Being able to seize, react and then maintain incoming leads is what lead management is all about. Marketers spend a lot of time and money on perfecting their campaign, but so many of them fail to put to use clearly defined lead management practices. Without good practices you risk a decrease on your ROI, bad relationships with leads and customers and a faulty sales funnel.

However, when managed correctly, lead management can create more informed buyers, you have a better understanding of their needs which results in more revenue. Below are some great ways to practice good lead management that you probably were not aware of.

1: Know when a lead is ready for a sale by working directly with sales.

Work closely with your sales team to create criteria such as demographic information, lead source information and behavioral information that predisposes the steps prospects should be taking before making a sales call.

2: Execute lead recycling practices

Although you have worked closely with the sales team to determine whether or not a lead is ready for a sales call, there can be times when the sales team conclusion was the lead was not ready for a call, or there was no follow up by sales. These leads seem to fall between the cracks and this can be avoided by executing lead recycling practices. You can create this in two different ways. One would be automatically recycling leads based on a set of business rules, and the other way would be to manually recycle leads if not believed to be ready.

3: Score your leads with behavioral data

Monitoring your prospects activities online to know when they are ready for the next step is important because, after all, they are in control of the buying process. Lead scoring will tell you where the prospect is in your funnel. Determine their interest level according to their actions by tracking email clicks, web page visits, eBook downloads and then update accordingly.

4: Tie data to new leads by tracking anonymous visitors

By placing a code on your web pages you can track both known and anonymous prospects. This will determine who is interested in your products. When unknown prospects fill out forms on your landing pages or website, any visits prior can be associated to a new lead.

5: Regularly know your prospects needs

As your relationship with your prospect builds, you should learn more about their needs. Keep in mind that every campaign that a prospect reacts to gives you insight about their interests. With every form they fill out and every click they make you learn even more about them. Be creative with your forms and ask questions to find out something you don’t already know.

6: Ideal buyer profile

Both your sales and marketing teams should know the profile of an ideal buyer. Being on the same page of what you’re looking for can make it easier to pass leads between sales and marketing at a later time.

7: Know the difference between intent and interest

When going through a lot of lead data, it is important to know which actions are vital and which ones you can let slide. In order to know that, you would need to understand the difference between intent and interest. If a prospect is just surfing around, they most likely are showing interest. If they are signing up for a product demo, they would indicate intent. Which action matters most to you? Decide and use these to compile your better leads.

8: Grade and score your leads

Having a buyer profile in mind and knowing which actions equal the best buying signals, it should be easy to implement a grade and score system that helps determine which leads should be followed up and which should not.

9: Keep non sales ready leads in your mind

You will come across leads that are just not ready to buy. Don’t let those leads slip away only to get picked up by a competitor. Nurture those leads with drip marketing content over a period of time that will keep you in the top of their mind. It is also a good way to build relationships where there otherwise might not have been any.

10: Create supporting and engaging content

It is important to take the time to build supportive and engaging content that you can include on your landing pages and in emails.

Once you begin to refine your process of lead management, you will be able to track and report all your efforts. Tracking will help identify areas of improvement along with areas that you excel and are meeting your goals.