How to Get the Most Out of HubSpot Lead Scoring

Stephanie Lehuger
Stephanie Lehuger
Apr 27, 2021 · 4 min read

When done correctly, HubSpot lead scoring can have a major positive impact on your sales. Read on to get tips on creating an effective lead scoring model.

HubSpot offers a wide range of features designed to support businesses as they transform their contacts into leads (and, eventually, transform those leads into sales). In addition to delivering features like HubSpot lifecycle stages and HubSpot sales dashboards, the platform lets you leverage lead scoring to optimize your marketing and sales efforts. At the highest level, lead scoring involves assigning numerical values to various attributes a lead can have to determine which leads in your HubSpot funnel are most likely to convert.

There are many benefits to effective lead scoring, but most obviously, HubSpot lead scoring helps your entire team know who to follow up with. Why does this matter? Well, according to Gartner, 70% of leads are lost due to poor follow-up practices. Successful lead scoring — which replaces “gut feelings” with data-driven guidance — helps you avoid this trap. It also allows your sales and marketing teams to better prioritize their time and resources based on a lead’s score and their place in the sales funnel.

In short, HubSpot lead scoring enables you to direct your efforts toward the most promising leads instead of toward leads that are unlikely ever to result in a sale. This means you’ll increase your conversions and improve overall sales efficiency.

Common factors in a lead score

HubSpot lead scoring is a dynamic, variable process, which is why there’s no universal template for how businesses should score their leads. That said, there are a number of common attributes that are typically included in effective lead scoring models:

  • Demographic information: This includes basic facts about the lead and their company. What industry are they in? How big are they? What type of business is it? You can also score details about the lead specifically, like their job position, role, and level of seniority.

  • Online behavior: Scoring the ways a lead interacts with your website can be useful in determining how likely they are to buy from you. Lead scoring often incorporates attributes like website visits, social media interactions, content downloads, and contact requests.

  • Email engagement: Statistics like email open and click-through rates can prove much more telling when it comes to a lead’s potential than simply whether they subscribe to your newsletter.

In addition to these attributes, lead scoring models often include “negative criteria” that subtract points from a lead’s score. Negative criteria include factors like low email open and click-through rates and long periods of inactivity, which may suggest that a lead has lost interest in your company.

Building a lead scoring model that drives results

To build a HubSpot lead scoring model that results in lead scores that accurately reflect a prospect’s propensity to make a purchase, you need to be strategic about which attributes you attach points to and what point values make sense for each of them. As a starting point, you should:

  • Work with both your sales and marketing teams to create your lead scoring model. This ensures both teams are on the same page in terms of scoring criteria and the lead scoring threshold. It also prevents leaks in your HubSpot sales funnel and keeps your sales reps from chasing leads that are unlikely ever to result in a sale.

  • Consider what kind of leads your current customers were. By thinking about which attributes your previous converted leads had, you can better identify which attributes tend to indicate a high-quality lead.

  • Talk to your customers. Conducting a few interviews to learn what your existing customers believe was responsible for their decision to buy from you can also help you identify the most important attributes in a lead.

  • Refine your model regularly. An accurate lead scoring model is never stagnant. Once you design your model, you should continually update your lead scoring approaches based on the most recent data in your HubSpot sales dashboard. You might discover your lead scoring threshold is too low or too high, or even that your target persona has shifted.

An overview of lead scoring in HubSpot

Now that you understand some best practices for lead scoring, let’s dig into how lead scoring plays out on a practical level in HubSpot. Fortunately, HubSpot makes lead scoring easy. While you have to decide which attributes you want to include in your model yourself using the guidance above, adding, adjusting, or removing these attributes in HubSpot is simple.

You can find HubSpot lead scoring in a contact property called HubSpot Score. Simply go to the platform’s Property Settings and click on HubSpot Score to get started. There, you can choose both positive and negative attributes from a lengthy list that covers basically everything that’s tracked in HubSpot. When you select an attribute, you can choose how many points to assign to it. You can also combine attributes to lead to a single point value. For example, if you wanted to add five points for COOs in a specific industry, you’d click the “AND” button to combine the job title and industry attributes.

HubSpot also makes it easy to edit your lead scores at any time. You can change the point value for an attribute, change the criteria for an attribute, or delete an attribute — all with just a few clicks.

Once you have lead scoring set up in HubSpot, the platform will automatically assign the appropriate lead scores to all your contacts so your sales and marketing teams know which leads in your HubSpot funnel to prioritize.

Elevate HubSpot lead scoring with analytics

In addition to the tips above, there’s one tip that’s particularly useful for ensuring you get the most out of HubSpot lead scoring: embracing reporting and analytics to refine your lead scoring model.

Data analysis is one of the best ways to learn how your leads become customers. When analyzed correctly, your HubSpot data can tell you what kind of content engagement tends to result in conversions, which marketing activities have the biggest impact on revenue, and more — all of which can help you craft a more accurate lead scoring model.

The thing is, HubSpot’s reporting and analytics leave a lot to be desired, particularly when it comes to customization. For instance, HubSpot doesn’t allow you to mix data from multiple sources. If you want to flag customers who consistently report bugs on Intercom or attribute a negative score to users who pay late using Stripe, you’re out of luck. That’s why anyone who’s serious about lead scoring needs to invest in a HubSpot reporting add-on or a third-party tool that enables top-notch reporting and analytics. Actiondesk is a great example of such a tool.

Actiondesk combines the power of a BI tool with the ease of a spreadsheet. Simply import your HubSpot data with a few clicks and begin creating customizable HubSpot dashboards and reports that update automatically to give you the information you need to elevate your sales process. What’s more, Actiondesk allows you to create your own custom reports on data from a mix of sources, including not only HubSpot, but SQL, Airtable, Salesforce, Intercom, and Stripe.

Lead scoring model creation is a dynamic, iterative process — one that can and should be optimized on a rolling basis as new data and insights come to light. Actiondesk gives you the tools you need to help you refine your model and ensure that your leads are being scored appropriately. With Actiondesk, you can create custom funnel reports, perform conversion rate analysis, list and explore your contacts, and better understand where exactly your deals are occurring. The insights you gain from these analyses can help your sales professionals develop an increasingly nuanced understanding of what factors really indicate a promising lead.

Find out how Actiondesk can help you elevate your HubSpot lead scoring with a 14-day free trial!

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