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What is lead nurturing?

What is lead nurturing

Lead nurturing should be at the heart of any business. By nurturing leads, companies grow and expand their businesses,[1] and customers have their problems solved satisfactorily. When done right, lead nurturing can be a very effective strategy. 

What is lead nurturing?

Traditional lead generation tactics aren’t as effective anymore. Customers are more aware now of their status as numbers in a company’s checklist. Buyers don’t want to be bothered or just sold to, they want to be helped. 

Lead nurturing is doing just that. It’s the process of developing and reinforcing relationships with prospects during the buyer’s journey

When successfully done, efforts focus on listening to the buyers’ needs and giving them the information they need. It builds trust, greater brand awareness, and more personal connections with prospects. 

Like any relationship, the more effort you exert, the more you get out of it. Lead nurturing involves anticipating the buyers’ needs, determining their problems, then passing on information so they follow along towards making a purchase.  

What is lead nurturing?

How does lead nurturing work? 

Lead nurturing entails creating a program that builds and maintains relationships[2] with your customers. 

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Lead Scoring

During this process, the sales and marketing teams come together to identify leads or those with interest in the company’s products. They also determine how far leads are within the sales cycle. 

Based on research and past experiences with different types of customers, the teams then assign scores to these lead divisions.

Lead nurturing then occurs when specific communications are formulated to address these prospects. 

Lead scoring gives insight to companies so they may create strategies for lead nurturing.  

Content marketing 

This process involves creating and communicating valuable content for your prospects. A central objective is to educate the leads on solutions for their needs. 

Some common forms of content are:

  • Written content (e.g., emails and your website)
  • Audio content (e.g., company podcasts)
  • Video content (e.g., on social channels or YouTube)

Marketing automation

Companies frequently deal with broadcasting their message across multiple channels and platforms. Marketing automation software is a solution that allows them to streamline and automate this process. 

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This technology will align all your marketing efforts for your lead nurturing to work more efficiently. Part of this includes making sure that the leads receive the most relevant content at the most opportune time.   

Conversion and evaluation

The endpoint of a successful lead nurturing program is the lead deciding to make a purchase. They may have responded to a call-to-action on one of your channels. 

Finally the campaign’s effectiveness is evaluated. The company measures user engagement, the time it takes to move a lead, and how many were led to sales. This is a continuous process so that companies always adapt.  

Where to do lead nurturing

The most successful lead nurturing strategies implement a multichannel distribution method. This diversifies your reach and ensures that all across the board you maintain contact with your leads.   

Web

This channel describes the website of your company. A well-designed landing page of your website is capable of capturing emails and converting a high percentage of leads. 

Use the website itself for blog articles, calls-to-action, and other helpful content that answers your prospects’ possible questions. 

Remember that it must be dynamic, so use marketing automation software to personalize web content to the buyers.   

Email marketing 

Email is still the first and best way to prod your leads towards a purchase of your product. Even within email, there are different methods. 

You may begin by sending an introductory email with a link to helpful content on your site. You can then progress to automating personalized follow-ups and news. Finally, target hot leads with exclusive offers on limited products. 

Social media

This channel is a critical part of multiple channel lead nurturing. A large number of leads can be reached and nurtured through social media, because today nearly everyone is on a platform. 

Educational content and campaigns can be very helpful for reaching potential leads who aren’t aware of your company and services. It also reaches those who don’t respond well to email. 

Through social media platforms, you can also track the success of your campaign in real time. Social media allows you to interact with your leads through messaging, reactions, and commenting when appropriate. 

Retargeting ads

This occurs when a lead visits your site, leaves, but then is shown an advertisement of your company on a different site or platform. 

The retargeted ads will need to be consistent in your company’s branding, but still personalized to customer segments. An aggressive method, it can be very effective in nurturing leads. 

Mobile marketing

It’s an important observation that if a lead is exposed to your company online, it will most likely have been because they were using their phones. 

Make sure your content looks good and functional on a mobile platform. You should also use specific mobile strategies such as text-based marketing and location technology. 

Direct mail and calls

There’s still a place for direct mail and phone calls. These further personalize your lead nurturing strategy and place the message directly in the buyers’ hands.

Events and webinars 

For your more serious, well-nurtured leads, consider holding special events and/or webinars. Hosting one gives you access to a large number of leads in one setting, and establishes you as an authority in your field. 

Where to do lead nurturing?

Importance of lead nurturing

Lead nurturing should be an approach every business takes. There are multiple benefits to taking care of your customers even before they make their first sale. 

Some of these benefits are: 

Introduces the company to new leads

There’s only so much information that an email or ad can convey. Lead nurturing gives you the space to teach prospects more about your company over a greater period of time.  

Builds reputation

Even if the lead you were nurturing doesn’t push through with a purchase, you will already have shown that the company is capable of properly handling them. This opens the door for newer potential leads to come in.  

Gains you the audience’s trust

Through lead nurturing, you make clear to the buyer that you understand their pain points. It’s about being helpful to them and showing that you genuinely want to help them with your service. 

Reduces customer acquisition costs

Marketing is not cheap. If you’re looking for less expensive ways of engaging your customers, lead nurturing is it. You invest more time, but it does save money. 

Increases sales

Lead nurturing doesn’t waste time on “cold” customers. When the company identifies the “hot leads,” you can get right to nurturing them towards a purchase. This leads to a higher sales rate. 

References

[1]Expand their businesses. Wali, A. F. (2018) ‘Customer Relationship Management and Marketing Effectiveness: A Comparative Consumer Study’, Paradigm, 22(2), pp. 101–124. doi: 10.1177/0971890718787663.

[2] Relationships.   Kumar, M. P. S. (2006) ‘Customer Relationship Management (CRM) – Retaining Customers’, SEDME (Small Enterprises Development, Management & Extension Journal), 33(3), pp. 63–72. doi: 10.1177/0970846420060306.

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