You’ve done it. You provided valuable content to your readers and they’ve converted into leads. Now, it’s time to nurture these leads into opportunities for your sales team.
Trouble is, cutting through the inbox clutter isn’t an easy feat. And many of these folks just aren’t ready to buy yet.
If you’re new to the world of email marketing, you might be unfamiliar with the importance of segmenting your email lists. But it’s a big deal: According to DMA, 77% of email marketing ROI came from segmented, targeted, and triggered campaigns in 2015.
The best part about email segmentation? There are a ton of creative ways you can segment your email list to run innovative and effective campaigns that leads and customers will enjoy, from geography and industry to content format and topic.
As businesses adopt inbound marketing and generate more and more leads, the need for an effective lead nurturing strategy becomes clear very quickly.
After all, 50% of leads aren’t ready to buy at the time of first conversion, so lead nurturing — especially through email — is the smartest way for marketers like us to reach them.
As companies adopt inbound marketing as a way to generate more leads, the importance of having an effective lead nurturing strategy becomes very clear. In most cases only a relatively small percentage of your inbound leads will be ready to make an immediate purchase, leaving upwards of 90% of your inbound leads on the table.
Let’s start with some scary stats. According to SiriusDecisions 98% of MQLs never result in closed business. Additionally, 54% of sales reps won’t make quota. All this despite record investments in marketing automation and sales enablement tools.
Now consider that the top priority among B2B marketers is increasing the number of contacts/leads generated (Source, State of Inbound 2015). Of course, a close second priority is converting contacts/leads into customers. Over the last five years, I’ve seen the focus on lead generation increase significantly among small and mid-market businesses (SMEs). As recently as 2013, I would regularly engage executives who had reached out to me to discuss a sales problem in an effort to teach them that the cause of their sales problem was how they were (or more accurately weren’t) generating leads. Today I get to do much less teaching as more and more executives have increased their focus on lead generation.
Not everyone is ready to buy your product or service the first time they come to your site and that’s okay. With the right amount of time and information they will warm up to your brand, assuming they’re the right persona for your product or service, of course.
Nurturing campaigns are essential for keeping these people who visit your site but aren’t ready to immediately buy engaged with your brand. Essentially these campaigns are a series of emails aimed at keeping you top of mind while building trust and moving your lead further along in the buyer’s journey.
This post originally appeared on HubSpot’s Agency Post. To read more content like this, subscribe to Agency Post.
I think we can all agree that things taste that much sweeter when we actually earn them: the promotion you got, the first car you bought with the money you saved mowing lawns for three summers, or the free coffee you received after the cashier punched the final hole in your rewards card.
Are your contacts going with the flow, or are they just sitting dormant in your marketing database? If you don’t have any automated email workflows set up, your answer is probably the latter — which means you’re missing out on some major opportunities to nurture and engage your existing contacts.
Did you know that B2B marketers who implement marketing automation increase their sales pipeline contribution by an average of 10% according to a report by Forrester? But wait … there’s more.
[Cue Twilight Zone Music] There is another dimension beyond which is known to most marketers. It is a dimension that is vast and chaotic and as timeless as the sales process itself.
It is the middle ground between the introduction and the close, between engagement and disengagement, it lies between the deepest of our marketing fears and the heights of our marketing knowledge. This is the 4th dimension of the sales funnel. It is an area which we’ll call… The Sales Continuum.
I’ve got a pretty big thing for phone calls. (I bet your sales reps do too.)
Why? Often times, it takes a lot of interest to get someone on the phone. In fact, inbound phone calls are 10-15X more likely to convert than website leads, according to Conversion Scientist.
The trouble is that many marketers don’t know where to start when it comes to driving more inbound phone calls to their business.
In my job at HubSpot, I chat with marketers very often about what problems they’re facing. One of the most common issues I hear about is lead flow — a marketing department generates hundreds of leads per month, but many of them aren’t closing.
Nobody knows where to turn. Sales points fingers at marketing. Marketing points fingers at sales. They both shrug, unsure of how to proceed.
Struggling to earn the trust of potential new customers?
Before you can expect them to open up their wallets, you need to start the sales process by demonstrating your ability to deliver on what your product or service promises.
Sure, you could tell them that you’re great at X and that you’re light-years ahead of the competition when it comes to Y and Z, but at the end of that day, that’s just lip service.
In the sales and marketing world, there are few issues that are getting more attention than the issues surrounding lead management and follow up. In my experience, clarity around lead management, qualification and response times are the crucial linchpin to align sales and marketing efforts.
It’s a rather scary statistic, but according to a study most recently done for Harvard Business Review, 71% of qualified leads are never followed up with. What’s more is, of the leads that are followed up on, they’re only touched an average of 1.3 times. This represents tremendous opportunity costs not only in revenue, but in the customer/prospect experience as well.