Lead Nurturing: The What, Why and How

By Dan Sincavage

If your goal is to truly excel in sales – be the best salesperson that you can be or put together the most effective sales team – you have to get to the heart of the craft. What drives sales? Why would people buy from you, and not from your competition? Why do they stay despite available alternatives?

The answer strips the science and art of sales down to its core: relationships.

A purchase is the start of a relationship. You woo leads and prospects into considering you, over your rivals. And, like most love affairs, a long-lasting, mutually beneficial business relationship relies on trust.

“The trust that a customer has in your company and in you strongly outweighs the techniques you use to sell. Establishing trust is better than any sales technique.” – Mike Puglia, Vice President of Marketing at TimeTrade, an American software company.

Trust goes a long way in sales. And, the best way to establish trust is through lead nurturing.

What Is Lead Nurturing?

Lead nurturing refers to developing relationships with your customer base, at all stages of the sales funnel. It is your hand held out, ready to assist, at any time that your lead or potential buyer requires help or more information. It is done through conscious communications and marketing efforts that speak to leads at different stages of the sales process. You provide answers when needed – verbally or in the form of content – as well as open venues for conversation.

According to Marketo, a provider of automated marketing services, 50% of leads are not yet ready to buy. Add to that, a study by MarketingSherpa found that around 80% of new leads don’t convert to sales. What can make a huge difference? Lead nurturing.

Lead nurturing is your way of being present in your prospect’s mind, without the negatives that have been associated with sales (pestering, unsolicited calls, etc).

Consider the numbers. Marketo found that companies that are able to effectively implement lead nurturing enjoy 50% more sales at around 33% less cost. Likewise, demand generation services company The Annuitas Group observed that nurtured leads are likely to make 47% larger purchases.

If you are not implementing any lead nurturing efforts yet, you should. The market is buyer-driven. Your sales and marketing strategies have to focus on developing and sustaining relationships with your buyers.

Why Should You Implement Lead Nurturing?

If the probability of increasing your sales revenue is not enough to convince you to implement lead nurturing, consider these other advantages:

Becoming a Thought Leader: Lead nurturing relies on establishing trust, and a great way to do this is to build up your reputation. Available content is not just there to answer your target market’s questions. It is also there to establish you as a thought leader. Helpful and relevant content communicates your expertise to your audience. When it’s time to buy, people will always turn to the experts that they trust.

Bridging Communication Gaps: A study by InsideSales.com says that 35% to 50% of sales are closed by those who Go to the full article.

Source:: Business 2 Community

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