MQ for CRM Lead Management


Gartner recently published the MQ for CRM Lead Management and the highlights have been summarized below to evaluate effective CRM lead management solutions.

In general, marketers see analytics and content management as key to CRM lead management success. In response, vendors are facilitating delivery of content across multiple channels and orchestrating better marketing and sales coordination.

MQ for CRM Lead Management – CRM Market Definition/Description

Good CRM lead management is about better cooperation between sales and marketing to increase the supply of potential customers and boost total sales conversions. To achieve this, CRM lead management applications need to support one aligned organizational revenue-generating process at any time, from any point of view.

As a logical consequence, CRM lead management processes measure beyond a single team’s perspective to also look into the overall impact on increased revenue. CRM lead management applications must support processes that cut across both marketing and sales. They must help these two different departments work together to achieve the overall goal of increased sales revenue. This means that measuring business outcomes should also include the impact of a lead on sales and its sales process workflows.

Gartner defines CRM lead management in the MQ for CRM Lead Management as the process of capturing leads, tracking their activities and behavior, qualifying them, giving them constant attention to make them sales-ready, and then passing them on to the sales team.

CRM lead management is further defined as to provide the following technology features:
• Multichannel lead management
• Lead aggregation
• Lead augmentation and deduplication
• Lead process management
• Lead nurturing
• Lead scoring and qualification
• Analytics and measurement
• Integration with other applications

MQ CRM – CRM Lead Management Market Overview

In this modern era, CRM lead management processes have rapidly become technology-centric and shifted from manual workload to automation systems. Today, CRM lead management applications, in most cases, score leads automatically on the level of nurturing and engagement as they move through the funnel, then notify the owner of the process step by proactively delivering insights to marketers.

Since lead management comes with the ability to document a customer’s full history of interactions and experiences marketer’s can analyze exactly how a customer was converted from a suspect to a prospect, to a lead, to a customer. But this is only as long as the data has been properly ingested, collected, and the profile unification is in place. This applies to your marketing, but also to your sales teams. Thus, CRM lead management is ultimately about better cooperation between sales and marketing to improve the supply of potential business (B2B) customers and boost total sales conversions.

Adoption of CRM lead management applications has been highest in large organizations and is concentrated in North America and Europe. But increasing adoption of lead management applications among SMBs and other geographies is anticipated to increase demand. The recognition of the need for growing collaboration between marketing and sales teams by executives with the power to spend is also a significant factor driving demand. In addition, more B2C organizations are attracted by lead management technologies. Lead management applications support the digital shift that many B2C organizations are undergoing, because it allows for more structured and automated insights into the lead conversion process. Hence, overall, the CRM lead management market is anticipated to continue to grow steadily at a double-digit rate.

CRM – CRM Lead Management Evolution

Several trends have been documented in the most recent 12 months for the MQ for CRM Lead Management:

  • Emphasis on increasing collaboration between marketing and sales departments, fostered by functionality within CRM lead management products.
  • A strong focus on integration capabilities, especially integration of lead management to content marketing platforms, SFA, digital/e-commerce, PRM applications and retail execution solutions, for the seamless flow and collection of customer data.
  • Continued maturing of predictive lead scoring solutions, often from third-party vendors that have formed partnerships with the vendors evaluated in this Magic Quadrant.
  • Continued focus on ease of use and redesigned UIs.

Trends during the past 12 months:

  • More CRM suites with lead management functionality — There is a significant shift toward lead management functionality being part of a larger CRM or marketing solution – many vendors investing in lead management functionality.
  • Demand for account-based marketing — evaluating leads (making scoring and workflow decisions at an account level instead of a contact level.
  • The rise in use of web-based data to personalize B2B experiences — The more that web-based data is used to personalize the B2C shopping market, the more the technology and concepts influence the B2B market.
  • Consumers are becoming accustomed to seeing their browsing data used by vendors to create a customized online sales experience. As a result, the concept of using customer web-based data for tailoring sales experiences has become more commonplace in companies that sell in a B2B capacity.
  • Increased interest in sales acceleration solutions — These are tools for outbound marketing to prospects by sales development representatives (SDRs). Sales acceleration tools improve the productivity of SDRs by automating the engagement across email, voice and social channels. They also provide marketing scripts and email templates to ensure that SDRs are saying the right things, in the right order or cadence.
  • More embedded AI/advanced analytics for lead scoring — Both vendors and clients are looking after AI technologies to facilitate lead management processes. While broadly used, lead management use cases for AI are becoming available in many applications, such as for lead scoring.
  • A renewed interest in scalable data ingestion/storage — Vendors have a renewed emphasis on scalable architecture and the data ingestion and storage capabilities that allow them to consume the massive amount of data generated during lead management processes.

