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Lead Nurturing Using Email

Lead Nurturing is dying quickly, and marketers are to blame. People are overwhelmed by massive amounts of email; and even your biggest fans are starting to see “educational” materials as being spam.

If I want to learn, I tend to go to a podcast, blog, or specific website for information. Information has lost its value in today’s “Google world,”  in most cases with evergreen content. However, automated messaging has one very important purpose: drawing attention to timely content.

If you are not sending content that is directly tied to the point in time that you are sending it, you are wasting your time and the time of your audience. And, your lead nurturing efforts are going out the window.

Instead, send timely/relevant information to nurture your leads. Examples include:

  • Special time sensitive offers (Your $50 coupon is going to expire tomorrow!)
  • Seasonal information  (Christmas is 1 month away and if you don’t buy your tree right now, you’re going to pay twice as much and get a brown tree!)
  • Date specific information (Your check-up is coming up in 3 weeks!)
  • Contact your representative and let them know to vote a certain way for our organization
  • Your contract is up for renewal
  • You are offering a webinar or attending a trade show and would like to include them

If there isn’t a time sensitive reason to open and act upon your message, 92% of all people that read the first line in your email will delete it/push it off with the intention of reading late – or worse, unsubscribe! Of the 8% that do read your entire email, 96% of those readers will not act upon your email.

A few tips to get a higher response rate:

  • Reference why you are writing to them at this time. Do so in the first sentence.
  • Let them know a consequence of not acting in the next 48 hours.
  • If information is not time sensitive, don’t send it, or wait until that information has a time sensitive meaning.
  • If your information is “education-only” consider sending a one sentence email letting them know that based on what you knew about that person, that you thought they would find a way to immediately benefit from the information…and send it as a link to a landing page. No proThis will build some level of curiosity, and the brevity of the email isn’t as likely to get 1,000 of your contacts to roll their eyes in unison when they open your email.   Also it will give you a much more organic “content garden” which could help SEO and future marketing efforts.

In the case of lead nurturing campaigns, less is best. Your messages should build excitement to the recipient. In doing so, you will be adding to your brand’s emotional value; and increasing response rates by 100% or more.

Want to learn how to automate time-sensitive messages as a part of your lead nurturing? Let us show you how!

Lead Liaison Reveals Its Secret Sauce for Managing Leads

Lead LiaisonIt’s not every day that a company pulls back the curtain and unveils the processes that make them successful. But Lead Liaison is different. Lead Liaison is known for unlocking the vault on marketing automation and lead management solutions. The decision to divulge their secrets is reflective of the company’s overall passion to support sales and marketing teams, to help businesses grow, and to be transparent in their developments. Their Automated Lead Flow Management Process, including a sample Qualified Lead Flow, lays the foundation for an ultra-successful nurture track intended to be carried out using marketing automation systems like their own. The company uses processes like this to help fuel growth in the marketing automation industry, since the company has the luxury of “drinking their own champagne” (using their own software), to achieve their goals. Businesses can do the same with the same exact tools in their own respective industries.

Sales and marketing tactics have evolved from a dialogue to more of a monologue in recent years. Potential buyers or customers have access to more information and more reviews – right at their fingertips. It’s time for companies to respond in a more relevant and meaningful manner.

How Does the Qualified Lead Flow Work?

There are many ways that businesses get inbound leads to their websites: web forms (Contact Us forms, Request a Demonstration forms, Free Trial forms, Free Consultation forms, etc.), content downloads, and explainer videos to name a few. The key is for a company to identify the primary ways that it’s website captures inbound leads. Lead Liaison identified its primary channels for inbound leads coming from key forms and video conversions.

Once the lead or inquiry comes in, that person will be sent through the Qualified Lead Flow process. First, there is an automation in place to distribute the lead to a salesperson. For Lead Liaison, that process is round-robin, because that’s how their sales team is structured. For other companies using this Qualified Lead Flow, that lead distribution could be based on other methods of lead distribution, like geographical location, performance, or any myriad of attributes about the person making the inquiry. Once distributed, the Qualified Lead Flow sends an email to the lead, giving them the contact information of their account manager. This message uses the lead’s name, making it personal, and in the case of Lead Liaison, includes the salesperson’s contact information. The automation then pushes the lead’s information into Lead Liaison’s CRM, OneFocus™.

