Nov
17

Plan de travail 2 copie 2

It’s not unusual to hear, “Content is king.” Well, that is true to some extent…
Sitting comfortably on the content throne is however, almost pointless if you don’t convert your hard-earned website visitors into paying customers! Absorbing content is just one facet of the buyer journey.

“79% of marketing leads never convert into sales. Lack of lead nurturing is the most common cause of this poor performance.”
(Source: MarketingSherpa)

 

That said, I’d ultimately suggest conversion is king.
Without conversion, you are wasting all your marketing efforts, traffic and leads.
To ensure that doesn’t happen, I’m going to uncover the top 5 lead nurturing techniques you can begin to action right away for huge brand love and sales.
Before diving in, it’s important to differentiate between two interchangeable (and often confused) marketing terms:

  • Conversion

    A conversion could signify a newsletter signup, somebody downloading an eBook or paying for your service. Whatever business-orientated actions you’d like your visitors to take, they should all be counted as conversions.
    Your conversion rate is defined as the total number of conversions divided by your total traffic amount. Ideally, you always want a high conversion rate.

  •  

  • Acquisition

    While conversion rate is an overall definition of success, the ‘acquisition’ metric is more financially-orientated, directly measuring the revenue impact of campaigns.
    By improving your conversion rate and optimising buyer journeys, you are able to subsequently lower your cost per acquisition (CPA – the cost of acquiring a new customer).

    Defining a related metric known as customer lifetime value (CLV – how much each customer is worth to your company) means you have the ammo to establish a healthy CPA.

 

CLV calculations can become very complicated, but here is a brief example you can use for quick assessment:


 

The primary objective of any commercial website is to convert as much traffic as possible into recurring revenue that is maintained and developed.

Here are 5 top-notch techniques to do just that:

 

#1: Accurately Score Your Website Visitors

To efficiently nurture visitors into prospects and transform those prospects into sales, you need to be able to closely monitor all of these people on the fly – including their varying levels of propensity to buy from you.
How is this concurrently possible? By using marketing automation – a staple of high conversion rates.
Marketing automation software takes the manual labour out of scoring your visitors based on positive (and negative) actions they take on your website. If you’re not using any form of scoring, you’re shooting blind and missing countless opportunities to nurture your leads and sell.

“Marketers using automation software generate 2x the number of leads than those using blast email software.”
(Autopilot – Source)

You also gain valuable insight into the effectiveness of your content and anything that isn’t driving results.

Not only does marketing automation software score your visitors and alert you of those likely ready to be funnelled towards your sales team, it has the capability to warm up prospects using pre-set email marketing and other triggered automations. For example, progressively dynamic auto-fill forms on your website can be applied to gradually build your visitor personas over time.

Hubspot display the best example of such tactics. Just look at the size of this form!

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Scoring your visitors as leads or otherwise needn’t be a struggle. I recently explained exactly how to create a lead scoring matrix right here on Sparklane.

Analysing your traffic in such a way means you are able to deliver your most persuasive content to targeted audiences at the optimal time – which brings us nicely onto our next technique…

 

#2: Meet Visitors On Their Multi-Touchpoint Journey

Content is king? (Okay, for this particular section, we’ll run with that.)
Your material serves numerous purposes for many different people – and this is why countless businesses get it wrong. It’s an art that isn’t easily mastered, after all. Actually, it’s probably one of the most difficult aspects of conversion.
To maximise the likelihood of acquiring a customer, it’s critical to understand and plan for the various phases through which a website visitor travels, from initial landing to purchase.

content marketing funnel

Source: 123 Reg


 

So, what types of content are best suited to each scenario? Here’s a few ideas for you:

Awareness Phase

  • Social media posts
  • Guest articles
  • Infographics
  • Blog posts
  • Landing pages
  • Free eBooks

 

Consideration Phase

  • Comprehensive white papers
  • Exclusive Webinars
  • In-depth articles
  • Brochures
  • Input from brand advocates

 

Purchase Phase

  • Free trials
  • Case studies
  • Free consultations
  • 1-2-1 videos
  • Demos

 

Apply all types of content distribution (owned, earned and paid) for maximum reach, impact and the ‘always in mind’ effect.

All types of content distribution

Source: Capital One


 

“On average, a lead requires 10 marketing-driven ‘touches’ to convert from the top of the funnel into a paying customer.”
(Source: Aberdeen Group)

 

But how exactly do you meet leads and prospects on their journey with the right content..?

Automated email marketing is the answer!

 

#3: Warm Your Leads With Email Drip Campaigns

Your marketing automation software/s will take care of this process too. You’ll be glad to hear there’s no need to sit there sending thousands of emails one by one (although I realise how enticing that sounds.)
Your job here is to craft the content and corresponding emails, ensuring they are triggered in a timely manner and delivered to suit the interests of each lead.

