Lead generation is essential for any business, with 85% of B2B marketers saying that generating new leads is their most important marketing goal. But 61% also say it is one of their biggest challenges, and businesses are always looking for more effective ways to identify and qualify new leads. Your Sales team does an excellent job of taking care of active qualified leads. But what about latent leads, the ones who aren’t ready to talk to Sales yet, but may be good candidates for your offering? These latent leads can represent a significant percentage of potential qualified leads. Still, many businesses neglect these latent leads and their potential value by failing to identify, capture, and nurture them.
What are latent leads?
Latent leads are leads that fit your target profile but are not ready to speak with Sales. They are usually people you have had some contact with, and they typically have some familiarity with your business and your offerings. Some are potential prospects who have gone cold because they weren’t ready to purchase. Or they are leads who moved to the stalled list and have been neglected and untouched for a while. Other latent leads are familiar with you for other reasons but may also be good prospects who just don’t realize that your offerings solve their pain points. They’re potential leads hidden in plain sight, often lost in your email inbox or amidst your connections on social media. These leads represent a large pool of potential prospects that you effectively ignore. They also can represent a significant portion of your prospective leads overall.
How do I find latent leads?
Identifying and re-engaging these latent leads is key to moving them through the sales funnel. But you have to find them first. These leads have not been pulled into your CRM or added to your email marketing list and may be lost in your email inboxes or your connections on social media. Scanning email inboxes and analyzing your contacts and the types of communications you have with them is one way to identify latent leads. But it takes time to sift through your inboxes and connection lists to determine who may be a latent lead. There are tools available to scan your inbox and collect contacts to feed directly into your email marketing list or streamline connections on social media and pull those connections into your CRM and email marketing activities.
Use your Ideal Client Profile (ICP) to help identify latent leads
In your email and social media interactions, you communicate with a wide variety of people. But not all of them are latent leads. You want to pull in contacts who are good potential leads because they fit your ICP. Just like you use your ICP to identify quality leads, use it to ensure that contacts meet your criteria before identifying them as latent leads. Using your ICP when determining your latent leads will also lead to higher-quality leads and help determine where in the funnel to put that latent lead.
What do I do with recovered latent leads?
Once recovered, latent leads need to be put back into the funnel for further nurturing. It’s time for your Marketing and Sales teams to schedule further outreach and nurture those relationships as you pull those leads further into the funnel. Make it personal. Reaching back out to these latent leads and re-establishing communication with personalized messaging is the best way to re-engage with them. Add these leads to your email nurturing campaigns and follow up with them regularly through communications that target where they are in the decision cycle, helping to qualify them and move them to the next step in the sales funnel. Utilize LinkedIn and other social media outlets as additional platforms for communicating with latent leads.
Above all, be consistent with your leads, especially latent ones. Make sure you follow up with leads the right way to keep them engaged and prevent them from slipping through the cracks again. It is critical to have a clear communications plan in place for how you will reach out and communicate with them, including frequency, messaging, and what platforms you will use.
Leveraging your latent leads can help increase your marketing ROI. These leads are already there. They’re already aware of your company. But they might not fully understand your offerings and how your solutions can help them. They need additional outreach and nurturing. Establishing consistent communication with them and providing them with the right information and support to qualify themselves helps pull them further into your sales funnel.