Lead freshness is arguably the most important data point to track within the Inbound application. Capitalizing on fresh leads can be the difference between getting a great ROI and simply wasting your marketing dollars.

Below, we’ll explain how the lead freshness categories work within the app and how your team can utilize this information to achieve success.

What is Lead Freshness?

Lead freshness is the metric we use to categorize how recently your new lead submitted a form or placed a phone call within one of your campaigns. You can find the Lead freshness categories on the left side of the page just below the Inbound app title.

The Inbound app automatically categorizes all leads into these categories. They are as follows:

  • Hot - A “hot” lead is a brand-new prospect that just entered your Inbound app. The lead is no more than 15 minutes old.

  • Warm - A “warm” lead is a prospect that is between 15 and 60 minutes old.

  • Cold - A “cold” lead is a prospect that is over 60 minutes old.

  • Ice - A lead that’s gone “ice” cold is over a day old.

The importance of lead freshness is simple - the more “hot” your lead is, the more likely you are to convert. Many businesses waste thousands of marketing dollars and high-quality leads by not having a sales team that appropriately capitalizes on every “hot” lead.

Studies show that making contact in the first five minutes can make you up to 21x more likely to convert a lead. Unfortunately, the average response time for businesses is an unacceptable 42 hours.

Why is a Fast Response Time Important?

A fast response time is essential for multiple reasons, all of which are focused on general psychology as well as buyer intent.

Your marketing team creates a campaign with the intent of attracting leads who will become buyers. Users discover your landing page and sales offer through a general search or advertisement. Your marketing tactics are effective, and the user commits to giving you their data via a submission form or by calling your tracking number. The lead’s information then appears on your dashboard.

What happens when one of your sales representatives contacts this person immediately?

First, you are significantly more likely to make an immediate connection with the lead. They just visited your site just seconds or minutes ago and have your business fresh in their minds.

Second, they will be impressed by your initiative. Not only will your team come across as professional and on the ball, but the lead is also likely to feel special due to the eager attempt to make contact.

Third, the lead is more likely to convert as your landing page has done the heavy lifting of selling them on your offer. It presents a strong opportunity for your talented sales personnel to answer any lingering questions and secure the deal.

What Happens When You’re Too Slow to Respond?

Allowing a new lead to sit for more than 15 minutes will drastically reduce the likelihood of both connecting and converting.

Marketing is more competitive than ever, and your potential leads are capable of finding new offers from your competitors anytime, anywhere with their mobile devices.

Waiting a day or longer increases the likelihood that your business will get lost among all of your competitors. Even if you’re lucky enough to get a hold of the lead, their intent to purchase will be much lower.

Take advantage of the lead freshness tracking and give your talented sales team every opportunity to close out easy opportunities.


Our dashboard highlights lead freshness above all other filtering options for these reasons. Contacting “hot” leads should always be your number one priority. Notice that to the left, there is a number showing how many leads qualify as hot, warm, cold, or ice. These numbers will update in real-time.

The color indicator under Freshness will also demonstrate this:

Make sure that the sales reps assigned to your campaigns are capitalizing on these new opportunities. If leads are coming in faster than your sales reps can handle, you can turn off your campaign when appropriate to avoid burning additional ad spending. You can learn how to do that here.

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