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How to Increase Sales-Ready Leads Using Nurture Marketing Automation Strategies

May 31, 2023   Posted By Mark Johnson

How to Increase Sales-Ready Leads Using Nurture Marketing Automation Strategies

How Email Workflows Boosted MQLs to 33% of Leads for an Industrial Pump Manufacturer

Many B2B marketers, especially those marketing to engineering teams, see that they can successfully generate contacts for the marketing database. Using content offers, media ad programs, and trade shows, they generate lots of leads, but sometimes not enough of the leads are good enough to pass to the sales team. It might be that only 5-10% of leads are truly sales ready.

What if you could dramatically raise that percentage? That would have tremendous ROI leverage for any company.

 The fact is, at any given time, some portion of every database is in the buying process NOW. It’s marketing’s job to uncover who those are and serve those up to the sales team to propose and close. While the sales team can sift and filter through a database of leads, that’s too slow and time-consuming (I.e., expensive).

Marketers need a faster, more automated way to uncover those active buyers and to more rapidly convert contacts from just a name in the database to a genuine sales prospect. The best strategy for this? Nurture your contacts with marketing automation nurture workflows.

Our team at Goldstein Group Communications did just that for our client Unibloc Hygienic Technologies, increasing marketing qualified leads (MQLs) to a third of its lead stream and increasing sales qualified leads (SQLs) by another 30%. The results were so impressive that our work earned an award from the local chapter of PRSA for being one of the best integrated marketing campaigns of the year. Read how it’s done.

Execs’ Demand: Pump Up the Leads

Unibloc Hygienic Technologies is an industry leader in fluid processing pumps used in hygienic production facilities such as food and beverage, pharmaceutical and cosmetic production plants. It sells to manufacturing and maintenance engineering teams, and the product development and marketing messages focus on fighting plant downtime and achieving a lower cost of operation.

Following Unibloc Hygienic Technologies' acquisition of two new companies, executives asked us to boost the size and efficiency of its lead generation machine.

Analyzing and Planning the Sales-Ready Workflow Campaign

GGC performed an audit of lead flow performance at the start with the newly acquired companies in mind. We discovered that only 9% of contacts were converting to marketing qualified lead (MQL) status, and of that only 4% were converting to sales qualified lead (SQL) status, well below the agency's target and industry standards.

GGC saw that existing emails and content were not helping to move leads down the funnel. By introducing a more sophisticated nurture workflow approach, this new automated strategy, managed through HubSpot, would boost lead conversion to sales-ready status at the higher level needed to generate more quality opportunities for the sales team. This was the right strategy, but it still had to be executed with excellence, or the new workflows would not work any better than the last.

The team decided to create several new automated email workflows, focused at all levels of the funnel (top, middle, and bottom), to better align with customer patterns and lead flow. This alignment, supported by better engineering-level content, turned out to be the secret to success.

Making Workflows Work Better

The agency developed four new workflows:

  1. Welcoming Campaign – Top- to Middle-of-Funnel
  2. Brand Nurture – Middle- to Bottom-of-Funnel
  3. Product-Specific Workflow 1 – Bottom-of-Funnel
  4. Product-Specific Workflow 2 – Bottom-of-Funnel

GGC created new content maps for each workflow, identifying applicable content for each workflow to serve at just the right moment in the buying cycle. Then GGC developed a playbook that mapped out the email strategy including order, timing, and branches. The logic was particularly important because it included branches that gave prospects the opportunity to contact a salesperson and move immediately to the bottom-of-funnel quote stage.

Flowing with Success

Lead performance for this pump manufacturer dramatically improved. Now that the workflows are running, 33% of leads become MQLs. In fact, one of the product workflows is converting contacts to SQLs at a 30% conversion rate. Execs are smiling a lot more.

Awards for B2B marketing-1GGC's Unibloc program is just one award of many for B2B Integrated Marketing 

What can we learn from this? Award-winning marketing requires two ingredients: the right strategy and strong execution at a product-engineering level, supported by a broad team of experts covering marketing automation, email marketing, technical writing, and data analysis. Would this work for you? Perhaps – so we invite you to bring us your most difficult marketing challenges. Send us a note

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