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How to Improve an Email Lead Nurturing Campaign

  • What is email lead nurturing?
  • How to create an effective lead nurturing campaign
  • What metrics should I track to improve my email marketing strategy?

Every data-driven marketer knows that email is thriving. However, email marketing won’t get you far with conversion if you’re not using data to track your results.

Marketers must also develop relationships with their clientele and subscribers to turn potential leads into conversions and secure a loyal audience. Choosing the right campaign for your company could make or break the success of your email marketing strategy.

Besides drip campaigns, which focus on sending a series of scheduled personalised emails to your database over a set period, another successful method is email nurture campaigns.

Email marketing strategy

Lead Nurturing: What is it?

Lead nurturing campaigns focus on investing in the intended audience by delivering timely, targeted information to walk recipients through the buying process.

The goal of email nurture campaigns is to create awareness of your product or service by delivering educational value to your leads, which, if done effectively, will boost engagement with your campaigns.

Recipients tend to receive email lead nurturing campaigns better than drip-fed campaigns as they are more personalised and sent based on user activity rather than automation.

With lead nurturing, personalisation is vital. The statistics speak for themself, as more than 67% of email marketers invest in personalised email campaigns. It’s important to analyse data to understand user behaviour, target the right demographics and provide value to subscribers.

email marketing stats

Understand how buyers interact with your product and services. Identify your buyer persona’s pain points and map out the customer journey, which is a surefire way to target your intended audience accurately.

Utilising data in your email marketing strategy will help you build stronger relationships with leads, increasing revenue and profitability opportunities.

How to Create an Email Lead Nurturing Campaign

Email lead nurturing is all about data based on user behaviour.

According to recent statistics, 70% of millennials are frustrated with brands sending irrelevant emails, and 91% of consumers are more likely to shop with brands that personalise offers and recommendations to their interests.

It’s not enough to schedule emails and send them to your subscribers – content needs to be personalised. Properly tracking metrics will save time, resources and money by ensuring you send emails to qualified leads.

Capture information on user behaviour by collecting data from email signups, website navigation and search history, which help you identify what email marketing practices are working and areas that need improvement or adjustment.

Tracking the right metrics will increase engagement and help optimise the sales cycle. If you want to learn more about email lead nurturing, we’ve outlined ten metrics that are essential to success.

1. Email Open Rates

Every email marketer should be tracking this metric. It tells you exactly how many subscribers opened your mailshot, indicating how engaging your subject line and preheader text is.

The average email open rate is between 12-25%. While this is just a benchmark, you should be concerned if your emails consistently receive an open rate score of less than 12%.

Most email service providers will display open rate data in their reporting dashboards.

2. Click-through Rate (CTR)

Noting the number of unique recipients that clicked through to a link in your email is extremely important.

Email click-through rates (CTR) will show you what percentage of your subscribers were interested in the content in your email. The CTR metric will allow you to evaluate the success of your campaigns and are effective in capturing by providing insight into what products or services interest your audience.

You can measure CTR by including tracking links in your emails. Using a Google URL builder will provide an even more comprehensive view of your data, allowing you to track information on sessions, medium, bounce rate and other metrics in Google Analytics.

If you really want to measure the effectiveness of your emails, A/B test different copies with the same offer to see which message produced the highest CTR.

3. Bounce Rate

Another essential metric to track and analyse is bounce rate, which refers to the number of email addresses that didn’t receive your email.

Emails can bounce for several reasons, including:

  • Email size being too large
  • Email recipient server being down
  • Email address no longer exists
  • Recipients email inbox is full

Bounces are categorised into two types: soft and hard. Hard bounces indicate a permanent delivery issue, such as the recipient’s email address no longer existing. Soft bounces signal a temporary problem, such as a full inbox.

That aside, high bounce rates suggest that you have compiled a list of poor-quality emails. Ensure your emails reach the intended recipient by correctly formatting and cleaning your data.

4. Unsubscribes

If a recipient no longer wants to receive emails from you, they will opt out of your mailing list, also known as unsubscribing.

A high unsubscribe rate suggests that your message hasn’t appeared in front of the right audience. Revisit your lists and see whether they are appropriately segmented to avoid annoying people that receive your emails.

Remember that people crave personalised content in this ever-growing digital landscape, so cleaning your subscriber forms will ensure the right audience is delivered the correct message.

5. Conversion Rates

Conversion rate is one of the most important email marketing metrics as it is tied to your business’s overall goal and determines the extent to which you are on track to achieving said goal.

While a good conversion rate will depend on your business goals, this metric will tell you how many people completed the desired action after clicking a link in your email. If you don’t track your conversion rates, you won’t know whether your email campaigns have generated any sales.

To track conversions more effectively, develop an email marketing sales funnel and outline the expected steps in the buyer journey to track customer behaviour at different stages of the sales journey.

Email marketing on phone and computer

6. Spam Score

Some email platforms will include metrics on your mailshots spam percentage in their reporting dashboard.

Spam is an important metric to track as high rates could result in your email being blacklisted from specific domains and servers. Internet service providers proactively fight against spam, so ensure you adhere to the relevant protocols and comply with GDPR to avoid being blocked.

There are tools available that will allow you to test the spam score of your emails for free before you send them to your subscribers.

7. Revenue Rate

Revenue may be a tricky metric to measure as it depends on how you calculate your sales.

If you’re a service-based business, you may track revenue based on the number of subscriptions you receive from a given email or how many leads you generate. 

Nonetheless, it’s important to calculate how much revenue you have generated from your email marketing activity, as this will help you identify the exact number of sales generated from a specific campaign.

You should see success with this metric if you have optimised your lead nurturing systems.

8. Share Rate

Share rate, also known as forwarding rate, refers to how many email recipients shared your email with somebody else.

It’s an important metric to track as it indicates the potential reach of your marketing efforts and demonstrates whether the content in your emails is valuable enough to be shared by your subscribers.

Analyse the content and quality of emails that have resulted in shares and use that data to inform future marketing activity.

9. Engagement Rate

Monitoring engagement rate over time will help you identify whether customers are satisfied with your email campaigns. It can also provide helpful insights into measuring holiday campaigns such as Christmas promotions and Black Friday offers,

We’d have a 100% open rate with the replies to match in an ideal world. While that is probably impossible, the way people interact with your emails could help you further develop prospect engagement levels.

You could take the following actions to improve engagement over time:

  • Adjust content in a follow-up email based on how subscribers have interacted with your email content.
  • Work on your targeting by sending to people that would benefit from your business relationship.
  • Don’t send too many or too few emails. One will annoy recipients, and the other will make them forget about your business.
  • Craft a compelling subject line that will encourage recipients to open your email.

Remember, low engagement levels will also impact deliverability, so observing this metric is vital.

10. Return on Investment (ROI)

Arguably the most crucial metric in your campaign is the overall return on investment (ROI) since it provides you with an indication about whether the time and money you invested have been worth it.

Business owners will want to know how their campaign performed relative to the associated costs. Calculating your ROI and dividing it by total spend will give you that figure.

Are you still wondering whether email marketing is an effective digital marketing strategy? Well, research shows that it generates the highest ROI of any other marketing effort, with some marketers reporting rates of return up to 4400%.

If you have the time and resources, why not start getting your killer lead nurturing campaign underway now.

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