely to be converted into a sale. This step requires assigning points to leads depending on their level of engagement i.e. visiting a website, attending a webinar, or downloading content.
Leads with high scores are then sent to the sales team on a priority basis. This ensures that sales reps are working on the most promising leads. Below are the steps sales teams have to follow when scoring leads:
- Conversion rate calculation of all the leads
- Create attributes from converted customers
- Calculate the lead score and compare values
- Assign points
Step 3: Segment Qualified Leads
Segmenting qualified leads is a way to make your lead routing process more efficient. Segmenting and categorizing the prospective customers is beneficial in many ways. For instance, segmenting qualified leads makes it easier to route such leads to the most relevant sales rep.
To achieve the best possible outcome, you need to segment your leads depending on their similar traits like company size, location, or industry. By doing so, you can direct the leads to those sales reps who have experience dealing within a specific industry.
When performing the step of lead segmentation, make sure to consider the following aspects:
- Type of industry
- Role of the lead
- Company size
Step 4: Route Leads Automatically to Sales Reps with lead routing software
Using a lead routing tool or automation software helps eliminate the need for manually performing tasks like lead scoring or email messaging. So, when you have saved some precious time, utilize it for some other productive activities like having personalized interactions with prospects.
With the right marketing tools used, lead management could not only become a lot easier but also ensure more sales. For instance, you can route leads automatically to sales reps with a fair, impactful, and faster approach. When every lead receives the attention it deserves, the chances of conversion are always bright.
Best Lead Routing Practices
When the marketing team is successful in generating a large number of leads, the next step is lead routing inbound leads. However, to handle lead routing and get the most out of the generated leads, you need an effective lead routing mechanism.
Listed below are a few of the best practices associated with a successful lead routing:
- Choose the Right Sales Rep for the Right Lead
- Route Leads Depending on Demography
- Rely on a Suitable Lead Routing Tool
Choose the Right Sales Rep for the Right Lead
Every member of a sales team could have his/her own strengths and skill levels. For instance, some sales reps might perform well while dealing with leads in a particular industry. Once you are aware of the strengths and weaknesses of your sales team, it is possible to find the right person for the right job.
It can improve the chances of lead conversion, which in turn could result in generating more revenue for the organization. When choosing a sales rep, don’t forget to consider the following aspects:
- Type of product
- Lead Behavior
Route Leads Depending on Demography
As mentioned earlier, demography is one of the most critical criteria for lead routing. If the lead is generated from a specific location or territory, it should be dealt with according to a specific strategy. Sometimes, there is a substantial time difference due to the time zone, which demands responding to a lead at the most appropriate time.
For instance, it is easier for a sales rep to schedule meetings and stay connected with the leads located in a similar time zone. On the other hand, things could be relatively hard when there is a time difference involved. So, make sure to route leads to the most relevant sales rep.
Rely on a Suitable Lead Routing Tool
This is one of the most important factors associated with lead routing that most organizations fail to consider. An integrated lead routing tool can help track the leads and create strategies depending on the collected data.
With an effective, lead generation and routing mechanism, it is possible to eliminate the issue of slow or no response to generated leads. With this system, handling leads more efficiently and with the least available resources is much easier.
A perfect lead routing strategy converts more leads and improves user experience. This means the customers will continue returning and doing business with an organization. However, for a successful lead routing system, you must rely on the correct data and tools.