Qualifying leads with data builds trust faster

Pre-qualifying your leads using data means skipping out unnecessary steps and starting on the right foot.

building trust with qualified leads through data

A study from the Harvard Business Review found that the number one reason salespeople don’t close deals is because they aren’t trusted by a prospect.

The report shows how salespeople can be broken down into four different types:

  1. Someone who is trying to sell something,
  2. A supplier with whom they do business,
  3. A strategic partner who is important to their business,
  4. Or a trusted adviser whose advice is followed.

Out of these choices, it’s pretty clear that you want to be a trusted adviser. They enjoy the best advantages over the competing salespeople and this position helps you to build relationships, not just deals.

Gaining this trust is an important part of the sales process, and there aren’t any shortcuts.

But you can change the position you’re starting from.

Build trust from the outset

building trust from the start with leads

Trust is established from the very first contact you have with a prospect. It’s easily lost and nearly impossible to gain back.

However, the first interaction between a prospect and a salesperson is usually met with conflicting objectives. A prospect’s only concern, at first, is if your product or solution can solve their problem. A salesperson’s main objective is qualifying them as a lead.

Of course, ensuring that their product or solution can solve a prospect’s pain point should be their main qualifying criteria but in reality, they’ll have other criteria to qualify too. Just look at the common BANT qualification criteria:

  • Budget: How much is the prospect able and willing to spend?
  • Authority: Who is the ultimate decision maker?
  • Need: Does the prospect have a problem your product can solve?
  • Timing: Is there urgency?

Three-quarters of those qualification criteria aren’t focused on the prospect’s problem. They’re questions that benefit the salesperson, not the prospect.

The more time spent on questions unrelated to solving a prospect’s problem the more a prospect will feel they’re being sold too.

People are time poor. Think to yourself, if there was only time to ask a few qualifying questions what would they be?

As modern salespeople, we actually have a lot more data about our prospect than we’re aware of.

Specifically, web data. In many industries, over 60% of the purchasing journey is now undertaken online. We can use a lot of this data to qualify our web prospects.

Ask the right questions

Consider the following questions:

“How did you hear about us?”

“What problem are you trying to solve?”

“How long have you been trying to solve this problem?”

“What is your role in the decision-making process?”

“What type of budget do you have for this type of product?”

Now, you could ask all of these questions on a call. Or you could use that time more efficiently and begin the call from a better starting point.

Using only web data we are able to answer the above five questions, without having to ask the prospect a single one.

Looking at the web data of a captured lead

lead capture data and trust

Qualifying with web data

Screenshot of GoSquared Customer Data Hub web profile

“How did you hear about us?”

We can tell from the original source URL (where the link to GoSquared was clicked on) that this lead has discovered us from a Quora article, where we’ve been listed as a potential alternative to a competitor product.

“What problem are you trying to solve?”

We know that the lead was looking for a cheaper alternative to a competitor’s product. This tells us quite a bit about the situation. We can infer from this that they are going to be price sensitive, and by knowing our price comparatively we can tell what sort of budget the lead might have.

“How long have you been trying to solve this problem?”

We know that the lead was researching a solution to their problem 5 days ago (when they clicked through to our website and got in touch through our Assistant.)

“What is your role in the decision-making process?”

From their email address, GoSquared has been able to enrich their data to get their job title and company size. Their position is CEO and Co-Founder, so we know they most likely will have the authority to make a decision.

“What type of budget do you have for this type of product?”

We’ll have benchmarks here based on our competitor’s pricing. They are most likely looking for a more cost-effective solution, or at the very least one that offers more value at that price point.

Further data points available for qualification.

While the above example may seem quite simple based on the source URL that was clicked, you can also be smart with data you include with your online campaigns to help qualify leads.

For example, if we were running a retargeting campaign focused on targeting the same type of lead, we just include that data in the campaign URL. These details can be seen when we capture a lead to help us start qualifying right away.

GoSquared data capture

Even at the most granular level, we could infer a lot of this qualification data based on the pages a lead has viewed before they had got in touch with us.

data about a qualified lead in GoSquared

Focus on the “Why”

building trust with data generated leads

There’s always room to more thoroughly explore the lead’s background and needs.

But with the above data a salesperson can get a pretty good steer on the budget, authority and timing. They can now approach the first conversation more educated about their lead’s current position and focus on the problem to solve.

When salespeople can focus on the “why” of the problem, not the “what”, they are in a far better position.

It is this approach that helps to get to the root issue. Why are they looking for a cheaper alternative? Why hadn’t they been able to achieve success with the competitor’s solution?

The shift of the balance of those qualification questions swings back to the prospect and the problem they’re looking to solve.

By spending less time on establishing the basics and more time on working out why the person has come to you and how you can help them, the quicker you can become that trusted advisor.

Learn how to qualify your leads faster today

Want a more personal recommendation of how you can qualify your leads with data? Book in some time with us for free and we’ll share everything we know!

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