drip email marketing

Drip Email Marketing vs. Lead Nurturing Campaigns; When To Use Each

Many marketing tools seem similar and are often mistaken for one another. Two tactics that are often confused are drip email marketing and lead nurturing campaign. It’s true that there are similarities in the way they work. However, they are two distinct tactics that serve different purposes. You should have both in your marketer’s toolbox to use when appropriate, especially with attraction marketing. Let’s learn a bit about each tactic and when they should be used.

Email Drip Marketing

Emails are a huge part of modern marketing. One email marketing option is email drip marketing. Named after drip coffee makers, this marketing tactic sends out emails at specific timed intervals. Time is the only factor used to indicate when an email is sent. Nothing else.

When should you use email drip marketing?

  • Educating prospects on all the products and services in your company’s portfolio.
  • Keeping your brand in front of your customers while they are contemplating a purchase.
  • Announcing new products or services for your business.
  • Showcasing best sellers in your portfolio.

A well-crafted drip email campaign can educate and inform your audience. However, done too frequently, or used only to pitch products or services, your audience may perceive these emails as spam.

[Read About Interactive Email Marketing Trends Here]

Lead Nurturing Campaigns

A lead nurturing campaign is not based on timed emails. It is based on the lead’s behavior. When a lead performs a specific behavior, it triggers an email with targeted information to be sent to your audience. These emails are designed to guide the lead through the buying process.

This type of campaign depends on gathered information about the lead’s behavior. Specific behaviors that can trigger an email include:

  • Which whitepapers grab the lead’s attention
  • How many times they visit a specific page on your website
  • Which webinar they attend
  • Which of blog post category they spend the most time in

The goal of the emails sent during a lead nurturing campaign is to deliver useful information at critical points in the sales cycle.

A marketing automation system is ideal for lead nurturing. You can build full campaigns within the system that automates almost everything in the process. The power of marketing automation systems is their ability to capture key data. This then triggers the specific emails that nurture leads.

They Complement Each Other Very Well

Drip email campaigns and lead nurturing campaigns, if well designed, will do their jobs well. They both help leads engage with your brand and give leads the information needed to make an informed decision about your products and services.

They are each powerful tools in the marketer’s toolbox on their own, but working together, they are even more powerful. Coordinated campaigns can help close deals faster and keep your brand ahead of the pack.

email marketing program

Lead Generation Strategy

The Right Lead Nurturing Strategy Can Help You Stay Top of Mind

Just as you put thoughtfully planned initiatives in place to help with new lead generation, you must also think about how you will then nurture these prospects through the sales cycle once you obtain the lead. Successful attraction marketing is having leads. A smart, strategic email and direct mail program can help you maintain a consistent connection with prospects and grow the relationships you have available to you—remaining ‘on their list’ and top of mind when they are ready to act.

Lead Nurturing Basics

It’s a proven fact: marketing needs to assist sales in order to achieve the most effective conversion results. So when you create a program that keeps prospects in touch with your thinking beyond just a salesperson’s outreach, you provide an opportunity to push the prospect through their journey faster. Utilize various outbound communications as key touch-points that complement the sales teams efforts, yet showcase your company’s thinking on a different level. Provide information contacts may be seeking out—not what you want to tell them—to build trust as they make their way to a purchase decision.

Key Considerations

The goal is to offer interesting, relevant and varied content that is not primarily self-serving in nature. Begin by creating a detailed plan for messaging and scheduling of communications. Think about common questions prospects may have, and how you can provide those answers while conveying your competitive advantages, promoting educational content you have to offer, and building trust in your abilities.

A study by DemandGen found that leads that are nurtured with targeted content produce an increase in sales opportunities of more than 20%. To ensure even greater success, target content to coincide with the behavior and mindset of your audiences at different points in their journey—naturally guiding them through the sales funnel by providing the right information at the right time in the buying process.

