How to Spot and Remove Bad Leads Before They Drag You Down

It’s a dilemma everyone faces at some point: bad leads.

Should you try to revive them or cut them loose?

Unfortunately, most B2B companies set themselves up for failure. Instead of targeting the best fit leads, most B2Bs focus on generating as many leads as possible.

Marketers get overwhelmed. Scoring goes awry. Sales can’t do its job.

The cycle continues.

While removing poor quality leads should be priority number one, preventing them from ever entering your system should be your next step.

Why Bother Removing Bad Leads?

According to the 1-10-100 rule, it costs $1 to remove a bad lead before it enters your system but $10 to cleanse it later. The cost multiplies to $100 if you let the lead sit there collecting dust.

Bad leads don’t just collect dust – they drain resources and throw off marketing strategies.

Marketers end up working an uphill battle against poor conversion rates, unengaged email lists, and no end in sight. Your marketing team can’t even develop effective personalization strategies because bad leads throw off your insight.

Not surprisingly, Gartner predicts 80% of B2Bs will abandon data-driven personalization strategies by 2025, citing poor ROI and bad data.

Lead scoring turns into a cruel joke with marketing consistently sending dead-end leads to sales. Sales wastes their time with unprofitable outreach.

How to Find and Remove Bad Leads

Wouldn’t it be easier if you could unite your sales and marketing teams around high-quality leads instead? Get those bad leads out of the system.

Decide What Makes a Lead Bad

The buyer’s journey is long, non-linear, and convoluted. It’s easy to see why you wouldn’t want to abandon hope in certain leads.

Each organization should map out their unique buyer’s journey, so marketers have an idea of what a poor-quality lead looks like. For high-value purchases, it’s natural for the journey to take longer.

Figure out what your company’s journey looks like so you can pinpoint engagement drop-offs and abandonment.

Use a CRM to Track Leads

A contact or customer relationship management system (CRM) lets you follow leads throughout the journey and builds a better understanding of their behavior.

A CRM is especially useful for spotting and removing bad leads because it syncs all your data into one convenient location. By integrating data and tools from email, website traffic, social media, and other platforms, you can eliminate typical problems associated with siloed data.

Employ AI-Driven Lead Scoring Tools

With lead scoring, artificial intelligence works better and faster than any human. AI algorithms are specially developed and trained to pick up subtle behavioral changes unnoticeable to humans.

Every organization has more data on leads than they know what to do with. AI removes the most tedious parts of data analysis. Plus, machine learning allows AI lead scoring tools to improve over time, so they get better at spotting bad leads the longer you use them.

Marketers can spend more time developing targeted, effective strategies. They’ll be relieved to use AI-based lead scoring tools.

Clean Up Your Email List

Email is an excellent place to learn about your audience and connect with leads. Low open rates and poor-quality leads, however, distort metrics.

Draw better insight from your email lists by cleaning them up. Email tools like Mailchimp and Campaign Monitor let you segment leads based on engagement. If someone hasn’t opened your last dozen emails, it’s probably time to cut the cord.

Nurture Those Iffy Leads

Every organization has those leads who teeter between hot and cold. Think about what your lead nurturing process involved that moved them from hot and from cold.

Could you send more relevant content? Were you targeting them at the wrong stage?

Intent data can help you figure out if they’re considering other options or just simply aren’t prepared to buy.

Use Predictive Analytics

Predictive analytics comes in handy for understanding both your company’s general buyer’s journey and the individual behavior of each lead.

Specifically, intent data and predictive analytics can tell you things like:

  • What competitors a lead is considering
  • If a lead has converted with a competitor
  • Where a lead is at in the journey
  • What types of content a lead is consuming

Using intent data, predictive analytics empower you to nurture leads until it’s not advantageous. With predictive analytics, you can also stay a step ahead of competitors with lead nurturing.

Change Your Acquisition Process

Finally, reevaluate how you collect leads. Bad leads don’t only screw up sales. They also deplete marketing resources and interfere with future personalized content.

Comprehensive lead profiles will help you create content for the right audiences. More relevant content will help you attract more qualified leads.

You should also consider how marketing approaches leads. Are they focusing on generating as many as possible or only the best quality leads?

Make Bad Leads a Priority

You can’t afford to waste time and money targeting leads who will never convert. Once you cleanse your system of current bad leads, set up a strategy to prevent collecting them. Ungated content can prevent visitors from falsifying form information. Meanwhile, AI-driven tools can cleanse bad data before it does damage.

Looking for more strategies to target the right people and nurture leads effectively? Check out the resources from the Televerde Resource Library.

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