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EDMONTON, AB Jul 6, 2015/ Troy Media/ – As a business owner, you don’t want to abandon your business relationships while out exploring Banff for a week or travelling to Europe for a month. Neither do I.
It’s the reason I appreciate lead nurturing. This digital marketing technique is used to understand when and how clients prefer to make a purchasing decision. Automated lead nurturing helps make those vacations possible.
- People like to work with those they trust. The first time someone visits your website, they probably don’t know you so well. Lead nurturing embedded with useful content is an opportunity to show that you are an expert in your field.
- Learn more about your prospects. What challenges are they facing? What features or products are they interested in? A free Needs Assessment downloaded from your website, blog or social media saves time for you – as well as for your prospects – by providing you with the insights to start a more insightful discovery.
- People don’t always answer their phone for a chat. We hear this complaint all the time these days, especially from mature business people. A series of emails built around helpful hints or industry updates shows your comprehension of the world that appeals to your contacts.
- Once you set up an automatic email system, the emails do the work for you by helping to move leads down the sales funnel faster. This means your contacts might move from total disinterest to curiosity to eventually closing a deal with you.
How do you start lead nurturing?
- Try sending general educational emails that feature the value your company has to offer. These emails should not be sales-driven. For example, the messages could offer people links to more whitepapers, blog articles, and videos that you genuinely believe will be helpful to the recipients’ needs and goals.
- Next, send emails with more specific information. If you’re a sporting goods manufacturer, for instance, don’t just send emails that sell your equipment. Instead, try to teach people new techniques related to working out.
- Did a lead click on product information in an email or on your website? Then, perhaps, that person would be interested in checking out a demo or receiving a free trial offer to know your company better. Send them an email invitation to a demo. You might even ask if it’s an opportune time to schedule a phone call or an in-person meeting.
This is a good time to remind you that social networks such as LinkedIn for business are exactly that – a place for networking.
Test the frequency level your prospects will tolerate. Weekly is a good frequency, yet, a specific campaign might move that to daily message leading up to a special event. The take-a-way here is that lead nurturing needs patience. It’s important to remember not to rush into the sale. Instead, let it take its natural course. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different times.
Time to get personal
If a prospect has gone down the sales funnel, it may be a good idea to schedule a more personal and targeted email, perhaps from a sales team member.
That way, the lead gets a more personal touch, has a chance to ask specific questions, and gets to talk to a real person rather than being a part of an email group. It gives you a chance to offer extra attention to a potential customer who becomes an actual customer.
- If possible, include a photo of a real person rather than a generic mailing list. Also, make sure your “reply-to” address is a real person. This lets people know that you care about hearing from them by allowing them to reply to a real person.
- Keep a list of additional resources, influential bloggers, and white papers handy to send to your prospects. They might appreciate the content and check out the suggested resources you have curated for them.
Social media supports your brand
You may or may not sell a great deal using social media but relevant platforms will support your direct messages using email. The two channels complement each other and help you stay top-of-mind within your market.
Social media is a great way to stay in touch with leads over time and keep them updated on your business.
Go ahead. Take your vacation.
Communications strategist Sharon MacLean owned and published a print business magazine for 21 years. She now works to assist clients in digital marketing.