Depending on the primary interest of the lead, which is typically gathered from the original inquiry, a company can set up very specific nurturing. Lead Liaison has identified their key areas of interest to be partnerships, CRM, or it could even be an agency interested in private labeling. The nurture track contains 8-10 emails with educational content that focuses on the lead’s area of interest. Once the lead has completed their interest-specific nurture, they flow into a mainline nurture and are added to the Lead Liaison Subscribers List. If, at any point in time, the lead become a client, Lead Liaison’s tool automatically moves them out of the respective nurturing tracks and adds them into nurturing tailored to clients. It’s here that messaging can focus on up-sell, cross-sell, and other opportunities. These strategies are discussed more in Lead Liaison’s Marketing Automation Playbook.

Lead Liaison’s Qualified Lead Flow has been proven time and time again, producing leads that are educated, familiar with the brand, and that are ready to move forward with purchasing a license. Director of Marketing, Jennifer Worsham, shares her experience, “Since implementing this Qualified Lead Flow, we’ve seen an increase of 68% in conversions. It’s something that took a little time and effort to set up, but has proven to be time well spent. Now, this flow runs in the background without us having to touch it. It’s fantastic!”

To see the diagram of the entire flow, check out Lead Liaison’s Library of Resources. The Automated Lead Flow Management Process is located under Guides.

About Lead Liaison
Lead Liaison provides cloud-based sales and marketing automation solutions that helps businesses accelerate revenue by attracting, converting, closing and retaining more prospects. Filling a void in the small pool of marketing automation providers that focus on marketing-centric functionality, Lead Liaison gives equal focus to sales providing sophisticated visitor tracking and additional website engagement tools to boost sales effectiveness. Lead Liaison blends ease-of-use, a flexible business model, deep external integration, marketing across social, web, mobile, email and offline channels and powerful functionality, all specifically tailored for mid-sized businesses, into a single platform, called Revenue Generation Software®. Lead Liaison is headquartered in Allen, Texas, near Dallas. For more information, visit http://www.leadliaison.com or call 1-800-89-LEADS (895-3237).

Are You Ready to Nurture Your Leads?

Most marketers think that lead nurturing is just a natural process. They gather some leads, nurture them, and then make sales. In reality, you aren’t going to be successful with lead nurturing unless you are prepared. In order to prepare, you need to go through a three-step process. This process will help you have a successful lead nurturing campaign.

Know Your Target

Targeting is essential with lead nurturing. You can’t target everyone in your market and expect to get results. Instead, you need to narrow the scope of your targeting so you communicate with people who have shown interest in your product or service. Target the people who are in the middle of your funnel and need a little nudge. These people are the most responsive to a lead nurturing campaign.

Think About Content

You’ve probably heard the phrase “content is king,” and that is especially true with lead nurturing. You need to think about how you are going to communicate with your leads. Consider mixing your content up. You might want to send some personal emails wishing your leads a happy holiday or a fun summer, along with educational content that will help them make an informed purchase. Then, consider personalizing it with handwritten letters.

You also need to consider how much content you will send. It’s important to focus on quality over quantity. With that in mind, stick to around four to five pieces of content for your campaign.

Consider Length

Your lead nurturing campaign needs to have a beginning and an end. If it goes on indefinitely, you will never turn your leads into customers. You have some leeway for how long your campaign should last, but 45 days is the sweet spot. You should be able to nurture your leads and turn them into buyers at this time. If you can’t convert your leads, you need to look over your data and see where you are losing your leads.

Lead nurturing is one of the most important components in internet marketing. Remember to prepare for your lead nurturing campaign so you can get the best results. The right preparation goes a long way into achieving your lead nurturing goals.

Are you ready to nurture your leads? Talk to one of our experts today!

