A couple of years ago, we helped a client set up an electronic “nurture” (eNurture) campaign for lead generation—the first of its kind in this multinational corporation. We managed the content development and the editorial calendars for several campaigns. Afterward, we wrote a tutorial to help our client and his peers run their own eNurture campaigns with their existing staff.
Here is a sampling of what we included in our tutorial.
Serve your audience first
The goal of eNurturing isn’t closing the sale. Rather, it’s being of service to your audience. You help them by delivering useful information when they need it. Closing the sale is the natural result of doing this well.
Being of service means aligning your content to your customers’ journey. This customer journey—also known as the “buying cycle”—has five phases: Awareness, Interest, Consideration, Purchase Intent, and Loyalty. (We’ll talk more about this in a future blog.)
eNurture clarifies where prospects are in the customer journey, provides insight into their business needs and interests, and helps identify content that might be of value to them.
Offer relevant content on a regular basis
When valuable content and information are delivered regularly and consistently, prospects and customers increasingly trust and prefer your brand.
Strong content fuels the eNurture process. It helps your prospects move through the buying cycle. Effective eNurture content must:
- Address the audience’s business needs and interests
- Provide the right level of detail at the right time
- Help the audience solve a problem or answer questions
If content does not meet these criteria, the eNurture process can backfire and you could lose credibility with prospects.
Track campaign behavior
eNurture efforts can be empirically measured at all digital touch points and tied to success metrics for your campaign. For example, you can track email interactions, website behavior, and content downloads.
To the extent possible, all “trackable” elements of an eNurture campaign should be set up for tracking in your back-end systems. It should include:
- Email performance metrics (including delivery, opens, clicks, opt-outs, bounces)
- Email links to the offered content
- Landing page “visitor” behavior
- Responses to profiling questions
By incorporating analytics, you can optimize eNurture components and continually increase the program’s value and effectiveness.
In my next blog, I’ll discuss the customer journey in detail and how to make content relevant for each of these stages.