One of our biggest goals of inbound marketers is converting leads to customers. We want to not only attract people to our website but once they’re there, it’s crucial to funnel them into our sales process via email nurture campaigns

Why? Well, there’s a lot to be gained from effective lead nurturing. Well-nurtured leads are more likely to become brand loyalists, and in turn, advocate your brand to others, serving as stronger partners in the long run. Also, an educated lead makes smarter decisions and becomes a strong, lasting customer when they do decide to partner with you. 

But before you hop on the nurture train, you have to really understand who your leads are and where they are in their journey. So, we’re offering up some tips for you to follow to ensure your bases are covered, and you’re going about it the right way. 

Qualifying Your Leads

Qualifying is the act of classifying your lead based on how well they align with your buyer personas and how close they are to making a purchasing decision. Knowing where your leads stand in these two areas helps you get to know them better so you can identify the best way to nurture them. 

The two practices that help you qualify your leads is lead scoring and identifying where a lead falls within the buyer’s journey. 

Lead Scoring

Lead scoring helps you better understand your leads and segment them into the right lists so you can send them personalized emails. To score appropriately, learn as much as you can – their demographics, actions taken on your site, how they engage with your content, job title, industry, company, etc. Compare this information against your audience personas to determine where a lead fits and, therefore, how you should score and segment them for different nurture campaigns.

Leads and the Buyer’s Journey

Each stage of the buyer’s journey represents a certain level of understanding of what your company does and how ready your lead is to make a decision. You’ll need to know where your prospects are and how to use the right content to engage and convert them. 

  • Awareness: Leads in this stage have just discovered your company, what it is you do, and how you can possibly help them. They need content that explains your services and shows you as an industry leader.
  • Consideration: Now that they know what you do, they’re starting to compare you against competitors and consider working with you. They’ll need more content that positions you as an industry leader, as well as shows how you help your current customers meet their goals.
  • Decision: They’re ready to make a decision, so you’ll want to make sure they can easily sign up for a demo of your product. Continue to send them case studies, testimonials, and pricing information to help seal the deal. 

To help connect the dots, look at your leads’ behaviors — from what kinds of content they’re engaging with to what online forms they’re filling out to how they got to your site in the first place. Keep in mind that leads come into the buyer’s journey at various stages of the funnel, and just because a prospect is new doesn’t mean they’re not in the consideration or decision stage. 

Lead Nurturing With Email

There are different types of email nurture out there, and each serves a specific purpose. Here are a few email examples and how they can continuously provide nurture to your leads.  

Drip Campaigns 

Email drip campaigns are a series of emails sent to your leads aimed at helping you stay top of mind with them and move them through the funnel over time. They allow you to send lots of content and resources, but at a designated frequency that doesn’t inundate a lead’s inbox. Always make sure your drip campaigns are personalized by creating a campaign for each stage of the funnel. 

Newsletters

These types of emails are sent every week or month, and they typically include a roundup of your recently published blog content. A great newsletter tip is to personalize them by creating separate campaigns for each of your audience members. For example, if one of your target audiences is small businesses, send your list of small business leads a newsletter each month that only includes blog content specifically created to address the needs and pain points of small businesses. 

Email Courses

Oftentimes leads get stuck within a particular stage of the funnel because they lack information. Create an email series that includes tutorials or guides on a specific area and send them to these stagnant leads. You’ll be providing them with precisely what they need, when they need it, and get them moving on to the next stage. 

Other Nurture Tactics

Lead nurturing can take place through a lot of different channels, including your website and social media platforms.

On your blog, make sure you are regularly posting high-quality and original content, and make it easy for leads to find the resources they need. A helpful way to do this is to create categories and designate each blog post to its appropriate category. 

On your social media pages, share your content but also be active and engaged. Make sure to listen, too, paying attention not just to your role but to what others are saying about you so you can respond when and if it’s needed.

When you do lead nurturing right, you create a foundation of trust and engagement that can turn site visitors into leads and leads into long-time customers. So what are you waiting for? Work lead nurturing into your existing marketing strategy and get all of the benefits that come along with it.