Effective Lead Nurturing Tactics To Close More Deals
When you start generating leads, only a few of them are ready to purchase right away. Some of them have to be nurtured till they make a purchase. After a point of time, it becomes clear that you need effective lead nurturing tactics to hold on to these leads. According to a 2014 Forrester research, there is a 20% increase in sales opportunities from nurtured leads. In fact, companies who employ lead nurturing tactics generate 50% more sales at a 33% lower cost.
But, we marketers already know this. Then, why do only 36% of them employ lead nurturing tactics? There can be a variety of reasons. First, if you want to nurture leads, it is impossible to do so manually unless you have only a handful of customers. You will need a tool like marketing automation which has a lead management module to implement your lead nurturing tactics.
Second, you need to have a lead nurturing strategy in place, before you deploy your tactics.
And last but not the least, you need to know the right lead nurturing tactics to gain the maximum amount of business. Moreover, lead nurturing is just one part of your entire inbound marketing strategy. You need to make sure the tactics that you use complement your all over strategy for maximum benefits.
Imagine a Sales funnel. There are three stages in a Sales funnel: ToFu (Top of Funnel), MoFu (Middle of Funnel) and BoFu (Bottom of Funnel). When leads are first generated, they enter ToFu. At this point, they know very little about you. In fact, they are not even interested in your products.
As they proceed through the sales funnel and reach the middle, they become more interested in your brand and what it has to offer. MoFu serves as a decisive stage for lead because they will soon be moving on to ToFu.
In the final stage, you know that these are leads who are genuinely interested in your products. You can send them offers, discounts, demos, etc. at this point.
Also, you need to gather as much information as you can on your leads in order to know their likes and dislikes. This will help you target your audience better. Now, according to the position of the lead in the sales funnel and their preferences, you can create targeted content to nurture them.
Using targeted content improves sales opportunities by more than 20%. But even then, 33% of B2B marketers have stated that targeted content is their biggest challenge. I believe that if you analyze your sales funnel and the preferences of every lead, creating content and targeting your audience will become easier.
Email is not the only marketing channel anymore. In fact, it’s not surprising to hear from 4 out of 5 marketers saying that their email open rates hover around 20%. What worked in the past, will not work now anymore. You will have to nurture leads across all channels to keep them interested. Some of the channels that you have to focus are social media, websites, mobile and search engine results. Unless and until you are nurturing your leads across all of them, you are not doing it right.
However, you have to realize that without the help of a powerful tool like marketing automation, it is next to impossible to create multi-channel lead nurturing tactics. An effective lead nurturing strategy would nurture leads on all these channels and target them accordingly. Perhaps, the most important thing to keep in mind is that every channel requires a different marketing strategy, so your nurturing strategy has to be improvised according to requirement.
Multiple Touch Points
According to research, on an average, prospects receive 10 marketing touches from the time they enter the funnel to the time they become customers. But you will be surprised to hear that 49% of marketers include less than 5 touches in their lead nurturing strategy. No wonder, most marketers still struggle with this.
In order to increase the number of touch points, the best way to go about this is to think from the point of view of a lead. Focus on solving their problems and keep a line of communication open at all times.
Target every lead using a mixture of different content types. Do not put all your eggs in one basket and target a lead only with blog posts just because they like them. Map your buyer’s journey and figure out the points where you can influence them the most.
Employing good nurturing tactics is like cultivating good habits. If you don’t make it your habit, you are not going to succeed. Similarly, follow ups are something that most organizations do not act upon. Slow response times often cost you a lot of leads, and you don’t even get to know it. According to Harvard Business Review, B2B companies take 42 hours to respond to a lead on an average. Only 37% respond within an hour, which should be the norm if you are wondering. I think you will be surprised to hear that 23% do not respond at all.
A lead nurturing strategy without follow ups will not help you achieve the best results. Your odds of converting a lead into a sales opportunity increases even more if you follow up on inquiries on a timely basis.
If you are using marketing automation, I suggest you take advantage of lead tracking and scoring to see what your leads are up to. More often than not, recent browsing behavior reveals a lot about your leads and what they want.
One of the most important lead nurturing tactics has to be personalization. Marketers have reported 20% increase in Sales when they started personalizing their website for leads. Personalizing your content makes sense because it makes your leads feel good about themselves. From their point of view, they see a brand that cares for them. Almost 74% of consumers complain about seeing content that is generic or irrelevant to them. So, this is a persisting problem.
When you are reaching out to your leads on email, make sure that you personalize each and every one of them. Personalized emails have the potential to generate 6x higher revenue than non-personalized ones. You can also personalize your call-to-actions as part of your lead nurturing strategy. This can go a long way as such CTAs have a 42% higher chance of converting a lead.
However, personalization takes a lot of time. 46% of marketers say that lack of time is the biggest hurdle to personalization. However, 75% still believe that it is crucial for a company. Having a tool like marketing automation helps in these situations. It has a dynamic content module that helps you automate your personalization efforts. It can definitely save some of your time and make your overall lead nurturing strategy efficient.
These are the most important things to keep in mind while formulating your lead nurturing strategy. If you do as suggested, you will be able to retain a large portion of the leads that you generate.
In fact, if you play your cards right, a lot of them will become your long-term customers. Depending on your company’s needs and requirements, you should go and implement marketing automation. It will definitely go a long way and aid your lead nurturing efforts.