 

Buzzwords in Marketing Automation: Inbound Marketing

Inbound Marketing: its meaning and how it relates to marketing automation. A part of the series Buzzwords in Marketing Automation.

Inbound Marketing

At one time, outbound marketing was all the craze. Then, marketers finally woke up and realized that inbound marketing is the way to get qualified leads. They realized something else, too, though. Inbound marketing is a time-consuming process. Fortunately, folks quickly discovered that combining inbound marketing tactics with marketing automation strategies allowed them to harness the power of inbound marketing without the burden of finding extra time to do so.

What is Inbound Marketing?

Before you dive into inbound marketing with marketing automation tools, you need to be certain you are clear on what this type of marketing is. To put it simply, inbound marketing is the process of using quality content to bring people to your website, and then turning those people into paying customers.

There are three main components of inbound marketing. First, you attract potential customers. You do this with blog posts, white papers, eBooks, and other forms of content. Each piece of content is targeted in order to attract the right people.

Then, you convert visitors into leads. You do this with calls-to-action and lead generation forms on your website.

Next, you go for the close with lead nurturing. During this process, people go inside of your sales funnel.

This is a simplified look at inbound marketing. If you had to go through the process all by yourself, you would have to roll up your sleeves and go through a series of tiresome steps over and over again. Fortunately, things can be simplified with marketing automation.

Marketing Automation to the Rescue

Marketing automation software has the power to track leads as they engage with different types of content. For instance, if they download a piece of content, the software can track that person from here on out. The software also has the power to score leads based on their actions once they arrive at the site. This will help you understand what strategies are working and which ones need to be replaced.

Normally, you would have to submerge yourself in hundreds of pages of data to understand user behavior, but marketing automation software is able to assign scores and provide data in seconds. This information makes it easy to run a powerful inbound marketing campaign.

If you try to manage an inbound marketing campaign on your own, it is incredibly complicated. You have people coming in from multiple traffic sources and once they arrive on your site, they engage with different pieces of information. Utilize marketing automation software to quiet the noise so you can see the real picture – what’s working and what’s not.

 

Deploying Long-Tail Lead Nurturing and Marketing Automation to Build Relationships  

Deploying Long Tail Nurturing to Build Customer Relationships Using Marketing AutomationThe more touch-points you have with website visitors, the more opportunities you have to convert those visitors by collecting their contact information. Long-tail lead nurturing, combined with marketing automation, provide the additional touch points you need to build trusting relationships with prospects and customers. Determining when and where to deploy those touch points can often times be a challenge for many marketers. In addition, contact prospects at the wrong time and you run the risk of scaring them away. Wait too long to contact a lead and you likewise run the risk of losing that lead forever. Timing is absolutely vital to successful marketing, regardless of industry.

Long-tail lead nurturing gives your brand the chance to build solid relationships while becoming a trustworthy, helpful source of information. By helping your visitors with their problems or questions and staying in contact with them,  you are able to set the stage to convert that lead into a sale later on.

What Is Long-Tail Lead Nurturing?

By deploying long-tail lead nurturing, you gain the chance to use an array of intelligent actions that are designed to engage your visitors even further with the use of multi-touch, multi-channel communication. For instance, after a visitor enters information to receive free information (like a crash course on training) via an engagement window, you can then leverage the opportunity to follow up with that visitor via text messages, emails, direct mail, and more. You can even take advantage of the chance to assign leads to specific salespeople and have touch points delivered automatically, thus taking advantage of one-on-one communication.

Unlike traditional ‘drip’ campaigns, automated long-tail lead nurturing is designed in an intelligent manner to reflect the interests and actions of your lead.  As a result, you can rest assured that your leads are provided with exactly the right information at precisely the right time.

Why Is Long-Tail Lead Nurturing So Important?

It’s no secret that many of your site’s leads never actually convert into sales. What you might not realize is the extent to which that happens. According to research from MarketingSherpa, 79 percent of leads never actually convert into sales. Furthermore, the primary cause of such poor performance is a lack of lead nurturing. Lead nurturing is so important that brands that perform well at lead nurturing tend to generate up to 50 percent more sales-ready leads.

