Does your strategy prioritise lead nurturing or lead generation? A key difference in the approach of content marketing compared to traditional marketing is the emphasis placed on lead nurturing over lead generation. And for good reason, too. Studies have found companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50 per cent more sales-ready leads at 33 per cent lower cost. It’s one of the many examples of how content marketing uses inbound, rather than outbound, techniques to achieve more effective communication with their consumers.
What does it mean to be lead nurturing?
Whereas lead generation is about getting a high volume of consumers into your sales process, lead nurturing is about building a relationship with those consumers every step of the way. A study by Gleanster Research found 50 per cent of leads are qualified but not yet ready to buy, highlighting the need for businesses to go beyond simply lead generation to achieve optimum results.
Lead nurturing means anticipating the wants and needs of your audience as they progress through their decision process, and striving to serve those needs even if they aren’t yet directly linked to sales.
Why should I nurture my leads?
Besides impressive statistics like companies with mature lead generation and management practices having a 9.3 per cent higher sales quota achievement rate, lead nurturing is attractive to brands because like much of content marketing, it builds trust between the brand and the buyer. Once trust is built throughout several consecutive stages of the decision-making process, your buyers are unlikely to ditch you for a competitor. What’s more, they’re more likely to engage in valuable activities like brand advocacy or spreading positive word of mouth.
How do I start lead nurturing?
Most authorities on content marketing agree effective lead nurturing should begin with content mapping. Content Mapping is a process that involves taking an overall view of your content, both existing and planned, and identifying what content is best suited to your buyers at a specific time.
For example, following the widely accepted AIDA framework as your sales process, you might divide your content in the following ways:
Awareness: Introductory content about what your product/service is, and what problems it serves to overcome. For example, an animated video explaining features and benefits.
Interest: Content focussed on the broader context of your product/service. For example, blog posts written about industry trends and research.
Desire: Content promoting the competitive nature of your product/service. Real life examples of how it has brought success to other customers. For example, case studies written about your most successful clients.
Action: Content facilitating a hassle free purchase and use of your product/service. For example, written how-to guides or live demo videos.
After dividing your content into stages, you’ll be able to identify whether your approach is lacking in any particular stage. Perhaps you’re putting too much focus on awareness but not enough focus on desire, or perhaps your content is too focussed on action without considering what comes before. Using a messaging framework, you’ll also be able to align all your content pieces to ensure they match the needs and circumstance of your different buyers at the given stage.
If you’d like help arranging your content into a lead nurturing program, contact Lush – The Content Agency.