Social media marketing has demonstrated that the way to find and keep your leads is to nurture them. This is done through building relationships with them whether they are ready to buy or not. Your intention should be to earn their business when they are ready. Building a relationship with your leads is the same as building any kind of relationship. You can’t force someone to make a commitment whether it’s to purchase or go out with you. However, you don’t want to lose those individuals just because their willingness to buy doesn’t match your readiness to sell.
Many leads that are not ready to buy will be ready eventually and in the meantime it’s up to you to provide them with information that will help them make up their minds and to be there when they are ready.
Most people that visit your website, blog site, Facebook page or Twitter are there to research your product, but they are probably not ready to talk to a salesman. However the majority of them will be ready sooner or later to buy from you or from your competitors.
By nurturing these leads, you can increase your sales up to 20%.
It’s a buyer’s market in these rough times. Prospects are spending more time on the Web doing their own research, getting information from their peers and from other third parties. LinkedIn has made this research among peers into an art. In the process of the information gathering, companies are meeting prospective clients earlier than ever, but any attempt at an early-stage sale is probably premature. Buyers aren’t ready to engage with sales reps until the final third of the buying process. The role of marketing has to change to meet this need and nurture the potential buyer. Instead of generating the lead and moving on, today’s marketers need several levels of marketing to synchronize their process with the potential buyer’s processes. The best way to do this is to have high quality content that helps answer the client’s questions.
Information given by blog, white paper, website and social media nurtures your potential client and builds your brand. The most important characteristics of your brand are often credibility and trust. The best way to build these characteristics is by sharing useful information. If you can frame the discussion, your company will be viewed as a trusted advisor and thought leader. If buyers feel that your company understands their problems and knows how to solve them, the buyers will not be so fearful of making a complex decision. This makes it easier for them to select you.
What can you expect if you invest your time in lead nurturing? Here are some statistics taken from research done by Marketo, Forrester, CSO Insights and others ( based on information in The Definitive Guide to Lead Nurturing—A Marketo Workbook white paper):
Companies that excel at lead nurturing:
- Generate 50% more sales-ready leads at 33% lower cost per lead
- Reduce the percentage of marketing-generated leads that are ignored by sales (from as high as 80% to as low as 25%)
- Raise win rates on marketing-generated leads (7% points higher) and reduce “no decisions” (6% lower)
- Have more sales representatives make quota (9% higher) and a shorter ramp up time for new reps (10% decrease)
There is additional evidence that suggests that prospects that are nurtured will buy more, required fewer discounts, have shorter sales cycles than prospects that are not nurtured.
- From Ripe to Ready: Nurturing Leads Increases Sales Conversion (businessinsider.com)
- Build Lead Personas For Better Lead Nurturing (customerthink.com)