How to Improve Lead Scoring


How can I improve my lead scoring process to identify the strongest leads?


Lead scoring, when done effectively, can completely revamp productivity, quality, value, and time spent prospecting. No one wants to feel as if their time has been wasted, whether it's a sales representative or a potential consumer. 

As Marketo wrote, the best lead scoring processes leverage "demographic and firmographic attributes, such as company size, industry, and job title, as well as behavioral scoring, such as clicks, keywords, and web visits. The goal of lead scoring is to identify which leads are ready to move to sales and which leads require further nurturing." 

There are many kinds of lead scoring tactics (such as implicit and explicit) and models teams can implement depending on what works best for the business model. For instance, Sendbird, a fully managed chat platform, wanted to improve leads. This was accomplished through "in-depth persona interviews, buying triggers and barriers were uncovered, as well as the buying journey for the CTO, product, and engineering audiences, which was then used to reframe the paid channel audiences and corresponding messages."

Moreover, the company identified pain points from the consumer journey, which helped create content that "would resonate with Sendbird's audiences — from prospects to target accounts — including industry-specific guides, white papers, and live webinars." This revamp led to 30,801 leads from 2020 to 2021.

That being said, it can be difficult to measure accurately. Jenn Choo, marketing director at Theorem, wrote in an ANA article recently how important it is to measure ROI, stating, "ROI is a percentage value calculated to give you a fast answer to very important question: Are you making enough money to justify your business venture? It's important to attribute your ROI back to your conversion rates by tracking the number of MQLs that converted to a closed sale — an essential metric for executive teams to see."

Further, Choo also raised three important factors when measuring marketing qualified leads (MQLs) and sales qualified leads (SQLs): 

"Marketing qualified leads (MQLs) are prospects willing to interact with brand content to get something return... Sales qualified leads (SQLs)are even further into the buyer journey and show an interest in making a purchase. MQLs become SQLs when they're ready to talk to a sales team. When it comes to analyzing this lead gen data, you should measure:

    • How many MQLs in each nurturing program hit the scoring threshold and became SQLs that were passed along to sales.
    • How many of the SQLs became qualified opportunities.
    • How many of the qualified opportunities became actual sales, and how much revenue that sale contributed back to the business."

Below are helpful resources, best practices, and tools. 

Best Practices 

  • The Definitive Guide to Lead Scoring. Marketo, April 2022.
    Lead scoring allows you make the most out of every lead that enters your pipeline. This guide is meant to help companies understand why, how, and when to implement lead scoring and improve execution with best practices and easy-to-use worksheets.

    Whether you're a lead scoring pro or just getting started, these scoring tactics, case studies, and measurement tips will transform your practices and streamline lead flow, productivity, and efficiency between marketing and sales to simplify processes so your teams can focus on what they do best.

  • The Best Lead Scoring Models. Zendesk, March 2022.
    A business can't thrive without a reliable lead generation system, however, the more leads you generate, the more selective you must be in your pursuits. Sales rep don't want to waste time chasing a large list of dead-end leads. That time could be spent nurturing more promising leads. Yet, when it comes to valuing leads, how do you separate the wheat from the chaff?

    Experience and gut instinct go a long way, but they aren't enough. To consistently find strong potential customers, sales reps need a lead scoring model. Here Zendesk looks at the seven factors that all robust lead scoring models have in common.
  • Lead Scoring: 14 Ways for Identifying Your Highest Quality Leads. Databox, January 2022.
    If you're spending time converting leads with no success, use this lead scoring model to find your highest-quality leads, and prioritize them to close the sale faster. In this ultimate guide to scoring leads, Databox talks about:
    • What is lead scoring?
    • Why is lead scoring Important?
    • 5 lead scoring criteria for evaluating your leads
    • How to score a lead: 9 lead scoring tips for identifying your highest quality leads
    • What is a good lead score?
    • What are the best lead scoring tools?
  • Lead Scoring 101: How to Use Data to Calculate a Basic Lead Score. HubSpot, November 2021.
    Depending on your business model and the leads in your database, lead scoring can quickly become complicated. To make this process a little easier on you, HubSpot walks you through the basics of creating a lead score, including what data you should look at, how to find the most important attributes, and the process for calculating a basic score.


  • Getting Started with Lead Scoring: Best Practices Guide. ANA/Demand Metric, April 2018.
    This Guide will help marketers score leads by showing how to set up a simple lead scoring system and then refine it over time. Read this guide to learn about:
    • The case for lead scoring
    • Setting up a simple lead scoring system
    • Refinements to improve results over time
  • Lead Scoring Template. ANA/Demand Metric, April 2018.

    This Lead Scoring Template can help you analyze leads and identify strong prospects. The best possible score for a lead is 100, which is based on 6 criteria for evaluating explicit and implicit need for your product or service.


  • SAP's Marketing Innovation for Sustained Audience Growth. ANA, July 2022.
    By targeting companies based on intent and utilizing an ABM and omnichannel approach, SAP was able to identify additional revenue streams for SAP, as well as create relevant connections with these targets and industries through persona-based messages and landing pages. SAP also targeted their entire buying committee.

  • Sendbird Tackles Demand Generation.ANA, July 2022.

    Sendbird identified the need for a more sophisticated CRM platform and undertook a Marketo standup, which included optimizing lead scoring, establishing integrations for paid campaign tracking, and advancing data enrichment and integrity. It strove to optimize both its paid program and SEO strategy to improve organic and paid ad performance, drive leads, and unlock the full potential and value in its sales pipeline.

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"How to Improve Lead Scoring." ANA, 2022.