As important as the sales funnel may be to the conversion process, there are always holes present within that funnel. Long-tail lead nurturing helps to seal those holes so that you are able to convert more leads into sales while losing fewer targeted leads.

Although a triggered long tail lead nurturing campaign might seem to be a bit impersonal, the exact opposite is actually true. When you are able to deliver content that your visitor want and when they want it, they’ll likely not care how or why the information arrived, provided it is relevant. Ultimately, when lead nurturing is performed well, the process will feel quite personalized and not at all impersonal.

How Marketing Automation Increases Lead Conversion

How Marketing Automation Increases Lead ConversionLead conversion is a vital statistic for any successful marketing and sales team. It can also be a difficult statistic to influence in a competitive world, one where failing to contact a lead at the perfect time can result in a competitor taking the sale. However, according to the Aberdeen Group’s Marketing Lead Management Report,

“Companies using marketing automation see 53% higher conversion rates from initial response-to-MQ.”

Read on to learn how some of the essential practices of marketing automation can increase lead conversion.

Lead Scoring

Marketing automation tools, by their very nature, gather a large amount of raw data. From web clicks and form submissions to social media demographic data, your marketing automation software is constantly gathering and analyzing a lot of data about every lead in your database. This data is used to then create an individual profile for each lead – one that is continually being updated. This profile is then evaluated by the metrics that your sales and marketing teams deem most important, and is assigned a lead score. This lead score indicates how likely an individual is to be converted to a client.

Once a lead has been assigned this score, it can go to one of two places. If the lead is warm, it will be sent straight to your sales team, who can try to convert the lead as quickly as they can. If the lead is not warm, it will be sent to your marketing automation software’s lead nurturing tools.

Lead Nurturing

Lead nurturing is a marketing automation process of contacting individual leads with promotional and educational material in order to make them more likely to purchase your company’s product or service. Lead nurturing also takes advantage of the large amounts of data that has been collected about each lead so that each lead can be placed on the most appropriate lead nurturing program. Once a lead has been placed on a lead nurturing track, your marketing automation program will continue to gather data on the lead, recording things such as email click through and giving you an even fuller picture of your leads.

If your lead exhibits positive behavior that may lead to a sale, then their lead score will increase, and when the time is optimal, will be handed over to your sales department.

Lead Conversion

When a lead is presented to your sales team, either by exhibiting positive buy signs when assessed initially as a lead or as a result of a successful lead nurturing program, your sales team will have all the information they need to convert the lead. With access to a leads entire history of interaction with your website and promotional emails, you can make sure the right person will know the right thing to say to make the sale.

These are just a few of the ways that marketing automation increases lead conversion. If you want to learn more about the benefits that marketing automation can have for your business, you should check out Lead Liaison’s marketing automation resource blog.

Evaluate and Focus your Lead Nurturing Strategies using Lead Liaison

Evaluate and Focus your Lead Nurturing Strategies using Lead LiaisonHaving a diverse and complete lead nurturing strategy in place is a very important part of any overall marketing automation strategy. We’re excited to share some ideas on how you can focus your lead nurturing strategies. Lead Liaison’s built in lead nurturing tools can be extremely helpful in implementing a successful lead nurturing strategy; however, you need to be sure you are implementing the most complete and effective plan for regularly contacting your leads. Take some time to evaluate your current lead nurturing system by thinking about some of these common mistakes. Make sure you’re up to speed by reading over these best lead nurturing practices.

Common Lead Nurturing Mistakes

There are some very basic mistakes that, even though they are easy to fix, can derail any lead nurturing strategy. The most basic one is ignoring your leads. Focus your lead nurturing strategies by making sure unqualified leads are entered into a lead nurturing program to ensure every potential lead is contacted and engaged. On the other side of this is the issue of spamming leads. Excessive emails and social messaging contact is sure to eventually annoy and deter a lead, driving them to a competitor. Make sure that all the content that makes up your lead nurturing program is well put together and engaging – people notice when content is sloppy or off topic.