[Read About The Importance Of Lead Generation Content Marketing]

Fine Tuning

Set a solid foundation for your program by maintaining an up-to-date database with as much information on each prospect as possible. Determine the activity level, timing and quantity of communications that makes sense for each. Be organized, yet allow for adjustments as your program evolves. Track and score behavior and deliver content accordingly, allowing the sales team to receive better quality leads along the way to reach their goals. And remember: conversion is the ultimate objective. Always hold something back—never tell the whole story in your email—make them want to click through to your site or landing page to learn more.

How Marketing Automation Can Help

According to ChadwickMartinBailey, 56% of U.S. email users unsubscribe from a business or nonprofit email subscription because of content that is no longer relevant. Automation makes it easier to schedule emails, segment contacts, manage your content, trigger responsive emails based on actions, and track the lifecycle of prospects in your marketing funnel. By addressing their specific needs, contacts stay engaged; yet you are ultimately in control because you set the parameters for informing, interacting with and nurturing each lead. It provides you the ability to better target your contacts in a personalized way—assisting the buying decision based on their behavior—and leading to increased conversion rates. Consider investing in one of many standard marketing automation software systems to simplify your Top of Mind program initiatives.

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How To Nurture Your Leads With Email Marketing

How To Nurture Your Leads With Email Marketing

Despite some claims that email is dead, it is still a highly effective way for marketers to connect with consumers. It is an integral part of inbound marketing as well as attraction marketing, and is a great way to send nurture leads throughout the buying process. Here are a few email best practices that will help nurture your leads.

Segmentation

The segmentation of your contacts database will help define your audience into categories. If you are unfamiliar with buyer personas, read about them here, as they will be extremely useful in segmenting your contacts. Segmenting be done in terms of geographic location, company type, role within that company, behavior, marketing intelligence, or any other category that could be valuable to your company. Use segmenting to your advantage by targeting those different groups with useful content based on their specific needs.

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call to action phrases

How To Use Targeted CTAs To Increase Lead Conversion

Lead conversion can prove a tricky mistress, but inbound software has changed the way marketers interact with their prospective clients. They now reach customers through clever virtual workflows and smart targeting. Specifically, targeted CTAs can help convert the visitors to leads 42% more often than standard CTAs. A good CTA is a part of attraction marketing. Let’s look at how to use targeted CTAs to increase lead conversion.

What is a “Smart” CTA?

Targeted or smart CTAs convert visitors to leads by tailoring the content to a specific user. They’re based on segmented lists and what stage of the customer lifecycle they’re in. Basically, based on the data your lead generation software is provided, a smart CTA changes dynamically enabling your pages and calls-to-action to be more effective and targeted.

Read More: 3 Helpful Tips To Improve Your CTAs To Generate More Leads

Slice Up Your Contacts: Use Segmented Lists

If you’re not already using segmented lists, you may as well be throwing darts at an indiscriminate and undefined dart board. In other words, if your contacts occupy one single list or a small handful, then you’re really not leveraging your lead conversion software to the max.

Start by creating filters that help define your buyer personas. For example, you may want to create a filter to put “C” level managers with 100-300 employees in a 3-state area in a specific list or perhaps you want to simply create a list where follow-up emails can be generated. In either case, making your lists and your leads more specific will definitely increase the effectiveness of targeted CTAs.

Get Personal: Design and Copy

Finally, let’s talk about getting personal with your leads’ CTAs. Not in a weird way, but in a way that can actually close some sales! Smart CTAs have the ability to change the copy on a CTA button or change the design based on the end user.

If you’re selling chocolate candy bars to a potential customer, perhaps you want them to click the “Get a Free Sample Here” CTA at which point they become a lead and potentially a sale. On the other hand, however, your website may be entertaining an existing chocolate buyer who already loves your product. As a result, giving them a sample won’t necessarily get the job done nor further the value of your expertise as a chocolateer.

