Grow Your Customer Base With 5 Simple Lead Nurturing Tips

05 Apr 2017 4 min read

As the savvy owner of an ecommerce store, you know it’s important to build your email marketing list because email marketing offers a return of about $38 for every dollar invested. You’ve probably already spent some time building that list. But how exactly do you turn those email subscribers into customers?

We call this process lead nurturing, and if you do it effectively, it will generate 50% more sales-ready leads at a 33% lower cost. Lead nurturing starts the moment a potential customer gives you enough contact information for you to personalise your communication with them—and, in most instances, long before they’ve made a decision to buy your product. In many cases, they’ve given you their email address in exchange for something interesting or useful that you’ve offered them, like a free ebook or a discount voucher to use with their first purchase.

So now it’s up to you to nurture these leads and turn them into loyal customers, and we’ve got five tips to help you get started.

1. Welcome Your New Lead and Deliver on Your Promise

Don’t leave them hanging—send your lead a personalised welcome email as soon as possible after you’ve received their details. This email should confirm their subscription, set their expectations for future communication, and deliver the incentive you offered. You should also invite them to continue the conversation via email or social media. It’s easiest to automate these communications using email marketing software, which will also give you information about when the lead has opened your message and clicked through to your download link.

2. Don’t Rush to Close the Deal

Only about 10% of your inbound leads will be ready to buy straight away, and it takes an average of 10 touches to transition from lead to customer. So putting on the hard-sell straight away can be counterproductive. Instead, consider how you can inform and educate your customers about topics that loosely relate to your product offerings. For example, if you’re in the business of pet food and accessories, share some tips for new pet owners, advice on caring for aging pets, or a handy guide to choosing the best dog breed for your family. Shoppers are more likely to buy from brands they consider familiar, and this repeat exposure will keep you top-of-mind when they’re ready to make the leap, without scaring off those who need more gentle convincing.

3. Adapt your follow-up emails match your leads’ activity

Emails that are customised and relevant to your subscribers generate 18 times more revenue than simple broadcasts, so make use of your marketing software’s tracking to tailor your approach for each lead. For example, if your welcome email included a link to an ebook, you could follow up by sending

  • a tip sheet or checklist to leads who downloaded your ebook, to help them get started
  • a link to a video summary of your ebook’s key concepts to those who didn’t open your link.

And be careful to avoid using phrases like, “We noticed you haven’t downloaded our ebook yet.” You’re trying to gain your lead’s trust, so it’s best not to sound like a creepy stalker!

4. Sell Strategically

Your CRM or email marketing software should track your leads in a way that make it easy to see when a lead starts showing more interest in your brand. Then it’s your turn to start selling, by spelling out what makes your products superior to others on the market, and backing it up with testimonials from your happy customers. Close with an incentive to make them buy sooner rather than later, like a limited-time promotional offer.

5. After Lead Nurturing, Move On to Customer Nurturing

Congratulations—you’ve nurtured your lead all the way to their first purchase, and now they’re officially a customer! But your job doesn’t stop here. It’s time to move your customer from your “leads” marketing segment to your “customers” segment, and shift your focus to nurturing your first-time buyer into a loyal customer. Start by sending your customers useful information to help them get the most out of their purchase, and use the email as an opportunity to suggest other products they may like. You can even throw in another incentive to sweeten the deal.

If you’ve put in the effort to build your email marketing list, it’s time to get your list working for you. Neto is a leading ecommerce platform designed to help your business grow across multiple channels. It offers a wide range of add-on integrations to digital marketing platforms, and inbuilt analytics to help you track your campaign success. Still looking for ways to build your subscriber list? Don’t panic—check out our tips to help you get started with email marketing for your online store.