Here’s an example of a triggered automation flow:

☑ Visitor hits eBook landing page via an organic tweet

☑ Visitor downloads the eBook by entering brief details and now becomes a lead

☑ Lead enters monthly newsletter email subscription and over the course of the first week, also receives a series of 5 emails relevant to the eBook they downloaded, gently prompting further action in the final email (perhaps pointing to a whitepaper download)

☑ Lead decides to take action and downloads the whitepaper

☑ Another series of emails are triggered, pointing to in-depth articles – the 4th email encourages a free consultation to aid their business

☑ Lead accepts consultation and becomes a prospect

☑ Another series of 3 highly personalised, prompting emails are sent to the prospect following their consultation – these emails are now visibly sent from a ‘dedicated account manager’ and may contain time-limited offers

☑ Prospect takes action on the final email and becomes a paying customer

☑ Another, less frequent email drip is triggered to suit their business and continued behaviour on your website, with a view to future upsells

Following each new triggered email drip campaign, the delivery of your other drips may or may not change. You are able to set these automation flows as required to fully suit the recipient. Obviously, you don’t want to be sending out 35 emails every day to one person just because they downloaded 35 of your documents!
One drip campaign may cancel out or delay another, and so forth.
If you have ever questioned the importance of email, this may change your mind:

“Email marketing has an ROI of $38 for every $1 spent.”
(DMA – Source)

 

#4: Remind Busy Prospects & Hook Strays With Remarketing

The power of lead scoring and email marketing has been demonstrated – but it’s still not enough. We live in a hectic world with many distractions. No matter how great your offering; leads and prospects need to be reminded to take action before they go cold.
Remarketing is a form of advertising (for instance, via Google AdWords) that assigns cookies to your visitors. You can target those visitors with tailored or even dynamic ads based on their specific activity. These ads follow them around as they browse the web:

Adwords for SaaS Start-up

Source: WordStream


 

Let’s say your lead clicks a link in your email but their colleague suddenly distracts and calls them over, causing your whitepaper download to be forgotten. No problem! Hit them with remarketing ads directly related to the whitepaper and present a big shiny ‘Download Now’ button within the ad. Even be blatant with ad messaging: “Forgotten something?”
Remarketing is a fantastic way to reach, remind and convert. Even if your ads don’t get clicked…they are proven to aid conversion. This can be assessed by a metric known as ‘view-through conversion’. The fact it is displayed in AdWords speaks volumes.
I wouldn’t suggest running any lead nurturing campaign without some form of remarketing. You can even remarket on Facebook.
Here’s a great guide on tactical remarketing implementation from Wishpond.

 

#5: Upsell With Personalisation, Exclusivity & Urgency

You’ve acquired a new customer. Amazing! But the story doesn’t end there…well, not if you want to remain profitable.

Remember the final stage in our example automation flow?

☑ Another, less frequent email drip is triggered to suit their business and continued behaviour on your website, with a view to future upsells

Keep your customers warm and excited about everything else you are able to offer them. Perhaps they aren’t aware – or they just need some coaxing.

Sapling plant growing seedling

Source: Pixabay


 

A great upsell method is through the use of webinars. Alert your relevant customers via email drips and dedicate your webinar to topics you have found to be common pain points of these customers.
Hard selling is not your aim here
– avoid that at all costs. Inform and educate your customers to insider trends, news and expertise. You could drop in a subtle upsell at the end, or even in your follow up email. But do be subtle. Most webinars today really are appalling, with what could be described as 90% sales messaging and <10% useful information.
When you have a solid webinar topic planned, apply these tactics to almost guarantee conversions:

  • Personalise your email marketing campaigns to the highest degree (not just customer names in the subject line).

 

“Personalised emails improve click-through rates by an average of 14% and increase conversions by 10%.”
(Aberdeen Group – Source)

 

  • Make your campaigns completely exclusive to paying customers only – and ensure they know it!
  • Decisions are rarely made without a stated deadline. Communicate a sense of urgency – tell your customers this is a limited time offer with a certain number of seats and there will be no replays of the webinar.

 

Bringing It All Together

These techniques are so insanely powerful and work best when combined.
You can switch them up however you wish – remarket your webinars, open them up to the public, personalise your landing page designs, send out an email drip that spans a whole month…the possibilities are endless.
What matters most is you always have your audience in mind; cater to their needs through content. Solve their problem. Scratch their itch. Be the solution. Simplify yet enhance your conversion paths for their benefit. Become a brand they know and relate to.
Attract the right traffic and you will collect qualified leads all day long.
If you are unsure of the nature of content your potential customers seek, you can conduct industry research using smart data to hyper-target your material. Even look to your competitors for content inspiration.
 
A systematic, intricate lead nurturing process maximises your conversion rate, lowers your cost per acquisition and increases customer lifetime value – a model that any business owner aspires to achieve.

 

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Sam Hurley
About the Author
Sam Hurley is a lateral-thinking digital marketer holding 6+ years’ self-expedited experience in both agency and client-side settings before launching his own digital consultancy venture: OPTIM-EYEZ. He is ranked as the world’s #1 digital influencer by Webinale and #2 most influential digital marketer by Onalytica. He was also recently commended as one of the top 3 content marketing influencers of 2016 by ScribbleLive.