This is where smart CTAs show their beauty. Instead of offering a sample, a smart CTA would show your existing customer the “There’s S’more to Chocolate” CTA. Here, they can learn about how to use your product to their advantage. While the example may seem silly, the fact of the matter is that both the design and copy can be altered based on the input of your CRM.

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lead nurturing

Perfect Your Inbound Marketing Strategy With Lead Nurturing

When it comes to marketing, many businesses focus on trying to attract as big of an audience as possible. The more awareness you generate, the more potential customers you’ll have, after all. However, it’s crucial that you don’t skip a step when it comes to generating leads. Just because your marketing efforts have successfully attracted new leads doesn’t mean that they’ll automatically convert into sales. Most of the leads you generate will need to be nurtured before they’ll convert into customers. As such, no inbound marketing campaign is going to be complete if you don’t implement a comprehensive lead nurturing strategy.

What Is Lead Nurturing?

People who discover your brand are going to be doing so at various points of the sales funnel. Everyone is going to be in a different place. For instance, some leads will be in the awareness stage, which means that they are still doing research about their problem. Others may be in the consideration stage, which means that they are looking for solutions to their problem. Then there are those that are in the decision stage, which means that they are comparing solutions from various brands and are in the process of making a purchasing decision.

Lead nurturing is all about meeting the needs of your leads. The goal is to present them with the information and guidance that they need to move through the sales funnel. However, lead nurturing is also about building a relationship through your marketing and communication efforts that not only educates leads and builds trust with your brand, thereby creating a connection that lasts beyond the first sale.

Lead nurturing is an important aspect of marketing. Read more here.

The Benefits Of Lead Nurturing

It’s not just about moving your leads through the sales funnel so that you can close a sale. The following are a few of the additional benefits of a strong lead nurturing strategy:

  • Increase ROI of marketing efforts – Leads that are nurtured are more likely to make a purchase. As such, your marketing efforts are going to result in a greater return if you implement a lead nurturing strategy.
  • Build brand authority – By presenting content that addresses the needs of your leads at every stage of the sales funnel, you’ll establish yourself as a brand authority, which will boost your brand reputation and trust.
  • Generate loyalty – Customers that were nurtured throughout the sales process are going to have a deeper connection with your brand than those that weren’t. As such, they’ll be more likely to remain loyal and may even refer your business to others as a result.

lead nurturing magnet

Ways To Nurture Your Leads

The following are a few tips on how you can successfully nurture your leads through the sales funnel:

  • Develop buyer personas – Your leads all have different needs and motivations. To be able to build relationships with your leads, you will need to understand who your audience is. Develop buyer personas so that you can target every part of your audience.
  • Create high-quality content – Avoid over-promotional content. Instead, focus on creating content that educates your leads. Make sure that you create content that not only addresses every stage of the sales funnel, but that also targets each one of your buyer personas.
  • Personalize emails – Email marketing is a great way to nurture your leads since it allows you to directly send them content that can nurture them. However, it’s essential that you make sure your emails are relevant. You can do this by personalizing them. For instance, segment your email list using the information you’ve gathered on every lead (such as the data provided in your opt-in forms and from their purchasing history).
  • Use email drip campaigns – Email drip campaigns can nurture leads that you’ve captured over a specific period of time. They are designed to slowly nurture leads through the sales funnel by sending emails over a few weeks to encourage leads to make a purchase.
  • Implement lead scoring – Using a lead scoring tool allows you to track at which point in the sales funnel your leads are. This is incredibly useful as it gives you the opportunity to engage your leads at the right time so that you can successfully nurture them through to the next stage.

Implement A Lead Nurturing Strategy Today

Effective lead nurturing is the best way to increase your chances of converting new leads into customers. It’s also important to note that it is essential to building long-term relationships with your customers. The more time and effort you put into developing leads, the more likely they’ll be to return as repeat customers.

30 Greatest Lead Generation Tips
Factors That Influence Consumer Purchasing Decisions

What Are Marketing Qualified Leads And Why Do They Matter?

