It would be wonderful if all you needed to do to make a sale was to collect a lead’s name and email address and send them one email. Unfortunately, that’s not the way marketing works. If that’s all you’re doing to turn leads into customers, then you’re probably not making many sales.
The solution is labor intensive but worth the effort. Nurturing the leads you get can help to build trust, overcome objections, and close deals.
Why is Lead Nurturing Necessary?
Let’s start by talking about why lead nurturing should be an integral part of your marketing strategy:
- In any industry, at least 50% of the leads that come in are people who are not yet ready – for whatever reason – to make a purchase.
- In the absence of lead nurturing, the majority of your leads will never become customers.
- Companies who engage in lead nurturing generate 50% more sales than those who do not, and they spend less doing it.
In other words, lead nurturing helps to do two important things at once. It increases your sales, and it also decreases your overhead. Nurturing leads might seem like a lot of work, but it doesn’t have to be expensive. Its primary goal is to build relationships with leads so that when the time comes for them to make a buying decision, the choice is an easy one.
Lead Nurturing Methods to Try
Now that you understand why lead nurturing is important, let’s look at some specific techniques you can use to turn the new leads you get into paying customers.
It stands to reason that if you want to get the biggest possible bang for your buck, you should spend the majority of your time nurturing leads who are highly likely to buy from you. But how can you tell? Here are some metrics you can use to determine the viability of a lead:
- Basic demographic information such as age, gender, education level, and so on can help you determine if a potential lead matches your typical customer persona.
- For B2B companies, looking at a lead’s company, including their business model, revenue, and products – can help you determine if they are a good fit for your product or service.
- Online behavior can be a good predictor of a customer’s intent to purchase. A lead who scans your content for information but doesn’t engage with you in any way should be scored lower than someone who registers for your website or downloads gated content.
You should develop your own scoring system based on your business’s needs and criteria. Once you have assigned a score, you can decide which nurturing activities make the most sense for the leads on your list.
Email marketing is still one of the best ways to grow your business. It’s affordable and extremely versatile, and you can manage it easily using autoresponder software.
After you have scored your leads, you can use the information from the scoring process to segment your list and send out targeted emails based on what you have learned. For example, if you know that the purchasing manager for a large company is interested in a particular product you sell, you can send that person a series of emails designed to teach them about your product, reassure them about its value, and overcome any objections they might have to buying it.
If you do it properly, each email you send should move your lead a little closer to making a purchase. Research shows that personalized emails are more effective than generic ones, so consider using your lead’s first name to build trust.
Social Media Nurturing
Another tool you can use to nurture leads and turn them into customers is social media. Here are some things that can help you make the most of your social media contacts:
- Remember that social media is a two-way street. You can’t post content and then ignore it. Instead, share content that is relevant and useful to your followers, and then engage with them when they ask questions or make comments. The more you respond, the easier it will be for your followers to believe that you care about them. Caring builds trust, and trust makes sales.
- Use social media tracking tools to figure out which content engages your followers. Not every piece of content you share will be a winner. If you want your social content to help you make sales, you should track each piece of content’s performance and then use what you learn to guide your social media strategy going forward.
- Remarket to leads on social media. Facebook and other social media sites offer remarketing options that can help you reach out to people who have visited your website without subscribing to your list as well as those who have abandoned shopping carts.
These are all easy things to do and they can make a big difference in your sales.
What do your leads see when they return to your website? If they’re seeing the exact same content they saw the first time around, then you’re missing out. Instead of having a static website that fails to nurture leads, think about using smart programming that tailors itself to individual customers.
These three nurturing options can help you take even the most reluctant leads and turn them into paying customers. At each step along the way, you can build trust, overcome objections, and help your leads make the decision you want them to make.