Every company should have a clear content marketing strategy for its website and this focus differs depending on the company’s ultimate goal. Having a sound content strategy is to create informative and engaging content that attracts the right customers to your company.
Some companies’ marketing strategies focus on boosting their brand, some focus on retaining current customers, and others concentrate on generating leads.
Generating leads is done with a lead scoring strategy that ranks the potential of a customer’s likeliness to buy your company’s product or service. Using a scoring chart, marketers will assign points based on a visitor’s action, for example, someone downloads your company’s eBook will score 10 points while another person gets 25 points for clicking on the company’s price list.
The overall concept behind the lead scoring strategy is to focus only on those who are more likely to become customers and ignore the weak scorers. High scorers will initiate automatic action via a CRM workflow or a campaign action.
Creating content solely for lead scoring can be a mistake, even a costly one, let me show you why.
Ignoring Weak Leads
As I mentioned, the lead scoring strategy concentrates on high potential leads and usually filters out the weaker ones.
The problem here is that sometimes people go to your company’s site knowing exactly what they’re looking for and go right to the “source”. So, they’re not doing enough to score a high lead score to trigger your sales system to start catering to them.
There are also your current customers as well, those who are already your regular customers when you initiate new lead scores will miss out on new sales, focused content, and other opportunities because of low scores.
Scoring on Call to Action Only
There are so many ways to score leads such as demographics, account-based, engagement, call to action, behavioral, and more, but some marketers focus their scoring system on website actions only and miss scoring on these other important factors.
For example, taking into account a visitor’s demographics will actually show you if they have the resources to buy your products, while their behavior shows if they’re actually wanting to buy or are “looking around”, thus these visitors should score lower points than those who are actually ready and able to buy your products right now. A study by Annuitas showed that 52% of marketers score leads only by behavior and 48% score only on call to action.
So, a freelance writer like myself who is doing research for my content might score highly because I checked out a company’s product page and downloaded a white paper, but the probability of me buying something from your company is actually zero.
High Lead Scores Doesn’t Mean High Sales
You may have a very effective lead scoring strategy that’s creating many sales leads, but unless these leads are followed through effectively using your automatic sales platform or by your sales team, these scores won’t mean anything.
A surprising statistic states that 79% of marketing leads never convert to sales due to lack of follow-up and lead nurturing.
So, your marketing department and your sales department may have conflicting strategies and will need to get on the same page in order to be effective. Even then, salespeople have stated that only 27% of all the leads they receive from marketing are actually qualifying leads.
Having an Inflexible System
There are many factors that influence a customer’s decision to buy products and services and if your marketing department is using a fixed scoring system, it is likely you’re missing sales.
Some scoring criteria will rarely change such as site visits and form submission, but other criteria will always fluctuate over time such as economy, a new competitor, buying preferences and so on.
So, there’ll be a need to regularly analyze and refresh your lead scoring system, which is a time-extensive (and expensive) activity.
Targeted Content is a Better Method for Attracting Customers
Instead of working extensively on a scoring system for grading potential customers that’s rife with errors, you should create content that targets your market. Content that addresses peoples’ specific issues, meets their needs and gets them engaged is a much better approach to gaining loyal customers.
Targeted content is accomplished by creating the “perfect customer”. Your strategy would be to create personas of the people you want to attract to your company, then writing content speaking directly to them.
There’s no complex number-scoring and tracking system to compute, just focus on speaking directly to your customer and you’ll achieve a 56% higher engagement rate. Personalized, targeted content ensures your customers will remember your brand, your content feels more personal, and less “schtick”.
More Successful Lead Generation Methods
You may now wonder what you can do for generating sales instead of lead scoring.
There are more successful ways of attracting leads to your website and targeted content is only one of them. Other methods include having a clear and visible call-to-action, having alternate media on your site such as videos and infographics instead of text, effective link sharing on popular platforms like SlideShare and StumbleUpon, and brand ambassadors.
Generating leads that become sales is important to a company’s success, but how you implement a strategy to gather those leads is just as important.
Creating content purely to attract readers so you can gather numbers and statistics for potential sales will only work for limited time because if you cannot make readers stay on your site, your success rate drops drastically.
Create content that personally speaks to your customers and addresses what they’re looking for and you’ll earn loyal readers and customers.