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Here’s something to think about:  the goal of your marketing and sales teams isn’t to make sales—it’s to create loyal customers (“brand advocates,” as some would have it).  Why?  Because if yours is like most businesses, about 80% of your sales come from just 20% of your customers (the so-called “80/20 rule“)—your best customers, the ones who trust and believe in what you do, the products you sell, and the services you offer them.

This isn’t of course to say that an individual sale is a bad thing—rather, it means that every time a customer makes an initial purchase, it’s an opportunity to create a long-term relationship with that customer.  These are the customers who not only contribute the bulk of your sales revenues, but also tell their friends and family about you, and, if you take the time to effectively nurture this new relationship, multiply sales exponentially.  As Marketing Insider Group puts it:

“What one person says about your brand, whether through online reviews, social media or even while having coffee with a friend, has the ability to convert like nothing else. It is the customers who are more than satisfied and who are motivated to share their positive experience with your brand who become your biggest fans – and your greatest asset.”

How to Turn First Sales into Loyal Customers

The question, of course, is what strategies you need to put in place to ensure that every first sale becomes an opportunity to create loyal customers.  Every business is different, but some strategies will work for almost all, including the following 5:

  1. Welcome them with open arms:  if you bought a product online—and nothing happened—you’d probably think something like “wow, talk about ingratitude.”  If, on the other hand, you received a thank you email within 5 minutes, one that welcomed you to the business, recommended other, similar products and promised to be there for you whenever you experienced a problem, you’d be more likely to want to buy more products. This is the mindset you want to take on for your first sale.
  2. Automate your communications:  if your marketing is successful, your business is going to grow.  That’s a good thing, but it will make it more difficult to provide the personalized service which has become a hallmark of your company.  To effectively nurture new customers, you need a powerful automated crm tool.  This will ensure your ability to respond in real time when new customers take important actions, like making a purchase or downloading content.
  3. Offer rewards and incentives:  one of the best ways to nurture your new relationships and show your gratitude is to give tangible evidence that you consider these customers important.  And one of the best ways to do that is by offering them rewards and incentives (like discounts) based on what and how much they buy.  You can do this using a tiered approach in which the extent of the rewards you offer is aligned with how much new customers spend.
  4. Get feedback:  if you want to know what kinds of service your customers care about the most, ask them.  Maybe it’s customer discounts, or perhaps it’s free shipping.  The point is, it’s always better to have reliable data than to guess.  If you want to know how to serve your customers more effectively, conduct a customer survey—and make sure you get the help you need to construct it and analyze the results for your first sale.
  5. Ask for their help:  if your customers like the service you provide, they might be willing to help you spread the word about that outstanding service—but sometimes you need to ask for their help.  Ask your new customers if they’re satisfied with the service you provide, and (assuming they are) if they’re willing to provide a customer review or referral for you.  You can sweeten the pot by giving them incentives—like offering a special discount for every new customer they refer to your business.

Conclusion

Customer loyalty—the kind that creates new sales opportunities for your business—doesn’t happen by itself.  You need to work smart to obtain it even past your first sale. Take the time to learn what your customers care about most, and then deliver those services.  When they do something nice for you (like adding to your revenues), show your gratitude by doing something nice for them.  It’s time and effort well worth the investment.

The post 5 Smart Strategies to Make Sure Your First Sale Isn’t Your Last appeared first on SalesNexus.

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Lead nurturing is an important part of the sales and marketing process. When done properly, lead nurturing can help your company send the right content like tailored marketing messages to leads at the right time based on their individual preferences and level of engagement. Before the internet and CRM tools, it was a full time job to nurture a lead. Unfortunately, lead nurturing requires a substantial amount time and effort since it’s so detailed and nuanced.

That’s why it’s important to leverage software to automate the process. In fact, we recently created a video showing why our software provides a powerful and effective solution for companies who need lead nurturing.

Automate Any Process for Your Entire Team - YouTube

Still not convinced? Here are several reasons why you should automate lead nurturing.

Reasons Why You Should Use Automated Lead Nurturing 

1. Automated Lead Nurturing Can Save You Time

Is your sales team stressed out trying to keep track of all the business cards they collected at networking events? Or maybe they are manually scheduling follow up calls to each contact? Automated lead nurturing can help them save valuable time. Just upload their contact information and sort the leads into different marketing campaigns and hit save. The leads will receive automated messages based on how the marketing campaign is structured. This simple tool can prevent your sales and marketing team from wasting valuable time chasing leads who aren’t interested in your products and services. It will also give them the freedom to focus on other important tasks.

2. Automated Lead Nurturing Can Improve Your Conversion Rate

With SalesNexus, you can instantly receive a notification when a lead engages with your content. Since you can get real time information when they click on a link or visit your company’s website, you can learn more about which topics or services interest them and when. This type of insight into their behavior from automated lead nurturing can help improve your conversion rate and increase the overall ROI (return on investment) of your company’s marketing and sales campaigns by 20%.

3. Automate Lead Nurturing and it Can Help Make Sure that You Never Forget a Lead

Are you worried that a hot lead might slip through the cracks? Luckily you’ll never have to stress about losing a lead ever again when you use our software. After you configure the marketing campaign, you can just upload the lead’s information into our system.

4. Automated Lead Nurturing Can Provide More Data When Paired with a CRM

Another reason why you should consider using automated lead nurturing is that it can provide powerful data when combined with your CRM (Customer Relationship Management). The analytical data gathered from the lead nurturing tool can dramatically improve your company’s sales and marketing process. Employees can look at the lead’s previous actions and history and customize their conversations and emails according to their specific needs. Ultimately, when you automate lead nurturing, you can help your company create more effective and efficient marketing campaigns.

If your company hasn’t started automating the lead nurturing process, there’s a good chance that your sales team is wasting time on leads that are not interested in making a purchase. Automated lead nurturing can help push your leads through the company’s sales funnel and increase your close rate.

For more information about our services, please contact us today and call (800) 862-0134. Our software allows you to automate and manage responses to leads, while also making it easy to nurture and follow up with them. You can also try our software out during a free 30-day trial. SalesNexus makes it easy for you to grow your business Our CRM, Marketing Automation and Lead Generation tools.

The post 4 Reasons Why You Should Automate Lead Nurturing appeared first on SalesNexus.

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You’ve ordered the new software and have given your IT people the orders to prepare for the implementation of the new CRM system, so everything is ready – right?

Maybe not…

CRM is Not Designed for DIY

It isn’t that CRM software isn’t worthwhile or that establishing an effective CRM system won’t pay dividends, it will. A recent Forbes article said this…

“Since customer loyalty and revenue are both qualities that affect a company’s revenue, CRM is a management strategy that results in increased profits for a business.”

The problem isn’t the software, the system or the theology of customer relationship management.  The problem will inevitably be somewhere in between the setup and the implementation of the software and the system.

The success and effectiveness of any CRM system is greatly dependent on its implementation. There are several reasons behind this and many common misnomers about using CRM software. Unfortunately, a do it yourself CRM system is a bit more involved than plug and play.

These are a few of the primary reasons why do it yourself CRM setup and implementation fail and the mistakes companies make.

Proper CRM Tailoring

Some companies discover that the busyness of their day to day operations prevent them from having the time to properly tailor their CRM software. Others may simply not understand the importance of tailoring these systems to fit into their unique business processes while some might just not have the technical or marketing expertise to know how or where to begin.

Failure to Simplify

It isn’t uncommon for many business owners to hold their companies close to their chest, these are after all, their babies. That isn’t a bad thing, except it can make it difficult to be objective about their business. When implementing CRM software, it is necessary to simplify the nuanced business processes into more basic easy to follow steps within the CRM system.

The aforementioned Forbes article later said this about CRM systems, “…CRM software allows businesses to optimize their customer interactions. By simplifying and streamlining many of the more complex customer interaction processes, CRM increases customer satisfaction.”

Actualizing the Plan

While the success of any plan or new system is considerably impacted by the staff or team involved, it is essential to the success of every CRM system. In order for a CRM system to be optimized and effective, the salespeople must “buy in” and commit to adopting the new system.

No other individuals will benefit more from great CRM software than the members of your sales team. That will require that they use it, however, which may require some planning and follow up.

“… the CRM system helps in complementing and supplementing the physical customer relationship effort and by automating customer touch points; it ensures that there are few errors or mistakes committed during the customer relationship management process.”

If your salespeople use the system, the system will work. Your team will have to invest more time and energy and make more of a commitment to make your CRM software more than a high-end appointment book! Ensuring your team is taking full advantage of the system will provide them with customer insights, make them more knowledgeable and equate to better customer relationships.

The Implementation Solution

While companies can struggle with a do it yourself CRM setup and implementation, there are smart and reliable solutions. The setup and implementation were never intended or designed to be a do it yourself CRM type of process.  This isn’t a band-aid fix for your lacking revenue or a new idea to improve the overall performance of your business. This is a change in how companies do business, namely using technology to deliver insights and a decisive competitive advantage.

The solution, now that you’ve found the right software and have a great team behind you, is to reach out for professional guidance and support. The right CRM software will enable that great team to target, connect and convert and the best help will ensure that your CRM system empowers them to do just that.

The post A Recipe for Disaster: Do It Yourself CRM Set Up appeared first on SalesNexus.

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Yes, it really can AND the great news is that it’s easy!  Read on for a simple tip you can implement today!

Are sales people cutting profits by using price discounts to win business?

When sales people fail to differentiate themselves or their products from competitors, there’s no alternative available to win business.  Simple CRM tricks can help sales people deepen relationships with customers.

In our recent webinar, “Increase Margins with Sales Habits that Last”, Steve Yastrow suggested a simple approach to building relationships of trust that separate your brand from the competition.

Yastrow’s suggestion?  So simple! Salespeople can use the CRM to ensure they ask the questions that will lead to engaging conversations with the customer.

Sure, I can review notes from prior conversations in my CRM before my next meeting with a client.  Steve’s suggestion though is that salespeople are trained to walk in the room full of things they plan to say.  They’ve rehearsed their presentation zillions of times. They’re ready to walk the customer through the presentation….

Of course, what really builds relationships are authentic conversations.  And only asking probing questions break through the customer’s wall of resistance and protection and begin authentic conversations.

So, the solution is so simple…

Just put the questions that are most important to ask in the CRM as fields so it’s easy to remember what to ask, what has already been asked and answered and what has yet to be addressed.

Of course, structuring the CRM in this way also allows management to measure the effectiveness of salespeople at asking these questions and provide sales coaching and training where it’s most needed.

So, the only question left is what questions are most important for your sales team to ask?

Watch the webinar for Steve’s suggestions about how to develop these questions.  Or take the online “Ditch the Pitch” course to learn to find these questions and leverage them in building relationships.

Then just put them on the screen in our CRM for salespeople to see and use easily like the screen shot here.

CRM grows profits by helping salespeople focus on asking the questions that build relationships and set you apart from the competition.

The post CRM Grows Profits by Building Deeper Relationships appeared first on SalesNexus.

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In many businesses, the roles of marketing and sales teams are rigidly defined—and quite limited.  Marketers in these businesses have the job of generating and nurturing leads, these businesses contend; salespeople run with those leads, hoping in many instances that they’re sales-ready, and that they’ll respond to requests for meetings and sales pitches.

The problem with this model is that members of the sales team are often in a better position (because they’re on the front lines) to gauge when, and for what reason, a prospect needs to be communicated with.  For example, while the marketing team probably won’t know that a prospect called the salesperson that morning trying to gather some additional information about products or services, the salesperson does.  Should that salesperson based on defined roles ignore the request, or simply push it back to the marketing team—or should he respond, quickly with the information the prospect is asking for?

