Every company is happy about newly generated B2B leads - however, this is not the end of the story. Because only if you rely on clever lead nurturing can you also achieve conversions that ultimately lead to the desired success and thus also to more sales.
What is Lead Nurturing?
The verb "to nurture" means to care for, cherish and nourish - and that's exactly how lead nurturing can be described.
It involves all the steps within a lead management process that a company plans in order to provide interested leads with the right information at the right time.
The most important purpose of lead nurturing is therefore to nurture B2B leads generated through inbound marketing with automatic marketing measures so that they are eventually ready to take up products or services.
However, marketing and sales can only implement this really well if more extensive data about the lead is known. Now, prospective customers do not normally enter additional information into a form on their own.
Here, companies can help a little, for example with high-quality content or by collecting relevant data based on their behavior: If they open newsletters or click on links, this can be tracked and evaluated accordingly.
Lead management is the term used to describe all the measures that companies take to turn anonymous leads into contactable prospects.
The entire process consists of several phases: First, the right target groups must be defined, followed by lead generation and lead scoring.
Based on this information, a lead nurturing strategy can then be developed, which is finally complemented by lead routing.
In a way, lead management is a bridge between marketing and sales - always with the goal of acquiring new customers.
Within the scope of lead management, potential buyers are identified, provided with important information and sometimes also directly invited to interact. As soon as a B2B lead proves to be qualified, the sales department takes care of establishing contact.
Lead Nurturing with Social Media
Social media plays an enormously important role in today's business world. However, many companies are still far from exploiting the enormous potential of Facebook, Instagram & co.
In fact, however, it is the case that even your marketing without social media for a successful lead generation will eventually falter.
Social media helps you stay current and better understand your leads' interests, questions, and desires.
However, social media also offers you the opportunity to capture marketing-relevant information such as personal interests, values or sources of influence from a wide variety of people.
In addition, many networks offer very practical features that allow you to contact leads. In this way, you can increase the reach of your business in a very organic way.
Social Media Strategy
Facebook pages of companies are not usually set up to collect likes these days. It is much more important to be able to gather valuable information from them.
An important prerequisite for a successful social media strategy is high-quality content that is delivered at regular intervals and can serve as the basis for interactions in social networks.
However, you will only be successful with this if the right people are on board: Defining the right target group is of utmost importance - topic-relevant posts and articles as well as comprehensive research within the industry can be of great help.
However, the selection of the right networks for the delivered content should not be underestimated: What works well on YouTube is not necessarily suitable for Facebook - and vice versa.
With the help of a powerful content management system that can deliver very precise analyses and which is used in conjunction with a marketing automation tool, a lot of data can be collected.
This includes, for example, information about which channels the leads come from.
Measuring success also includes a kind of dashboard on which you record and evaluate the most important key figures. How many leads have you gained and how high are the costs per lead?
Professional tracking and regular analysis are important indicators of success in order to generate more leads and thus more conversions.
Lead Nurturing with Email Marketing
Once new leads are generated, it's a matter of nurturing your potential new customers until they decide to buy. With the right offer coming at the right time, that's not so hard.
This is where classic email marketing comes back into focus: personal newsletters sent to the lead at regular intervals with important information will increase interest.
In addition, relevant information such as the position, the need or other data about the lead can be obtained through each email.
With the support of marketing automation, your email communication can be improved even further. You will benefit from a greater number of high-quality leads in a shorter period of time - which in turn will have an extremely positive effect on your business relationships.
The term lead scoring translates from English as "lead evaluation" and refers to a powerful method of evaluating leads.
Here it can be determined whether the sales chances are good or bad.
Lead scoring examines what data is already available and whether or to what extent the lead has responded to being contacted. Each individual interaction with the lead influences the score and indicates whether a lead is valuable or not.
The scoring system is ideally developed in cooperation between marketing and sales - close collaboration is required here to be able to decide at what point a prospect can be transferred from marketing to sales. This process is also called lead routing.
In marketing and sales, the conversion from a lead to an actual customer is called lead conversion. How high the quality of a lead is depends to a large extent on how much information and details are known about it.
During lead nurturing, a distinction is made between MQLs (Marketing Qualified Leads) and SQLs (Sales Qualified Leads).
MQLs initially only show interest, while SQLs are already interested in making a purchase. SQLs can be transferred directly to sales, as they are ready for the conclusion of the purchase.
A conversion, i.e. the ultimate conclusion of a purchase, can usually only be achieved via a long, but carefully tracked customer journey.
From the initial collection of data to the regular provision of important information to closing the deal is a long road that can lead to success more quickly with an individually planned lead strategy.
Find out who your potential customers are. Based on this, you can develop a step-by-step process that allows you to always monitor which phase the prospect is currently in.
Remember: a lead nurturing process does not end, but is always being continued and optimized. It always needs to be adjusted, because marketing and products are always changing.
In addition, you can think about where the process can be automated to make the work easier for your teams.