Even with all of the new communication outlets available to marketers, email remains one of the best ways for small businesses to reach and engage their audience. Email allows you to communicate with a target audience through a reliable channel. But how can you generate new leads for your business through email? Below, we’ll discuss why you need email lead generation and go over the basics for setting up your campaigns effectively.
Then, we’ll provide some specific and actionable tips you can use to get started generating more leads and maximizing conversions with your email marketing.
Why Email Lead Generation is Important
Even with all the new technologies and channels the modern marketer has at their disposal, email marketing remains one of the most effective. In fact, Experian shows that for every $1 a company invests in email marketing, they will make about $44. This is an impressive ROI for small businesses that want to get the most out of their digital marketing tactics.
One of the reasons why email marketing remains so effective is that consumers are comfortable with this marketing channel. In fact, many actually enjoy getting email communications from their favorite brands. According to Marketing Sherpa, 72% of U.S. adults prefer to communicate with brands through email as opposed to other marketing channels.
Email marketing campaigns are one of the best lead generation tactics for small businesses.
Every small business wants to generate more quality leads. If this is a focus for your business, email lead generation will play a vital role in your digital marketing strategy. To get the most out of your email marketing, you’ll need to start with understanding the basics of email lead generation and focus on tactics that are proven to maximize conversions over time.
Email Lead Generation: The Basics
Before we get into specific tactics that you can use to improve your email lead generation, let’s cover the basics. There are a few different fundamentals and best practices that you’ll need to familiarize yourself with before you start creating email marketing campaigns.
Email List Segmentation
Email list segmentation is the process of dividing your email subscriber list into smaller segments. These segments can be based on a number of different criteria that describe your audience. For instance, you can break your list into groups of people based on demographics or create different lists for various buying behaviors.
Sending targeted content to segmented lists drives higher ROI than general email campaigns.
List segmentation is an important tactic to help you personalize your email marketing. The more specific the messaging, content, and offers, the more effective your email campaigns will be. By segmenting your lists into similar groups of subscribers, you can provide more targeted content in your emails to improve relevancy. Ultimately, this will boost open, click-through, and conversion rates.
Email Automation and Drip Campaigns
Email automation takes some of the guesswork out of sending your email marketing messages. Rather than manually sending an email every time a subscriber takes an action, you can use email marketing automation software to send the right message to the right subscriber at the right time.
For example, let’s say that you want to send an email to site visitors that have filled out a landing page form for a free checklist. Rather than logging onto your computer to send the offer out to the lead manually, you can use automation software to automatically send the lead an email with the checklist content offer as soon as they fill out the landing page information.
Email marketing automation helps you send the right message to the right person at the right time.
Email automation can also be used to nurture leads over time. Email drip campaigns are automated email campaigns that are sent to a lead on a schedule. By sending targeted pieces of content to leads over time, you can work to guide them through the sales funnel and move them closer to conversion.
Let’s take the example we used before of the lead that has filled out the landing page form to download a free checklist. Your first email may come to the lead immediately, delivering the promised content offer. Then, a couple of days later, you may send another piece of helpful content like a blog post or e-book. Then, a few days after that, you may engage the lead again and ask them to sign up for a free consultation.
Not only does email marketing automation save you time, but it helps ensure that you’re getting the right content and messaging to leads quickly and consistently. For more information about how automation can help you improve lead nurturing, check out our email marketing automation services.
Email Marketing and Lead Scoring
Before we dive into how lead scoring can work with email marketing automation, let’s answer the question – what is lead scoring? Lead scoring is a process that involves assigning scores to leads based on certain characteristics and actions they take. Scoring your leads is the best way to prioritize which individuals you need to engage with.
With email lead scoring, each of your leads is given a score based on certain actions they take that identify them as qualified to buy your products.
You can use lead scoring to determine which leads might be right for different types of email marketing campaigns. For example, if you want to send out an email campaign focusing on a particular product or service you offer, you can use lead scoring to determine which leads might be most qualified or ready to buy this product or service.
Using lead scoring as part of your email lead generation campaign will help you improve click-through and close rates. This is because you are sending targeted messages to the leads who are most likely to be interested in the email content you are sending. Ultimately, this will not only improve conversions but also decrease the timeline of your buying cycle.
3 Ways to Generate More Leads and Maximize Conversions
Now you know the basics of how email lead generation works and what you need to do to get started. But which tactics will help you generate the most qualified leads? And which tactics will result in higher conversions? Below, we’ll dive into our top tips for generating more leads and maximizing conversions with your email marketing:
1. Use email newsletters to deliver consistent, relevant content.
If you want consumers to subscribe to your email marketing list, you need to provide some type of value. You see, valuable content is one of the most important factors of an effective email marketing. If your brand doesn’t have anything valuable to offer to users, they wouldn’t even consider joining your email list. And even if they do sign up, they will definitely hit that unsubscribe link if they think your emails are all out just to get sales from them. Or worse, they will unsubscribe if your next email took long enough that they forgot why they signed up in the first place. So, what can you regularly send to your subscribers that they will find useful?
