As a marketer or sales professional one of the main focuses of your time is nurturing and increasing the number of leads coming into your business. But there's a big difference between getting huge numbers of contacts into your database and finding good quality leads, that are ready and willing to buy from you.
Knowing this difference can have enormous effects on your bottom line, because although you may be attracting large numbers of leads, your conversion rate will be low. Why? Because the majority of those contacts will be simply irrelevant or just not prepared to buy yet. These leads are to put it bluntly, 'time-wasters' and not worth your effort. Harsh we know, but true!
So, What is Lead Nurturing oppose to Lead Generation
Let's start out with a clear definition of lead nurturing;
‘Lead nurturing is the purposeful process of engaging a defined target group by providing relevant information at each stage of the buyers journey, positioning your company as the best choice to enable them to come to a resolution of their business problem’.
Lead nurturing oppose to lead generation is all about relevancy, and it has a proven track record of being incredibly successful,
"with a 20% increase in sales opportunities over simple lead-generation.
And running the process as a whole generates 50% more sales-ready leads at a 33% lower cost. (Data: From MarketingSherpa)"
You see the thing is, people know when they’re being marketed to, and they appreciate a bit of personalisation rather than your average blanket email. By adjusting your marketing plan to target specific industries and their industry specific problems you can really begin to scratch their itch, as it were.
If you go even deeper, you can wrap your emails around problems found at every stage of the buyer’s journey. For example, ask yourself the following questions,
- What is preventing them from buying?
- Not knowing you well enough?
- Not being convinced your product or service will be suitable?
- Are they ready to buy or are they just browsing?
By asking these questions you can really start to tailor your responses so that you can convince your lead that, now is the time to buy and in the words of Nike 'Just do it!'
The marketing funnel which we have talked about extensively in the past, comes into its own here and not every lead will begin their journey at the same stage. Lead nurturing is about getting people into the top of your funnel and then making sure they trickle through to the buying stage without putting them off with irrelevant spam and pushy sales emails. Nurturing is exactly that, your warming your leads up gently through persuasion. Often this approach can be timely and you shouldn't expect results overnight, after all Rome was not built in a day.
It is worth the wait though because when you do get that lead conversion, trust us, it’ll be worth it because you’ll have a client who trusts you and is more than likely to buy from you again in the future.
To give you an Idea of a Typical Lead-Nurturing Plan
Begin with education – show your potential client you know your stuff and give them useful information they can use in their business and industry.
Inform – Teach your potential clients how to make better decisions and why they can benefit from your services over others.This is the 'trust factor'
Engage – Share with them relevant content and enter into a polite and ongoing conversation. If they ask questions be sure to answer them. Connect with them on Social Media too as an added engagement platform.
Convert – Make sure your prospects are aware that they can buy from you at any point of the funnel and don't leave it until the end, peope make decisions at different points!
Lead nurturing is an often lengthy and time consuming process but it not only improves the quality of your database it gives you company an air of professionalism as well as a PR bonus, it'll show customers you know your stuff and you've done your research. Sometimes it pays off to do that bit extra legwork.
Alas, Until Next Time,
Kelly the Marketeer
And the Develop and Promote Team