Is your sales team complaining because pipeline numbers are dwindling? Is your once stellar lead nurturing program now leaking prospects like a sieve? If your lead nurturing campaigns aren’t delivering the kinds of results you need, there are a number of elements that could be to blame. Let’s take a look at some common culprits that can throw a lead nurturing campaign off track and see what steps we need to take to re-engage prospects and close more sales.
Problem 1. Letting Automation Shine Through
Automation is fabulous for us as marketers, but it’s something we want to keep in the background to facilitate our work—if we let it take center stage, we’re doing something wrong. That means that if our email recipients spend even a moment of time wondering if something “weird” is going on with our emails, we need to switch things up. Using automation to help create a relationship with our customer is what we’re after; using it to create psychological noise is not.
How to fix it: Make sure that automation keeps a back seat in your email nurturing by thinking in terms of a human first, marketer second. For example, how many humans do you know who regularly send you emails only at 3AM? And how many people would address the email to you using the same odd capitalization you inadvertently used when you were quickly entering your name into the data field? Lead with your human side and let the automation work for you.
Problem 2. Ignoring Your Analytics
If you’re like many marketers, by the time you get your nurturing stream updated with new content, that points to your new landing pages and other new resources that you’ve also had to create, you’ll be happy if you don’t have to see (or think) about the nurturing stream again for weeks or months!
How to fix it: Resist the temptation to set it and forget it. Just like all of the other aspects of your marketing programs, your email nurturing stream’s analytics will be able to provide you with insights on what your prospects find compelling and what is falling short. Follow them through the clickthrough and you’ll be able to determine their average level of interest in the content once they arrive on the site. Like your website and your other marketing and advertising campaigns, approach your email nurturing campaign as one that is always in-progress, waiting to be updated and optimized based on your latest findings. This is especially relevant if you include time-sensitive information in your nurturing programs. You might have included a great blog post from an event or an annual recap; however, these pieces of content are only relevant for so long.
Problem 3. Stopping too Soon
Ask ten marketers how many nurturing emails and touchpoints are suitable for a lead in the first three months after meeting them, and you’ll get ten different answers. Some marketers say that a half dozen is the limit, while others allow for up to ten. But the reality is that if you pay attention to your analytics and continue to offer leads timely, valuable, non-salesy information, it doesn’t behoove you to put artificial limits on following up with them.
How to fix it: Remember that your lead is a lead because they expressed some interest in your product or services. As long as you continue to truly nurture the relationship by providing resources that they find valuable—and can confirm through your analytics that they’re opening and engaging with your emails—there’s no reason to mark them off of your list after the first 90 days. Let data, not emotions, drive your decisions.