Lead generation should be taken on, as with any business measure, with a strategy in tow, particularly one that is based on the nature of the products or services and the target audience. However, the most common dilemma when it comes to this approach would be prioritizing between quantity or quality of leads.

By Cedrick Capati

The typical process of lead generation goes like this:

Initial list building and filtering, which involves intensive research to see if leads are qualified and match your business’s ideal customer profile.

Filtering out those that do not match the criteria based on data points provided.

Additional research to know if the remaining leads have expressed a buying signal, which may entail visiting their blogs or social media or reaching out to the sales team.

When it comes to determining the success of lead generation, sales teams prefer looking at the amount of qualified leads while marketing teams look at just the number of leads. This is because sales professionals care about conversion rates, while marketers care about the brand’s reach and the leads generated from it.

What is Lead Quality, Anyway?

A qualified lead is one that fits the specific parameters set—an individual in authority who is actively searching the market to interact with brands because he or she has the intent to buy (and has the money to buy) the product or service needed.

The quality is measured through lead scoring, wherein the leads are ranked on a scale based on each of their perceived value. Aside from knowing who to prioritize, the score also determines the type of engagement that is appropriate for each lead.

Quantity vs. Quality

Getting a high volume of leads (quantity) is basically what most companies have been doing—buying leads that haven’t been found to be qualified but may match their criteria in place. The idea is to attract enough leads, then sift through it for the qualified ones.

Casting a wide net is often the strategy of new businesses that still need more brand awareness, as well as those that offer less expensive products or have little marketing and sales budgets. This is because it allows companies to collect customer data, which can be used to learn more about their behavior, pain points, needs, and motivations, so brands would know how to best address them.

Quality, meanwhile, means that the leads have fit your customer profile and have already expressed some form of buying signal. In 2015, a study by BrightTALK found that “B2B marketers had a preference for generating high-quality leads (68%) over generating a high volume (55%),” which proves that companies are transitioning to prioritizing qualified leads, and for good reasons.

There’s a higher chance of conversion since the lead already has the intent to buy.

Customers’ lifetime value is improved because relationships are nurtured; their loyalty also increases.

In addition, they become brand advocates who can help spread positive news about your business.

There is better ROI since the lead turns into buying customers

Note that concentrating on lead quality means high spending on selected or targeted leads, so there’s a chance that the pool of qualified leads is small. The upside is you’re still spending more efficiently.

Why Choose When You Can Do Both?

There is not one correct way to handle your lead generation campaign. Whether you prefer, quantity, quality, or both, it’s best to strategize, test, implement, observe, and examine consistently. Doing these steps repeatedly to know what works for your business is the only way to truly discover the approach that will fit and drive the best results.

By now, it’s evident that both qualification and quantity matter when it comes to lead generation because both contribute to the overall success of the campaign anyway. The critical thing is implementing a strategy that’s based on rigorous research on your business’s nature, products and services, and its intended clients.

Cedrick Capati is an Online PR Specialist for Spiralytics. He loves everything digital from gadgets to the latest video games. During his free time, you can see him in front of his computer playing, listening (and trying to sing along) to his favorite show tunes, or binge-watching an anime show.

Lead generation stock photo by Olivier Le Moal/Shutterstock