So you went out and bought that shiny new marketing toy — marketing automation technology — sold on the allure of how it can solve all of your marketing and sales woes. You read our posts on how to plan your email marketing automation campaigns. And then it was time to use it. figuring out how to structure and launch your first email campaign can seem a little daunting.
But, are your aware that only 25% of your leads are sales-ready. In addition, a whopping 50% of your leads are qualified but not ready to buy from you. [Gleanster Research]
So, what do you do with those qualified but reticent leads to turn them into customers? Lead nurturing, of course!
Lead nurturing campaign is one way that your marketing automation can really help your sales team keep prospects warm and turn them into opportunities. So understanding how best to make this work for your organization will set you on the road to getting the most out of your marketing automation platform.
Lead nurturing is the process of developing relationships with buyers at every stage of the sales funnel, and through every step of the buyer’s journey. It focuses marketing and communication efforts on listening to the needs of prospects, and providing the information and answers they need.
- On average, 50% of the leads in any system are not yet ready to buy (Marketo).
- Almost 80% of new leads never become sales (MarketingSherpa).
- Companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales ready leads at a 33% lower cost (Marketo).
- Nurtured leads makes 47% larger purchases than non-nurtured leads (The Annuitas Group).
Effectively developing leads in today’s buyer-driven marketplace means establishing and nurturing buyer relationships with a strategic lead scoring system, and then filling out that framework with a thorough content marketing plan.
Email is the most direct way to get specific content to a specific lead, but effective email marketing needs to be five things:
Trusted—A smart opt-in process sets up accurate and happy expectations, which means your content will be well received in someone’s inbox.
Relevant—The days of email “blasts” are over. Segment your audience as much as possible, and send small, highly-relevant campaigns.
Conversational—Give your buyer a chance to respond, and make sure your next round of content takes that response into consideration.
Coordinated—Email content should be the hub that connects social and website content.
Strategic—Opens and CTRs are good, but you want sales. Analyze the email reports and metrics well to determine which campaigns are working best or worst, and plan ahead accordingly.
The following infographic explains the effective steps for nuturing a lead into a customer through email marketing, and retaining them even after the sale is made: