Lead nurturing is the process of engaging prospective customers by providing them with appropriate content at each stage of the sales funnel to earn their business at the end.

The HubSpot Academy lecturer considers the importance of lead nurturing and explains how to do it.

Lead nurturing is all about listening to the needs of prospects and giving them information that adequately addresses their concerns regarding the products and services offered by a particular business. To nurture sales leads successfully, marketers should provide content that depicts their brands as the best choice from the others in the same niche. By elevating the profile of a business in the eyes of a potential customer, marketers significantly boost the chances of consumers purchasing a product or service from their brands when the time for buying comes.

Why is lead nurturing important?

  • More sales at lower costs
  • Better decision making in businesses
  • Builds a business reputation
  • Boosts engagement
  • Identifies upsell and cross-sell opportunities
  • More sales at lower costs. With lead nurturing, a company stands to benefit from more sales conversions while spending considerably less on traditional marketing strategies. This approach thus offers any brand better ROI. A Forrester Research survey concluded that brands that did well in lead nurturing generated 50 percent, sales-ready customers, at a 33 percent lower cost.

  • Better decision making in businesses. Lead nurturing helps companies focus their energy appropriately. On the one hand, through this approach, brands can identify legitimate “hot” leads and send them directly to the sales team. In turn, this ensures that the sales department invests its energy and time on solid prospects. On the other hand, lead nurturing helps identify “warm” leads, which are then sent to the marketing team and nurtured to the point of purchase.

  • Builds a business reputation. Through lead nurturing, brands develop and strengthen their presence by providing useful educational content to their subscribers. Moreover, lead nurturing allows a brand to show its customer base that it understands their concerns and can offer permanent solutions.

  • Boosts engagement. With automated lead nurturing, a business can easily maintain engagement with leads who have already interacted with it. In case a specific lead has stopped viewing a brand’s offerings or visiting its site, lead nurturing is an excellent way to remind the lead about the business.

  • Identifies upsell and cross-sell opportunities. When dealing with existing customers, companies can use lead nurturing to inform consumers about other goods or services provided.

How does lead nurturing work?

  1. Score all leads
  2. Identify the ideal buyer
  3. Develop a lead nurturing program
  4. Evaluate campaign results and adjust where necessary
  1. Score all leads. Lead nurturing starts with lead scoring, the process of identifying where a particular lead is within the sales cycle. For this strategy, a marketer can rely on various lead scoring tools to assess leads based on a set of demographic and behavioral scoring data. Marketers can also tap into past experiences with different types of customers to create lead scores.
  2. Identify the ideal buyer. Once a marketer identifies the target customers, they should proceed to define the profiles of all perfect buyers. With this information, a business can focus its lead nurturing strategies.
  3. Develop a lead nurturing program. After identifying the target consumer segment, a brand should create a program by looking at how often it wishes to communicate and what content offers (webinars, case studies, white papers, and so forth) to share. It also makes sense to segment the customer list by buyer personas and create targeted campaigns based on industry, location, job function, buyer cycle, and so on.
  4. Evaluate campaign results and adjust where necessary. After the program is set up and put into action, all that is left is to evaluate its effectiveness. Here, one can measure the engagement of users: email open and click-through rates, the time it takes to move a lead within the sales cycle, and the number of leads that made actual purchases. After that, a marketer can analyze all of the results, determine trouble areas in your lead nurturing process, and try out new solutions like providing new communication channels or fresh content.

Lead Nurturing Strategy

A lead nurturing strategy is a particular approach adopted by a brand aimed at attracting and engaging customers while retaining existing ones. That said, here is how to develop one.

How to create lead nurturing strategy

  1. Align sales with marketing. Identify both marketing and sales leads at the very start. Marketing leads are sent to the nurturing process where they are “weaned” until they are sales-ready. Sales leads are redirected to a salesperson where they are handled in the CRM.
  2. Set up a lead management process. This process ensures that the sales department only handles “hot” leads while the “warm” leads are sent to the nurturing process.
  3. Collect useful data. For effective lead nurturing, a marketer should gather information regarding target buyers and what they require throughout the purchase process. This info can be attained through interviews, surveys, doing keyword research, and so forth.
  4. Develop a content plan. Marketers should create lead nurturing content plans to understand their timelines better and know when to send out appropriate content.
  5. Communicate your message via email. Seeing as email offers the most ROI compared to other marketing tactics, it makes sense for a marketer to get the message out to the target customers.
  6. Keep tabs, measure, and analyze. Once the strategy is rolled out, the marketer should track various metrics to know if the endeavor is worthwhile or not. It is also vital to measure leads to determine how many are sent to the sales or marketing teams. Lastly, the brand should gauge the content that generates the most leads to help to improve the process.