How are you handling your marketing qualified leads? Once you have a lead at the top of the sales funnel, you can’t just stop marketing and hope that initial lead turns into a sales-qualified lead (SQL). You need to keep your eye on your marketing qualified leads (MQLs) as well.

Don’t Forget the Lead in the Middle

Prospects, also known as contacts and leads, are the consumers at the top of your sales funnel. They have an initial interest in your product or service and might provide an email address or first name, in exchange for a report or other premium offer. However, they are only at the browsing stage and are definitely not ready to make a purchase yet.

At the bottom of your sales funnel are your sales qualified leads, also known as SQLs. These leads are ready to make a purchase. This is when your sales people need to be in contact, ready to provide additional information and incentives to finalize the sale.

Now there is plenty of room between the prospect and the SQL. This is where the marketing qualified lead (MQL) sits.

An MQL has moved beyond the browsing stage and is seriously evaluating whether your product or service meets certain criteria. They are looking at your competition as well. This is when your marketing needs to shift. An MQL needs more detailed information on your products and services, and needs to know how you differ from the competition. This information will help the MQL move towards the decision-making point.

Read here to find out how to nurture leads with email marketing

How Can You Tell if a Lead is Marketing Qualified?

To tell when a lead is moving towards the MQL stage, you need to gather pertinent data from the lead and monitor his/her activity on your website. Then, compare this information to past sales opportunities to determine what direction the prospect is moving towards.

  • Demographic data from the lead, like location, industry, and business size makes a difference. Also, how much do they want to spend? Is your product within their budget needs?
  • What types of actions are they taking on your website? Frequent visits added with downloading whitepapers or other detailed information is a good sign they are in this stage.
  • How similar are they to your past sales opportunities? If your typical customers are established companies with a large budget, a start-up with a limited budget may not be a good fit. That doesn’t mean that start-up won’t make a purchase, it is just less likely to happen.

The exact definition of what an MQL means to your company is something only you can define. But, no matter how you define MQLs, you cannot forget them in your marketing process. Forgetting them means less SQLs which means less final sales. And that defeats the purpose of marketing in the first place. The next step is learning how to engage marketing qualified leads until they move to being an SQL.

Inbound marketing will help you grow your business by attracting website visitors, converting them into leads and closing leads into customers

buyer persona

How to Drive Website Conversions with the Buyer’s Journey

Before any customer commits to purchasing a product, they will have to go through the sales funnel. The sales funnel is comprised of several stages that the buyer will go through, from identifying the problem they have to making a decision. In online marketing, the sales funnel expands from a prospective buyer to a buyer looking to purchase. Marketers are responsible for guiding prospective clients along the sales funnel until they eventually make a purchase. Attraction marketing is what will catch the attention of customers.

Growing social media usage gives marketers a chance to engage their prospective buyers by creating customized content. However, some marketers still find it challenging to identify the most effective content for each step. The following is a guide to creating the right content to drive website conversions at each step of the sales funnel.

Top of the Funnel: Awareness and Research

This is the primary step where prospective customers realize they have a problem or a need to fulfill. Buyers at the top of the funnel are searching for high quality and relevant information to point them towards the solution

Over 80% of buyers research products online before buying. The best way to attract them is by offering exactly what they need: highly optimized content with original research. Additionally, posting explainer videos that contain demonstrations can have a huge impact on your site. Lastly, create attractive landing pages to offer your visitors solutions at the click of a button.

Read More: How To Use The Buyer’s Journey To Create Great Content

Middle of the Funnel: Evaluation

During the second stage of the sales funnel, buyers are trying to sort through their best options that you and your competitors are offering.  It’s the seller’s job to explain why they are the best solution for the customer’s problem. The purpose of this section of the funnel is to highlight your expertise and begin the process of lead nurturing.

