Manually qualifying leads on social media is about as much fun as bathing a cat.

It requires some poor entry-level marketer (or team of salespeople who have better things to do) to spend hours searching for leads and ends in nightmares and a poor excuse for an aligned relationship between sales and marketing. Though it is a step in the right direction, an attempt to unify sales and marketing efforts, its brutal inefficiencies do less than they could in the fight against the abysmal qualification rates (0.5-2.5%) of pure inbound marketing.

Social lead-gen could be a kind of godsend, a way to warm prospects while determining whether or not they’re actually qualified before turning them over to sales. But, without automation, it creates incredibly weak links in a tentative alignment between sales and marketing goals.

Social Lead Generation Automation: The Light at the End of the Tunnel

Fortunately, the clouds seem to have parted, and the technology gods are smiling on us from afar. Seriously. With the advent of social lead automation tools like Socedo, we’re now able to automate social prospecting, letting algorithms do the work of searching keyword, bio, and location data to automatically locate a huge potential lead pool.

Once you have your pool, you can accept, decline, or save potential leads for later. Those accepted are immediately placed in your automation flow and are then engaged by Socedo algorithms in a variety of ways, receiving relevant content and, essentially, becoming part of a nurture campaign as they warm to your brand, your product, you.

This way, when salespeople start calling or emailing, it isn’t as abrasive or unnecessary as the norm; instead, it feels natural, an extension of the conversation begun through automation and marketing now picked up by sales. It doesn’t damage the brand that your marketers have built, and it doesn’t leave your sales team feeling like the guys in Glengarry Glen Ross. Instead, it builds a bridge.

What Social Lead Generation Automation Does for Sales/Marketing Alignment

As I discussed in a prior blog post, the two major factors contributing to sales and marketing disalignment are failures of shared values and funnels: sales professionals thinking marketers are head-in-the-cloud creatives, marketers believing salespeople are over-promisers who don’t understand the digital landscape, and everyone working for their own departmental success, their commissions.

But, behind it all is a single fact: marketing can never be aligned with sales if it doesn’t feed warm, relevant leads into the sales funnel. If a marketing team has “provably high inbound ROI” (whatever that is) but it isn’t translating to leads, why should sales have faith?

Social lead-gen automation, then, creates direct alignment between marketing and sales, utilizing marketing technologies and platforms and marketing content in a way that directly identifies, sorts, and warms potential leads. Socedo, in particular, then connects with your CRM, feeding the info directly to your sales team.

In Summary

In a sense, social lead-gen automation is the bridge between sales and marketing. It takes marketing back to its roots, when a marketer’s job was to “figure out if someone could buy and when” and marries it to the latest and greatest automation technology. In doing so, digital marketers are able to replicate the most tried-and-true sales-qualification strategy (i.e. created real, personalized engagement with a single prospect) on an enormous scale, without wanting to crawl under their desks and die.

And, to further your lead-gen arsenal and keep up with all of your new prospects, give CircleBack a try on iOS or Android. CircleBack uses artificial intelligence and crowd learning to keep contacts clean, complete, and updated automatically.