Creating Effective Funnels is a Piece of Cake Or….
How to Get the Tofu, Mofu, Bofu, Right Once and For All
Here’s the ice cream for that cake.
The other day the concept of working your leads through your marketing funnel with a strategy, tactics and an overall explanation of why lead scoring is important to know at what stage your leads are in the buyer’s journey.
Today we’ll discuss the various nurturing campaigns and they specific purposes.
Initial Stage Sequence
This sequence is your stock in trade. Your “welcome to the family” email sequence is designed for beginning a relationship that you hope will last for a long, long time. It’s light, introductory, shares a little information about the value proposition you are about to share with them over the course of the next few days or weeks.
The purpose of this sequence is to familiarize the new lead with you and what they can expect. It’s that honeymoon period where both parties are getting to know them on a deeper level. Putting your best foot forward is always a good idea, but don’t promise what you can’t deliver.
For Some Great Examples of Award-winning Welcome Emails, click here.
Don’t misunderstand me; however, by thinking, you can just send a blanket email to every new lead you obtain. It should matter from where the lead originated. Segmenting within a segment is not difficult to manage as long as you set things up, and every CRM user understands the segmentation nuances.
For instance, if a lead came from your offline marketing, they might receive a slightly different version of the welcome email than say, someone who originated from a Google Ads campaign.
If someone downloaded a piece of content, they might too get a version of the master email for welcoming new leads. The same holds true for every funnel you operate. I know of one firm that has eighteen working funnels. That’s a lot of email versions.
There is no limit to how many welcome emails are in a sequence. You have to decide the number of them, but you also have to identify the triggers that will move them along the buyer’s journey. It’s the IF/THEN process of setting up your funnels. If they download this, then they should receive this form of content.
IF they lead doesn’t open the email or opens but doesn’t click through to a predetermined location, THEN they may rotate back into a previous step along the trail to purchase. The importance of tracking is obvious.
Additionally, your welcome sequence should contain calls to action, but they need to be exceptionally soft in nature. If they are interested, they’ll click through. If not, you haven’t lost them. They simply need more discovery time with you, so don’t let up. Depending on the industry and individual, it might take ten or more emails to move them through the funnel, but that’s okay.
For those leads that don’t follow up or are not engaging in email opens, don’t abandon them. We put them on a long-term nurture campaign that runs until they unsubscribe, or we get a notice that they no longer work there, or have passed away. Nothing short of those reasons does our sequence stop.
Second Stage Emails
This email sequence is designed to follow up on some action the lead took. Say they watched a video you sent along or downloaded an eBook or some other indicator that this person is showing more profound interest. Moving them down the funnel with second stage emails to further the relationship and reward them with another piece of related content.
If they went so far as to participate in a webinar or tele-seminar, they are signaling that they really are beginning to feel pretty good about you as a company. This is an indicator that middle of the funnel sequences doesn’t have to be as many in the count, and a little more deliberate in the calls to action. Don’t overdo it, but you can test a slightly stronger CTA to find out exactly where they stand.
Event leads are a horse of a different color. There’s no telling what level a lead may be at without clearly querying them at the event itself. Are they planning to make a buying commitment at the event? What’s the time period for the expressed need their interest reflects? How can you solve this person’s real pain point?
An email sequence specifically for this crowd should be a combination of welcome, thank you for stopping by, and eliciting some sort of interest level. Trade show leads are tough to assess, so use caution and take it at a pace they indicate based on their responses.
The purpose of these sequences is to not only deepen the relationship, seek some information, and also perform some trial closes by hinting at the benefits available based on the type of action they took to request more information.
Should they positively respond to this new information you have shared, the lead score should go up considerably, indicating they are moving that much closer to making some sort of decision. Hopefully, it’s to deepen the relationship and not to abandon that relation’s ship.
This is a sequence that may or may not apply. If there is a specialized, long-form content format like a multiple-episode video series, podcast episodes that occur daily on the same topic, or just making sure that whoever may have shared their information with you individually, for this reason, is segmented into this lead nurture campaign and not go through the standard complete email sequences previously discussed.
This sequence may be multiple per-day emails thanking them for their interest, providing overviews of the day’s topics, a thank you email and a copy of whatever was shared that day. Akin to a compressed timeline course or training you wish to share. Each day for, however, many sessions and their frequency will create a more profound and deeper relationship. Based on their attendance, a call to action to either purchase a product or sign up for whatever it is you are highlighting.
Internal Marketing Sequence
Attention to email sequencing and its stages would be incomplete without discussing a critical aspect of marketing management. Gathering leads and readying them for sales are NOT marketing’s sole responsibility.
It’s one thing to attract, persuade, and build trust with a new lead, and quite another to maintain that relationship once they are on the paying end of your transactions.
By internal marketing, I am speaking of keeping your existing client base engaged, offering them occasional opportunities to ascend to a higher level of a client through up-selling and new product introductions. Caution, however, as treating your clients like you think they are an ATM would be harmful. For every 6-10 emails, you send only one of them should be a sales opportunity. Businesses vary, but for B2B, continuously operating a separation strategy (separating them from their money) will cost you that client.
Unexpected extras are another marketing effort that is often ignored or misconstrued when loyalty marketing is functioning. Just because you are sending them a coupon doesn’t mean that you are showing them gratitude for your relationship. What about a birthday card in the mail, and another digital card online in their social media profile, as well as an email.
For every occasion, you can imagine there is a digital card that can easily be shared.
Resurrecting the Dead
Here is another opportunity for sales that almost all small business owners overlook. Just because the client or customer has stopped engaging with you doesn’t mean they never will again. Re-engaging the former client or customer costs nothing but pushing a button on the automation sequence. The time you invest in creating an email sequence is nothing compared to just one resurrected from the dead list of former customers.
Again, use the same process as we do at eLaunchers. Keep sending emails until they unsubscribe, or you know what else.
I hope you got something out of this two-part posting on email, and its sequencing, processes, systems and idle chatter. If there is anything we can do here at eLaunchers, please feel free to reach out. You can schedule a free consultation by going to https://elaunchers.con/client. Book an appointment to speak with me, and I’ll see if we can help.