Deliver thoughtful email drip campaigns
In sales, nearly half of all the leads you identify may be qualified customers who are not yet ready to buy. For shoppers who prefer to purchase at their own pace, email drip campaigns deliver the information they need in a timely manner to help prospects reach a favourable purchasing decision.
Using drip marketing, you can complement the buyer’s journey. This allows you to handhold customers through each stage of their decision-making process before finally pitching your services.
According to marketing strategist Janelle Johnson, there are six types of drip campaigns:
- Top-of-mind drips to consistently engage prospects through each step of the sales cycle.
- Educational drips to inform potential customers about your offerings, trends that apply to their business, and how your product is the perfect solution for their needs.
- Re-engagement drips to connect with customers who stopped using your product or leads who went cold.
- Competitive drips to educate prospects who patronize your competitors about your unique advantages to ultimately convince them to choose your solutions instead.
- Promotional drips to incentivize leads to purchase during a limited-time promotion or using an exclusive discount.
- Training drips to seamlessly on-board new customers who want to learn ways to fully use your product or service and extract more value from your offerings.
Regularly optimize the content and timing of each email. Over time, you will be able to develop a solid schedule for when you will deliver messages to leads and what to include each time.
Help prospects excel at their jobs
To exhibit more traits that appeal to buyers, adopt a different role entirely. With prospects, act as a consultant instead of a sales representative, recommends sales manager Mark Stoddard. Work collaboratively with potential customers to identify what they actually need from the engagement. Stoddard says, “Once you learn to understand and diagnose the problems your prospects are facing, you can problem-solve together. The value of your product will be much more apparent to the prospect, sometimes without even a need for a pitch.”
Some brands accomplish this by leveraging content. Extend customers a helping hand by sharing tips or tools that empower them to be better at their jobs. Three categories of content to create are:
1. Awareness Content
This serves as an initial touchpoint with prospects. Examples include:
- Social media updates
- Articles and blog posts
- Brand website(s)
- Press mentions
- Company events
- Business presentations
- Visual assets including video, images, and infographics
2. Consideration Content
Share educational content that will help prospects become more familiar with what your product or service is capable of doing for clients. Examples include:
- Customer success stories
- Client case studies
- Customer testimonials
- Other forms of social proof
3. Decision Content
At this stage, customers are almost ready to make their final decision about whether to purchase or pass. Let your content do the talking for you; in-depth materials work best. Examples include:
- Competitor comparison charts
- Product demonstrations
- Price lists
- Sales proposals
Offer risk-free product trials
Some prospects need to see it to believe it. Propose a free trial that offers all the functionality the client needs to be completely swept off their feet. Make it either a time-sensitive offer in which the customer only has access to your product or service for a week or a month—just enough time to tinker around with your tools and extract enough value to make their purchasing decision a no-brainer. Alternatively, provide an access-limited account in which customers pay for premium features and upgrades. In this instance, select features would be free to users for a lifetime.
The Case for Free Trials
- Started in the 1800’s when Benjamin T. Bobbitt, a soap manufacturer, offered free soaps as a promotion
- In a study of 63 web-based companies and startups
- 93% offered a free trial period
- Trial periods range from 14-30 days
- 3 reasons to offer free trials
- Convert skeptical customers
- Defend against competitors and grow market share
- Outshine the competition
- What companies should expect
- Should be considered an investment
- Need to be well-planned
- Often make the sales cycle longer