3 Essential Acquisition Scoring Models
Unlock revenue with acquisition scoring. Prioritize leads, boost conversions, and fast-track sales with Breadcrumbs’ top 3 lead scoring models for acquisition.
The average cost per lead can vary between $98 to $1,262 depending on your industry, channel, and vertical–so making the most out of the leads you already have in your database has never been more important.
Enter lead scoring.
Lead scoring is the fastest way to sort through your contact database and find high-quality leads engaged with your brand and ready to become customers.
It works by ranking your prospect’s demographic fit and digital activity and scores them based on how close they are to your ideal customer profile in addition to how likely they are to convert based on historical trends. Traditionally, when you think of lead scoring, you think of large companies sifting through leads to send to the sales team.
Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) Worksheet
Learn how to create an Ideal Customer Profile and build a successful sales strategy with this Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) Worksheet.
The fact of the matter is that lead scoring can be used across any industry and stage of the funnel for B2B and B2C companies alike. 68% of marketers attribute lead scoring as a top revenue contributor, and sales and marketing teams who implement a lead scoring system into their database typically see a higher conversion rate, shorter sales cycle, and a higher interest level than those who do not.
Other trends have indicated that around 66% to 81% of businesses still do not utilize lead scoring. Moreover, regarding B2B specifically, only about 21% use some type of lead scoring, which presents a solid chance to get a head start against other businesses.
In this guide, we’ll demystify the lead scoring process and provide 3 of our top scoring models based on the most popular conversion goals—product sales, trial signups, and demo calls.
Let’s get started!
Why Lead Scoring is Vital in 2024
There are a few core reasons why all businesses should take advantage of lead scoring across all industries and stages of the funnel.
1. Stop wasting time and resources on the wrong leads
Talking to everyone just doesn’t work–and it certainly isn’t scalable, especially for enterprise-level solutions. Manually sifting through thousands of leads is impossible for any human to do (or very well, at least).
This is where lead scoring comes into play–it helps to isolate and promote key fit and activity differences so your team will know which leads will likely lead to sales and which to put on the back burner.
2. Sell to prospects at the moment they’re ready to buy
Chances are, if you went out on a blind date and asked that person to marry you, you’d get turned down instantly. The same goes for trying to make a sale too early.
With lead scoring, you can use intent signals you already have across your tech stack to find contacts in the consideration stage at this very second. This ensures you’re not only talking to the right people but also when they’re ready to hear what you have to offer.
3. Align the marketing and sales teams
Lead scoring is not just beneficial to your sales team. Rather, it is an essential process for any sales and marketing teams in that it brings them together to agree on what criteria make one contact more qualified than the other.
This harmony results in better messaging and content curation from the marketing team and more qualified leads for sales—a true peanut butter and jelly moment.
4. Nurture your lukewarm leads with the right content
As we mentioned in point 2, not everyone is ready to become your customer just yet. Lead scoring allows your team to test every prospect’s readiness and pinpoint where they are in the sales funnel.
With this information, you can create nurture sequences with your email marketing tools to give your contacts the tools and information they need to move to the next step with your organization.
What Goes Into the Perfect Acquisition Scoring Model
Breadcrumbs (and this guide) takes a co-dynamic approach to scoring. This means that your models and score will contain both a letter and a number, with 16 possible variations.
The letter represents fit, which determines how aligned the contact is with your ideal customer profile and personas based on factors like their business size, industry, and needs.
Options include A, B, C, and D. A is the best fit, and D is the lowest.
The number will represent activity and engagement levels, which are based on factors like whether they’ve signed up for a trial, how responsive they are to emails, how they’re interacting with your brand overall, and how engaged they are with your product in the case of PLG/PLS strategies.
Your potential scores here include 1, 2, 3, 4, with 1 being the highest level of engagement and 4 being the lowest.
An A1 lead, for example, is as high intent as you can possibly get. They’re a great fit for your business and highly engaged. You want to act immediately.
Another factor in your scoring models should be time. As we all know, someone interacting with your brand today is more important than someone who did three years ago.
