May 14

Lead Generation: Balancing lead quality and lead quantity

Lead Generation


Lead generation is somewhat like a tightrope act.

Generate too many leads, and the rope between Sales and Marketing breaks. If you don’t generate enough leads that turn into sales, your ROI plummets.

As Debbie Pryer, Program Manager, Siemens Healthcare, discovered, finding the right balance between lead quantity and quality takes trust, teamwork, and planning.

When the rope breaks, you get the Wild West of unqualified leads

In the health care segment of Siemens, field service engineers interact directly with customers to repair medical equipment. This interaction was a great opportunity to capitalize on generating prospects interested in Siemens products.

Service engineers were considered trusted advisers for customers, so submitting leads to an external website seemed like a great approach to generate leads.

But something went wrong.

A monetary incentive for sales-qualified leads seemed to be working until the number of unqualified leads skyrocketed to 12,000 after the program was released to thousands of employees.

Ultimately, the expansion also led to 65% of those leads being rejected, so while the program was generating leads, they were not high-quality leads.

“It was totally the Wild West; anybody could submit any lead they wanted for anything,” Debbie explained.

Audit the situation and look for problems

As she explained in her presentation at Lead Gen Summit 2013 in San Francisco, Debbie’s initial challenge was to realign Service and Sales after the program’s high rejection rate ultimately created distrust between the two departments.

To accomplish this, Debbie shifted the lead generation approach from a linear model to a closed loop with a customer-centric focus.

She explained, “You learn from those mistakes, and it’s what you take with that learning and what you do with it.”

Realignments in the process are also important.

Getting all the moving pieces to work together is tough. There’s buy-in from all stakeholders and then gathering all of the resources you need to make it happen.

The key to making this massive shift work, according to Debbie, is in communicating those changes across the organization effectively.

“If you don’t put together some communications plan of what you’re going to communicate to whom and when, you’re setting yourself up for a lot of heartaches,” she said.

To learn more about Debbie’s approach to revitalizing Siemen’s lead generation program and the factors she identifies as keys to success, you can watch the on-demand Summit webinar replay of “Lead Generation: How to empower your program like Siemens Healthcare.”

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About the author 

Brian Carroll

Brian Carroll is the CEO and founder of markempa, helping companies to convert more customers with empathy-based marketing.

He is the author of the bestseller, Lead Generation for the Complex Sale and founded B2B Lead Roundtable LinkedIn Group with 20,301+ members.

  1. Sounds like maybe the comp plan for bringing in new leads was not completely thought out in all aspects before it was rolled out to the employees as a unit.

    It also sounds like they pulled back on the reins before the whole train ran off the rails.

  2. Unfortunately, it’s hard to find a reliable lead broker. Generating your own leads is the best way.

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