Another common mistake is not engaging in split testing your lead nurturing programs. Obviously, you should have different lead nurturing paths for different demographics of leads, but you shouldn’t be afraid to try different things within different groups. Different approaches yield different results, and you’ll quickly be able to see which approach gives you better results.

Best Practices for Lead Nurturing

One great way to focus your lead nurturing strategies is to engage a lead with your lead nurturing program’s content is by educating the customer. Inform the customer how your product can solve their various problems, or simply deliver informative content that is relevant to your business or industry. Add a personal touch, and be careful not to skew all of the information you deliver into a pitch for your product, if content is too biased it can turn a customer off. Do your best to add a personal touch to as much of your content as possible to help your lead nurturing communication connect with a lead.

Remember to integrate all of the various data that Lead Liaison’s marketing automation tools can deliver to your marketing team, and use that data to place the lead into the most effective lead nurturing program. On a higher level, make sure your sales team and your marketing team are communicating with one another and are generally in sync – both departments will be able to interpret different things about different leads and lead behavior.

Learn more about Lead Liaison’s other great marketing automation tools by visiting our website. Check out our marketing automation resource blog to learn more about how marketing automation can streamline your business.

Creating and Maintaining A Healthy Balance Between Lead Profiling and Lead Nurturing

Creating and Maintaining A Healthy Balance Between Lead Profiling And Lead NurturingWhile every lead is worth pursuing, the fact of the matter is that not every lead is ready to buy quite yet. It’s the very nature of marketing automation that the strategies being employed generate a large number of leads that are not ready to be converted into customers. But just because they aren’t going to purchase right now, or even in the near future, doesn’t mean you should ignore them. In order to keep in contact with these leads and be ready to convert them to customers at the opportune moment, you must employ successful lead nurturing – and the ability to do this effectively requires that you begin with careful lead profiling.

Learn More About Your Leads With Lead Profiling Software

Lead nurturing and lead profiling are two functions that are at the core of Lead Liaison’s marketing automation software. Lead profiling begins by collecting as much data about potential leads as possible, and Lead Liaison has many different methods of doing this. Our software tracks things such as email opens and site click-throughs, in addition to monitoring buy signals that indicate how likely a customer is ready to purchase your product. Lead Liaison also uses social intelligence software to gather data about things such as a customer’s age, gender and interests to create a detailed portrait of your leads.

All of this data is processed by Lead Liaison’s lead grading tools, and the leads that are likely to buy are passed on directly to the sales team so they can make the sales that they need to. However, the leads that are not ready to be converted are sent to Lead Liaison’s lead nurturing tools, and this is where a successful lead profiling strategy can really pay off for your sales team.

Lead Nurturing Helps You Get The Most Out Of Every Lead, Every Time

Lead Liaison’s automated lead nurturing tools ensure that no lead is ever left behind by contacting colder leads on a schedule that your marketing team dictates or in reaction to certain actions taken by the lead, such as following a link in an email. This noninvasive contact helps ensure that your leads never feel spammed or irritated, but will keep your company in mind for when they will require your products or services.

Combing automated lead profiling and lead nurturing can lead to many different and effective strategies. Using Lead Liaison’s automated nurture tracks, you can arrange for customers with different levels of interest to be contacted with different frequencies and content. By taking advantage of the data collected can be used to engage in very specific targeted marketing. For example, your sales team could set up an email campaign that would be directed only to male baseball fans aged 30-40 during the World Series.

To learn more about the fantastic opportunities Lead Liaison’s marketing automation software can create for your business, visit us online and check out our marketing automation resource blog.

How can you integrate trade shows and other industry events into your automated marketing?

Marketing Automation Trade ShowsRegardless of the industry you are in, trade shows are a great opportunity to gain new leads and meet potential new clients. Regardless of whether you plan to have a representative at the event or not, trade shows represent a gathering of individuals interested in the type of services that you provide, and interacting with them is always a positive experience. And since it is nearly impossible for most businesses to have a real presence at every relevant show, using some of the marketing automation tools provided by Lead Liaison can greatly increase your company’s visibility to attendees and the industry in general.

