Do you have a lead nurturing strategy? If not, you’re doing your business a disservice. The sales industry has always been a competitive arena, with everyone vying for the same thing: attention.
In sales, it’s important to know where to start – leads! They are your starting point, your driving point, the point itself. They are your clients and without them you needn’t bother.
In marketing terms, a “lead” is a potential client or buyer. A qualified lead is one that is willing and able to buy. All over the world, sales teams spend their time sourcing, qualifying them and nurturing leads. That is their bread and butter. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as it sounds. Recent stats have shown that up to 65% of marketing companies admit that generating traffic and qualifying leads is their biggest challenge.
And more so is finding the right way to do it in an industry that has been doing the same thing for generations with leads starting to learn how to dodge and avoid. How is a lion meant to catch it’s dinner if the antelope can see it coming?
What is Lead Nurturing?
At any point of the sales funnel, lead nurturing is the method for building and improving relationships with customers. In addition, lengthening sales funnels promotes prospect independence, generating a higher need for well-crafted lead nurturing services.
That is the short version, though. Let’s dig a little more deeply into lead nurturing.
At least half the leads are not yet ready to buy, in any company’s applications or CRM. Maybe you got the lead in exchange for a lead magnet via an online opt-in form. Perhaps it was achieved through sales prospecting, or through a cold call or cold email process. Maybe it was a business card issued at a trade show to your sales team.
There are dozens of ways to generate leads, but the truth is that just because someone gave you their data doesn’t mean that they’re 100% willing to give you their money. And it’s unrealistic to expect them to be at that stage already, and may even drive someone away.
In your approach, you want to be more attentive. You want to give customers marketing materials that will educate them in what your company does, and why they would want you to work with them. In order to give them appropriate, targeted content, and not content that will throw them off because they are not far enough down the sales funnel, it is important to know what part of the purchasing process your leads are at.
Why is Lead Nurturing Important?
We’ve covered the basics of why it’s essential; from lead generation to conversion, you can’t go straight. It doesn’t act like that. But let’s get down to the bottom of why that’s not the way it works.
Fifty-seven percent of marketers see lead nurturing as one of their marketing automation software’s most valuable components. It is important to use automation resources for your lead nurturing while scaling a company and gathering more and more leads each year to ensure that you hit your audience at every stage of the purchase process.
They make 50 percent more revenue at a 33 percent lower cost when an organization focuses on lead nurturing. This means that when you, as a marketer, concentrate on cultivating every lead produced, your ROI is even better than the sales team going in for a hard sell.
In comparison, lead nurturing leads to 47 percent greater transactions than purchases of leads that were not nurtured. So your investment is certainly worth it, and it’s a win-win each time.
This is why it is so extremely important to incorporate lead nurturing within your sales and marketing plan. Compared to the ROI you will see due to it, the time it takes to cultivate your leads is nothing.
How Do You Create a Lead Nurturing Campaign?
So now that we have addressed what lead nurturing is and why it is so important for a company to include it in its marketing plan, let’s move on to the next step. How do you build a campaign to nurture leadership?
Segment Your Audience
The first and most important step is to ensure that any person who goes through your campaign is at the same position in the purchase process so that they are all properly nurtured together. As we said before, you don’t want to give material and calls to action to someone at the beginning of the purchasing process that are meant for someone in the middle or end of the purchasing process. That’s a sure way for a client to fail.
Instead, you want to begin by segmenting your leads according to where they are in the purchasing process. By developing triggers based on opt-ins, lead scoring, or even sending out a survey, you can do this.
Lead scoring gives the lead a ranking based on a variety of factors: website visits, videos viewed (high level or in-depth), free content downloads, webinars attended, blog posts read, social media posts involved, etc. The more someone interacts with your business, the more likely it is that they will become a client.
You can create a complete lead nurturing campaign to direct a client through the purchasing process step-by-step, then segment your leads and position them wherever they belong within the campaign.
Send Out Something Valuable
Next, you want your clients to deliver something of value. Lead nurturing is a form of strategy of give-and-take. Without giving them something in exchange, you can’t expect your customers to just send you their email address, their time reading your material, and ultimately their money.
If anyone signs up on one of your landing pages to obtain more information about your company, do not send them an email immediately asking if they want a quote or a demo. Unless they are fully on the market to buy (which is going to be a small percentage of people), they will not respond to your email.
Alternatively, give an ebook, webinar, or white paper with more specifics about your business, what you do, and why it’s essential. With your new lead, you want to take it slowly. Take them to dinner metaphorically, and tell them about yourself before you propose.
Use Email Marketing Automation
Then you can send them via an automated email marketing campaign that answers FAQs, shares resources such as blog posts and videos, and more, to remain at the top of your mind and provide each lead about your company with useful information.
Be sure that there is a purpose or a target for each email. You don’t want to put something that has no meaning within your marketing funnel.
The goal of each one of your lead nurturing emails should be to transfer your leads further down the sales funnel. So you want to give useful tips and data, but ultimately end up with the objective of being a customer. Including in each email some form of call to action, making the pitch inside each one stronger and stronger.
Your call to action in your first email, for instance, could be “Download this ebook!” “In email number three, the call to action might be “Click here to watch a demo,” and email number five would say “Request a quote.”
Set up an email automation timeframe, such as sending an email every two or three days, avoiding weekends, so that you remain at the top of every lead, so you don’t overwhelm them with regular texts, calls to action, and pitches for sales.
Regardless of how many marketing companies there are in this vast arena of sales and competition or how many generations have been using the same old tricks, despite how smart your leads are becoming there are still numerous ways in which you can not only find your leads and qualify them but actually take them all the way to the bank. If one fact in selling has stood the test of time it’s that quality and professionalism will always be a winning bet.
Quantity has never outweighed quality, and quality has never been overlooked. So when working on your next lead, keep this lead nurturing strategy in mind and remember it’s not always what you say but how you say it.