Marketers Lay the Foundation—But Salespeople Carry on the Conversations

Your marketing and sales team are both critical to your success, but their work needs to be effectively integrated, and both marketers and salespeople need to be fully empowered.  While marketers are adept at generating and nurturing new leads using best practice inbound strategies—and at determining which leads are most sales-ready—salespeople are the ones who actually talk to those leads, set up sales appointments and provide relevant information about products and services based on customer requests.

That means your sales team needs to leverage the most effective communications strategies, ensuring both efficiency and effectiveness.  Among the best ways for salespeople to communicate with prospects is with a sound, organized email marketing strategy, one which will boost response rates and drives sales.

That said, here are 4 smart email marketing strategies your salespeople should use to increase response rates and sales:

1.  Keep It Short, Simple and Focused

Whether you’re trying to set up a meeting, talk about product features or close a sale, get right to the point and include only the information you need to say what you need to say—generally that means your emails should be no more than 5 or 6 sentences.  Avoid long, confusing sentences, obscure concepts and insider jargon, as these tend to turn prospects off.  Finally, focus on one concept, and make clear what action (one action, not many) you want the prospect to take, like taking a call or accepting an appointment.

2.  Focus on Your Prospect’s Business and Achievements

You might be tempted to go overboard with compliments to boost your prospect’s ego—this is generally a mistake, as most prospects will see through such a transparent ploy.  Instead, talk about something specific your prospect has achieved for his business, like a new product launch or a successful conference, to get the conversation going (you can find a wealth of information on his LinkedIn profile).

You might, for example, say, “I caught your presentation at the recent marketing automation conference—what are your thoughts about integrating automation with CRM?”  This demonstrates that you know (and care about) your prospect’s business and respect his achievements within the company, both of which will make him more willing to speak with you.

3.  Humanize Your Email Marketing with Compelling Visuals

Incorporating visuals—like pictures, memes and engaging video content—can be extremely effective in reinforcing your message, grabbing your prospect’s attention and humanizing you.  The more you know about the prospect (typically from researching what’s in his social media posts), the more relevant and effective your visuals will be.  Try to make sure whatever visual you use works seamlessly with your messaging and call to action.

4.  Don’t Forget Testing and Measurement

You can’t improve your results if you don’t test and measure.  This could include A/B testing of email subject lines, content and calls to action, for example.  You should also use sound analytics data to determine what’s working and what isn’t, particularly data related to open and response rates for given market segments.  Finally, knowing is one thing—acting is another.  You need to use the market intelligence you gather to double down on what’s working and eliminate what isn’t.

Conclusion

As consumers have an increasingly large number of options, selling has become more competitive than ever.  That means salespeople need to use every tool in their arsenal to succeed.  For many, the difference between success and failure is a smart email marketing strategy, one which will increase response rates and drive sales.

To learn more about the ways our CRM, marketing automation and lead generation services can help you drive sales and grow your business, contact us today.

The post 4 Key Benefits of Email Marketing for Salespeople appeared first on SalesNexus.

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Do you know how many people use email? You probably don’t have an exact number but you know the answer is, everyone, right? The question isn’t why you should be addressing (literally!) email marketing but if you are – and if not, why not?

Email Marketing for Sales Facts

Just to get the obvious out of the way, these are some rather eye-popping statistics from a recent story posted by SocialMediaToday. The story reported on an infographic released by EveryCloud (a hosted spam filter service) and they revealed the following:

  • 97% of businesses use email as a conversion tool.
  • 76% of subscribers purchase when engaging email marketing methods.
  • More than 205 billion emails are sent and received each day.
  • Consumers interact with nearly 11 different brands every day in the U.S.

So now the real question, how are you using you’re sales emails to engage customers, improve customer acquisitions and convert them…

Using Email Marketing Effectively

It is astonishing, how many times we find persistence right there with success, time and again. They are damn-near synonymous with each other and this applies to sales and marketing even more than most other arenas.

