You attend networking events and have stacks of business cards to show for your efforts, but sheepishly admit you don’t know when you last connected with the “hot lead” whose name is on the card. Or maybe your lead generation system works a little like this: If you call them or they call you, their business card is toward the TOP of the stack? We are sure even you would admit that isn’t a stellar way to get prospects to emerge as qualified leads.
If you want more lead generation return on your networking investment, how about tackling that stack of business cards with a little email marketing? Don’t know where to start? Today we are sharing three proven ways you can use email marketing to turn those prospects into suspects who will eventually turn into great customers!
1. Use The Tools Of The Trade
Sign up for a third party email marketing tool or CRM. Email blast software such as Constant Contact or MailChimp are great if you simply want to send emails to your database every once and a while. However, if you are a sales representative and need more functionality, you may want to consider a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tool like AddressTwo, Sales Force or ACT!.
2. Get In The Habit
When you attend a networking event, use the back of the business card to write down the date, place you met and one key topic that you discussed (or want to follow up on). Then, at least once a week, take some time to enter the business card information into your CRM or email marketing software. You can then send a polite, “Nice to meet you”, email to your new database contact using the information on the back of the card, which will show your networking contacts you care about keeping in touch. By honing this activity into a weekly habit, you will build an email marketing list that keeps the lead generation pipeline full.
3. Keep The Relationship Warm
How do the best sales people get to be the best? They create systems and processes that help keep those prospects feeling valuable. One tactic to stay in front of those new leads is called trigger or drip feed campaigns. This type of activity is designed to DRIP email marketing content to your database over time after it’s TRIGGERED. A trigger can be as simple as adding a new contact to your email marketing database. For instance, a new contact may receive a Welcome to My Database email, followed by some specialized content based on their interests (perhaps from the notes you took on the back of their business card), then a once a month email newsletter providing interesting and relevant news and information about your industry. The main point to consider when setting up your own trigger/drip feed campaigns is to be creative and conservative. Too much content dripped too quickly will ruin your credibility as an email marketing savvy professional.
If you want to join the “Work smarter not harder club”, start by putting our three tips for using email marketing as a lead generation tool into action, then let us know how it worked for you by leaving a message below.