Whether they’re new leads or long-time brand loyalists, customers take work to maintain. You have to score leads according to sales readiness, nurture leads who aren’t yet ready for your sales team, adapt to shifting markets, segment your audience, supply steady streams of content and use A/B testing regularly to stay relevant to your prospective customers. Marketing automation eliminates most of this work for you by turning complex campaign creation and organization tasks into a few clicks, but you have another option: driving away your leads.
If you want to expand your customer base and keep leads moving through your sales pipeline, email marketing automation could be the tool-set you need. To make your marketing administration easier by losing customers, read on.
Forget about List Hygiene
One of the surest ways to lose your audience is to lose track of where they are. Email marketing lists rely on having clean, accurate data free of invalid addresses and outdated information. A soft bounce happens when email goes to an in-box that’s temporarily unavailable; when an email address is no longer valid, mail undergoes a hard bounce. Automated marketing systems that handle email marketing handle soft and hard bounces in different ways automatically, but if you’re looking to lose touch, you don’t need to bother.
Spray and Pray
You never know where your next customer might be hiding – well, unless you use marketing automation software that features lead scoring and audience segmentation to help you find your best prospects, that is. Without a plan in place to get the right message to the right audience, you can always try the “spray and pray” technique of sending emails at random regardless of whether you know anything about the recipient. Your response rates will almost certainly plummet.
Ignore Your Leads
Email marketing is one of your most important lead nurturing tools. It lets you address your prospects directly with the information they need to make important buying decisions. For prospects who aren’t yet ready to buy, it’s a vital connection that needs to stay open until they’re ready to talk to a seller. This step’s as simple as can be – just stop sending email. When prospects feel you don’t value them or their time enough to maintain contact, they look for a competitor who will. Marketing automation software could let you maintain contact automatically, sending timed or triggered email marketing messages to keep you in your audience’s mind, but failing to keep in touch is sure to drive off some of your most promising leads.
Sell, Sell, Sell
Your potential customers get more than 100 email messages daily, many of which are ads; why not add to the pile with constant hard-sell advertising? The state of the art in email marketing uses relevant, valuable content rather than high-pressure advertising to convince readers to click. Recipients open and read because they want to, not because they’re fooled into it by a misleading subject line or worn down by a steady diet of ads. Talking about yourself instead of carrying on a mutual dialogue or learning about your conversation partner is one of the quickest ways to stifle a budding relationship, and that goes for connecting with your customers too.
People love having choices. A preference page that lets your audience opt down instead of opting out of receiving email entirely lets your email marketing team deliver just the content your readers want while maintaining contact with customers you might otherwise have lost to an opt-out. What better way, then, to drive away prospects than by telling them to take it or leave it when it comes to your email marketing?
If you’ve followed these guidelines, you’re well on your way to ending some beautiful friendships. If you’d rather expand your customer base and nurture your leads with email marketing, automation is your better option.
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