Ep. 90 | Why You Need a Lead Nurturing Program (Hint: More Revenue)

If I could tell you how to get 75 percent more marketing qualified leads, would you do it?

That’s what you can expect from a lead nurture program, yet most marketers have not implemented a lead nurture process.

In this episode, we chat with Phil Bosley of Tactical Marketing about the third installment of the Fundamental Three, regularly emailing to a segment of your audience. He explains why that’s important and outlines how to get started.

Before launching his business, he was a marketing strategist for Act-On, consulting thousands of companies on their marketing automation strategies. He’s been on the podcast before, and you can listen to him explain his marketing automation is like chess metaphor in Episode 21, or get his insights on the benefits of strategy and training to your marketing in Episode 50.

This transcript has been edited for length. To get the full measure, listen to the podcast.

NATHAN ISAACS: Can you tell us about the benefits of regularly sending segmented emails via your marketing automation? 

PHIL BOSLEY: …We expected to see that people with a higher volume of emails, that is in the Act-On subscription model you subscribe to a certain number of Act-On active contacts. We expected to see that the higher percentage of active contacts you sent to correlated to satisfaction. And what we actually found that customers who are sending to an average of at least 20 percent of their database every single month were actually the ones that were delighted. So it didn’t have anything to do with sending to your entire database. It was actually the consistent sending to your audience that was resulting in this high level of satisfaction.

NATHAN:  So when we’re talking about the subset of your entire list, sending to least 20 percent of your active contacts, how do you find that 20 percent? What are we getting at there?

PHIL: Well, one of the things that we noted is when we dove in to look at these organizations that are consistently sending, you had basically two types of organizations. You had organizations that were sending these big blast emails to their entire database or to a high percentage of their active contacts. And what actually seemed pretty consistent is these organizations that were sending out the blast emails, were actually not very good at the other fundamentals. So they weren’t tracking website visitors, they weren’t integrating forms, and this kind of correlates to this idea of the fundamental three. These are three pillars of success. So just sending a lot of email didn’t make you happier as an Act-On customer. In fact in those cases, and many of your listeners will probably resonate with this statement, in the cases where people are just using a lot of email and that’s it in Act-On, they start to feel disenchanted, like what do I have marketing automation for if I’m just blasting emails like I would with one of the junior email providers.

The customers who were consistently sending, that is we saw their 20 percent this month, 30 percent next month, maybe 15 percent one month, what they were actually doing was far more intelligent sends. And if you think about marketing automation, what it’s intended to be, it’s not intended to be a batch and blast tool. Marketing automation is intended to identify different segments of your audience and automatically begin nurturing these people as they reach certain milestones. And that’s where we see that this consistent sending to the smaller subset of the audience is actually indicative that the customer has figured out how to begin truly automating marketing efforts.

Check out our additional related content:

The Ultimate Lead Management Playbook

NATHAN:  When we’re talking about segmentation, I think a lot of people think about demographic sort of information, or titles, sending it to the C level people, or sending it to marketing directors, or whatever it might be. What are the different ways that you can segment a list in a nurture campaign?

PHIL: I think that’s a really great question. And if you think about the type of demographic segmentation that you’ve just defined, those are actually really conducive to like the 1950s era advertising tactics. And in many ways that’s how a lot of marketers are using email today, is we have simply replaced spam to the mailbox with spam to the inbox. In fact there’s an interesting stat that 68 percent of B2B organizations have not identified their lead funnel. They literally don’t have names for the stages of progression somebody will go through in becoming a customer. And so it’s no surprise that a corresponding statistic is that 65 percent of B2B marketers haven’t implemented lead nurturing processes.

And the reason is, is because marketers are still thinking in demographic segmentation. So those customers that are really successful, what they’re doing is they’re defining, okay, this is my unengaged audience, this is my engaged nurture audience, these are my marketing qualified leads, and that way they can truly begin building relatively simple automation that targets each of those audiences based on behavioral criteria.