Outbound campaigns vary – some businesses can generate leads fast and send just one or two messages to convert them into deals won, while some companies offering more expensive and sophisticated products and services take time to even start a conversation with potential clients.
There is a process that helps warm up leads, driving your potential clients through your buying journey. It’s called Lead Nurturing. We will definitely talk more about lead nurturing in upcoming articles, but this time we would like to discuss four tips that will help optimize your lead nurturing process or create one if you don’t have it set up yet.
Lead nurturing is a highly diversified process that can include social media interactions, email chains, phone calls and more. In this article we will focus on the most important aspects that will be useful for both a beginner and an experienced marketer seeking new optimization ideas, or who may be stuck with their lead nurturing campaigns.
Let’s get down to business with four hacks and tips that will help you nurture your leads more effectively.
Create a map of your buyer personas
Usually businesses have multiple buyer personas. Buyer personas are the types of your existing or potential customers. You can divide your buyer personas into product type, price range, company size and many more. For example an enterprise-level customer that buys 100 of something from you definitely differs from a small business that buys a single piece.
To make your lead nurturing process more effective you need to start by creating a so-called map of your buyer personas. This map should contain the main parameters of each persona, showing their main growth limits and the solutions they are seeking.
Besides buyer personas, your map should contain a nurturing plan – what email chains they receive, how you contact them, what content they are seeking for, etc. Make your plan as detailed as possible, in future this will help you optimize the process and related content.
The main idea of the map is to approach and nurture every persona in a different, more effective way.
Answer questions that your clients are thinking about
Every buyer persona on your map has different needs, growth limits and problems they are looking to solve. For example, a big company that’s already implemented your product or is solving a problem with another solution will be seeking ways to optimize their process further, or looking for an alternative or additional solution. A small business would not be aware of this problem at all, and you need to show them that they may face it soon, and it’s better to be ready.
As you can see every buyer persona, and sometimes every client, has different limits and questions in mind. And recognizing this is the key to successful lead nurturing and effective communication.
Your nurturing emails and messages should answer the questions that your clients might have: If I am not aware of the problem, where do i start with comparing solutions? Or if I’m already solving the problem, why should I learn more about the basics?
Always adapt your messages and email chains to the questions that are bothering your leads and potential clients. By delivering the right content you are guiding them further towards your buying journey’s end.
Focus your nurturing on progression
This advice is related to the previous point, because the questions and growth limits of your leads change with their place in the buying journey – and their path changes with progression. You should always keep track on where your lead is at the moment.
Usually the buying journey can be divided into three stages:
- Awareness stage – when your leads need content and info on diagnosing the problem, why they need to solve it in the first place, and what methods and tools can be used.
- Consideration stage – when your leads are already aware of the problem and are seeking for more specific solutions to it.
- Decision-making stage – when they know about your solution, but need to compare you with competitors, learn more about the benefits and features of your product, etc.
As you can see these are three completely different stages for every person. If you have three buying personas, then you should have at least 9 (3 x 3) variations of your lead nurturing campaigns. Progression will affect the content and the messages that your leads are receiving from you.
Walk the path with your leads
This last point is more of a reminder. Businesses often set up their outbound marketing campaigns, including email chains for lead nurturing, and just let them run. This is not the approach to effective campaigns.
What you should do instead is occasionally walk the path with your leads, and definitely keep an eye on where every one of them is in your journey at the time.
Some personal discussions and follow-up phone calls can help – you will understand just how effective your lead nurturing is, and see if it is guiding leads to your buying journey’s end.
Lead nurturing is a highly detailed process, but these few tips will help you avoid common mistakes.
Always create a map of your buyer personas, and plan your lead nurturing chains separately per persona. Talk about things that bother your clients – make your lead nurturing content and messages relevant to their problems and questions. Focus on progression, and walk your leads from the awareness to the decision-making stage. Don’t just set-and-forget – walk the path with your leads and track your progress instead!