According Hubspot: lead nurturing is the process of building relationships with prospects with the goal of earning their business when they are ready.
As with any relationship, a relationship with your prospective clients requires building trust. Getting your sales team to cold call a stranger who has not yet been properly acquainted with your company and does not yet trust you, is a good way to ruin a potential sale. In fact, statistically speaking, 73% of B2B leads are not ready to be sold to when first encountering your company. In this post we will teach you how to reevaluate your sales approach using lead nurturing to improve B2B Sales.
Lead nurturing done right, the inbound way
Let's first get one thing out of the way – lead nurturing does not mean that sales should never contact leads until they are sales qualified leads. It's about taking a step back and creating a non interruptive funnel. Implementing a holistic inbound marketing approach will result in prospects finding you, and deciding to buy specifically from you.
Traditional marketing is all about cold calling, cold emailing, and interruptive ads. It's marketer focused. Inbound marketing is customer focused. The idea is to all provide value and to understand that the nature of the communication with your prospects should always align with the stage of your prospect in the buyer's journey:
If for example a prospect who has just become aware of your company, provides you their email in order to receive an offer such as an ebook, the natural next step should be to communicate with the prospect in the context of their stage of the journey and to provide added value in accordance (all with the aim of pushing them down the buyer's journey to the next stage i.e the consideration stage).
However, if for example a prospect has submitted a form on your site requesting a free consultation, there's no need to take 2 steps back and try to educated them about what they already know. In this case your communication should be aimed at qualifying the lead in order to understand whether or not your product or service is a good fit for them.
Hard selling should only be done once the lead is qualified. And I'll tell you a secret, it shouldn’t be hard selling by this point as it will be completely natural for both you and the prospect. It's all about trust, authority, and win-win long term cooperation's.
Here is a standard lead nurturing work flow:
When context meets content
Here are some recommended offers to send to your leads in order to nurture them in accordance with their stage of the buyer's journey:
Download an ebook/ onepager/ guide – once the lead submits a form to download the offer, make sure to contact them with a confirmation email.
Trigger emails – if a prospect has not viewed your blog in 90+ days, you can send them an email saying you miss them and inviting them to read your top featured blogs. Try to recommend content that you know the prospect is interested in.
Invite the prospect to attend a webinar – you can correllate this with your previous stage offer. Send them a personal email, refer to the ebook they have downloaded and invite them to attend a webinar on the subject in order to advance their knowledge on the subject.
Invite the prospect to view a case study/ start a free trial/ request a free consultation
Remember this: Each communication with your prospects is an opportunity to learn more about them and conduct a relevant conversation with them.
Establishing a relationship with your prospects is a pro way of increasing your conversion rates and creating sustainable long lasting relationships. Once your leads become customers, do not stop nurturing them. Your current customers are your most important asset. Brining on a new client will always be more expensive than investing in your current clients. Delighting your customers is a sure way to make them your ambassadors and increase your business wisely. Good luck!
If you found this helpful, let's pick up the pace, learn how to rectify your sales pipeline and grow your business in our FREE 14 B2B Marketing Best Practices that every CMO must know eBook!