Whether you call it the funnel, the pyramid, or the pipeline, the sales life-cycle is always a point of discussion. Who is sales-qualified? Who is marketing qualified? When does one know when to stop pursuing a lead? How does one start an effective campaign? How do we streamline the process?
We’ve had the same questions ourselves and decided to take matters into our own hands and take the guesswork out. Automating the process allows you to let leads nurture themselves, so you don’t have to. To do this, we built out a process in our marketing platform, 366 Degrees that we call “drip campaigns.” Drip campaigns are loosely defined as multi-step communications that aim to drive a certain action. The email follow ups that a lead or contact receives are dependent on how they interact with your content. That means that your team spends less time guessing, and more time selling.
Today, we will look at some effective use cases for the drip campaign functionality in 366 Degrees. From training and on-boarding to sales and marketing, successfully implementing a drip campaign will increase engagement and nurture leads more effectively. We’ll also look at how you can add leads ad hoc to drip campaigns to start the nurture cycle whenever, wherever.
The most common use case for an automated drip campaign is managing marketing communications. For your leads who are marketing qualified, but not yet ready to close, pushing quality content to their inbox keeps you at the top of mind. The goal is not to sell, so much as inform, and hopefully push the lead towards sales qualification.
Your marketing communications may take the form of a newsletter, with content designed to engage and interest your customers. By pushing blog posts, interesting videos, and relevant articles, you can engage your audience and begin to build credibility. Another use is the promotion and explanation of new products, events, webinars, and special deals. Though the client may not be ready to purchase, it is important to build awareness of your company’s efforts.
So how do we transition from marketing-qualified leads to sales-qualification? That’s easy--you let them do the work! Spending your time trying to push cold leads to the buying stage is a time waster. Often times, marketing qualified leads just signed up on a list and may not have any interest other than seeing your content. Historically it has been difficult to determine when someone may be ready to buy, but with 366 Degrees, it has never been easier.
366 tracks who is opening, interacting with, or ignoring your content. Not only does this give an understanding of which leads are warm, and which ones aren’t worth the time, but also allows you to automate communication accordingly. For instance, the leads who get in and consistently check out your stuff can be pushed additional communications based on their interactions. In the Campaign Workflow tool, you define the follow up that customers get, depending on whether they opened, clicked, or skipped your content. Not only are you not wasting time guessing, but you’re ensuring that only the people who are interested are receiving content, without touching a button.
So you’ve been sending marketing communications, and you see who is digging it. What next? Well, for those leads that are warming up, drop them into a pre-defined sales cadence. 366 Degrees allows you to build out multi-step processes that nurture leads automatically. You may start with an invitation email to a demo. From there, depending on whether they sign up or don’t open, follow up accordingly with a signup confirmation, or a re-invitation to those who missed it.
Each of those steps in the cadence can likewise be defined with interaction-dependent followups. Very quickly, your leads push THEMSELVES through the sales funnel into smaller segmented groups based on their interest. The only thing you had to do was define the content and the Workflow. Once you drop people into the campaign, their own actions define their follow ups, delivered automatically to their inbox. Push the leads through your sales email cadence step-by-step, without the constant monitoring and support.
Another relevant use case for drip campaigns is in an on-boarding process. When you get a new signup, drop them into a Workflow for training, and drive them through the process step-by-step. By pre-defining your training cadence, whether through video links, or helpful tips, you can effectively teach at your client’s own pace.
Additionally, by adding links with commonly asked questions, you can send automatic follow ups to answer those questions as they have them. Highly personalized training and on-boarding is now automatic!
Ad Hoc Campaigning from CRM Profiles
The most powerful part of 366 Degrees comes when it’s tied into a CRM platform, namely Salesforce or Nimble. We built 366 around these platforms and support push-back into lead profiles. Whenever a CRM contact clicks on an email sent through 366, that interaction is pushed into their Salesforce or Nimble profile in real time. This enriches lead profiles and helps gauge interest more effectively.
The real kicker, however, is the ability to ad hoc add a lead to a pre-existing drip campaign at any time. For instance, say you have automated campaign cadences defined for the above use cases: Sales, Marketing and on-boarding. Now, whenever you get a new lead or customer, they can be added into those campaigns right there in Nimble or Salesforce, from your phone or laptop. They start at the first step of the campaign and are pushed through as they interact (or don’t) with your content.
You can also use 366 Degrees to create a landing page, or embed an email collection tool on your site. Then, when a potential customer submits an email, they can begin the first step of a cadence built with a landing page as the starting point. As mentioned in all the above use cases, their own interactions dictate how they receive your further communications.
The sales funnel, pyramid, pipeline, or other buzzword of your choosing doesn’t have to be complicated. More importantly, it doesn’t have to mandate constant monitoring and follow up. Define your content, pick your leads, drop them right into a campaign, and let your workflows push them to action. No more guesswork, let the leads carve their own path. Don’t over complicate your sales process. Automate it, grab a cup of coffee, and watch your deals make themselves.