Social Media and Marketing Automation

One of the most straightforward ways to utilize Lead Liaison’s marketing automation tools to interact with trade show attendees and other individuals who are interested in what the show has to offer is to utilize the automated social media tools in Lead Liaison.

With a little bit of planning, your marketing team can quickly schedule LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook posts to automatically post as the event approaches. With strategic use of hashtags and other markers, your company will become a part of the online community interested in the event, introducing you and your services to new clients naturally.

Social media automation doesn’t stop there either. During the event, posts about significant events can help attract attention to your company’s social media feeds, but even more effective are interactive posts that prompt community discussion. Social media posts that quiz attendees about favorite products and questions directed at attendees can all be scheduled in advance, generating create feedback and exposure.

Make New Connections and Keep Them Interested With Lead Liaison’s Lead Nurturing Tools

If you do have a representative at the event, be sure that they stay in tune with social media, but don’t neglect the face-to-face network opportunities inherent in events such as trade shows. You want to meet as many prospective clients as possible, but don’t let this be your only goal. You aren’t simply trying to sell – you want to be receptive and listen to what your new contacts are interested in.

After an event has occurred, enter any new client data obtained from the event or social media into Lead Liaison’s client database, and let the program qualify all prospective leads. Make sure to integrate any leads that may not pay off right away into Lead Liaison’s lead nurturing system – and also remember that trade shows offer you great opportunities to send a message to anyone already in your lead nurturing system.

Trade shows are fun events that bring together lots of disparate elements of any industry, and treated properly can yield fantastic information and lead generation. With a little planning and good use of marketing automation, you’ll be amazed at the difference even the most basic levels of interaction with these events will have.

Visit our revenue generation and marketing automation resource blog to learn more ways to use marketing automation to expand your client base and build your business with Lead Liaison.

Do You Know Which Leads Are More Likely To Become Customers?

Do you know which leads are  more likely to become customers?Do you know which leads are more likely to become customers? There’s nothing more exciting than a fresh new group of leads, all contacted through a successful marketing strategy and ready to be turned over to an eager sales staff. But as we all know an unfortunately small percentage of those leads, no how well they were acquired, will be ready to buy when they are contacted. So how do you know which leads are likely to become customers, and how do you help your staff contact those leads at the right time? Using a combination of tools available through Lead Liaison’s software and solutions you can help your marketing and sales staff capitalize on every opportunity.

Lead Liaison is able to offer these sorts of results by employing a variety of different approaches to information collection, analysis, and automated marketing solutions to keep leads engaged and accessible for the right moment for your team to make the sale. How does this work? It begins with the analysis of data gleaned from your website and other materials, which feeds into a sophisticated algorithm of lead grading and scoring to tell you’re sales team when a lead can be converted into a customer.

Analytics

One of the basic principles of creating an automated marketing solution for your company is gathering and examining the data that customers bring to your marketing team through their activity on your website and with other materials. Actions like web form conversion, email opens and social media activity inform your marketing team of what is working with customers and helps sales better understand the interest of their leads.

Buy signals are a real-time system of alerts that will communicate with your sales team when a potential lead performs an activity that exhibits a good chance to make a sale, such as a time-sensitive email click through or web form submission.

Lead Grading

Lead grading is a vital technique in helping your marketing team identify ideal buyers. Lead Liaison’s lead grading algorithms take a variety of factors into account, including job title, industry, geography and revenue to determine whether or not they are a good match for your product or service and thus would make a likely sale. These qualifications are fully customizable, letting your team develop the ideal customer for your company.

Using the data compiled by the lead grading algorithms, Lead Liaison’s software scores individual leads, and passes this data on to your sales team. Using the hot lead dashboard, Briefcase, your sales team will have all the information they need to know when a lead is ready to buy and have the information they need to make the sale. Information such as buy signals, overall activity and lead grade is delivered into the engine to create a complete picture of your potential customers.

Lead Liaison’s tools for helping your team know which leads are more likely to be converted to customers don’t end there. Visit our marketing automation blog to learn more about practices such as lead nurturing, which helps you turn cold leads into warm one.