The best content for this stage are webinars and live communication features. These give the marketers and customers a space to interact with live questions and discussions. Email marketing is also a great way to offer relevant and consistent content. Don’t forget to include clear calls to action that will convert leads.

Bottom of the Funnel: Purchase

At the final stage, the buyer has decided they are ready to make a purchase, but they have not yet decided the source of their purchase. Providing them with access to the solution as well as some incentives will likely turn a prospective buyer to a customer.

Clear calls to action linked to trial offers, video tutorials, and product information can have a huge impact on prospective customers. Aligning your offers with educational and entertaining testimonials is an effective technique. It’s also wise to creating a purchasable demo based on a free plan that entices customers to access its premium features.

Pay Attention to the Buyer’s Journey

Above all, remember to consider your clients’ needs first. From there, develop your funnel in order to fulfill these needs at each stage. If the sales funnel is implemented correctly and your content is helpful to customers, your lead conversion rate will definitely increase.

Download Our White Paper Guide To Learn How To Perfect Buyer Personas For Your Business

lead generation content marketing

The Importance Of Lead Generation Content Marketing

Your company is struggling to generate leads, and you’re looking for a quick and relatively simple solution. I have this solution, but you’ll probably groan because you’ve heard it before. “Content is king” might be an overused term, but that’s only because it’s proven to be true. A foolproof solution to your lack of leads as well as website foot traffic is lead generation content marketing.

Nowadays, the quality of your company’s content is more important than ever before. Granted, there is more space to generate content and share it on the Internet, but with increased space comes tougher competition. We as marketing agencies feel pressure to stand out from the pack with remarkable content that converts our website’s visitors into potential leads. Consistent, quality content will attract the attention of readers, as well as encourage them to trust your company.

So what exactly is “quality” content?

Quality content has a specific purpose, format, and topic. The purpose should help the users find an answer to their questions or interests. The format you choose should fit your content well. In order to attract more leads, the content in the conversion stage should consist mainly of content offers.

Choose an appropriate format

The format of the content offers can be a multitude of things, such as case studies, white papers, forms, calls-to-action, visuals, eBooks, emails, and landing pages. For example, if you want to demonstrate to users how a product works, you might use the template of a visual, such as a video or an image, rather than an eBook. On the other hand, if you wish to show your readers a how-to process that is also aesthetically pleasing, an eBook format would work better than a visual one.

In terms of topics, your content should be educational as well as specific. You should conduct market research and create content with your buyer personas in mind. Imagine you are your buyer persona: what problems do you need solutions for? How far are you in the buyer’s journey? What language would you use when typing keywords into the search engine? This can help you cater your content towards your target audience.

Read our article about using the buyer’s journey to create great content

Be consistent

Another factor that makes content “quality” is frequent and consistent publication. If your readers know they can count on you to publish a semi-weekly blog in a specific time window, they are much more likely to see you as reliable. Webdam’s statistics show that blogging consistently has led to B2B marketers generating about 67% more leads marketers who do not, which is a huge advantage. After you’ve earned their trust, a number of your visitors will subscribe to you and convert to leads.

Lead generation content marketing is a proven way to get the word out about your company and have potential customers become interested in your business. Without good, consistent content, people will have little reason to visit your website or truly believe that you’re a leader in your field. Don’t let this happen to you. For a consultation, please visit the link below.

Inbound marketing will help you grow your business by attracting website visitors, converting them into leads and closing leads into customers

How To Nurture Your Leads With Email Marketing

How To Nurture Your Leads With Email Marketing

Despite some claims that email is dead, it is still a highly effective way for marketers to connect with consumers. It is an integral part of inbound marketing as well as attraction marketing, and is a great way to send nurture leads throughout the buying process. Here are a few email best practices that will help nurture your leads.

Segmentation

The segmentation of your contacts database will help define your audience into categories. If you are unfamiliar with buyer personas, read about them here, as they will be extremely useful in segmenting your contacts. Segmenting be done in terms of geographic location, company type, role within that company, behavior, marketing intelligence, or any other category that could be valuable to your company. Use segmenting to your advantage by targeting those different groups with useful content based on their specific needs.