Each of these models we’ll build for you will have a time decay element added. That means contacts who have completed an action recently will have a higher score than those who have completed it in the past.
Adding time to the score is critical to ensuring you never miss an opportunity when it arises.
Now, let’s get into the good part–creating your scoring models.
The Best Lead Scoring Model to Get More Demos
The following is our recommended model for determining which leads should be prioritized by the sales team and includes the following data points:
The first thing you want to do is see if the contact is a good fit for your company from a demographic perspective. Once you have your ideal customer profile done, you can start to score the contacts based on how closely they represent that persona.
Each of the following data points is weighted equally (20%) for a total fit score of 100%.
- Estimated annual revenue
- Company size
- Number of form submissions
Once your fit model is done, it’s time to look at your activity model, which identifies your contacts’ actions and behaviors on your online properties.
For a lead scoring model that surfaces contacts ready to book a demo with you, consider the following:
- High-value webpage visits—40% of activity score. Pages like your pricing page and case studies indicate that your contact is in the consideration stage of the buying process. Those who have visited these pages recently are precisely where you want them to be when you reach out to schedule a demo.
- Content downloads—30% of activity score. In addition to visiting high-value pages, those who have recently downloaded other forms of content (eBooks, white papers, etc.) indicate they have a good relationship with your brand.
- Website visits—20% of activity score. Contacts who recently visited your website and have taken the other actions above should be highly prioritized as they are engaged now.
- Email opens—5% of activity score. While the latest tracking regulations make it difficult to track true email opens, using this as a small but supplemental scoring factor is yet another way of indicating engagement and intent with your brand.
- Email click-through—5% of activity score. Factoring in email clicks and opens can help ensure you’re routing the right contacts to the right automation or department.
The Best Lead Scoring Model to Get More Trial Signups
While our product signup model looks very similar to our demo model, there are a few key differences between the two—namely, in the specific actions that qualify one contact over the other.
The overall fit of your contact. As in the previous model, we want to consider our buyer persona. For SaaS companies, you might look into more firmographic information—knowledge about the company rather than the individual contact—to determine if they meet your ideal persona.
Once your fit model is done, it’s time to look at your activity model, which identifies your contacts’ actions and behaviors on your online properties.
For a lead scoring model that surfaces contacts ready for a product signup, consider the following:
- High-value webpage visits—40 % of activity score. Pricing and case study pages are great places to start; however, you would also want to consider trial signup and feature pages as high-value visits for this goal. This can aid in retargeting those who have considered signing up recently but have not taken that vital step and those researching what you have to offer.
- Content downloads—30% of activity score. In addition to eBooks and case studies, SaaS companies benefit from adding webinar registrations into their scoring equation. These typically have a higher ask from your contact, as they usually need to spend 30 minutes to an hour to digest this type of content.
- Website visit—20% of activity score. While they aren’t considered high-value pages, tracking blog articles or general website visits is another great data point for product signup models. You might also want to consider which blog pages have higher conversion rates (for example, those tied to content downloads) and weigh those more than others.
- Email opens (5% of activity score) and email clicks (5% of activity score). We still want to add email engagement as a factor for product signups. They remain a smaller part of our overall score but are still crucial for judging engagement within the overall organization.
The Best Lead Scoring Model to Sell More Products
While lead scoring is traditionally associated with routing leads to sales, it can also easily be adapted for eCommerce businesses. While the activities and demographics may differ, the theory is the same—get the right people in front of the right offer at the right time.
For this example, let’s say we sell accessories for devices for mobile phones and tablets. These categories can easily be customized for your specific product.
- Device brand—30% of fit score. In this case, we will use the type of device the user accesses our site on. If you don’t have this information in your database, you can add a question to any signup form on your site.
- Past purchases—25% of fit score. The best customer is the one you already have, which counts for scoring models, too. Pay attention to any previous purchase history, as these contacts are more inclined to purchase again if they had a positive experience in the past.
- Last product purchase (type)—25% of fit score. If you don’t outright ask which device they have (or cannot get that information by other means), it’s safe to assume that any previous product purchases will be related to ones in the future.