How many hours do your salespeople spend trying to start conversations? How about follow ups, sending new service or product information out and simply building those invaluable relationships? Email marketing campaigns for sales have come a long long way, evidenced by smart automation.

The need for mail will always be here, how we use that need will determine the success of our email marketing campaigns for sales, retention and conversions. Maybe more importantly than what an effective automated email campaign does, is what it doesn’t do…

Utilizing Your Company’s Greatest Resource

None of this is new information, yet so many businesses are still typing each individual email. There are still a few of us as well, who have their business card automatically attached to each email sent and think this is really automating! Most of us, however, are very well aware of the advances in AI, technology and automation. So we haven’t become fully automated because – why?

Maybe it is just a matter of getting started or even knowing where to begin. The good news is, the job isn’t as tasking as you might think and what you will realize most, is what automation doesn’t do! It won’t tie up your systems, it won’t require some extensive and expensive overhaul of your mainframe or require hours of training.

Most importantly, once your email marketing campaign is automated, it won’t tie up your company’s greatest resources – your salespeople. Your team will literally be able to spend less time mailing and more time selling, which is exactly what the best salespeople do.

Email Can’t do it All!

The truth is, regardless of how smart and “human” technology becomes, there will never be a replacement for a good salesperson. People sell, period. What technologies like automated email will do, is free those people to do what they do best.

The best technologies will even assist your sales team, provide email empowered appointment setting and scheduling and more, but it won’t shake your customer’s hand and greet them with your warm smile. We don’t improve our email system to make our email system better and maybe that’s why there are still some of us who haven’t fully automated. We improve and automate our email systems to make our make our people better.

How is your email marketing system making your team better? How are you using your email system to empower your people and increase sales? No, email can’t do it all – but it can help to make it all happen!

The post The Question Isn’t Why Your Sales Team Should be Email Marketing…but How? appeared first on SalesNexus.

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You’ve signed up for a fancy new cloud-based online CRM. This new system will help you manage sales like nobody’s business, keep up with every last lead, and boost your customer service. There’s just one problem. It hasn’t worked out that way.

Instead of the super-efficient system you imagined, your cloud is a mess. It’s hard to find anything in there. The information you’ve stored is no neater than an old Rolodex, but instead of sitting on your desk, it’s an invisible mess somewhere in the cloud.

The Problem with Cloud-Based Storage

Cloud-based storage sounds great in theory. You have just about unlimited storage without taking up any physical space. There’s just one problem. Digital tools aren’t a substitute for good organization.

There’s great potential for humans to organize their information more efficiently with digital tools. But potential doesn’t translate into reality unless we take action. People tend to get lazy when it comes to digital organization. But with the vast amount of information we can now store, digital organizational systems are vital.

How Do I Manage an Online CRM for Sales Teams?

Tools don’t make us more productive or organized. But using those tools as part of a larger system does. Your first step to a manageable CRM is to establish a system and get everyone on the same page.

Establish a Consistent System

The first requirement for CRM management is consistency. Everyone using the CRM should enter the same information on a contact. Establish what information is vital to have on each contact and what information should be added as your contact moves from lead to customer. Stick to a standard system and leave a brief field for additional notes if you must. Personalized notes can be useful, but not if they prevent users from quickly accessing essential information.

After you establish what information needs to go into your system, decide on the when. When should your sales team enter information into the system? Ideally, users should add or update contacts as soon as they obtain this information. Consider the structure of your sales department and whether this is feasible. If not, set a time frame and hold everyone to it.

The final key to consistency is to enforce your system. Expect the same of everyone on your team, including yourself.

Ensure Adequate Training

If your new system requires significant changes to current practices, consider holding a training. Here you can ensure that everyone is comfortable with the system and able to complete everything you ask of them.

During the first few months, you also need to provide support as needed. The amount of support will depend on your team’s familiarity with your online CRM and the complexity of your system. In almost any case, expect an adjustment period with occasional mistakes and a need for reminders. In time, your experienced team members will be able to support newer employees and keep your system consistent.

