Progressive Profiling: How to generate high-quality leads

Progressive Profiling: How to generate high-quality leads

As marketers, we very well understand the importance of lead generation forms. These are the forms with lead intel that gives you critical information to convert a prospect. But what makes people fill out a form?

We have all come across those lengthy forms that seem too onerous to fill. We have also seen forms that ask questions that don’t even seem relevant. And yes, we don’t like such forms; we detest those.

This is why you need to use progressive profiling. So, get ready to generate more, high-quality leads!

What is Progressive Profiling, anyway?

It’s difficult (and not pragmatic) to ask for all the information you need from a lead all at once. You need strategic steps and ask the right questions at the right time.

To convert leads, you need a big chunk of information about them. But, don’t be naïve to think people will share everything you want to know in one go.

Progressive profiling is a strategy to target and influence leads as per their stage in the buying journey.

You only ask the questions that are most apt at a particular stage and move on to new questions as the prospect progresses to the next phase.

Here’s how to do it-

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Why You Need Progressive Profiling

As a brand, it is more important than ever to make each interaction with your audience personal and relevant.

Asking redundant or repeated questions can drive your users away, and there’s a lot on the line here.

You need a dynamic inbound strategy that prompts users to share their data by cutting out the crap and only collecting information that the user is comfortable sharing at that particular point in time. 

Progressive profiling allows you to build the relationships that your leads expect. When your forms look tailored and relevant, more people will be willing to share their information with you- in turn getting you not only more, but better leads.

How to do Progressive Profiling

In simple terms, it’s asking different questions each time a lead fills out your form. Let’s say you have three resources to promote this month. If a person fills out a form in exchange for the first resource, it makes no sense to ask him/her the same set of questions while promoting the second resource.

First, start with a broad viewpoint such as name and email, and then eventually take a narrow approach, for example, job function and the name of their organization. Make your questions more specific until you have all that you need to know to form a complete picture of your buyer personas.

You need to ask more specific and relevant questions on your form as the lead interacts with your brand and travel further in the buying journey.

For example, take stock of where they are in the sales cycle. You may include a question about the purchase timeframe to better understand how you need to nurture the particular lead along the way.

If yours is an IT company trying to promote a new product, you may ask your audience how they plan to interact with your product and use it.

Progressive profiling conversation rate

Source- Aritic PinPoint

Progressive Profiling and Making it Work

The purpose is to make it effortless for the users to fill out your form. Progressive profiling reduces the time it takes to fill out a form, but since you’re using multiple lead gen forms over time, you get to collect more information from your users.

This way, you make the most of each interaction while also increasing the conversion rate.

Short forms tend to perform substantially better than the longer ones. Ask yourself, what is so critical to be included right now?

Progressive profiling makes so much sense because there will be people who have never heard of your brand, and there will be people who are already familiar with your brand and services. You can’t target these two categories with the same forms.

Let me elaborate on this for you. If you have a business blog, you’re sure to draw attention from repeated users. These are the people who frequently visit your blog and know what your business is all about.

With progressive profiling, you ensure these users don’t have to deal with repetitive questions and have something different to tell you each time they fill out a form on your website or blog page.

Take stock of the entire situation, and get rid of the questions that are not serving you to understand your customer and their journey better. One of the best features of progressive profiling is its versatility. You get to know more about your leads, which in turn helps you to market to them better.

Forms making conversions smooth? Exactly!

Hubspot Progressive from

Source- HubSpot

Lead Generation with Progressive Profiling

If you don’t use correct forms for lead generation, it is next to impossible to engage them with your offers and content. Progressive profiling engages your prospects and gives you the leeway to ask significant questions that they wouldn’t want to share, filling out one long marketing form.

Progressive profiling paves the way for more business opportunities. You get a better grip on audience analysis and learn how to shape their journey in a way the like. Tailor your content strategy according to the answers they provide, resonating with them better than ever.

This technology saves your time in so many ways! You don’t have to build a different form for each landing page and each phase in the sales cycle. Progressive profiling does that for you, and you only ask your visitors the questions relevant to them.

If the prospect has already answered a few questions before, progressive profiling substitutes it with new fields.

With all this intel, you will never spam your users with generic marketing emails. You’ll know what exactly your audience wants from your business, and you’ll be able to give them exactly that!

Progressive Profile and Dating

When you go out on your first date, if you ask the wrong questions, it only guarantees there won’t be a second one.

That’s the same thing with your lead gen forms.

