How lead nurturing can keep you out of trouble
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Creative professional at work. Photo credit: Yuri Arcurs / Getty Images Israel)

Creative professional at work. Photo credit: Yuri Arcurs / Getty Images Israel)

Moving a lead through your funnel to fruition can be tough and requires love and care. These are some helpful tips to turn visitors into happy, long time customers

We have all been trying to figure out the exact science on how to make our users convert, and ultimately optimizing your conversion rates, well… it’s a never ending process but there are some key steps along the road that you must understand in order to achieve the optimization you are looking for. In this 7 minute read post I will go over the essence of lead nurturing and the steps you should follow in order to maximize your conversion rate!

Keeping KPIs in Mind

It’s very important to first fully understand what to aim for with your paid / organic / social campaigns. What you want to focus on is your micro goals. Your macro goals will be met through the completion of all your micro goals. For example, a micro goal in this example would happen when a prospected lead completes an action, which urges the lead to complete the next action, and then the next until, through the completion of all of these micro goals, there is a sale. You need to look at your macro goals to see whether your short-term target is reachable. Read more on KPI’s to help improve your marketing.

*Best Practice: Understand your user’s behavioral flow within your web site. This will give you a good indication of where your users will be willing to leave extra details and sign up (micro goal), enable A/B testing when possible, and make sure to integrate a marketing automation tool to your lead capture forms.

The Lead
Getting quality leads to feed your sales team is a never-ending job for any software marketer. Competition is tough in every market niche, with new competitors and technology appearing daily.

How does a website turn visitors into leads?
Your site will need to:
• Show that you understand your visitor’s needs
• Show your service can address the visitor’s needs
• Convince the visitor to take action

The Funnel

It is the funnel that takes your shy visitors and converts them from prospects to paying customers, turning them into confident promoters of your product. A staggering 76% of businesses have not identified their funnel. The journey to the end of the funnel is dangerous and many might be lost along the way. However, with the right amount of care and attention to detail, the process will become smooth enough for most visitors to slide through quite happily. There are three main stages beyond attraction: conversion, closing and delighting.

The first thing you want to do is convert your visitors into leads. This is the perfect stage to grab an email address (aim for CTA with a single field; number, email, website), which will allow you to keep contact with them warm. There are a couple of ideas to keep in mind:

Micro-conversion – these are small actions that require very little commitment from the visitor, such as following you on social media. It’s much easier to get your macro-conversions if you first start with micro-conversions. So, start small with gentle pushes.

Nifty tools – things like analytics and surveys can provide you with insights into your customers’ behavior. You can use these insights to tinker with your web page to draw more people in. Something like live chat allows you to interact with your customers in a more personal and immersive way. In fact, there is evidence to support that your conversions are boosted through live chat.

Quick tip: Use different SaaS engagement tools such as Addthis, and Trendemon to drive conversion rate.

Writing style – the way you describe your content is very important. The more engaging you describe your product the higher the chances of conversion. You could describe a flower as “red” or “bursting with color”.

The next step in the funnel is about turning your leads into customers. I think it’s safe to say that that’s difficult since over 75% of leads never convert into sales. The way to do that is to show them the value that they are going to get from your service, aka the value proposition. Techniques like email marketing and direct phone calling are effective ways of converting leads. Another good method is using onboarding, like a free demo, to convert leads. Let them see what the product is like and your value proposition will become very clear.

So, now that your visitors have been converted into customers, it’s important to nurture them. It’s far easier to push purchases and growth with existing customers than to acquire new customers. It’s important in this phase to encourage as much loyalty as possible. Loyal customers are going to come back. Customer support and handling complaints are great ways of showing your customers that you care and that they are important to you. In fact, over 80% of people who switch say their decision would have been impacted if the company had given more attention to customer support. Do your best to reply fast with answers that are customized and clear. People are impressed when there is clarity and they feel like they are given special attention.

Credit: Maskot / Getty Images Israel)

Credit: Maskot / Getty Images Israel)

Lead Nurturing: Converting Leads Into Customers

You have your lead generation system working now. The next step is to convert those leads into customers. There are many strategies you can try. Once again, you will need to try different things to see what works best for your particular audience. Here are some tips and techniques that you can test with your leads.

Contact Leads Quickly
Studies by the Harvard Business Review and others show that speed is vital. Delays in contacting a lead greatly reduce the chance of qualifying that lead. In the Harvard study, following up within an hour was 700% more effective in qualifying a lead than following up more than an hour later. This argues strongly for prioritizing response time above any other factor when qualifying leads.

Nurture Your Leads
Not every lead is ready to buy right now. According to a study by MarketingSherpa, almost 75% of B2B leads are not sales-ready. If you just let them go, the odds are low that they will be back when they are ready.

Lead nurturing is a way to keep from losing these leads. It can even increase their interest in your software over time. The goal is to have them come back to you when they are ready to take action. Depending on how much you want to invest in this process, lead nurturing could involve:
• Keep them updated on your product or if there is a new sale, or a new collection
• Sending educational material about your solution and why it is the best choice
• Creating personalized promotions to increase the chance that the lead will buy now

*Best Practice – No one wants to read boring blog posts, keep it relevant and spicy. If the quality isn’t there, don’t publish it.

Applying Marketing Automation
Keeping on top of everything we have just discussed is a huge amount of work. And much of that work is mechanical, almost mindless. This makes it a perfect place to apply marketing automation. Businesses that use marketing automation to nurture prospects see an over 400% increase in good leads.

As HubSpot puts it: “In a nutshell, marketing automation refers to software that automates your marketing for you. The software is designed to help you prioritize and execute your marketing tasks in a more streamlined and efficient way.”

Once you set it up, marketing automation tools such as Eloqua and Ontraport do a lot of the routine work for you. This frees you to do higher-level tasks. It also ensures that things don’t fall through the cracks, which can cost you sales.

The exact capabilities you have at your disposal depend on the software you choose. Make sure that it can at least track and analyze site visitors, as well as handle lead-nurturing email campaigns.

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​Nadav Olmert

About ​Nadav Olmert

​Nadav Olmert is the Director of Business Development and Marketing at DiscoverSDK. Nadav also teaches Digital Marketing at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya. He is passionate about Entrepreneurship, Startups, and all things Digital Marketing. You can contact Nadav on LinkedIn.

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