Leads in the networking process

In last days, it has been occurring to me to talk about lead generation with different professionals. I found out that many of them didn’t know what lead generation is, often confusing “prospect” and “lead”.

We refers to “Lead” and “lead generation” as “term used, […], to describe the generation of consumer interest or inquiry into products or services of a business” [Wikipedia]. A lead is other than a prospect. While a prospect is someone who is interested in our products and  who contacted us for a specific commercial purpose, we can define lead as a person gererically interested in our business. Chronologically, a lead is the first step of a prospect.

Within networking activity a lead is an evolution of a contact. Not all contacts are potential leads. A contact is a person we could have met occasionally and who we would have been exchanging business cards with. This contact will become a lead once we would have engaged and made him/her to want to know more about our business. While a contact is an opportunity of visibility, a lead will appear once we’ve moved to a relationship level.

Do you track lead generation in your business ? How are you doing?

What do you think about?