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5 Aspects to Consider When Creating a Lead Nurturing Workflow

Katelyn Ahern Digital Project Manager
#Digital Marketing, #Inbound Marketing
Published on July 18, 2018

We discuss 5 things to take into account when creating automated workflows that deliver the right content to the right people at the right time.

Inbound marketing is all about delivering the right message, at the right time, to the right audience. But sometimes that’s easier said than done. Marketing automation can be a very useful tool to follow up with the leads in your database and deliver them valuable content based on their schedules, but it comes with a lot of responsibility, and it’s very easy to do wrong.

We have previously discussed the different types of workflows that can be created in HubSpot to add some automation to your hectic marketing needs. Although this is a great start, today we are going to discuss some key aspects you will need to consider before creating a lead nurturing workflow in particular. By considering these five things, you can help avoid creating marketing automation that annoys and interrupts your audience, and instead create workflows that deliver the right content at the right time to assist your audience in their education process.

1. Who is the workflow for?

The first thing to consider before getting started on a lead nurturing workflow is deciding who the workflow will cater to. Sitting down and thinking this through is vital in order to make many decisions throughout this process and to provide the most value for those contacts. You will also want to provide information for your sales team to better serve these contacts later on, but considering who the contacts are (including their buyer persona) and providing them with the most valuable content on the best possible schedule should be the first priority.

2. Segmentation based on actions

In order to continue to provide the best value for these contacts, you will want to utilize the If/Then branches in the automated workflows tool in HubSpot. This function of the HubSpot workflows tool will assist in catering your messages to the actions of your contacts, allowing you to match their level of engagement throughout the entire workflow, not just at the starting point. However, these parameters will have to be thought through very carefully, since they have the ability to enhance the experience exponentially for your contacts. Use this function very wisely in order to increase the value of what each contact will receive.

Pro Tip: When creating if/Then branches, make sure you keep in mind the contacts that don’t match any of the criteria. Is this the step in the workflow that you want them to stop receiving information from you? Are they un-engaged? Is it the right time to stop following up? It might be the correct time to let some contacts go until they follow up with you again, but make sure you are considering those things when creating If/Then branches in HubSpot. Also, keep in mind that lead nurturing workflows are not intended to move all contacts through the funnel. They are intended to differentiate the levels of engagement that your contacts have with your company in order to better serve them. Don’t get distracted by losing touch with a contact when you have others who are still engaging on a deeper level right now.

3. Next Steps

We have previously talked about the importance of defining your end goal, and this is still important for measuring the success and engagement level of your workflow. With that being said, it is also important to define what you intend for their next step to be.

By that, I mean that when the workflow is done, what is the next level of value that you can offer them for engaging with you? Ensure that this next level of engagement matches the reason they entered into this workflow to begin with. Whether it is a consultation, registering for a workshop or webinar, or purchasing a product on your website, you have to consider whether the contact has all the information they might want or need to take this next step.

If a contact doesn’t have enough information, you’ll want to create a way for them to reach out for it throughout the workflow and assess whether your workflow should include more information. When we set our end goal, we want to make sure that we are giving them all the information that they need to decide to take that step, and if you have not provided that in your workflow, then it is time to step back and reevaluate the value of your workflow.

4. How will this coordinate with your other content offers?

There are a few things to keep in mind in regards to how your workflow coordinates with your other content offers. Keep in mind that some leads may be downloading lots of content offers at one time. When you are creating your lead nurturing workflow map, we suggest mapping this out on a timeline alongside your other lead nurturing workflows as well. Although all workflows are triggered based on action, seeing these maps side by side can help you to see if a lead is downloading several content offers, which may lead them to receive too many follow-up emails. You’ll want to avoid this overwhelming amount of email follow-ups by creating more specific parameters, or by changing the timelines of your workflows so they don’t match up.

5. Analytics

Keeping an eye on your workflow analytics after the workflow has gone live is vital to keeping this workflow successful over time. We recommend looking at your workflow analytics every 3-4 months after launch to assess the trends and reevaluate your inbound marketing strategy. Some of the things to take a look at include:

  • CTA % on each follow-up email
  • End Goal percentage
  • Steps where a big drop off happens in engagement levels

These are just a few preliminary things to look at which can help you make some decisions going forward. They can help you determine whether your workflow trigger is going to the correct audience, or whether the audience is not getting the right information throughout the workflow to make the next steps. Monitoring your workflows’ analytics will help you understand what is and isn’t working and help you adjust your strategy accordingly.

The five aspects mentioned above are a great start for creating a lead nurturing workflow for your inbound marketing strategy, but there are a lot of decisions that go into creating the right content at the right time for the right audience. If you have any particular questions about your lead nurturing workflows or any other aspect of your inbound marketing strategy, feel free to get in contact with us; we’re happy to help!

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