Read more

How Marketing Automation Can Improve Lead Nurturing Process

One of the most important aspects of successfully nurturing your leads through the buyer’s cycle is understanding that each lead is different and that your marketing efforts need to be tailored to the needs of each lead. This can be quite difficult to do manually, which is why most businesses are turning to marketing automation.

What is Marketing Automation?

Marketing automation is an automated process that allows you to target leads based on their behaviors at different points in the buyer’s journey. It allows you to make your marketing more personal by delivering content to your leads that suits their needs or interests. This, in turn, makes it easier to build a real relationship with them, helping to drive them towards the conversion and closure stages of the buying cycle.

Not only does marketing automation help free up resources, it makes your marketing efforts much more effective. How effective? According to one study, businesses that use marketing automation increase their qualified leads more than fourfold.

So how exactly does it work? Take for example a lead that has just submitted a form from one of your landing pages opting into your email list. Using marketing automation software, this action can trigger an automatic email sent to them thanking them for signing up. It can be automatically personalized based on what landing page they converted from.

In fact, you’ll be able to personalize your content to your email list by using the information that they submitted on the opt-in form. Using this information, you can segment your email list to automatically send content at specific times that’s relevant to their interests and needs. For example, if you’re a pet food company and a lead lets you know that they own a dog on their form, then you won’t want to send them content you’ve written about cats. Using automation, you can make sure they get the right content, which will not only help build your relationship, it will reduce opt-outs.

If you’re uncertain as to the difference between marketing automation and CRM, be sure to read through our detailed article on the subject.

The Benefits of Marketing Automation

The following are some of the benefits that you’ll be able to take advantage of when implementing marketing automation software:

1. Improve productivity

Instead of sending emails out on scheduled dates to your entire email list by hand, you can schedule emails to be set out automatically by certain times on certain dates to certain segments of your email list, thereby improving your productivity significantly.

2. Increase revenue

Studies have proven that marketing automation does increase revenue if used properly. In fact, B2B marketers have reported an average of 20 percent increase in their sales opportunities as a result of using marketing automation to nurture their leads.

 

3. Improve customer retention

By being able to target your leads more effectively with personalized content, you’ll reduce the number of leads that you lose.

4. Improve customer relationships

By being able to personalize your interactions with leads, you’ll improve customer relationships. Not only does this help with customer retention, it will help with building your brand reputation. Building good customer relationships can help to improve repeat business and can also generate positive word-of-mouth.

5. Collect better data

Marketing automation software can help you monitor responses to your various marketing campaigns based on the specific parameters you’ve established for success or failure. This data can then be leveraged to improve future marketing campaigns.

For more in-depth information, check out our post on the benefits of marketing automation.

Marketing Automation has more benefits! Check out this article to learn more.

How to Use Marketing Automation

There are many ways that you can use marketing automation. Besides using it to segment your email lists, it can also be used to provide data on what types of content helps move leads from one stage of the buying cycle to the next, which allows you to create higher quality content to attract higher quality leads. In fact, you can also use marketing automation to score your leads based on their behaviors on your site. Scoring leads lets you identify what leads have the best chance of converting, allowing you to more effectively use your resources to target those leads.

One thing to keep in mind is that marketing automation isn’t just limited to your email campaigns or to your website — it’s channel-agnostic, meaning that it can be used on any platform. Read through our article on B2B vs. B2C marketing automation for more in-depth advice.

Marketing automation is proven to be successful, which is why businesses of all sizes have started implementing it into their online marketing strategies. There’s no reason not to use it, all it will do is make your marketing efforts more effective and more efficient, thereby allowing you to capture more leads and close more sales.

Inbound marketing will help you grow your business by attracting website visitors, converting them into leads and closing leads into customers