Did you know?
According to Brian Carroll, author of Lead Generation for the Complex Sale , leads can represent as much as 80% of your sales.
80% of anything is no small number.
The sad truth is, traditional marketing methodologies (as well as traditional sales tactics) has been focused on drawing in new leads, rather than maintaining them in some sort of cohesive pipeline.
According to a 2012 Lead Generation Benchmark report done by Marketingsherpa.com, 59% of companies do not have lead nurturing programs.
Why is maintaining old leads important?
Maintaining leads is much harder than the simple catch and release method of a warm lead, or low-hanging fruit.
Having an effective strategy to nurtures old leads will attract more returning customers in the long run. And rather than shortening the sales cycle, it expands it and creates room for customers in all stages of the buying cycle.
It also helps guide your prospects through the steps, and holds their hand even after they’ve bought for the first time.
If you maintain good relations after a sale, chances are that buyer will recommend you to other prospects, and serve as a “witness” in your company’s favor. Helping them take the next steps to buy from you as well.
How does a company maintain this relationship?
Much like growing a romantic relationship, you’ll need to still court them after you’ve sealed the deal. We’re not saying go buy them flowers, but create content that’s meaningful to them. Webinars that will answer their questions, blogs, videos, whatever it takes to grow your relationship after the sale.
What is long term lead and relationship building content?
Here’s what it’s not.
- Talking only about your awards, your volunteer efforts, how your CEO is awesome, describing product features, etc.
- Salesy stuff like strong calls to action to “ Buy Now .”
- Constant new product or service “announcements.”
Content like this is like that blind date you got set up with once; you were told they “were nice”, but really only talked about how wonderful they are the entire night.
Offer solutions, focused on the buyer’s problems, and talk about general business struggles and business trends, rather than schlepping your company, product or service.
Make it about them. Make your content about what they care about.
Become the listener and guide rather than the slimy-sales guy of the relationship.
Keep in mind that leads are people too, and they have feelings. Consider them. Would you want to keep getting content that tried to “sell” you every time you opened your email inbox?
The goal in building a successful lead nurturing program is to build a relationship with them with educational and useful content.
Be purposeful, respectful, and relevant. Have empathy. What’s empathy? It’s putting yourself in your customers or clients’ shoes. Address the needs of your buyer instead of blowing up your own ego.
Ready to learn about maintaining leads?
To learn more about how to craft your very own lead nurturing plan, or how to implement this on your own website through a free consultation, contact us here.