Lead Nurturing Tactics

  • Multi-channel campaigns
  • Relevant and targeted content
  • Personalized and segmented emails
  • Regular follow-ups
  • Multi-channel campaigns. It is necessary to think beyond email if a business is to nurture and eventually convert leads. Consider combining several delivery channels for better outreach and personalized approach. For example, with SendPulse, you can send an abandoned cart email, a client makes a purchase, send an SMS with the order details, and keep your customers informed about the shipping status via push notification.

  • Relevant and targeted content. This refers to reaching out to target customers with information that matches their personas. Collect the necessary data by providing your subscribers with the option to set their email preferences.

  • Personalized and segmented emails. This approach entails sending personalized marketing emails to a specific segment of prospective customers to achieve high levels of engagement. SendPulse allows you to use these marketing techniques for free.

  • Regular follow-ups. Under this tactic, the marketer strives to make timely and frequent follow-ups on leads to guide them to convert. With Automation 360, you can automatically send different messages to your subscribers based on various factors: whether they opened your email, clicked the link, made a purchase, etc.

Lead Nurturing Campaign

Given that we have already covered what lead nurturing is and why it is essential, let’s now look at how to develop an excellent campaign.

How to create an effective lead nurturing campaign

Highlighted below are useful tips for creating a nurturing campaign:

  1. Segment the target audience.
  2. Send out high-quality and valuable content.
  3. Set up email marketing automation.
  4. Make the sale.

How SendPulse Helps Nurture Leads Effectively

SendPulse is a service that helps online marketers, business owners, online marketing experts, and anyone operating an online brand to generate, nurture, and convert leads through sound marketing tactics. SendPulse helps companies build relationships with buyers at different stages of the sales funnel in the following ways.

Email, SMS, and web push notifications marketing

Using email, SMS, or web push notifications to talk to prospects and customers can significantly help to gain exposure for a brand.

Email

SendPulse offers email marketing services for all types of businesses. By signing up, one can make subscription forms, place them on their website, and collect subscribers. Then, using the drag and drop email editor, one can create professional-looking marketing email templates lightning fast. To start an email campaign:

  1. Upload a mailing list
  2. Create a preferred email template
  3. Send email

SMS

With SendPulse, it is easy to set up bulk SMS automation.

  1. Go to SendPulse features and then SMS.
  2. Input the recipient’s name/ID, message, and date and time the messages should be sent.
  3. Send SMS campaign

Web push notifications

With SendPulse, sending web push notifications to leads is possible in all major browsers and smartphones as well. The service offers easy personalization options, and one can also segment subscribers based on specific criteria and set up web push automation.

  1. Add your website.
  2. Add the generated code to your website.
  3. Create a push campaign.
  4. Send.

Email marketing automation

Marketing automation is a way of reducing repetitive tasks while making their execution more effective. With the Automation 360 feature, brands can nurture leads at every stage of the sales funnel. Automation 360 allows one to:

  • Create and send emails to a new subscriber or customer, welcoming them to the website.
  • Dictate and manage the time and frequency of sending emails to a mailing list.
  • Identify and focus on the most relevant offers. By monitoring prospects’ behavior, one can identify which offers are doing well and concentrate on them more.
  • Send automated reminders to customers who have added a product to their cart but have not completed their purchase (abandoned cart).
  • Send an order confirmation email to a customer confirming an order they have made.
  • Set up milestone emails. A milestone email is a personalized message sent to an existing customer on specific dates such as birthdays and anniversaries.
  • Combine multiple channels — SMS, web push notifications, and email — in an automation flow to get more customers.
  • Track conversions and follow up on those who fall through the cracks.

Lead Nurturing Examples

Take a look at how Airbnb is nurturing leads via email campaign

Lead Nurturing

And now a push notification for lead nurturing from MakeMyTrip

Lead Nurturing

Lastly, a lead nurturing SMS from Uber

Lead Nurturing

Lead Nurturing Best Practices

  • encourage recipients to share data about themselves for more personalized content and suggestions;
  • test different types of content to see how the target audience responds to it;
  • utilize multiple channels to reach users where they are;
  • greet new subscribers with onboarding and welcome emails;
  • personalize and segment your email campaign;
  • track user engagement throughout the nurturing process;
  • optimize retargeting ads emphasizing your benefits.

References

  1. The article "3 Ways Automated Lead Nurturing Can Supercharge The Sales Cycle" on Neil Patel's blog explains how to automate lead nurturing to supercharge the sales cycle.
  2. The article "7 Amazingly Effective Lead Nurturing Tactics" on HubSpot academy defines the term and offers seven lead nurturing tactics.
  3. The article "The Ultimate Guide to Lead Nurturing in 2019 (Process & Resources)" on Impactbnd blog builds a holistic view of lead nurturing. It offers eye-opening stats on lead nurturing, answers the question "How to align sales and marketing with lead nurturing," provides best practices to follow, sheds light on lead scoring, and considers a lead nurturing campaign.
  4. The article "5 Ingredients of Effective Lead Nurturing" on Convince & Convert offers five tactics to nurture leads effectively.

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