If you’re only using automated email campaigns to nurture your B2B customers, you may have a serious case of tunnel vision.
Our expectations have changed. Thanks to Netflix, Pandora and other streaming services, along with the rise of ad blockers and more advances spam filters, we no longer expect digital marketing. We can resist it, and we do. You probably use an ad blocker.
Break out of the digital-only trap and meet your customers on other channels. Here, we’ll get at the heart of what makes a good multi-channel nurture campaign by sharing our top four tips.
Multichannel Nurture Tip #1: Categorize Your Audiences
Today’s marketing technology makes it easy to split up your potential customers into a variety of categories — and this is the most important thing you can do right now to ensure you’re sending the right messaging to the right people in your nurture campaign. After all, your campaign is only as good as its content, and without a clear picture of who you’re speaking to, even the best efforts will fall flat.
You can split prospects up in countless ways, but here are a few easy ways to get started with categorizing:
- By stage in your sales funnel — top, middle, or bottom.
- By role at their organization — CTO, CFO, or CEO, for example.
- By interests, based on which pages of your site they spend the most time on — pricing, services, products, or specific blog categories.
- By industry — if you serve multiple industries, separating your audience out by industry can help you hone your messaging to their unique concerns.
Multichannel Nurture Tip #2: Get Smart with Retargeting
Both Google display ads and social media retargeting have been extremely effective for B2B marketers when done right, yet retargeting is significantly underused. As you know, B2B customers usually need much more time to make a buying decision than B2C customers, which means they require repeated interactions with your brand.
Imagine the difference: rather than another email popping into your prospect’s inbox while they’re trying to get work done, your display ad shows up when they’re already reading about solutions similar to yours online. In the second example, your prospect is warm, and actively thinking about your solution. In the first instance, they’re probably busy responding to emails and less interested in what you have to say.
When you’re setting up your retargeting ads, select a frequency cap to make sure you’re not bombarding your prospects with the same message over and over. Remember: the goal isn’t to blast them with a firehose, but to reach across different channels so prospects can interact with your brand in varied ways.
Multi-Channel Nurture Tip #3: Rethink Social Outreach
There’s been some buzz that branded content on social media is dead, but that’s not exactly the case. While it’s true that posting organic content isn’t an outreach strategy, organic content absolutely has a valuable place in any customer nurture program. Each platform is different, but consider the following:
- Customers conduct searches for brands on social channels, not just on search engines. If a customer searches for you on LinkedIn, what will they see? Will they find helpful and relevant downloads and links to your blog, or will they find nothing?
- Organic social content is a great way to test an ad before investing in paid advertising. Before you run your retargeting campaigns, why not test out your lead magnets or other ad content with your organic following? If it’s a dud, you can correct it and potentially save thousands of dollars in ad spend.
- Use your social channels as a breeding ground for ideas. Your most loyal customers are likely to be the ones following you on social media, so do what social’s made for and strike up some conversations! You’ll learn all about your customers’ objections and pain points by talking to them directly.
Multichannel Nurture Tip #4: Send Tactile Marketing
In a world where many things happen instantly, good old-fashioned snail mail can make a far bigger impression than digital media. Here are a few examples of easy ways to nurture customers with direct mail:
- A customer ignores five emails in a row, so you send something fun in the mail — like a video card.
- Your number one fan is super-responsive to your email campaigns, so you send them a personalized gift (at PFL, we send our best customers an ice-cream making kit. Who doesn’t love ice cream?)
- You send a printed version of your top digital content since a full-color eBook in the mail is much harder to ignore than an email attachment.
While email nurture campaigns often reign supreme in the B2B marketing world, they’re only one piece of the puzzle — and they’re limited to only the prospects you already know. Pick one new channel where your customers are most likely to hang out and plan a focused customer nurture campaign using that channel’s best practices. Your prospects will appreciate the variety, and your business will appreciate the new sales coming through.