- Last product purchase date—20% of fit score. Depending on your product type, those who have purchased recently will have a higher likelihood of buying again soon. While this logic may not hold true for cars, lower ticket items benefit from adding this data point to their score.
- Newsletter signup—40% of activity score. Getting a newsletter signup in 2022 isn’t as easy as it seems—so if your contact has taken that crucial step, it’s safe to say they’re considering a purchase in the short term.
- Engagements with your brand on social—25% of activity score. Consumers typically research brands before they buy—and engaging with a company on social media is one of the ways they do just that. Factoring in recent social engagement can help determine which contacts are in the consideration stage or, at the very least, are more interested than others.
- Email clicks and email opens—40% of activity score. Like in the last 2 models, we also want to pay attention to email clicks and opens. The more interactions the contact has with your brand, the more likely they will be qualified for the next step of the funnel. We weighted these as 20% of the total activity score each.
What to Do With Your Scored Leads
Now that you know the difference between an A1 and a D4 contact and scores start flowing in, you’re probably wondering what to do with them all. The critical factor here is that to see the most lift, you want to automate these actions as much as possible.
Breadcrumbs will route the scoring information to your CRM or marketing automation tool so that you can create automated workflows to respond to your contact’s intent signals as soon as possible.
A1-2, B1-2, C1-2, D1-2
While you may be surprised to see D’s listed in the lineup, the fact that these contacts are highly engaged is not something to be taken lightly. Even though some contacts may fall outside your perceived buyer persona, it shouldn’t disqualify them entirely.
For demos: Direct these to your sales team with the highest priority—these leads are highly engaged and looking into your service right now.
For trials: For these contacts, try to entice them with something a little extra. This could be additional time for a free trial, a 1:1 guided onboarding, or a discount on their first month.
For sales: This is your big chance to get the sale—it’s time to think big. Consider going with a Black Friday-style campaign and offer a large discount, free item, or even free shipping.
The next segment can be a little trickier to tackle. These contacts aren’t completely interested, but they’re not ready to take the next step just yet. A good idea would be to get the contact to raise their hand (so to speak) to indicate if they’re ready for the next step.
For demos: For your demo segment, direct them towards content closer to the bottom of the funnel—think case studies, competitor comparisons, etc. Getting these contacts to download or interact in any way with this type of content is a good sign that they’re getting closer to being ready to see your product in action.
For trials: Similar to the demo track, we want to focus on the bottom-of-funnel content. Direct these users to product-focused webinars, demo videos, or case studies.
For sales: Those in the eCommerce sphere have additional opportunities they can use to signal that a contact is interested. Consider offering a discount to sign up for your emails or follow social pages.
At long last, we get to the bottom of the pack. While you may want to toss these leads and contacts altogether, fear not—these people just need a little more coaxing. The next set of tactics will focus on nurturing the contacts into the A3-D3 bracket.
For demos: If you have a BDR on your team, this is likely the type of contact they’d interact with first. Get a conversation going by reaching out and personalizing your messages to address their main pain points.
For trials: These contacts aren’t actively engaged, so it’s time to get on their good side and show them that you know you’re eager to help—even if it doesn’t lead to a sale. Entice your users with educational content about their problems like your top blog posts, eBooks, podcasts, or other top-of-funnel content.
For sales: It’s time to show off the goods—and we mean that literally. Nurture these contacts by showing them what your brand is all about. This can include special features or benefits, brand values, or even behind the scenes of product creation. It’s all about letting your potential customers get to know (and, most importantly, trust) your brand.
As we’ve learned today, there’s a lead scoring model for every industry and vertical to help increase the number of leads, sales, and product signups.
But as we mentioned earlier, lead scoring (or, as we like to call it, contact scoring) can be used across every stage of the funnel.
In addition to acquisition-based goals, you can also use scoring models to find upsell and cross-sell opportunities and even reduce customer churn.
With contact scoring, identifying contacts ready to buy and retaining those at risk of churning just got way easier.