In a perfect world, clients would all buy immediately. But in the real world, only 2% of sales happen after one touch. So lead nurturing is a way to facilitate deals that take a long time to close. It is the opposite of pressure sales and minimizes regret.
But if not performed correctly, lead nurturing does little more than eat up your database space and wastes your salesperson's time. In many instances, it also annoys the prospective client!
Disclaimer: Not all of these lead nurturing tactics will be valid for your business because some work for direct dealers, and others work over the phone.
But it's no secret that lead nurturing is essential to driving sales and increasing your closing rate. By cherry-picking from these best practices, you can take your nurturing efforts to the next level and see a significant increase in sales.
1. Deliver Relevant Content
If your leads have signed up through an opt-in form and received their email, you might feel like you have the right to send them sales emails. But emails that try to sell first fail more often than emails that deliver value, and that's because people want to receive value.
Relevant content is a way to provide value while also keeping the sale in sight. Suppose you're marketing on behalf of a car dealership that wants to convert email leads into in-store visitors. One way to go about it would be to invite customers via an email blast. This is the lowest tier of lead connection. Then comes the possibility of giving a discount or a perk alongside the invitation. This tactic is a very urgent lead conversion one with high risks and rewards.
Great marketers try to avoid using discounts as a crutch, which brings us to the third strategy: Send them articles and videos on how to choose the best car. This content is relevant to the business and the audience's interests. And given that the emails are branded, the audience knows who is responsible for helping them.
On some level, it can even trigger reciprocity bias. This strategy works best when the client takes a long time to finalize his purchase.
2. Use a CRM for Personalization
Another thing you can do before and after the sale is to send out personalized emails. Receiving an email birthday wish can be pretty charming. Of course, you don't need to memorize the date of birth of every single customer. There are Customer Relationship Management (CRM) programs that can help you with this.
If you are in a position where nurturing leads is one of your duties, you probably already have a CRM. If you don't, check out the following top programs for customer relationship handling:
The above three are considered the most popular CRM platforms, and they all keep adding features that allow you to personalize at a high resolution. But using a CRM doesn't make one an excellent lead nurturer. You have to double down on personalization.
The following tips can help you fill up your CRM's relevant columns:
3. Make each Touch Valuable
While remembering their birthday can give you a reason to drop them an email, using that opportunity to attempt a close would be a waste. Providing value is the most crucial thing in lead-nurturing touches.
You don't just want to stay on top of their minds. You want to be remembered positively. Customers buy when they need to buy, and they consult their memory before they consult Google.
If your customer gets ready to buy and thinks about you as the annoying "salesey" marketer, you might lose the sale. If he doesn't think about you at all, you will still lose the sale. But if he remembers you positively, he will close himself. Getting to that level with all your prospective clients requires two things:
4. Consider at least 2 follow-ups
One of the salespeople's biggest lead-nurturing mistakes is that they don't nurture leads at all.
Nearly half of salespeople don't even make a single follow-up call. In big-ticket purchases, clients need five follow-ups before taking action. Nearly half the salespeople make one follow-up call, while 94% don't go beyond four follow-up calls.
Lead nurturing could look like touching base with the client and discussing whether he needs any information to facilitate his decision-making. It can also look like a limited-time offer. But the offer tactic cannot be used as a crutch, and the circumstances around the offer need to be believable.
5. Mold the Offer with each Follow-up
Novelty is the spice of sales life. So don't rely on one offer when trying to close the sale. Make each touch unique. If your business allows, offer different bundles or products via email.
Even when you make a sales call, you can mold offers and make the sale increasingly enticing with each call. While your prospect might not notice this, this strategy will make him look forward to your next call because every call brings a better offer.
6. Know when to Stop
Deadweight is often overlooked in a world where post-sales service and lead nurturing are emphasized. And this is perhaps because most salespeople are too quick to label tough prospects are unqualified.
Not all leads are relevant; after a point, nurturing irrelevant leads can take time away from relevant ones. This phenomenon is called opportunity cost. But how can one be sure when it is time to stop?
Disengage with a lead if:
Lead nurturing is the opposite of pressure sales because it gives time and breathing room to the client and minimizes buyer's remorse. But if you do not nurture the lead properly (and he buys from your competitors), you are left with seller's remorse.
To avoid this fate, make sure to use the best practices of lead nurturing that are covered in this article. (Related: 9 Email Nurture Campaign Best Practices That Will Quickly Turn Leads Into Customers)