Is your lead nurture program a speedway, or is it a narrow back road? While this might seem like a concern only for large corporations, it’s a meaningful question for businesses of every size – possibly even more so for mid-sized firms. Whether you’re an independent contractor with a few employees or a ubiquitous brand with global reach, your customers expect the same level of care, attentiveness, and respect for their time. Here’s a look at where your nurture track could be slowing them down and what you can do to get it moving again.
Learn about Your Leads
One of the underlying principles of urban planning and engineering transportation is grouping together people who have the same destination in mind. Light rail and subway stops are designed to serve groups of commuters, not just individuals. Stops and stations go where they’re most needed by the largest number of potential users. You can think of your lead gen program in much the same way, and the groups of commuters taking their buying journey are your market segments. Just as it wouldn’t make sense to have multiple bus stops for every block, it isn’t logical to use the same lead gen message to your entire audience in hopes that it will apply to each of them. Working with leads using segmentation achieves far higher relevance and gets them to where they want to go efficiently.
For creative elements of your marketing program, people are essential. For routine tasks, there’s marketing automation. Auto-responses, triggered emails, and targeted content are all tasks software excels at managing, freeing you and your content team to focus on the aspects of marketing that human minds do best. With automation, you reduce the inevitable delays that manual mailings and lead nurture interactions produce because technology can do multiple tasks at once. Moving up to marketing automation will give your lead gen program greater speed and agility almost immediately while retaining the person-to-person feel of your communications. Think of it as widening that one-lane country road into a highway, but without sacrificing any of the scenery.
Give Leads Control
Trusting your leads to know themselves best allows you to let them set the pace of interactions through preference pages and opt-down menus. Not every lead gen activity is relevant to every lead – and that’s fine. It’s welcome news, in fact, because it lets you direct your efforts to where they matter most. Lead nurture programs that are set up to cascade from interaction to interaction based on leads’ choices rather than your schedule make it possible for them to progress at their own pace. That means a few leads might progress a bit more slowly on their buying journey than others, but it also means faster progress for those who are particularly eager for information – your most engaged leads, in other words.
Taking the slow route is fine for a Sunday drive, but it’s always a work day for your B2B customers. They want to get where they need to go quickly, and your nurture program is a big determining factor for how you get them there.
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