Your sales process doesn’t just stop with getting leads from various sources and calling them once. Okay, maybe you send a couple more emails. But, is that all? You need to do more than that. That’s why having a lead nurturing strategy is something you should start incorporating right away.
Why is it important?
A sizeable amount of organizations have now found the secret ingredients to generate more leads. While some use clever hacks and others take help from third parties, the fact that a significant portion of these leads is not ready to buy yet is why nurturing is paramount.
According to Market2Lead, nurtured leads experience a 23% shorter sales cycle. It is quintessential to consistently touch base with your leads using content that is specific to the buying stage they are in. This not only improves rapport but also acts as that much-needed thrust to get them closer to making an order.
Some effective lead nurturing strategies
Now that I’ve established just how important lead nurturing is, let me give you some strategies that you can replicate.
1) Customized Content:
On the face of it, this might seem obvious but there are countless marketers who’ve still not grasped the essence of customized content. What makes this tricky is that there is a need for prior analysis. You have to understand your buyer’s needs, mentality, purchasing stage, etc. Then, you’ll have to segment these buyers based on items like profile or industry so that you give yourself a chance of creating reusable buckets of ideas. After that, you’ll have to sit down and create highly relevant content & shoot them to the right person, at the right time. While this might seem like a lot of effort, the results of a well-implemented system of personalized content are second to none.
2) Email Nurturing:
Nurturing prospects, over email, is still one of the most effective methods. In fact, according to Ascend2, 54% of email marketers say increasing their engagement rate is their number one priority. Some people may say that email is dead. But, that is so not true.
As a marketer, this process gives you multiple options with respect to when you want to reach them, frequency of attempts, frameworks for content presentation and of course, the degree of personalization. A well-rounded marketing automation system can ease your workload to a great extent in this area and boost your revenue significantly. Among other things, it’ll help in identifying lead actions like opening an email/clicking on links/downloading e-books, etc. Based on these actions, you can schedule highly targeted emails which will resonate with your leads and gently guide them into the next stage.
3) Multichannel Approach:
Placing all your eggs in one basket is almost always a recipe for disaster. While emails still work, you can sometimes hit a roadblock by relying solely on it. Given the abundance of options out there, it is rather essential to have other tricks up your sleeve.
Multichannel lead nurturing is a huge umbrella which hasn’t been fully explored yet. Authentic website content, tapping into social media and paid retargeting are just a few avenues which have seen a sharp spike. At the heart of it, these approaches give you a better chance of making the lead sales-ready by creating a more thorough attempt at qualifying them.
4) Lead Scoring:
An interesting feature available in most marketing automation systems, lead scoring allows you to rank the importance of each lead. This, in turn, helps you get an idea about which leads can be passed onto the sales team and which ones need to be nurtured more. The metrics assigned to lead scoring can vary from one company to another.
You can choose to give a higher score for activities like viewing details on the pricing page as opposed to more generic ones like opening an email. You can also create a threshold score and as soon as it is breached, notify your sales folks about the red-hot lead. Thus, this feature can play an important role in everything from understanding engagement levels to faster closures.
5) Timely Follow-ups:
While overlooked sometimes, a follow-up at the right time considerably boosts your chances of moving the prospect down the sales funnel. Let’s take a simple example: John has opened an email which you sent and is currently looking at various pages on your website.
Now, it would serve you better if you quickly do some research on John’s organization, his role there, the kind of information he was looking at and immediately shoot another email to capture his interest further. This proactive approach is bound to give you more qualified opportunities as opposed to waiting for days before getting back to leads who by then have mostly moved on.
A solid nurturing strategy can thus make a huge difference in the number of leads which are ready to buy. In order to maximize the results, there should be a good level of synchronizations between your marketing & sales teams as both will be involved in the nurturing cycle. Hence, a proper outline of who gets involved when is also necessary to derive maximize results from this process.
To apply all these lead nurturing strategies, you first need a good tool. It should be able to help you segment your leads and send you intelligent signals about what content you should send your leads and when. If you are on the lookout for such a tool, why don’t you consider LeadSquared? You can even try it yourself and take a call.