Successful SMB Habit #4: Nurture Your Leads Carefully, Until the Time is Right

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Successful Marketing Habits of Today's SMBsIt’s been said that timing is everything. Although that might not be entirely true, based on the findings from our recent study with Forrester Consulting, when it comes to leads and lead nurturing, timing does have a strong impact on SMBs’ success.

This wasn’t the only insight revealed by the “Driving SMB Revenue in A Tough Economy” report. In fact, this study revealed a number of habits Top Performers – that is, SMBs exceeding their own revenue goals – have in common. Today’s blog post discusses:

Habit #4: Nurture your leads carefully, until the time is right.

This study indicates that more than 50% of Top Performers nurture leads for between one and three months. On the other hand, Bottom Performers tended to pass off leads outside of that time-frame.

Is there a “sweet spot” for passing off leads? Maybe so. However, it’s important to remember that just holding leads and waiting to pass them off until a few months have gone by, isn’t going to improve your results.

  • 43% of Bottom Performers reported passing off leads in less than one month
  • 25% of Bottom Performers reported holding onto leads for more than three months

So what does happen in that apparently critical time between one and three months? That’s where lead nurturing comes in…

Lead Nurturing

Lead nurturing is a type of drip marketing program. You nurture prospects using sequential communications, “dripping out” accumulating information over a period of time, until those prospects have developed enough interest to be handed off to sales.

With marketing automation, it’s pretty easy to set up multi-step lead nurturing programs that deliver a sequence of relevant and personalized communications at appropriate intervals. Lead nurturing can (and should!) leverage a wide variety of your best content, including:

  • Newsletters
  • Case studies
  • White papers
  • Reports
  • Event invitations

Nurturing your leads until their time is right will lead to better-qualified leads for sales…and more closed deals.

Up Next: Habit #5: Collect the metrics that matter.

Want to know what other habits Top Performers share? Download our free ebook, “7 Marketing Habits of Today’s Highly Successful SMBs” now!