Survey says…Sales rejects 80% of marketing-generated leads

Playing the blame game with sales is a losing proposition for marketers. That’s according to our 2015 Survey of B2B Marketers, which shows that a full 70% of marketing teams are measured on the amount of revenue generated from marketing campaigns and lead-generation activities.

In addition, we discovered that lead-generation continues to be a particular area of contention for many teams. Based on responses from 321 US-based B2B marketing professionals:

  • 70% of marketers are measured on lead quality.
  • 60% are measured on quality as evidenced by the number of leads that their sales teams accept.
  • 80% of sales teams routinely reject leads supplied by the marketing team.

Clearly, marketers who are not taking steps to connect marketing activities to revenue continue to put themselves at risk.

How can we solve this dilemma? For years, industry thought leaders and experts have preached the need for sales and marketing to speak the same language. Agree on quantity and the definition of a good prospect. Collaborate to define buyer personas and develop useful collateral that addresses the concerns of prospects and buyers.

While these are important steps, they’re just a start. To reliably achieve revenue growth in today’s dynamic buying environment, marketing teams need predictive intelligence.

Predictive intelligence:

  1. Ends arguments about the attributes of a “well qualified” prospect. Predictive intelligence is built on behavioral models connected to prospects activity, giving you insight into which accounts convert into opportunities and business and which. Setting definitions for MQLs and SQLs becomes a matter of data not opinion, allowing sales and marketing to align around the same set of verifiable information.
  2. Eliminates chasing prospects that are not actually in buying mode. A robust predictive tool will track buying signals exhibited by prospects over time and will deliver those buyers who are actively in market, helping you conserve the dear and scarce resource of sales’ time.
  3. Stops guessing games about who’s on your website, who will buy from you and when they’ll buy. Predictive intelligence ties together billions of time-sensitive buying signals from your customer data and first-and third-party data sources to find prospective buyers with a high degree of accuracy, early in their buyer’s journey. Timing isn’t everything. It’s the only thing!
  4. Keeps your pipeline full by finding new prospects showing interest in products like yours. Do your buyers do research anonymously on your site or on other sites outside of your view? Most companies are engaging just a fraction of their total available market. Predictive intelligence helps you find the rest.

The best part about using predictive intelligence tools? The more you use them, the more you get back. Predictive tools are built on model refinement, which means that machine-learning algorithms “learn” from activities generated by ongoing campaigns. The more you use predictive, the more accurately the models will perform to find your next customer.

To truly achieve ROI on lead-gen efforts, companies need a consistent stream of prospects that are backed by data and predictive modeling. These tools will fill the sales funnel and help salespeople find more buyers, earlier and faster. And marketing will get the credit.

Get more key insights from the 2015 Survey of B2B Marketers.

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