Email newsletters are a great way to share quality, relevant content with your audience. E-newsletters allow you to deliver unique content that your leads will find valuable straight to their inbox.
Not only do email newsletters help you stay top of mind with your prospects and customers, but they can also help you encourage conversions. By providing valuable and relevant content for your customers and prospects, you are working to build stronger relationships, which will eventually lead to conversions and repeat sales.
Here’s an example of an email newsletter that provides valuable content for subscribers.
Don’t believe in the power of email newsletters? Consider this. One of our ecommerce clients was able to grow their sales by over $30,000 as the result of less than 5 email newsletters that our team created and sent. That’s some serious return on investment!
It’s important to remember that creating quality content for a regular e-newsletter takes time and resources. Many small businesses may find it challenging to gather or create the right types of quality content needed to engage their subscribers. That’s where an email newsletter service comes in handy.
If you don’t have the time to create your own email newsletter, you can work with an email marketing agency like LYFE Marketing to create one for you. Hiring our agency helps you save time and resources while still driving click-throughs for your business. For more information, check out our email newsletter service.
2. Create gated content.
Another way to boost email lead generation for better conversions is to create gated content offers. A gated content offer is a piece of content that you provide for the lead in exchange for their contact information. This piece of content can be anything from a checklist or template to an eBook or video.
The first thing that you’ll need to determine is what type of content you plan to provide as part of your gated offer. The content needs to be relevant and useful while providing enough value that the lead will want to hand over their contact information. Develop gated content that helps your leads understand their greatest challenges. And be sure to provide actionable advice and researched insight that will help them take the next step in the sales cycle.
After you have decided what type of content you are going to use and have created the content offer, it’s time to determine how you will collect lead information and deliver the content. The most effective way to collect lead information is through a landing page form. The landing page should clearly state what value the content will provide the lead.
The landing page form should only ask for the most necessary information. Most leads don’t want to fill out a long list of form fields, so keep it simple. For most purposes, the lead’s name and email address is often enough information to get them added to your customer relationship management (CRM) system.
Which form would you rather complete?
Once you have the lead’s information, you will need to deliver the promised content offer as soon as possible. The best way to do this is often as an email download. You can use email automation to send the lead a welcome email with their downloadable content as soon as they finish filling out the lead form.
Remember, not every piece of content is ideal for a gated content offer. If you want leads to give up their contact information, you need to make it worthwhile. When developing your content marketing strategy, consider which pieces of content might make good gated content offers and use these to boost your email lead generation efforts.
3. Send triggered emails based on behaviors.
We talked a little bit about triggered email campaigns earlier when we covered email lead generation best practices. But it’s worth bringing up here because triggered email campaigns are one of the best ways to improve email marketing conversion rates. Sending targeted email content when a lead takes a specific action helps ensure that you’re getting the right message to the right person at the right time.
Here are just a few actions that you might use as a starting point for triggered email content:
- A new subscriber signs up – You should automatically send an email to leads when they first sign up to receive your emails. You may also want to send additional messages in the weeks following to keep them engage.
- A consumer abandons their shopping cart – If a consumer adds items to their online shopping cart without finalizing their purchase, you should send them an email to remind them of what they left behind. To increase conversions, make it easy for them to check out.
- A lead downloads a content offer – When a lead downloads a content offer or fills out a landing page form to download a content offer, you should automatically send them an email thanking them for their download. You may even want to send later messages providing additional content that’s valuable and relevant.
- A lead fills out the contact form – When a lead fills out a contact form on your site, this means that they are serious about purchasing your products or services. You should automatically send them a message after they fill out the contact form to let them know that you will be reaching out to them shortly.
These are just a few of the actions that you might use to trigger specific email campaigns. Remember, with email marketing automation, you’re able to automatically send these messages when the lead takes a specific action.
Similarly, you can use marketing automation software to send drip campaigns that slowly deliver targeted content to your leads over time. This helps ensure that they are getting the information they need to move further down the sales funnel.
Email marketing is a powerful channel for generating new leads and engaging your target audience. However, if you want to get a return on investment, you’ll need to use the specific email lead generation tactics that are proven to maximize conversions over time. Use the tips above as a starting point for creating a winning email marketing campaign that will resonate with your target audience.
Having trouble with your email marketing? Working with an experienced email marketing agency can help you save time and money while speeding up your sales cycle. Learn more about our email marketing services. Or contact us today to find out how we can help you drive more leads for your business.