Segment Your Contacts (And Update as Needed)

Gone are the days when you threw every contact into an alphabetical Rolodex. An online CRM for sales teams gives them the capacity to organize contacts in several, more targeted ways. Segment your existing contacts first, grouping them by their placement in the buyer’s journey, purchasing habits, or other categories relevant to your business.

When a change occurs, have a team member immediately update the contact and add them to the appropriate category or categories. Your system should be clear and easy to update so users have no trouble making a quick change in your CRM.

Automate Whenever Possible

We’ve talked a lot about what you need to do to use an online CRM for sales teams effectively. But you don’t need to do all the work. A key component of modern CRMs is the ability to automate. Take full advantage of automation and both you and your team should come to appreciate, rather than resent your system.

CRMs can automate data entry by pulling information from sources like email and social media profiles. It can nurture leads by sending follow-up emails and grouping leads based on behavior. CRMs are also a powerful customer service supplement. You can set up your system to respond to a customer at any time of day and provide support suggestions based on keywords.

Using a cloud-based CRM shouldn’t be a hassle. Take steps to manage your contacts, stick with consistent standards, and automate mundane tasks and an online

3D rotary address book. Rotary card. 3d render

CRM can become everything you thought it would be.

The post Is Your Online CRM just a Rolodex in the Cloud? appeared first on SalesNexus.

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 can create a lot of interest and business regarding your products or services. However, for small to medium size businesses that don’t have professional design or copy writing talents on staff, crafting well designed and written emails can be a daunting task. Knowing where to insert your information, what to use as a subject line to grab attention, and whether a call-to-action (CTA) is important are all critical to a successful email marketing campaign. When planning and developing your ongoing email campaigns, here are some tips to keep in mind to make the task less daunting:

Keep it Simple

In email marketing, simplicity is key. When people open emails, they’re looking for a quick bit of information that explains why they should be interested in your products or services. Your emails don’t need to be flashy or complicated; just get straight to the point and capture the interest of your potential clients from the start.

A simple header with your company’s logo is great for catching an email readers’ attention, and it allows for continuity throughout ongoing email campaigns. Customers will know who you are if you include the same header in all your emails. Including icons that link to your company’s social media pages (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.) will blend your email campaign with the rest of your online presence, and create a seamless experience for customers.

Don’t go wild with colors; select a simple border or background that matches with the colors of your logo to keep a reader interested but not overwhelmed. Use images sparingly and only as necessary to complement the text of your email. Using too many images can make it difficult for readers to really see the point in your email campaign, and lots of images can easily turn into a jumbled and confusing mess when your email is opened.

Content

When determining the content for ongoing email campaigns, consult with your sales team to figure out the most frequently asked questions they receive. Prepare an email that answers each of these questions on its own, but that works with your other emails to create a coherent, consistent experience for readers and that builds interest in your company’s products and services. Explain who you are, what you do, why you do it, and how it works.

Use the email’s subject line to pose the question, then the body of the email to answer the question. Your email should be short, sweet, and straight to the point, but also interesting enough to catch your readers’ attention and draw them to your social media platforms, webpage, or sales information.

A well-placed CTA can work wonders in an email marketing campaign. After attracting the attention of your customers, invite them to learn more, to contact you, or to place an order, whichever best suits your company’s services. Don’t just tell them to visit your website; include a link to make your CTA seamless, simple, and accessible.

Timing

Developing an ongoing email marketing campaign requires some planning and preparation to determine the proper timing. A study by CoSchedule that compiled the findings of 10 studies claims that Tuesdays are the best day of the week to send out emails, followed by Thursday in campaigns that send two emails per week. Studies also showed high click-through rates on Saturdays and Sundays, but fewer businesses send emails over the weekend. Depending on your company’s services, consider sending your emails on the weekends to take advantage of lower traffic in your clients’ inboxes.

