Effective inbound marketing can draw customers to your brand and get them interested, but you are leaving a lot of sales on the table if you are not putting any effort into lead nurturing. Only about 4% of consumers are ready to buy the first time they encounter your brand.
With lead nurturing, you can move people in the other 96% through your marketing funnel and get them closer to becoming a paying customer. Incorporating lead generation into your email strategy is an effective way to increase your chances of success. While email best practices, like using a verified email list and tracking key metrics, remain important, the following are a few additional ways to improve your lead nurturing efforts.
Be Quick to Respond
An inbound lead has much more value than contacting customers cold, but the value of an inbound lead can diminish quickly. The odds of qualifying a new lead are at their highest during the first five minutes after contact. If your response time is outside thirty minutes, the chance of qualifying the lead drops by about 21X. If you want to make the most of your inbound leads, you need to be quick to reply.
Automation offers one of the best options for making quick contact with new leads. By sending an email or making a call right away, you can move leads through the marketing funnel more effectively. You can even use your marketing automation to send specific emails depending on the lead’s activity or level of interest they expressed in your products.
While email is still one of the most effective tools for lead nurturing, you should do everything you can to maximize the results you get from your email campaigns. Several studies over the last few years have shown that personalization is the key to successful email marketing.
It can boost your open rates, click through rates, and even improve on conversions. If you are not already using personalization as a part of your lead nurturing efforts, it is time to start.
Beyond the Inbox
Email might be one of the best tools for lead nurturing, but today’s consumer inhabits a multitude of online environments. Research from McKinsey has shown that the brands having the most success are those that reach consumers through a diverse range of online platforms and technologies. If you want to get the best results from lead nurturing, you need to go multi-channel by reaching consumers through email, social media, messaging, and more.
The Value of Multiple Touches
One of the best things about expanding your online presence is that it will give you more opportunities for marketing touchpoints. While it is true that every product has its own buyer’s journey, there is strong evidence to suggest that reaching leads with more touches is a strategy that leads to more conversions.
Finding the right number of touches for your brand might take some experimentation, as each industry is different. But, the general rule of thumb is that you want to have at least five touches in every lead nurturing campaign.
Sales and Marketing Working Together
Lead nurturing is primarily a function of the marketing department, but the sales team should play a role too. Since the whole point of the process is to turn leads into sales, you need to have these two teams working together to find the opportunities that best fit the skills of the different departments. When developing a lead nurturing strategy, you need to identify the ideal stage in the marketing funnel to move from the marketing team to the sales team.
With these strategies in mind, your lead nurturing efforts should strengthen. Doing so will help your business grow, and also serve to create a sense of loyalty and trust among your customers.
This is a guest post by Rae Steinbach, a graduate of Tufts University with a combined International Relations and Chinese degree. After spending time living and working abroad in China, she returned to NYC to pursue her career and continue curating quality content. Rae is passionate about travel, food, and writing, of course.