MQL vs MQA: An Account Based View of Lead Generation

If you have ever spent time with your marketing team, or perhaps have been responsible for marketing your business yourself you will no doubt have come across the term ‘leads’. You have possibly even heard of ‘marketing qualified leads’. As more data and a greater ability to reach specific companies has emerged those definitions have involved to now include ‘Marketing Qualified Accounts’, or MQAs.

Marketing Qualified Accounts flip the traditional lead generation model on its head. Rather than looking at individuals who come into your CRM system from your marketing activities and trying to figure out whether they are hot prospects, modern companies now aggregate that information to identify which companies are showing the greatest level of interest in their products.

Previously, if ten individuals from the same company each took a small action on your website such as downloading a white paper, the lead scoring measures in place may not have assigned enough value to those individual interactions to justify a follow-up from the sales team. However, with the MQA approach those ten interactions would be aggregated to give a cumulative score for that company as a whole, making it more likely to meet the required threshold for sales follow-up.

The basis for this methodology is an assumption that if ten people from the same company are visiting your website, downloading content, attending events an so forth, there is a strong possibility that there are discussions going on within that company about the potential use of your product/service to solve whatever problem they have.

The exact logic that is applied needs to be fine tuned to ensure that the correct signals are being picked up on and that neither too many nor too few companies are being identified as MQAs, but in principal this approach creates a fuller view of a company’s level of interest than simply looking at the interactions of individuals in isolation.

Simon Plews

Simon is an experienced marketer who spent 15 years working client-side for some of the world’s leading tech brands including Adobe, Oracle and McAfee. He now provides marketing consulting and campaign management services for fast growing B2B tech companies and ambitious start-ups.