Skip to main content
Marketing Tips

Lead generation: More than just a number

By June 15, 2022No Comments

As a healthcare technology marketing leader, how often have you been tasked with bringing in a set number of leads per quarter?

Next time a leader says to you, “We need 200 leads this quarter to feed to sales — I don’t care where they come from,” try responding with, “Well, you should.”

The problem with arbitrary lead generation targets

Viewing the marketing department as short-order cooks charged with feeding the insatiable appetites of the sales team “hungry for leads” will wind up in a feast-then-famine situation.

First, a feast: Marketing does, in fact, generate engagements and contacts from various channels within the loosely defined parameters. Sales is happy! They have a full roster of contacts to reach out to. And a few might progress through the sales cycle.

Then, the famine: Soon, sales becomes frustrated that they aren’t having the right conversations with the right people. They’ve exhausted their initial list of contacts and are hungry for more.

Which brings us to what the real focus of lead generation should be: quality.

How to change the lead generation focus from quantity to quality

Note the phrase “arbitrary lead generation targets” in the headline above.

If leadership can prove their lead generation goal is backed by solid, mathematical calculations taking into consideration total addressable market, defined marketing and sales funnel stages with realistic conversion goals, and average selling prices that, when all combined, equate to an achievable revenue growth goal — then sign me up to hit that lead gen target!

If you can’t show me the math, then let’s revisit some of the basics.

1. Define your target audience

Be extremely clear about who your target audience is. Embarking on lead generation campaigns without a mutually agreed upon audience definition will end in failure and frustration for all involved — not to mention wasted money on fruitless marketing campaigns.

If you don’t know who your target audience is — perhaps for a new product or market — then build audience and message testing into your campaign plans so you can assess fit and effectiveness with real-world data.

Get started with this comprehensive guide for who to target for your health IT product.

2. Focus on quality first

Instead of 200 “anything goes” leads, let’s narrow that down to 50 leads who work for companies in your target market AND have job titles that are economic buyers or influencers AND have a specific skill set or interest AND so on.

Marketing will be more successful when given these strategic parameters; sales will be more efficient when handed quality leads, not high volumes of contacts they have to qualify.

3. Be open to nurture

The sooner you accept that not everyone is chomping at the bit to buy your solution, the sooner you’ll be able to nurture contacts who may not be ready to purchase today, building awareness, momentum, and loyalty in the process.

Mixing in direct, bottom-of-funnel calls to action (e.g., schedule a meeting, request a demo) with top-of-funnel educational and informational calls to action (e.g., download a white paper, read a blog post) will help you build relationships with your target audience no matter where they fit in the buyer’s journey.

Lead generation is a numbers game

Just be sure you’re focusing on the right numbers so you can keep those sales bellies full.

Ready to get in front of the right audience? Let us cook up a marketing strategy for you.

Brian Shilling

Author Brian Shilling

Brian is our Executive Vice President of Client Operations with experience leading diverse teams of marketers and designers in strategic marketing, content creation, and crafting comprehensive messaging and positioning platforms for our healthcare and tech clients. To learn more about Brian's experiences and qualifications, visit our leadership team page.

More posts by Brian Shilling