Drip Marketing, which is known as Nuture Marketing, is a process by which you continue to develop a relationship with a prospective customer after they have left your website. Because they have provided you with their email address in exchange for one of your offers, you now have the ability to nurture these leads down the sales funnel by providing them with additional information about your firm's products and services and benefits of doing business with you over a set period of time. Doing so will keep your company with top-of-mind awareness, increasing the likelihood that they will seek you out when they are ready to make a purchase.
Lead nurturing creates a consistent, relevant dialog with prospects based on their needs and interests as evidenced by their engagement with your content. Here are the four best practices for establishing a Drip Marketing Campaign:
Create a Communication Schedule
Study after study shows that email response rates decline over the age of the lead. In fact, in his "Science of Timing" research, HubSpot Social Media Scientist Dan Zarrella discovered that there is a positive correlation between subscriber frequency and click-through rate. A good contact schedule should include a follow-up email within 24 hours after a prospect downloads a document and the timing of the rest of your email messages in the campaign should depend on your usual sales cycle. For example, if your sales cycle lasts 30 days, you might plan to send a new email on the 1st, 7th, 14th, and 30th day after the initial contact.
Don't Pitch - Provide Educational Content
Leads in the nurturing stage, by definition, are not sales-ready, so don’t make every message a sales pitch. Instead, use content that addresses the prospect’s needs and establishes your company as a thought leader. For example, the first email you send a new lead might include a whitepaper or ebook that addresses a high-level industry concern. Subsequent emails should then contain offers that intensify that relationship, such as inviting prospects to attend a webinar, download a video demo or participate in a customized assessment of their needs. You can also monitor each prospect’s activity to customize follow-up content offers based on their interests. For example, a prospect that downloads a ebook on a particular topic is a good prospect to invite to a webinar that dives deeper into some of the issues discussed in the ebook.
Engage Leads Through Multiple Channels
Email shouldn’t be your only lead nurturing communication channel. You should focus on the entire experience of your leads, sending communications designed to benefit leads, not interrupt them. This type of cross-channel nurturing should also incorporate mobile and social media. As a best practice, use marketing automation to nurture leads and send them information only when it is most relevant to their buying cycle.
Look for Segmentation Opportunities
Customizing your nurturing campaigns for different types of leads can help you deliver the most relevant content. Using information collected through your content registration forms, look for opportunities to segment your database by industry, job title/role, communication preferences (e.g. email vs. social media), the product(s) they’re interested in, etc. By doing so, you'll be able to select the best content for each segment. Say you are selling accounting software. Accounting Department personnel might be interested in ROI calculators, vendor comparison charts and other content that addresses financial concerns. But IT Department personnel who have to manage that software might want to receive product specifications or invitations to a webinar featuring best practices on implimenting your software. So you would establish separate tracks for those two types of leads.