Finding the right time throughout the day to send emails is a little trickier. CoSchedule’s study found that 10 a.m. emails yield the best results, as people are already awake and starting on their days. 8 p.m. is also a good time to catch people before they go to bed, and 2 p.m. works well for attracting customers who may be slowing down in their work and looking for a distraction.

Of course, all businesses and their customers are different. Perhaps your audience is solely night-owls, who are more likely to open and click through an email sent at or after midnight. Maybe they’re more apt to interact with emails that arrive at 6 a.m., as they’re waking up. You’ll have to determine the best timing for your individual needs, but the studies above provide a great framework for starting out.

Analysis

When implementing ongoing email campaigns, analysis is important to determine what works and what doesn’t. If clients are not interested in your emails, continuing to send them becomes useless, and potentially annoying to customers. Keep track of the emails you send out and the success rates they create in drawing clients to your website and social media platforms. Figure out what design aspects, colors, and information yield the most results, and adjust your campaign to boost these results. Analysis will also allow you to determine the days and times that more clients interact with your emails, and allow you to adapt your timing accordingly.

With SalesNexus, planning, sending, and tracking your email marketing campaign has never been simpler. Automate, send mass emails, implement templates, and track success with analytics all in one easy-to-use interface. Contact us today for more information!

The post Simple Strategy for Creating Ongoing Email Campaigns appeared first on SalesNexus.

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Businesses place their trust in marketing professionals for whatever they see as the “sticking point” of their efforts to generate more sales. For instance, lead generation investments assume that there will be a commensurate lead generation ROI that is directly attributed to that expense on marketing.

However, one of the most important realizations that a business can make is that lead generation investments are not useful, and will have a harder time impacting revenue, without lead management. The two must go together in order to see impressive boosts in customer purchase rates.

Lead management best practices involve comprehensively constructing campaigns, contact emails, calls, and personalization to reach each and every lead, as well as standardizes times and reasons for cutting off leads that, statistically, aren’t likely to go anywhere.

This management technique is essential for a variety of reasons, but one of the biggest ones is that your leads are valuable, but without follow-up and management software, it is hard to know which leads contain the most value at any given moment. Lead management is what helps you keep all qualified leads on the hook for long enough to make a sale, but also cuts down on the amount of time your sales people spend alienating potential customers who simply aren’t in the market to buy at this time.

Many Leads, Fewer Customers

The truth is that generating leads is not a one-to-one ratio with customers gained; in every industry, some leads are lost along the way to a variety of forces. However, one of the most important realizations that a company can make is that some leads are lost naturally, without any potential to change them, and others are lost due to lack of management and effort.

Rather than assuming that lost leads were never truly potential customers, an advanced Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system will enable your sales team to track exactly why a given lead is not currently buying. If this lead should emerge again, the CRM tracks and helps sales associates choose the best next step for contact with them. For leads that aren’t currently purchasing, lead management requires well-conceived drip campaigns that keep leads “warm” to the idea of your product while they are slowly moved toward purchase. Certainly, these are not the “low hanging fruit” of the sales world, but the revenue generated from lead management best practices accounts for a large part of the profits from lead generation.

Raise your Return on Investment

According to industry sources, attentive lead management doubles the ROI on marketing investments, because leads can be saved, as in the case where your lead has expressed interest in the company but cannot consider purchase until, perhaps, a year from now. Lead management creates alerts that allow your sales team to reach back out at the appropriate moment to remind the customer of their interest. Customers are more intrigued by a company that remembers their needs, and they are also more likely to be able to seriously pursue a purchase in the time frame they specified themselves.

When you invest in lead generation, your CRM should help you make the most of immediate response tools to capture in-market shoppers, help you reach out to the medium-term shoppers who will appreciate a personalized touch and a subsequent follow-up, and also any long-term prospects who are likely to purchase after a drip campaign messaging sequence. Lead management best practices put each of these items in reach, rather than abandoning all medium and long term prospects and resulting in wasted investments.

