Lead Nurturing Explained

After a buyer's name and email address have been collected, they are now a lead.  In the past, prospects who showed any interest in solutions offered were automatically kicked over to sales.  This resulted in a number of problems that traditionally faced sales and marketing organizations:

  • Sales people became frustrated in the quality of leads  being passed over to them.
  • Marketing became frustrated that sales did not follow through on sales leads.
  • Prospects went elsewhere to find information they sought in a low pressure environment.
A better way is to delay sending leads to sales people for action until they are ready to be sold to.  In the meantime, leads must be  provided with the information they seek based on their movement along their buying process.  This process cannot be accelerated and must go at the pace dictated by the buyer.

Lead nurturing and lead scoring are two important and interlinked elements to successfully matching the buyer's buying process.

Lead Nurturing

New leads are passed through a filter to determine which marketing track they should be placed into.  This is usually based on the nature of the information the prospect provided regarding his or her interests.  Tracks can vary in nature and are typically based on products or the role of the buyer (e.g. technical, executive, etc.).

Content is distributed based on a well planned nurturing program that is based on buying stage.  Buyers will advance through the buying cycle at different speeds depending totally on their needs.

Content Delivery

Content is generally delivered to leads in one of two means.   The first is through a direct download from your website, or from a related area, such as a blog.  As content is downloaded, that contributes to the implicit behavioral information being collected about each lead.

The second method of content delivery is through drip email campaigns.  These provide an automated method for delivering a series of relevant content over time which keeps the buyer aware of your company performs the necessary education and objection handling required to move the buyer ahead in their buying cycle.  Email campaigns also provide implicit information indicating whether the email was opened and if the content was accessed.
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