What Is Lead Nurturing

Lead nurturing is the process of sending automated emails to people in your email list that meets certain conditions with the main goal of making them take an action.

Lead nurturing comes after lead generation. It’s part of the second pillar of effective email marketing, which is lead management.

What is lead nurturing? 

Lead nurturing in digital marketing is a tactic where you send automated, but highly-relevant, emails (or other forms of communication) with the end goal of making influencing them to take an action. 

With modern technology, this is actually not limited to emails anymore. Some organizations use chatbots, SMS, and other messaging tools to nurture their leads. For the purpose of this article, I’ll just use email; but whatever you can do with email, you can do with other types of communication channel.

If you ever bought something online, or subscribed to a newsletter, or signed up for a course or content download, you have probably experienced lead nurturing yourself — whether or not it was effective, that’s another topic.

The Situation

When you gave your email address (along with other information) to these companies, what was the first email you receive?

Most probably, it’s some sort of a thank you email.

But then, the next email you receive is all about them — about how great they are and how they start selling you things right away.

This is the biggest reason why a lot of marketers fail at email marketing. They don’t know how to nurture the leads properly. Sure, some people will buy right now. But most won’t.

Related: Biggest Reason Digital Marketing Campaigns Fail

If your organization is doing this exact same thing, don’t worry. You’re normal. Because 99% of organizations are like this, it’s so easy to stand out.

Just stop selling.

That’s right. Do not sell.

I went through this issue in detail when I discussed the buyer’s journey. If you’re not familiar with the topic, read it until you understand it. Mastering the buyer’s journey is probably one of the things that separates mediocre marketers from the great ones.

Complication

Your customers are looking for something to solve a problem/need/want. While you may think your products/services are the greatest and can actually help them, your customers don’t think of you that way.

From their perspective, if you don’t add value and just asks for their money, that’s what they’re going to think of you — that you only care about their money.

Not them. Just their money.

It’s worth reading that paragraph again.

Ask yourself this question: “Would you want to do business with someone who only wants your money?”

And if you think that you’re the only choice out there, just remember that no industry is safe from competition. While your customers “might not” have any choice now, the moment a new competitor offers a similar product, they’ll just switch over in the blink of an eye.

So, What Are You Going to Do Next?

Implement a lead nurturing sequence that is educational in nature. Stop selling. Add value. After you do that, then and only then will you have the right to sell to them.

And if your prospects and leads don’t buy now, you don’t stop with the lead nurturing emails. Continue adding value to their lives. This is the basics of the typical online conversion path.

Here are 3 lead nurturing examples from Philippine companies you’re probably familiar with. I broke down that they did great and what they can further improve on.

In addition, you might want to review your arsenal as a digital marketer. Did you know that there are 12 different types of marketing email you can send?

Since majority of companies start selling right away, it’s so easy to stand out.

Do you need help with creating lead nurturing campaigns for your company? Let me know in the comments below.

Ariel Lim

Management consultant / MBA / Inbound marketer who helps startups generate leads, create and execute strategies.