Need help making lead generation and lead management ROI grow by combining these strategies in your marketing plan? SalesNexus combines a wealth of experience in modern digitally-driven marketing with the industry understanding that will help them tailor your marketing strategy to the needs of your customers. The All-in-One CRM combines marketing automation, lead generation investments, and drip campaign abilities. Contact us today!

The post Lead Generation Investments are Wasted without Lead Management appeared first on SalesNexus.

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Small businesses have to leverage every bit of technological know-how to remain competitive and attract leads. At the same time, small businesses have to remain true to their loyal customer base. For many small businesses, this means using email lists and automation to send out newsletters and updates to their customers. But maintaining newsletters for older customers can hinder business growth. Instead, look to  and not for customer maintenance. Here are a few ways to transform your current email marketing practices into lead nurturing emails.

1. Drop Your Newsletter

Small manufacturing businesses long avoided marketing their products. Instead, they relied on older customers and industry relationships. Now that overseas markets are cutting in on their business, manufacturers are turning to marketing techniques. For example, Stacey Bales and Sara Mortensen are owners of a multi-million dollar Illinois-based industrial plating company. They told Crain’s Chicago Business News that the company’s growth relies on its multi-channel marketing strategy. Social media and website channels bring in customers and young talent. On the email side, they maintain a newsletter solely for older clients.

As those clients fade away so will their newsletter. If your business relies on older clients then a newsletter makes sense, but only if analytics reveal that those emails are opened. Nurturing new leads via email requires personalized messaging and relevant information. Updates and ongoing news will not engage a new customer.

2. Break Down Silos

Congratulations, you’ve dropped your newsletter. Now you need personalized messaging and relevant information that will keep leads engaged. This information is acquired by breaking down silos. Marketers and sales reps need to exchange information. Understanding the questions that new customers frequently ask sales personnel helps marketers anticipate potential client needs. Lead nurturing emails feature those questions in the subject line, generating higher numbers of opens which translate to a greater number of conversions.

But relationship building isn’t always about answering questions. You can use email as a way to break down the barriers between consumer and marketer. Use your emails as an opportunity to increase the personalization of your follow-up email. If a lead is warm, then send an automated email that ends with a question. Marketing strategist Seth Price calls this form of questioning an “empathy trigger.” Ending an email with a question such as “Did you get the information you were looking for?” opens up the chance for an exchange. Should you receive a direct reply from the lead, then you can follow up with a manual email tailored specifically for this hot lead.

3. Link to Website Content

You’ve ditched the newsletter. You’ve broken silos and gained greater customer insights. Leads are opening your emails. Some leads have moved from warm to hot. Now you must entice them to your website where they can engage your product or service. Offering resources like check-lists or e-books are frequently used carrots. But before sending emails that link to resources, ensure that your website is deemed trustworthy and professional. The site should load quickly. Monitor site analytics to see where leads stay engaged and when they bounce. Update and improve content as necessary. And don’t send every lead to the same page. Target your leads and direct them to the product, service or resource that they will find most engaging.

Depending on your industry, you can provide a trial service period. Software-as-a-Service providers can use this opportunity to offer a basic trial membership with the plan of upselling to a premium package at a later date. Other strategies include providing a range of industry-relevant video, audio and even augmented reality content.

4. Discover Additional Channels

Emails are only a portion of a well-constructed lead nurturing emails campaign. Most marketers incorporate social media contacts, texts and calls to foster relationships. Other marketers have gone the traditional route and nurtured leads with snail mail and innovative packaging. One universal marketing technique is to follow up within three days of contact and then follow-up an additional dozen times over 100 days using a mix of channels. Messaging must be consistent across channels. Using your initial email as an anchor can help keep your message consistent even when the medium changes.

Last year, researchers found that lead nurturing practices can move up to 20 percent of leads from the “not ready to purchase” category to conversion. Starting with engaging, lead nurturing emails and moving to personalized messaging can help foster relationships and nurture leads.

The post Four Tips for Creating Successful Lead Nurturing Emails appeared first on SalesNexus.

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