4. Nurture Leads

How to Turn Leads Into Customers

Just because someone has converted on your website does not mean that the lead is sales ready. Just like traffic, leads don’t pay the bills, so it’s important to consider how to convert those leads into sales. Your top-of-the-funnel leads may or may not know exactly what they want, and it’s up to you to show them while simultaneously convincing them that you have the best product for their needs. Ultimately it boils down to trust. Your lead nurturing strategy needs to have a solid foundation with consistent follow-through to build a relationship and earn the sale.

What Is Lead Nurturing?

Basically, lead nurturing is convincing prospective customers to become buying customers by giving them all of the information they need to make a decision while advertising your brand’s benefits and staying top of mind. Most companies who utilize lead nurturing do, in fact, see an increase in sales.

Lead nurturing targets one customer or a group of similar people rather than the general public. For example, a company specializing in sports equipment might develop a lead nurturing plan for a young family, presumably with children interested in sports or a parent coach, while simultaneously creating a different lead nurturing sequence for a rock climber or extreme outdoors person. With this in mind, the strategy can then by highly targeted and personalized to suit their unique needs.

How to Use Online Lead Nurturing to Turn Leads into Sales

Because inbound marketing deals with capturing potential customers at the top of the funnel, lead nurturing is essential to an inbound campaign to guide them toward becoming sales ready. You can save time and effort by ensuring that your message is reaching the right people. Thanks to technology, it’s much easier to achieve this goal by segmenting email lists based on a wealth of different criteria.

Lead Nurturing Process

Lead nurturing is often executed through email and social media advertisements. Email, in particular, allows you to more accurately nurture prospective customers. People typically give out their emails in exchange for helpful resources (often in the form of a subscription). Keep email marketing best practices in mind as well as the average sales cycle length for your product or service to ensure that your lead nurturing process aligns with the buyer’s journey.

On the other hand, you can also target individuals on social media who have visited your site in the past with retargeting campaigns that further keep your brand top of mind.

Lead Nurturing Strategy

Understanding Your Customers’ Sale Cycle Is Crucial: Here’s Why

In your business, how long does it take your typical customer to make a buying decision?

The key here is to understand the research and comparison stages no matter the decision period and tailor the experience to that time frame. It’s your job to have systems in place to communicate with your online leads and prospects effectively throughout that sales cycle.

Sales Cycle Example

  • In the real estate and mortgage industries, a home buyer may be thinking about and planning to buy a home in 90 days to 24 months.
  • In the legal profession, someone injured in an auto accident may choose an attorney in as little as 3 days. Someone thinking about getting divorced may think about this for 6-12 months. Someone wanting to plan for proper asset distribution may consider the best options for several years.
  • In you’re in any profession whereby the funds needed to make the purchase are “discretionary,” then your customer may likely face longer sales cycles such as the case in some home improvement, health and wellness, or lifestyle-type of products and services.
  • If however, you’re in the world of solving emergencies such as plumbing, air conditioning services, or flood restoration, then your customer’s decision processes may be shaped in less than 24 hours.

How to Determine the Sales Cycle Length

The easiest way to do this is to calculate the total number of days for all sales combined (number of days from first contact to conversion) and then divide that by the number of deals. Your answer will be the average sales cycle. If this data is not available to you, don’t worry; you can estimate the amount of time and improve your process and data over time.

Using Known Buying Triggers to Effectively Convert Prospects into Customers

You’ll more successfully coax a prospective customer your way if you have something they need. By nature, people strive to feel pleasure over pain. Prospects will flock to your brand if you’ve convinced them that you’re the cure for their ailments, that your product will end their buying stress. Essentially, you can either be your customers’ vitamin, a constant source of wellness that prevents pain, or their painkiller, healing their pain after they’ve been afflicted. Which solution you are to them depends on the product or service you offer.

A Customer’s Vitamin

To be a prospective customer’s vitamin, offer your audience new products. Technology and automobile companies release new models every year, claiming that, even though last year’s model was great, this year’s product is better. These companies don’t claim their older products are bad; they merely promote something new and improved. That way, customers who ditch last year’s model for the newest one don’t experience their older one malfunctioning. They moved on before it could fall apart. You wouldn’t eat one gummy vitamin and expect it to keep you healthy forever; no, you’d take a new one as soon as the effect of the previous one wore off.

A Customer’s Painkiller

Depending on how recently a prospective customer became aware of your company, they might already be searching the market for a product to suit their needs. They might already be stressed or in pain and seeking relief. The hope is that, once they’ve found you, they’ve found their cure. You might not have been around to prevent their struggle, but you can certainly alleviate it. Painkiller positioning is even more effective than vitamin positioning because people are responding to an existing pain rather than avoiding a future one; this means you’re more likely to overcome their aversion to spending money.

What Is a Buying Trigger?

A buying trigger is just what it sounds like: A circumstance that causes a prospective customer to need a specific product. Buying triggers vary per person and situation, but knowing what common triggers might draw customers to your products makes developing your lead nurturing system more effective. For instance, backpack companies’ customers have two common buying triggers: back-to-school and travelling. As soon as the end of August rolls around, these companies know to focus on their children’s products; likewise, once summer begins, they’ll promote their heavy-duty travel brands.

 

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Turning Buying Triggers Into Lead Nurturing Content

By knowing the exact trigger your prospective customer is struggling with, you learn which specific products of yours they are most likely to consider. With a defined direction, generating lead nurturing content is much simpler. You can go in-depth about those few products, rather than advertising everything in your arsenal as you’d be inclined to do for an outbound marketing strategy.

What Is a Lead Nurturing Email Workflow?

A lead nurturing email workflow is a string of emails designed to entice your prospects to buy. By using automation, you can trigger a particular workflow based on a visitor’s or lead’s action/behavior on your website. This can further segmentation, leading to even more precisely targeted lead nurturing possibilities.

email lead nurturing flow chart-min

Lead Nurturing Email Tips and Best Practices

In order to make your lead nurturing email campaign the most successful that it can be, keep the following things in mind:

1.Start simple

The point of lead nurturing is to slowly persuade prospects your way. To do that, you need to warm them up to the idea of a sale before asking them to buy. Many lead nurturing campaigns start with education. You’re an expert in this field, and a lead nurturing email set to educate them will help them develop trust toward you.

2. Be concise

A confused mind says no. A lengthy message will only end up in the trash folder, so grab their attention with a nice subject line, and once they’ve opened your email, make sure the body of your message is just as clear./

3. Track email metrics

Knowing how many people opened your email and how many unsubscribed from your list are very important to understanding how well your messages are being received. If your open rate is too small for comfort, perhaps your subject lines aren’t as enticing as you thought, for example.

4. Don’t send one mass email

Lead nurturing content that appeals to one customer might not be relevant to someone else. Though this means developing more content, have a spread of lead nurturing emails to please your varying audience.

Lead Nurturing Tools

  • HubSpot
  • Drip
  • Leadpages
  • ActiveCampaign
  • MailChimp
  • AWeber
  • Marketo

Buyers couldn’t care less who they buy from unless something gives them a reason to. Lead nurturing is a great way to educate prospective customers on your product or service while developing a relationship with them. By providing them all they need to know, you become a strong voice in your field and build your top-of-the-funnel leads’ trust until they continue to move toward the bottom.

 

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