2016

4 Tips to Accelerating Your Pipeline Using Automated Messages

Pipeline management is crucial for any business of any size in any industry. From getting more customers onboard and closing sales deals faster, the biggest responsibility business responsibility with regards to bringing money in, falls to your sales pipeline. Having an organised sales funnel not only makes sales prospecting effective, it makes it efficient. And what better way to make your funnel more efficient than automating some of the tasks within it.

So if you are struggling for time but you want to accelerate your business growth, check out these 4 practical ways automated messages can boost your sales closing rate.

shutterstock_112905853#1 Use automated messages to welcome new leads

When someone signs up for your email list it’s important to roll out the email red carpet and welcome them. Whether they come through signing up for your email communications or when they fill in a form to download a price catalogue acknowledging their action is of utmost importance. In fact, statistics show that new subscribers are most engaged within the first 48 hours of signing up, so communicating to them in that window is bound to yield results.

Of course, following up manually with each new lead is both time-consuming and unnecessary. In fact, this is one of the first thing you should automate! An auto responder welcome email can help you reach out to your new subscribers within that crucial window of time and help you start off on a positive note.

One of the main drivers behind these emails is that they offer the lead immediate value. A welcome email sets the tone, instantly showing customers what kind of communication and information they’ll receive as a member of your email list. If possible, make sure that the email is sent from the email of the person who will be in touch with them or who would be assigned to their case/sale.

A sleek, well thought out welcome email shows subscribers your company can be counted on to deliver valuable content.

Need help coming up with the content for your welcome email? Check out this post.

#2 Identify the hottest leads

Not all leads are created equal and knowing which ones to nurture, which ones to nudge and which ones to call is half the battle. In order to accelerate your sales pipeline, you have to identify those leads that are a good fit for your product or service and ready to buy it.

Simply dumping all of them in one generic campaign without any consideration for their maturity and readiness to convert is not only a mistake but also a potentially fruitless endeavour. Lead scoring methods can help you find quality leads based on the prospects’ buying intention.

And of course the beauty of automation is that you don’t have to do this manually! By simply setting up some  contact ‘scoring rules’ you can focus on the other tasks you have and then be notified when a prospect has risen to the top of your list! To find out how Contact Scoring will help you convert more sales leads, check out this blog post.

#3 Send relevant content and offers to prospects

Nurturing leads through automated content aims to help prospects in their sales journey, by addressing pain points, educating them and assuring them that your business is right for them.

According to research, on average, 70% of the leads in any system are not yet ready to buy. This means that it is your job to nurture each and every one of those leads to convert them to paying customers. Failing to do so will result in the leads going cold and never converting.

Of course, nurturing leads is a complex process that cannot possibly be done manually. How would you know which stage the prospect is in, what content they need, how they react to it etc. In fact automating this part of your sales cycle is not only cost efficient but the most practical and effective way to make sure each lead is followed up accordingly and nurtured in the right way.

By communicating with prospects regularly and building a relationship with them via useful and relevant to them content, you will not only convert them quicker but also keep them for longer because they will feel attached to your business and your brand.

shutterstock_85417033#4 Use triggered campaigns to react to prospects actions

Triggered emails are automated marketing messages based on a prospect’s behaviour and actions. They are extremely powerful and valuable because they are inherently relevant and timely. Imagine that you receive an email inviting you to two events, one is for beginners and one is for advanced users. You are fairly new to the service so you click on the link for the beginner’s level event to see what it will entail. An hour later you receive a second email with much more detailed information on the beginner’s event you were interested in and a limited time offer for 50% off the event ticket if you book now. Would you book the event there and then? Chances are you will and this is precisely where the power of triggered campaigns lie. In the timely and relevant content that the prospects receives at a precise moment following a particular action.

The key to an effective email is relevance plus timeliness plus value, and the first two are baked into triggered emails. It’s up to the marketer to jump on that opportunity and align a valuable offer to those recipients.

Bottom line is, triggered emails are likely to get a higher response, engagement and deliver better results – and higher return on your effort – compared to the typical linear marketing automation campaign. Using triggered emails you will close sales faster by reacting to prospects actions. Your marketing efforts will be timed according to the lead’s schedule rather than you own.

These are the 3 most valuable and quick ways to accelerate the leads’ passage through the sales pipeline. Before you go on to putting those tips to work, here are some general pipeline management guidelines:

  • It’s a pipeline, but prospects shouldn’t feel like they are in a pipeline. Make messages relevant and personal.
  • Do not sell. Nurture! Even though it’s called a sales pipeline, it’s about building a relationship that eventually leads to a sale, not the other way around.
  • Automate as much as you can. Focus your time on the important things in your business and whether manual processes you can automate, do so!

If you’re an InTouch user, then you’ve already put yourself in the favourable position of having the InTouch Automation feature working for you. To put any of those strategies into practice or to find out how we can make automation work for you, get in touch with our Success Team today!

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