digital marketing
By Carrie-ann | Feb 13, 2017 | How Marketing Works

Your lead nurturing guide

A lead nurturing campaign is essentially a way to guide leads from the first point of contact, down through the inbound sales route and out the other side. One of the most effective forms of automated marketing is a properly designed set of lead nurturing emails. These will take the customer through the process and carefully direct them towards conversion.
A lead nurturing campaign can work to generate more customers. Check out the five steps below:

1. Consider, who is your audience?
Many companies make the mistake of directing their marketing campaigns towards just one type of customer. The truth is, no matter what the industry, there are nearly always a range of different customer types. To set up an effective lead nurturing campaign via email, you will first need to determine what these customer types are. Who needs nurturing? Once you have worked out your ideal customer types and target audience, they will need to be segmented, before you can even begin to create any campaigns.

2. Do not lead with a sales pitch. Instead, offer the lead something of value in the first instance.
Leaping straight in with an email requesting demos or quotes very rarely works when a customer first lands on your page. In fact, it frequently has the opposite effect to what is desired. The lead will invariably need to be nurtured through the first steps of the sales funnel, before they will be ready to buy. So, rather than proclaiming your product or service to be the best ever, you must first submit a valuable offer. This might be something as simple as a special offer code, an ebook, an interesting blog post or a webinar. There is no need to create brand new content for these. Judging by how successful and popular they have been in the past, you can re-use previous blog posts or content again.

3. Each email should have goals and objectives
We already know that the first email in a nurturing campaign should not contain any sales quotes. So what should you send instead and why? In essence, this is your chance to send your potential customers tailored offers which will appeal to each individual segment. The objective is to progress them further along the sales funnel and nearer to the conversion stage. Anything you send must be interesting and relevant.

4. Create a timeline
As with sales, your nurturing campaign should ideally follow a typical cycle. Send prospective customers in the region of 2 to 3 emails, as part of a lead nurturing campaign. These should be carefully timed and spaced out, and never rushed. Letting nature take its course is a great saying and one which certainly applies to this scenario. Have patience!

5. Evaluate and optimise
Analyse and evaluate regularly. Experiment with different calls to action, offers and subject lines within your emails. By taking note of which are most effective, you can continuously improve your nurture campaign.
If you get it wrong, lead nurturing can be ineffective and can even serve to put potential customers off altogether. However, put the time and effort into getting it right and you will find that in time, lead to customer conversions will steadily increase, along with the long term success of your organisation.