How to Improve Your Lead Nurturing With Marketing Automation

It probably won't come as any surprise to you that a lot of your marketing strategies can be improved upon and made more successful and efficient with proper marketing automation implementation. Your lead nurturing campaign is just one of them.

When you're running several lead generation campaigns and bringing in several new customer opportunities at a time, it's essential to put together some type of marketing automation to assist your marketing team with managing each of those new leads. Marketing automation implementation takes a huge load off of your marketing and sales teams and nurtures and qualifies leads for you so that once they get to your sales team, they're already ready to buy.

Because many sales tactics like cold calls and cold emails are becoming more and more ineffective, learning how to create a lead nurturing automation can help to increase conversions and generate more customers.

A Look at Lead Nurturing 

What is lead nurturing?

Lead nurturing is simply relationship development. When people first start the buyer's journey, they're not always ready to pull out their wallet and close the deal.

It's like when you start a romantic relationship. You're not going to immediately ask someone to marry you on the first date. Instead, you're going to nurture the relationship by going on multiple dates, texting all day, having hour-long phone calls, and really getting to know the person before you pop the question.

Think of business relationships in the same way. You need to nurture your leads and make sure they really know who you are before you make the big ask: "Will you buy our product/service?"

Sounds like it could be time-consuming, eh?

That's why we have marketing automation! Putting together processes and systems that work on their own without your marketing team having to be at the center of everything is the perfect way to clear up time so that you and your team can be focused on other marketing strategies.

Lead nurturing campaign

Ready to get started? Let's learn more about how to improve your company's lead nurturing by creating a marketing automation.

1. Send out information that your customers want.

Marketing automation allows you to set up emails going out based on triggers. These can be anything from a form being filled out (like your opt-in form on your landing page), a link being clicked, a product being reviewed, a shopping cart being abandoned, time passing since your last email, and more. When a customer sets off a trigger, an email automation that your marketing team has previously set up becomes active.

This gives you the unique opportunity to send out content catered to a specific customer. For example, if you send out a welcome email as soon as someone joins your email list and include several different links to products/services, you can set up triggers for other email automation based on which product(s)/service(s) the recipient clicked.

Those email automations would then send email content about the exact product(s)/service(s) in which your customer or potential customer is interested. Having this information can be incredibly powerful because you already know exactly what your new lead wants. You can keep this information in your data management tool and use it for targeting ads, emails, and more.

2. Increase personalization.

So you're already sending out content that your customers want to see based on their specific actions. What else can you do to personalize your marketing automations even more?

First of all, every email marketing platform worth its salt has a merge field option that allows you to input a name, email address, company name, etc., into the email that fills with each contact's information. You should always use the name merge field when addressing your email to create a personalized introduction to your reader.

However, in your CRM or data management tool, you can also save data about your customers like their birthday, anniversary, or another special occasion, to send discounts and well wishes to them on or around those days. How special is it to get a personalized greeting from a business wishing you a happy birthday? Even more so if it offers a special birthday gift or discount, right?

Personalization is key, and it is what will help improve your lead nurturing and turn more leads into paying customers.

3. Don't waste time on unqualified leads.

When you work on lead nurturing, you're churning out qualified leads who have made it all the way through your sales funnel or email marketing automation. These can then be turned over to the sales team, who will have a much easier time closing sales and converting customers, increasing your overall conversion rate, and decreasing wasted time on leads that simply won't ever close.

Because so many leads aren't sales-ready when they first enter the pipeline, lead nurturing is an essential next step to allow your potential customers to really get to know the company. After all, they're making a pretty big decision when they finally decide to buy. They want to make sure it's the right one!

So nurturing each lead as it goes through the buyer's journey is a great way to automate a lot of the work your sales team does, sending only sales-ready leads their way.

Lead nurturing campaign

4. Keep nurturing customers back into the sales journey.

Not only does lead nurturing work to generate first-time customers, but it can be used alongside marketing automation to increase customer retention as well. Every business knows that it's much cheaper to keep a customer than to find a new one, so customer retention needs to be a big part of every business's strategy.

Once your customer has made a sale, you can create marketing automations for customer service, sending out customer surveys every so often for feedback, ensuring that your business is doing a good job keeping retainer clients or customers. You can also create time-based automations that are triggered after a certain amount of time has passed and your customer's product/service may have expired or may need maintenance. Setting up a marketing automation for this is a great way to ensure your marketing team is working on retaining clients without having to keep everyone's renewal timeframes top of mind.

5. Gather data from your customers to make data-driven decisions.

When you create marketing automations, you can then study their performance to see which links/triggers are the most popular, which emails are opened the most or receive the most clicks/engagement, and more, and you can use this information to improve your marketing automations even further.

You can also use the data that you gather from your customers throughout their sales journey to inform your decisions in targeting future customers. Using CRM or customer data to create a lookalike audience is an incredibly powerful way to target digital advertisements for your business.

After all, if you've got proven data that a certain set of customers likes your product/service, why wouldn't people similar to them also have a use for it?

A good marketing automation tool will offer plenty of data, analytics, and reporting for your systems or processes for your marketing team to review in-depth. Reviewing and understanding this data is essential to grasp a firm understanding of who your customers are, what they're interested in, and what in particular gets them ready to buy. Looking at which emails lead to the most sales, which emails lead to the most opt-outs, and more can provide invaluable information that can help you to really pinpoint what is going to get the most people to convert.

6. Connect your marketing automation software and your CRM.

This can create a seamless alliance between your company's sales and marketing teams. If your marketing automation ends with a trigger in your CRM letting a salesperson know a lead is ready to be handled personally, the manual work on newly generated leads is essentially extinct. You can check out an assortment of marketing automation tools that will integrate with your CRM and give you the features you need in this helpful research hub

Having leads go directly into lead nurturing marketing automations, down through the sales journey, and landing right in a salesperson's lap is the most ideal way to manage new leads. Most CRMs allow you to create a workflow that will trigger a to-do for a salesperson to get in contact with a lead, so integrating your services can help to eliminate unnecessary back and forth between the departments.

Your sales team will also have firsthand knowledge (thanks to your marketing automations) of what that particular contact is looking for and was clicking around for more information for, and will be ready to tackle any questions the contact may have and close the sale. 

Marketing automation is key to creating seamless processes and systems within your company, and getting the sales and marketing teams to efficiently and successfully work together. Request a free demo to learn more about how marketing tools can help increase efficiency within your marketing team.

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