One Simple Strategy to Deepen Customer Relationships
Nurture sequences deepen customer relationships. If you’ve been in digital marketing for more than a week, that statement is a no-brainer.
The problem with nurture sequences: it takes a thorough email marketing strategy to establish and build a rapport with your people.
Think of your pre- and post-purchase email campaigns like a dating scenario. You wouldn’t marry someone you met for coffee one time. Successful nurture sequences stretch far beyond the “handshake phase” of your customer relationships.
So what qualities represent relationship-building nurture sequences? In a nutshell, nurture emails…
- Cultivate brand loyalty, so that existing buyers stay on your customer list for years to come.
- Establish your willingness to provide expert tools, resources, and guidance. (Yep, the email content must be valuable and practical, not overly salesy.)
- Ramp up your sales numbers before and after the purchase point.
- Build your reputation as a solution-focused expert, so that you grow your customer base through word-of-mouth promotion.
If you don’t have your pre- and post-purchase email sequences in place, then this blog is for you.
If you do have a nurture sequence in place, and it isn’t doing much to increase brand loyalty and sales, here is your roadmap to more effective marketing emails.
Sketch out the nurture sequence first.
When you lay the preliminary footwork for how your marketing emails roll out, you get a bird’s-eye view of the exact purpose. Mapping the days between emails, figuring out list segmentation, and pinpointing the reason for each message…
This process leads to a more thoughtful nurture sequence that converts.
Example: we had a client who sought out our email copywriting services for two reasons.
- Her new book was set for release in the near future.
- She had nothing in place to nurture the new leads who would purchase that new book.
Our team mapped out and wrote a month-long nurture sequence that added supplemental material to her book, gave practical action steps on how to use the content, gave invitations for strategy session phone calls, and sold VIP mastermind tickets.
Notice how the selling came last?
That’s because our goal was to give the audience content they could use, so the benefits of purchase became obvious.
And that’s what a successful nurture sequence must always, always, always do.
If an email does nothing, wad it up and throw it away.
After you craft your nurture sequence map, take a long, hard look at how each email functions. If you find that a few pieces make no headway in your quest to nurture clients, then remove those puppies from the docket.
Chances are, there will be a few weak points in your nurture sequence—especially if you’ve created a long-term marketing plan.
Our copywriting team uses a litmus test for the effectiveness of an email. As you outline your nurture sequence, or during the actual writing process, ask yourself:
- What value does this give the recipient? (Not only the value of the product, but the relevance and functionality of the copy.)
- Does it make sense for the email to go out now?
- If you were in a reader’s shoes, would you read, let alone open, this email?
- Will this email bombard the audience with too much information at once?
- Could this email thwart the overall nurture sequence goals?
Example: Let’s say you’re mapping out a nurture sequence that sells tickets to a live event.
You will write a series of emails about the various session benefits, a few about networking opportunities, some social proof content, a couple of sales-driven emails, and one or two about a special guest speaker. And then you realize you’ve got an email scheduled to go out only one day after a sales-focused message…
And that email drills the sale over their heads again. You won’t get much of a response from that, so cut it.
Consider how many “functional chapters” your nurture sequence has.
What the French Toast do I mean by “functional chapters”?
Simply put, your nurture sequence shouldn’t be a point A to point B map. Although the audience shares similar needs, they do have diverse pain points and buying behaviors.
We hope you’ve whittled down your target market into a customer avatar. But even though you’re writing for a very specific audience, you must factor in what unique email recipients really need to hear from you.
Ask yourself these questions:
- What have your customers purchased?
- What have your customers NOT purchased?
- What feedback have you received?
- What survey results have you weighed?
- What’s the buzz on your social media pages?
All these questions indicate elements of the individual user experience. In order to divide your nurture sequence by “functional chapters,” it’s paramount that you consider buying behavior.
Example: We had a client who needed an upsell sequence for a step-by-step checklist that helped buyers navigate and succeed in their lead generation efforts. However, the selected upsell product had more to do with the philosophy of business ownership than practical steps to landing sales after capturing leads.
The sales offer didn’t make sense, so the nurture sequence wouldn’t function without a product and message that complemented what the audience had purchased and moved them forward in their success.
With the need for a new offer came the need for a new nurture sequence. Otherwise, the content wouldn’t be relevant.
When you know where your customers are in their lives, and you send the right message that speaks to that situation, that’s when you establish and deepen those customer relationships that equal escalating sales.
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