The digital age has brought with it a new kind of discerning, knowledge-hungry customer. Indeed, in a now-famous study by Google and CEB, researchers found that B2B customers were nearly 60% of the way through the sales funnel before they even interacted with a sales representative. So, what were they doing if not engaging with sales? Languishing hopelessly in the digital aether?
Today’s customer is out there, trying to find solutions to their particular problem; they are utilising the length and breadth of the internet-content-machine to find a solution to their needs. So what does that mean for marketers? How do we find these leads and, ultimately, convert them? It all comes down to lead nurturing. But what is lead nurturing and what are the benefits?
What is Lead Nurturing?
Lead nurturing is, quite simply, the ongoing relationship we establish and maintain with our leads through every step of the sales funnel. It means finding out what their particular problem is and then providing relevant, insightful content that responds to their needs. From the outset, we can build a relationship based on trust and continued mutual value. So why is this important and what are the benefits to Lead Nurturing?
Three Benefits of Lead Nurturing:
1. It’s an untapped resource for sales leads, with no new investment.
Getting clients across the threshold of your sales funnel is often a cost-intensive exercise, meaning multiple marketing campaigns and a significant outlay in resources, staff and finances. Many of the newbies to the sales funnel may be sales-shy and not ready to take the plunge. But they may be willing to dip their toe in the water, and that’s where lead nurturing comes in. By creating valuable, informative content that is correctly-targeted, relevant and authentic, you can keep clients moving through the sales funnel, creating a plethora of opportunities for your sales team, without the need for continual lead-generation.
2. It’s an opportunity to learn more about your clients and develop brand authenticity.
Every campaign is a chance to learn. What do your customers want? What topics are the most relevant? What other products might they be interested in? Every time you learn, the content evolves exponentially. Lead nurturing ultimately comes down to building trust with potential customers. Trust comes from creating content that has authority and clout. The content you provide should establish your brand as the ultimate source of credible, viable information.
3. It can be automated.
The benefits of automated lead nurturing are boundless. There are opportunities to create a whole host of campaigns that are responsive to each client. This frees up a lot of time and still ensures that leads are being guided through the sales funnel with engaging, timely content. This also means that you can collect real-time, accurate data on engagement rates, which can be fed back into creating even more compelling content! Marketing Automation platforms such as Marketo offer the chance to nurture leads through every stage of the sales funnel with a remarkable range of personalised email campaigns, digital ads, push notifications and more. Automated lead nurturing allows you to create bespoke experiences for each customer that are scalable and ever-evolving