Prospects is a word that sounds a lot in the world of digital marketing and also within sales departments. For this reason, it is the foundation on which inbound marketing moves.
When a business creates its conversion funnels, what it is thinking about is the customer prospects, these people who have all the characteristics to become recurring buyers of the brand.
In this article, we will explain what a lead is, the types of leads that exist, and how you can classify them to know when to approach them to close a sale.
Let’s talk about what leads are.
Prospects are people who meet certain characteristics that make them potential buyers of the products and services your business offers.
Speaking clearly, a prospect is any individual who fits the profile of your buyer persona and has the financial capacity to purchase your product or service, but above all, they are the one who makes the purchase decision.
How are prospects different from leads?
Leads and prospects are not the same, although one contains the other. Every person who leaves their contact details is a lead, but not all the people who leave their details meet the three characteristics that we mentioned above.
For example, there are people who can fill out your form in order to download content. But when you study this person, they don’t fit your customer profile or they don’t have the income level to buy your product or they can’t even decide what to buy, as in the case of young children.
This person is indeed a lead because they are in your database, but they are not a prospect because they will not really convert into a sale.
Types of existing leads.
Prospects can also be classified into types, almost always associated with purchasing behavior, thus we have:
They are the prospects who focus on the type of treatment they receive from the brand throughout the purchase journey, their decision is much more emotional and they like to perceive a humane treatment by the company.
This is where branded content shines with its own light. Expressive clients seek to demonstrate that the values promoted by the brand are really applied in reality.
In short, they are more interested in how their decisions affect other people around them, and even the environment.
They are clearly pragmatic, they want to be spoken to through statistics, achievements and success stories.
This type of client is influenced by the opinions of other people, the reviews of pages and the videos that show the product or service in action.
Here we are talking about those who need to thoroughly research a brand before even making first contact, often ask a lot, download a lot of material and compare with similar products from the competition.
Of course, when this type of prospect decides to buy, they will do so without looking back and if they are satisfied, they will be loyal to the company for a long time.
The last profile is the hot prospect, they are people who decide to ask and buy on impulse. They are those who acquire things by emotion or impression.
But they don’t usually come back again unless the impulse buy has given them great satisfaction.
How are customer prospects classified?
To classify customers, you must do something called customer prospecting. That is, differentiate leads from prospects.
How can this be done? Very easy, you simply have to be clear about the following aspects of your business and type of client:
1. – Have a clear value proposition:
The value proposition of your business is what differentiates you from your competition and also helps your target customer, or at least solves one of their problems.
By being clear about the advantage that your brand offers, you will know the type of audience you are targeting and therefore, if someone who leaves their data fits that profile or not.
2. – Have a buyer persona:
Your customer profile will also help you discern if a person is your ideal customer or is simply someone to whom your product, service or content has caught the attention.
For obvious reasons, you won’t know this right away, but thanks to the number and frequency of their future interactions with your company’s content, what we call lead nurturing.
3. – Classify prospects:
You must have some type of statistics that helps you filter leads, such as a CRM program that allows you to measure customer interactions with the company, phone calls, and email contacts, among others.
This type of prospecting strategy is what will allow you to know who your qualified customers are or who are more likely to buy.
4. – Divide the prospecting methods by work units:
You must assign personnel to each type of classification method, there will be the customer service department, cold calls, email marketing, content generation, etc.
What is really important is that regardless of which methods you apply, all these contacts with potential prospects end up feeding the sales department’s database, so that priority is given to the best qualified.
Summary of the post and frequently asked questions about prospects:
What is a customer lead?
Customer prospects are those people who, in addition to having become a lead in your business, meet the following characteristics:
- They fit the profile of your buyer persona.
- They have the economic capacity to acquire your product or service.
- They have purchasing decision power.
What is the difference between a lead and a prospect?
Leads are all those people who have left contact information in your database through a form or other type of registration.
Instead, a prospect is a lead that meets the three characteristics that make it a true potential customer.
How can I differentiate a lead from a prospect?
The easiest way to differentiate a lead from a prospect is through the interactions a person has with your brand.
In general, those individuals who are motivated to contact the company or comment on its content are potential prospects that should be classified and approached with more personalized information.
As you can see, prospect identification is super important to have a financially healthy business, because if you don’t identify your leads well, you could end up spending effort and money on someone who will never purchase your products.