Lead Nurturing: A Must-Have Strategy for Your Business!

Lead Nurturing

In today’s competitive business landscape, companies must devise and implement a comprehensive, proactive lead nurturing program. Establishing strong relationships with prospects is essential, as it leads to increased engagement and understanding of your products and services.

Lead nurturing serves as the swiftest and most cost-effective method to guide initial prospects through your sales funnel, enhancing the probability of them making a purchasing decision. Every company should incorporate an appropriate lead-nurturing strategy into their marketing campaigns and overall strategies.

While telemarketing has emerged as the most comprehensive and productive way of nurturing leads in a B2B environment, the bigger question that stands at the forefront of business is: Why is it important to establish a lead nurturing strategy and how does it impact your sales funnel management?

No matter how effective your lead generation campaigns are, a significant percentage of potential customers may not be ready to progress through your sales process/funnel. Most industry experts believe that abandoning these leads is unwise. With well-implemented lead nurturing processes, these leads can prove to be quite profitable.

Implementing lead nurturing processes will strengthen the relationship between your brand and prospects. However, it’s crucial to use a proactive channel to reach out to these leads; not just any channel will suffice.

It is crucial to ensure that communication with these qualified leads during the nurturing process provides insights into their thought processes and decision-making. Understanding how a prospect “feels” about your interactions, whether its content delivery, incentive offers, etc., will help determine the best next step in this evolving relationship. Building productive and meaningful client relationships is not very effective in non-proactive channels like email and social media alone.

One of the best methods of lead nurturing involves a “human touch,” meaning actual interaction with a prospect by phone or video conference. We will call it telemarketing. When a meaningful conversation takes place, you precisely understand the expectations of the person/company you are targeting as your next best client. For example, you can find out which specific white paper or case study might be most effective in informing, educating, and motivating them to move forward down your sales funnel.

Completes Your Sales Funnel:

Technically speaking, lead nurturing occupies the central space of a sales funnel, but it is the most crucial step for cultivating the first-contact prospects into confident, driven prospects who can be converted into the best-paying customers.

Sales Funnel

Lead nurturing impacts buying behavior, helping prospects explore and further engage with your brand, greatly increasing the likelihood that your sales team will be able to “close” the sale. Nurturing a lead is just as important, if not more so, than generating one.

Helps Understand the Pain Points:

Lead nurturing helps you better understand your customers’ pain points, which, in turn, ensures that you’re offering them products designed around their needs and wants.

In a way, lead nurturing enables companies to dive deep into customer matters: what they’re looking for and what solves their problem with precision and rationality.

Research at “Salesmate” states that leads that are nurtured with the right attention make 47% larger purchases than those that are not nurtured.

Proven Ways to Nurture Your Leads using Telemarketing:

Before starting a lead nurturing program, you must set up the communication channel through which it will be implemented. Many businesses still use emails as their main lead nurturing strategy. More businesses should consider integrating a more proactive approach and use phone/video communication channels to nurture their leads as well. Those who do see greater sales conversion rates and overall better return on investment.

Telemarketing supports businesses in moving leads down their sales funnel. Telemarketing benefits B2B companies by becoming more cost-effective and interactive; it offers a personalized way of understanding your prospects’ needs, ensuring you support them with better, more targeted, and relevant solutions.

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Using Targeted-Content Strategy for Lead Nurturing.

When it comes to lead nurturing, telemarketing is best at helping you stay on top of your targeted content strategy. It enables companies to focus on what the customer wants instead of providing generic content not relevant to their needs. Incorporating the ‘human touch’ (via telemarketing) as part of your content strategy strengthens the connection between the buyer’s needs and the services they’re being offered.

A targeted content strategy doesn’t only mean limiting your prospects to phone contacts. In fact, you can use telemarketing as a driving force to navigate prospects’ behavior when browsing segment-specific content. This instills a higher probability of making a purchase without misguidance or hassle.

Using BANT With Telemarketers for Profitable Purchase Results  

BANT is an acronym used in sales to qualify and prioritize leads or opportunities. 

It stands for:

Budget: Does the prospect have the financial resources to make a purchase?

Authority: Are you speaking with the decision-maker or someone who can influence the decision?