If you ask irrelevant questions and ask for too much information, the conversion rates will drop low. We only have a limited amount of time, and focusing that on generating quality leads will only drive results. Progressive profiling doesn’t only generate leads but also helps you qualify them. With this lead intelligence, you know who is most likely to buy from you and where to prioritize your efforts first.

Your marketing is no good if it can’t convert your audience. Progressive profiling helps you build an audience that is not only informed but also interested. It allows you to build relationships with your audiences. You get to know them, and they have a feeling they know you too.

If you’re asking for personal information, you may want to specify why it is needed. Be clear with the CTA and your offer. Tell them what would happen after they submit the form. For instance, they will be subscribed to your newsletter and receive an email.

As your relationship with your prospect progresses to the next level, make sure you don’t get greedy and start asking for more and more information. Keep it short and sweet. Ask all the crucial questions, but bit by bit.

Segment your audience and try to understand their behavior to get the hang of which questions to ask and when.

Progressive Profiling for Engagement

Progressive profiling demonstrates the extent to which your leads engage with your brand, revealing the odds of them buying from you.

This is not just about the form; progressive profiling helps you formulate the best strategies to communicate with your prospects and market to them. Consequently, it boosts your prospecting efficiency, and you get to close more deals much faster.

The objective of progressive profiling is to enhance your understanding of your prospects and help you comprehend what makes them tick.

With this, you target your marketing efforts in a better direction. This lead intel uncovers their pain points and then you show you’re the solution to their problems.

Your marketing campaigns get more targeted- increasing conversions and building stronger relationships with your audience.

marketing campaigns

Source- Pinterest

Progressive Profiling and Customer Experience

For companies looking to improve customer experience, progressive profiling is all the way more important. Your prospects only have to answer a few questions to access the marketing material of their interest.

Good customer experience is crucial to succeeding in the modern business landscape.  If your prospects have a good time interacting with your brand in the first few touchpoints, they are very likely to turn into loyal customers. Progressive profiling helps you generate more leads and increase your conversion rate too.

You can analyze the quality of your customer experience after talking to your clients and by taking interviews and surveys. Try to figure out the reasons if your drop-off rate is too high. Why are people leaving the process without completing it?

We have all been asked how likely we are to promote a particular business to our relatives and friends. By this, websites gauge the Net Promoter Score (NPS), which is one of the best metrics to measure customer experience and satisfaction.

Progressive profiling and ICP

To effectively perform progressive profiling, the mandatory first step is to create detailed buyer personas. Create complete Ideal Customer Profiles (ICP) to understand what they need; their drives and motivations.

This will give you much-needed insights on how you can focus your efforts to generate quality leads, creating a win-win for both you and your prospects.

The progressive profile brings about the alignment between marketing and sales. Your marketing team shares this lead intel with your sales team, so they get to know your prospects before they even talk to them.

Plus, they don’t bother your prospects with the same questions, so your sales team takes it to the next level without coming off as annoying. Result? It decreases the sales cycle, and your brand builds a great rapport with your customers- more acquisition, more retention.

Progressive Profiling; the process

Talk to the teams in your organization that directly interact with your customers. You’ll get to know a lot about how your customers behave and what interests them. With this knowledge, you’ll be able to craft the right offers and ask the right questions.

When you ask subsequent questions in the next interactions, address your prospect’s name before jumping into the forms, so they know they have interacted with your brand before.

In times like today, when consumers are very concerned about their privacy, it’s your job as a business to reintroduce them to your privacy policy during each conversion process.

Keep measuring and analyzing. If you notice an increase in the dropoff, reconsider the questions your prospects are unwilling to answer.

You’ll gain expertise that will change how you communicate with your audience. Progressive profiling will do all the groundwork for you, and you will be able to connect with your audience better, even at later stages. Tweak your content and rebuild your marketing strategies after you get the complete picture of your customer profiles.

Progressive Profiling and Customer Data

Businesses need to put to best use the customer data they collect with progressive profiling. Tracking and monitoring are not enough. Having the metrics is one part, but acting on these metrics is a whole different story.

From the moment they sign up to the moment they buy from you, and even after they become your customer- you need to personalize the entire journey from them and make all the transitions seamless.

What is common among your best customers? What actions do they take when they first enter your funnel? Ask these questions to recreate the experience. Your marketing will benefit a great deal from the customer insights progressive profiling bestows on you.

Wrapping it up!

Here’s the verdict- progressive profiling will unlock enormous opportunities for you if you execute it the right way. It will help you move from an aggressive to a proactive approach. Quality profiling also indicates which prospects you need to send what message and when. The customer data you generate with this technique inform all your marketing and sales strategies, making the outreach highly effective.