How Predictive Marketing Analytics Changes B2B Sales & Marketing

CRM Lead Management – CRM Market Consolidation

Innovation through acquisition is intended to expand the scope, capabilities or global presence of the acquiring company and its products for its customers. Relative to the MQ for CRM Lead Management, the following acquisitions where seen in the past 12 months:

  • Acoustic — Private equity firm Centerbridge Partners acquired IBM’s Watson Marketing and rebranded it as a stand-alone company.
  • Acquia’s acquisition of Mautic has resulted in the two companies merging into a single entity.
  • Adobe acquired Marketo to place customer experience and engagement at the heart of its digital transformation.
  • Salesfusion joined the SugarCRM family.

CRM Lead Management – CRM Lead Management Strengths

Lead Process Management – Workflow creation includes standard out-of-the-box triggers along with unlimited customer trigger creation. Real-time behavior can be tracked, enabling marketers to build workflows that lead to next best actions, with an unlimited number of decision points and branches.

Compliance Support – Capabilities to support local data privacy laws, including compliance with GDPR, LGPD (the Brazilian version of GDPR) and CCPA (California Consumer Privacy Act). These capabilities include API and UI features to provide support for erasing data and sharing data with customers when requested, along with a double opt-in consent process.

Reporting and Analytics – Standard reports that are built into the system, with more metrics tracked out of the box.

Professional Service – From implementation through optimization to the establishment of industry-specific best practices. Support contributes to time to productivity as a measurable benefit for marketers.

Marketing-Focused – Ensure product roadmap emphasizes capabilities designed to support the needs of marketers, including supplying sales teams with relevant customer insights and content.

Ease of Use – Ease of use and adoptability of features – intuitive interface, repeatedly noting that the system streamlines campaign orchestration and workflow management.

Time to Value – Short deployment times than the all-vendor average. In combination with the platform’s affordable pricing and accessibility, this yields strong time to value – operational efficiencies, improved business process outcomes and revenue growth.

Data Management–  Lead augmentation, data cleansing and data deduplication capabilities, as well as functional audience selection.

ABM Functionality – Support ABM for B2B account data and signals, such as activation through channels including adverts. It also provides tools for sales to see account-level engagement and activate mini-sales campaigns.

Scalability – Strong data connectivity and customer identification capabilities, integrated customer journey modeling and multitouch attribution – lead qualification and conversion process efficiencies.

Lead Scoring – The ability to create an unlimited number of scoring models, including temporary models. Out-of-the-box models should be a given and the ability to customize is a must.

GDPR Compliance – The ability to ensure GDPR compliance at list upload rather than within the database.

Support – An all in-house, with email, phone and in-app support provided globally. 24/7 support –  responsive support and extensive training resources as helping them easily mitigate issues.

CRM Lead Management – CRM Lead Management Weaknesses

Lead Augmentation and Deduplication – Are there lead augmentation and deduplication capabilities?

Predictive Lead Scoring – Extensive prebuilt and customized scoring models are extensive and do not require a data scientists to create predictive scoring models.

Learning Curve – How much of a  learning curve is there?  Is there an active peer community and extensive training resources.  Hard to learn or overly complicated, with multiple ways of achieving the same outcome?

Pricing Model – Is the pricing model straight forward, reasonable and  clear total cost of ownership?

Data Management – Flexibility in data models, particularly for complex-enterprise use cases. Easily integrate natively with  CRM integrations?

Product Vision – Enterprise, Mid-market, SMBs?  Vertical- or segment-specific products?

Integrations – Third-party integrations? App marketplace?

ABM Functionality – Limitations in reporting to support ABM strategies?  Are ABM features limited focused on sales support rather than the marketing side of ABM? Is account selection manual?  Is account-based scoring limited to rolling up individual lead scores?

Limited Scoring – Is there native predictive lead scoring capability?

Reporting – Is there robust reporting and dash-boarding capabilities within the application?

Lead Augmentation and Deduplication – Does lead deduplication requires third-party integration?

Integration With 3rd Applications – Are there prebuilt integrations with third-party platforms and services? Are there out-of-the-box integrations provided for MarTech systems and deeper integrations with leading CRM vendors?

Additional Marketing Automation & Predictive Marketing Resources From Four Quadrant

A Marketer’s Guide to B2B Marketing Automation Platforms >>

The Predictive Marketing Analytics Buying Checklist >>

Three B2B Predictive Marketing Use Cases >>

Strategic Account Planning Template >>

Go to Market Strategy Planning Template >>

Go to Market Planning Examples


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