Lead generation has always been considered a critical part of our marketing . Lead nurturing refers to we build relationships with our prospective customers, as opposed to just blasting sales messages over and over. Strategies have evolved with the continuing advances in technology.
Online marketing has become increasingly intrusive over the last few years. Technology improvements should have led to a more highly targeted strategy; however, consumers seem to be receiving a constant barrage of ‘spam’ in their email and in the social media world. Consequently, many potential buyers resist any attempt to be ‘sold’.
Successful marketers have realised that prospective customers need to be nurtured. Research shows the following stats:
- Up to 95% of sales leads can be wasted if the first contact with the prospect is an attempt to sell.
- 70% of a company’s leads will buy at some point: either to the company trying to sell, or one of its competitors.
Therefore, the emphasis should be on building a relationship with the prospect, not trying sell on the first call.
The ideal prospective customer will be someone who has made the first approach; they may have responded to an offer posted on a website, or made an enquiry at a trade stand, for example. Ideally, the prospect will have given permission to the company, by way of a ticked box on a website or registration form at a trade exhibition, to contact them.
The company should, when they contact the prospect, give them a second opportunity to opt in to receive further information. A choice of subjects could be offered; also there could be options in the frequency of when the customer receives the information. This could be in the form of an email with links to particular web pages, or an e-zine. You should also invite them to connect with you on the various social media sites.
If possible, you should have an employee or service follow up with a phone call to check if the prospect is happy with the information they are receiving, to ask if there are any questions and ascertain if they would like to receive a call from someone in the sales team. If the prospect agrees, the sales team have a red hot qualified lead.