Need: Does the prospect have a genuine need or problem that your product or service can solve?

Timeline: What is the prospect’s timeline for making a decision or implementing a solution?

By assessing these four criteria, sales professionals can better understand the likelihood of converting a lead into a customer and prioritize their efforts on opportunities that are more likely to result in successful sales.

It is a common business practice for companies to try and gather BANT information from leads at the early stage of their sales process. After all, salespeople want to know that they are talking to the right person, that the solution they are offering is applicable, that money is available, and finally, the timeline for making a purchasing decision. Asking these questions may sound simple; however, being able to collect all this information is not easy at all. In fact, it is a major challenge for 80% of salespeople. It often requires a multi-touchpoint strategy, an area where too many salespeople fail to do well in follow-up and nurture. Moreover, prospects are often unable or unwilling to share information in the early stage of their discovery process, making this process more challenging.

Putting aside the fact that many salespeople do a poor job nurturing leads, a ‘typical’ sales representative can easily make prospects feel overwhelmed or uncomfortable when trying to get all the BANT answers in a single engagement. Some prospects report that they feel more like a ‘target’ rather than a potential business partner. These prospects may quickly turn their attention to a company that treats them with more consideration.

Experts recommend hiring a seasoned telemarketing company instead of relying on internal sales teams to qualify and nurture leads. These same experts suggest that having your salespeople focus on qualified actionable leads will increase your sales conversion rate and your company’s return on investment. Moreover, it improves the sales team’s morale. Professional telemarketing companies excel in delivering qualified new business opportunities. That is all they do, and they are well aware that if they do not do it well all the time, they will not remain in business for very long. That is their business, and so they must deliver quality results.

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Nurturing Leads You Already Generated

According to HubSpot, 65% of businesses consider traffic and lead generation as their most significant marketing challenge. A lead generated through digital marketing averages around $25 per lead, but companies may consider those obtained in the past twelve months as dead ends. 

Your organization already spent significant time and resources building relationships. Rather than starting over, why not revisit leads you generated in the past 12-18 months?

There’s Good News There are a lot of discouraging headlines and ominous predictions, but one piece of positivity is ready for your sales teams: your lead nurturing efforts should not be considered a lost cause. Sure, some of your older opportunities are likely lost, but not permanently. Companies that strategically approach their lead nurturing program throughout the year will gain an advantage over competitors. And there’s a reason to use your existing list of leads, as part of your lead generation plans, and not just start over.

The Bucket Strategy There is still plenty of life in the leads you’ve already generated if you have the right strategy for optimizing them. For instance, think about taking your existing leads your sales team is on and nurturing them longer, allowing our process to reclassify them and then place the leads into three buckets:

Bucket One: Actionable leads. These are your active leads. These are people and companies identified as near-term sales opportunities.  Decision-makers and/or influencers are identified, budgets are in place and the time frame is clear. 

Bucket Two: Potential future leads – This group includes companies that you are thinking of as more of a long-term nurturing relationship. They may be dealing with budget cuts, personnel reorganization, or a hold on projects for one reason or another. You are going to want to interact with them and send them appropriately timed content, but you are not looking to close a deal in the near term. Decision-makers and/or influencers are identified, budgets are being set, but timing is not immediate. 

Bucket Three: Dead leads – These are companies that have gone out of business or are facing devastating circumstances, companies that have acquired solutions from a competitor, companies whose business needs have changed, etc. They should be considered dead leads. No future nurturing or follow-up is needed.

Final Thought:

If you’re having trouble truly connecting with your prospects, if you feel there is room to improve your sales team conversion rate, consider utilizing the most proactive form of marketing: telemarketing. 

At Blue Valley Marketing, we understand the power of qualifying and nurturing leads. We have developed a system for constantly generating qualified, actionable, engaged leads that your sales team would love. 

Consider outsourcing the top-of-funnel lead generation and nurturing process to Blue Valley. Let us use our process, software, and trained communicators to offer you an excellent return on your investment. Contact us today and find out how quickly we can position your salespeople in front of prospective clients eager to learn more about your products and services.

Last Updated on January 13, 2024 by Ronen Ben-Dror

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