Every business leader wants to facilitate growth. No matter which industry or customer base you serve, you’ll constantly be searching for ways to increase revenue and unlock new opportunities. For businesses to grow and earn a profit, they need access to a constant stream of leads.
A lead generation team, working alongside your sales team, can help you to capture the potential customers you need to fill your pipeline. The members of this team, often consisting of marketing, sales, and demand generation specialists, ensure you can constantly attract new clients and revenue to your organization. The question is, how do you build a successful lead generation team?
The way you structure and guide your lead gen employees will influence how effective they are at driving results. Here’s how you can build and develop the perfect team.
Not to be confused with “demand generation” which involves creating interest or excitement around your products and services, lead generation is the process of attracting potential customers to your business. The goal is to guide prospects into and through the buyer journey and sales funnel.
In the business landscape, leads come in a variety of forms, some more valuable than others. For instance, “Information Qualified Leads”, or IQLs, are the cold leads in the initial process of entering your sales funnel. They’re looking for information about your solution and its benefits.
Marketing Qualified Leads, or MQLs, are warmer leads who are already aware of your company or solution, and are looking for ways to leverage your products and services to solve problems. Finally, Sales qualified leads” are people who have already decided they have a need for your solution, and are ready to make a purchase. These are the leads that can be passed over to sales reps.
So, why are leads important? In simple terms, without leads, you can’t earn sales.
Leads are the people who can turn into customers and advocates for your brand, helping your business to grow. With a lead generation strategy, you build visibility, and credibility for your business, while collecting interest from a relevant group of high-quality prospects.
An effective lead generation strategy ensures you can fill your sales pipeline with new potential customers consistently, increasing your revenue and profits.
A lead generation team is essentially a group of employees who act as “hunters” for your sales reps. These professionals can have a range of responsibilities, but their core focus is on finding relevant prospects and driving them towards your sales funnel.
Every member of a lead generation team needs a clear understanding of the company’s USP and go-to-market strategy, the target audience of the brand, and the overall sales process.
While many different employees can participate in a lead generation team, from content creation experts to SEO specialists and market analysts, common roles include:
Directors or leaders of a lead generation team are the professionals responsible for guiding the rest of the employees in your business. They ensure alignment between your sales and marketing teams, help create strategies for lead and demand generation, and conduct market research.
These specialists can often work as marketing managers, sales managers, and coaches or mentors to other employees all at the same time. They know how to use technology and software to achieve lead generation goals, and set KPIs and metrics to help monitor success.
Lead generation strategists are the people most responsible for collecting data and insights to drive your business strategies. They have a deep understanding of your market, and understand what “qualified leads” look like for your business.
Strategists can help to create ideal customer personas and profiles to guide other team members. They can also produce affinity maps for lead qualification, share demographic research, white papers, and case studies with team members, and host training sessions or webinars.
Content creation is one of the most common ways to generate leads in any business. The creation of valuable content, such as videos, search engine optimized blog posts, podcasts, and whitepapers can help to build brand awareness and generate demand for your solutions.
Content creators are responsible for creating these assets, and ensuring they help guide potential prospects through your sales funnel. They’ll often work with strategists to ensure the pieces they produce align with the pain points and goals of your ideal target audience.
Lead generation specialists are professionals in a business landscape that focus exclusively on filling your sales pipeline with potential leads. They work with other team members throughout your organization to identify qualified leads, build and execute nurturing campaigns, and even devise strategies for retaining future customers.
Lead generation specialists can also help to advise the rest of your team members on how to reach out to potential consumers, or move them through the sales funnel using different strategies and resources.
Every member of your sales team can play a role in the lead development process, but SDRs generally have the biggest part to play in driving leads through the sales funnel. Sales Development Representatives prospect and quantify leads before handing them to a sales rep.
They use various methodologies, such as the “BANT” lead qualification strategy, before defining which leads are most valuable to your organization. SDRs don’t sell to leads directly, but they ensure your sales reps always have potential consumers to connect with.
There are a number of different ways to build and structure a lead generation team. Depending on the size of your business and your budget, you may choose to hire full-time employees, dedicated to specific lead generation tasks, such as content creation and sales development.
Smaller businesses sometimes take a more flexible approach. While they might hire full-time sales development representatives and marketing coordinators, they may also purchase the services of freelance content creators, strategists, and lead generation specialists.
However you choose to source and implement your team, the most important step in ensuring the structure works is creating unity among your employees. Bridging the gaps between sales and marketing specialists is crucial for effective lead generation.
Marketing teams can use their industry knowledge to provide sales professionals with resources and guides they can use to nurture and convert customers. Sales professionals can share their data with marketing teams to help them create content relevant to the pain points and goals of your target audience. Alongside ensuring alignment, it’s also important to ensure you invest in:
Figuring out how to structure teams for lead generation involves a careful assessment of the buyer journey, and the sales funnel process used by your organization. Once you’ve determined which team members you need to include in your team, from content experts, to strategists, it’s important to know how to benchmark and monitor their success for continued optimization.
Evaluating the performance of your lead generation team begins with knowing which key performance indicators (KPIs) to monitor. The KPIs you monitor will vary depending on your business structure or goals, but common measurements include:
No business can thrive without access to a consistent stream of qualified leads. While it’s important to ensure you’re investing in retaining your existing customers, you also need a strategy that allows you to draw new potential clients to your organization on a regular basis.
A well-structured lead generation team can help companies to align their sales and marketing efforts, to fill the pipeline for future revenue. If you need help learning how to build, structure, and optimize your lead generation teams, join Hypcccycl today.
Our gamified training experiences offer an engaging way to learn all about the techniques businesses can use to optimize both lead and demand generation, and accelerate sales.