Automated lead nurturing is the process of sending a series of automated emails that will trigger based on a person’s behaviors or a preset time interval. This means you can provide the right information, to the right prospects, at the right time, and all without lifting a finger.
B2B Marketers are responsible for driving new leads and nurturing them through the customer journey, ultimately resulting in a sale. Lead nurturing campaigns, also called drip nurturing programs, are key to building relationships during a long, complex sales cycle. These campaigns give marketers the ability to virtually hand-hold leads from the time they begin to show interest on through the purchasing decision.
Nurturing can also be used throughout the entire customer lifecycle. For example, engagement campaigns can be created to onboard new customers, revive dormant leads, and run renewal campaigns to current accounts.
Studies have shown that only 17% of new leads are actually sales-ready, and if not handled properly, that can mean a lot of lost investment.
Features of Lead Nurturing
Simple, Visual Setup
Campaigns can be created easily with a visual launch pad that allows you to build custom paths and link directly to all of your existing marketing content.
Adaptive, branching campaigns change based on how customers interact with your campaign. Before you launch, you can test out your campaign to make sure it flows exactly how you envisioned.
You know your messages will always be relevant, because they are sent only when the conditions you determine for each message are met. It’s the right message at the right time, made easy. As you learn more about each customer, your marketing should adapt.
Engagement campaigns should include built-in segmentation and dynamic content so that your campaigns are always on-target. Campaigns will listen for what customers are saying — for example, they may share their industry — but also catch implicit, activity-based signals, like viewing your pricing page.
You can always stay in the loop with real-time notifications that alert you to a specific action or behavior from a prospect. The strongest relationships are built slowly over time by providing real value, the way automated lead nurturing campaigns were designed.
This information is also synced with your existing database and tools means campaigns can be seamlessly folded into your current sales and marketing workflow.
Reporting is only useful if you can use it to improve your programs. When it comes to nurturing, look for easy-to-digest reports, like visual charts and graphs, that help you understand exactly what’s working for your campaign, and where leads are getting stuck.
Reporting should show you how many customers are engaging with each part of your campaign, and also offer easy access to performance of individual messages.
"86% of marketers struggle to execute personalization across the entire buyer journey."
CMO Council, 2016
Who benefits from Lead Nurturing?
Anyone who needs to build a relationship with customers over time can benefit from lead nurturing. Below you’ll find just a few common business challenges that lead nurturing can help solve.
- Do you have leads that you suspect (or know!) are falling through the cracks?
- Do you have leads that aren’t ready to purchase today, but very well may in the future?
- Do you need a way to better determine when your leads are showing buying signals?
- Are you looking to build meaningful relationships with personalized, dynamic, messages for your audience — automatically and at scale?
- Do you need to coach your customers through a key part of sales process, for example converting free trial users to paying customers?
Lead nurturing campaigns run automatically, doing all the legwork and freeing you up to pursue your hotter leads. This saves both time and resources for your marketing and sales teams.
"49% of high performing marketing teams use lead nurturing, as compared to only 19% of moderate performers and 10% of underperformers."
State of Marketing, Salesforce, 2016