Can you find B2B leads on a social media site like Twitter?
It depends on what you mean by a “Lead”.
What is a “lead” to marketing need not be a “lead” to sales.
What marketing considers a lead is often called an MQL (Marketing Qualified Lead).
What sales considers a lead is often called an SAL (Sales Accepted Lead).
The difference between the two types of leads is best explained in terms of the BANT criteria.
BANT stands for Budget, Authority, Need and Timing.
In the B2B sales process, leads are considered qualified if they have the budget to make the purchase, the authority to take the decision, a pressing need for the product being offered and a desire to act on the need within a bounded time-frame that is not too far into the future.
SALs are typically fully BANT qualified leads.
MQLs typically lack some of the BANT criteria. In other words, it might be known that a prospect has the budget and authority, but it might be unclear if the prospect has the need and if the timing is right. Such a prospect could be an MQL.
Marketing departments typically filter their lists of MQLs according to various criteria and then pass on the most promising MQLs to the sales team.
The sales team then examines the list of MQLs to see if they are are BANT qualified and then lets the marketing department know which of them they accept to pass on to their BDRs (Business Development Representatives).
In other words, the accepted MQLs have become SALs (Sales Accepted Leads).
Two key metrics used to measure the performance of a marketing department are:
a) the SAL volume from MQLs and
b) the MQL to SAL conversion rate.
Now, it turns out that Twitter is a great source of MQLs.
So, the answer to the question is yes, it is possible to find B2B MQLs on Twitter.
We used concepts from an article by Mike Biuso of DemandDrive: http://demanddrive.com/demanddrive-blog/driving-success-in-lead-generation/introducing-isql