Lead generation for manufacturers is important, but it’s hardly a standalone concern. Your marketing — as well as much of the rest of your business — must also be concerned with what happens with those leads once they’ve made initial contact. Lead nurturing, which is just as important, should not be ignored, though it often is. At Cain & Company, we recognize the importance of nurturing leads and help our clients close more business by better understanding and improving their processes. These five steps are an important foundation.
Develop a Lead Nurturing Plan
Any new endeavor or reset of your existing marketing efforts begins here. When your marketing goes through several iterations or cycles through a number of different stakeholders, it’s easy to lose the plot. That’s why we help our clients in manufacturing, industry, and healthcare by designing a marketing plan that is intentional, communicating a clear and consistent message.
Personalize Your Approach
A significant part of knowing your lead nurturing goals is also knowing your target market. How do your goals align with theirs? Armed with this understanding, you can personalize your marketing beyond putting the prospect’s name in the salutation. Marketing sequences do more than sell; they exist to educate, build credibility, and form trust between you and a prospect. With the ability to segment your audience and target accordingly, you can even tailor your content with surgical precision. Just as importantly, resist the temptation to rush the process. An interested lead will inquire directly, but some prospective customers require a longer warming-up period that’s often spaced out over a few weeks, months, or, in some cases, even years.
Use the Best Tools Available
While there are times when there’s simply no substitute for a customized email written for an audience of one, that method simply isn’t practical when you’re reaching out to an email list or social media following that numbers in the hundreds or thousands. It’s even less practical when your marketing goes beyond the mailing list to encompass other media. Smart use of marketing automation is a time-saving best practice that can harmonize your work across channels. Use it!
Be Creative in Your Customer Outreach
Rather than trying to be everywhere, it’s important to be where your customers are. Some channels simply won’t deliver the results you’re looking for and aren’t worth your time and attention. But if you’ve planned your lead nurturing properly, you’ll know where your prospects congregate and the kind of information they want most from you. That will enable you to tailor your outreach to better engage your audience.
Analyze, Optimize, and Improve
While we’ve put this step last, in reality it applies to every part of your sales process. No area of your sales funnel should go unexamined, nor should it be exempted from optimization. The tools we use to assist you are always evolving and improving, opening up new areas of opportunity for your business. Your approach to marketing can and must evolve with them. While marketing automation simplifies our day-to-day workflow, we cannot simply “set it and forget it.” A business that is data-driven and that responds to that data will see more leads converted to sales a long with more opportunities to cross-sell, up-sell, and retain existing customers.
If you’re stuck on any of these steps or find yourself intimidated by the mere thought of getting started with lead nurturing marketing, get in touch with Cain & Company. We’ll help your manufacturing business generate and nurture leads with intention.