Every prospect who fills out a lead form, especially those who download a top of funnel ebook, is not ready to talk about your product. Sometimes they are, but the action of downloading that ebook doesn't tell you that in any way. This is where lead nurturing comes in.
Modern marketers know that they must learn more about their prospects before passing them along to sales. Marketing starts and nurtures that relationship with additional contact and content.
The follow statistics from Ascend2 show how modern marketers evaluate their own lead nurturing efforts.
What are the Most Important Objectives of Lead Nurturing?
68% say Increase Conversion Rates
68% say Increase Sales Opportunities
According to this study it was tie between increasing conversion rates and increasing sales opportunities as the most important objectives of lead nurturing. That is no surprise. Both of these objectives indicate the same thing, however, one is from the marketing perspective and the other is from the sales perspective. Success in both show that you are reaching the right prospects at the right time.
Increasing the conversion rate means that a greater percentage of people filling out lead forms move to the next stage, whether it's MQL or SQL. And increasing sales opportunities just means that you looking to fill the sales pipeline.
What are the Most Effective Online Channels for Lead Nurturing?
78% say Email
48% say Website
Many marketers focus on email as the heart of lead nurturing campaigns. Well, not just the heart, but the soul, the brains and the entire body. It is no surprise that more than three-quarters of those surveyed cited email as the most effective channel. Sometimes it's the only channel. There are so many other ways to nurture your prospects, and B2B marketers stick with the tried and true.
Just under half of them also included their website as an effective channel. Besides the fact that this tells us marketers were able to choose multiple answers, this means that landing pages and content paths on websites also contribute to the success of lead nurturing.
What are the Most Effective Tactics for Lead Nurturing?
69% say Creating Relevant Content
40% say Personalizing Campaigns
Relevant content. If you are not sending the right content to the right prospects at the right time, it really doesn't matter how many touches you have in your nurture campaigns. They will ignore it if it is not relevant. And the second most common answer was personalizing campaigns. Both of these tactics can be put in the same strategic bucket of understanding your prospect. There is really no question that lead nurturing works when you can build a relationship with someone you understand. Sounding a little bit like life, huh?
What is the Biggest Obstacle to Lead Nurturing Success?
59% say Creating Relevant Content
49% say Targeting by Decision Stage
It is interesting, and hard to overlook, that the most effective tactic and the biggest obstacle are the same. It takes a lot of steps to create relevant content, and that's why it is successful. Content marketing teams have grown at large organizations, but not every company can fund these dedicated individuals. If you run marketing at one of these companies, look to defund some activities without a clear result as you shift focus to creating content. Sales, customer service and other marketers can tell you what's on the minds of your prospects to help you get started.
Not far behind that is targeting by decision stage. I'm going to call this a content problem too. If you don't have enough content, or the right content to align with a buyer's journey, it is hard to know what stage they are even in. And that makes it hard to target them.
How Successful Is Lead Nurturing?
20% Consider Lead Nurturing Very Successful
62% Consider Lead Nurturing Somewhat Successful
18% Consider Lead Nurturing Unsuccessful
Only one-fifth of B2B marketers consider their lead nurturing efforts very successful. These are the ones who are doing all the right things like creating relevant content, segmenting and targeting their prospects by buying stage, and personalizing their campaigns based on the prospects' activities. A nearly equal number consider it unsuccessful. They are likely struggling with these same activities.
This post originally appeared on the Modern Marketing Blog.