What exactly is a marketing qualified lead, or MQL?

A qualified lead, known as a marketing-qualified lead (MQL), is one who has meaningfully interacted with a brand’s marketing content or marketing channels but hasn’t yet interacted with the brand’s sales team.


By participating in a company’s marketing initiatives, such as by downloading content assets, completing an outline form, or adding items to a shopping cart (without checking out), marketing-qualified leads have expressed interest in the goods or services offered by the brand.


MQLs are not a guarantee of sales, but they should be more open to subsequent marketing initiatives and, finally, interactions with your sales teams.


Identifying leads with marketing potential


The marketing and sales teams of a company should collaborate to establish what constitutes a qualified lead.


A prospective consumer who, at the very least, has acknowledged a need for the brand’s goods or services and isn’t averse to making a purchase from the company is typically considered a marketing-qualified lead.


It is up to the marketing department to qualify that qualified lead as an MQL if they interact meaningfully with the brand’s marketing materials or channels.


For instance, if a potential client with a need and the intent to purchase visits a software brand’s website and starts a web chat to ask questions about the brand’s products, they have meaningfully interacted with one of the brand’s marketing channels and may turn into an MQL, provided the client also meets other requirements.


What distinguishes MQLs and SQLs from one another?


An approach like the BANT framework is typically used to qualify a SQL once they have entered the sales funnel, suggesting they have:


budget allocated for purchasing a brand’s goods or services.


the power to choose a product to buy.


the demand for that service or good.


They can buy now since the time is right.


“MQLs are thought to be considering a brand’s products due to their engagement with the company’s marketing initiatives.”


Marketing-qualified leads typically lack one or more of these attributes. They might, for instance, have a need and the money to purchase a certain item, but the timing isn’t ideal.


In other words, MQLs are assumed to be contemplating a brand’s products based on their participation in the company’s marketing initiatives. On the other hand, SQLs have advanced past that and are prepared to decide whether to make a purchase.


What is a good conversion rate from MQL to SQL?


A fair benchmark for MQL to SQL conversion rate is 13%, and less than half of SQLs typically convert to customers, according to sales and marketing studies conducted across a variety of industries.


An MQL is more likely to become a SQL when it comes from websites, customers, and staff members.

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