Lead nurturing is the process of reinforcing and developing your relationship with potential customers. This helps inch the lead closer to the end of the funnel with the goal of converting into a customer. Typically, this is done strategically at every funnel step using various tactics.
A lead nurturing campaign takes that idea and draws it out across the lifecycle of the lead. As you can imagine, this is an important element to integrate into your marketing strategy, no matter what you’re selling. It helps the lead understand why your business is a good fit for them and supplies them with the information they need to make their choice.
If you’re stuck on what sort of lead nurturing campaigns you need to implement in your marketing automation strategy, look no further. Today, we’re going to be talking about 11 lead nurturing campaign examples so that you can also make the right choice for yourself.
Without any further ado, let’s jump right into it.
Lead nurturing campaign examples
The goal behind any good lead nurturing campaign is to engage, inspire, and convert. Sure, there might be a few more touchpoints in there, but the overall goal will always be to grab their attention, give them the right information, and close the sale.
This is done in a few consequential steps. After all, it’s rare that you make a conversion through a welcome email. Each step, from the top of the sales funnel to the bottom (or from the beginning of the lead nurturing campaign to the end), should be designed in such a way that they lead into each other. One step after the other.
That being said, let’s start from the top and work our way down. Here are a few examples of how you can engage with the lead and start their lead nurturing journey.
A welcome email is usually the first impression a brand has on a lead. It is exactly as it sounds — a brief message that sends warm regards and welcomes the lead to the brand. Anytime you gain a new free user, email subscriber, newsletter sign-up, or blog subscriber, a welcome email should follow shortly after. Remember, the idea is to engage at this stage, so a concise, friendly, and helpful message are what the lead is looking for.
A good example of a brand that hits the nail on the head with welcome emails is none other than Kate Spade.
As you can see with this email, it’s short, to the point, and on-brand for Kate Spade. There’s no denying the message they want to convey, and it gives the reader a simple CTA to make a purchase and convert.
If the lead wants to do some shopping, they have all the categories listed at the top, and a short message in the black and white banner, letting them know that anywhere in the United States has free shipping. This is an excellent example of a welcome email because it contains everything that you need to further nurture the lead to the next steps.
A top-of-mind nurturing campaign is designed to target those at the top of the funnel, not quite ready to convert yet. These people know very little about your brand and will need more information before they convert.
Think of this as an “Awareness” campaign. The idea is to keep the lead thinking about you and prevent them from being sniped by a competitor. This takes place over a long period, providing valuable content to the lead and consistent touch-points for the sales team.
An excellent example of this is the luxury clothing brand Louis Vuitton. They have positioned themselves in the market so that they are known, without much marketing, as a leading clothing brand. This is done through their high prices, unique branding, design, and lead nurturing, top-of-mind campaigns, which you could call a little obscure.
Louis Vuitton has partnered with brands from Supreme to the actual NBA to create their image. They are associated with other big names, solidifying their reputation as one of the principal clothing brands in the world. This is top-of-mind nurturing at its finest. Even more impressive is that Louis Vuitton has been around for over 160 years.
The hard truth is that not all of your leads will make it to the end of the funnel. Many won’t even make it past the first few steps. But, that doesn’t mean that all is lost. Your lead database is likely filled to the brim with users, subscribers, and leads that became inactive over time. Re-engagement campaigns are designed to specifically target these leads and restart them in the sales process.
Pottery Barn has a great example of a re-engagement campaign. As you can see above, they come right out of the gate and let the user know that they are not forgotten. They hit them with a 15% discount code, unique to them, and give them all the resources they need to choose whether or not they want to continue with their journey at Pottery Barn.
A small detail that is quite impressive here is that they also offer an in-store coupon via barcode. Pottery Barn knows their customers and realizes that in order to really nurture them, they need to provide options. Plus, there’s potential to cross-sell or even upsell in the store. As the customer walks past all the incredible products, they might just pick an extra item or two up to purchase.
As we move farther along in the funnel, the leads will get to the point where they need education on your product more than anything. That’s where a product-focused campaign comes in to save the day.
The main point of this lead nurturing campaign style is that all the information based on your product is coming from you and not from your competitor. You’ll want to focus on the pain points that your product resolves, how you address them, and the features and benefits that make all of this happen. Of course, one of the best examples of this is Apple.
Let’s face it; Apple is a master of visual design. Their products are sleek, clean, and minimalistic. Therefore, the face of all of their product-focused campaigns is going to be high-quality imagery of whatever they’re trying to sell.
Apple is an absolute pro when it comes to product marketing, and their email marketing campaigns are no exception. As you can see from the product campaign example above, they hit all the pain points. Fast processor, incredible battery life, and all the bells and whistles to go along with it. All the information you could possibly need about the M1 chip and the MacBook Pro is all within this email, including the price tag.
Competitive marketing campaigns shine a light on what makes your product different from competitors. This could be done in a lot of ways. Most commonly, blog articles, comparison videos, and landing pages that compare features.
A good example of a creative, competitive campaign is the Mac vs. PC commercials that we all fell in love with a few years back. Apple needed to reach for their biggest competitor, but simple ad campaigns weren’t going to cut it. Instead, they laid out the PC’s pain points in a friendly fashion, and then talked about how a Mac can fix it.
With this whole campaign, Apple’s goal was to push themselves as a great platform for working and multitasking. When these commercials aired in the late 2000s, PCs were dominant, and people were scared of Apple’s hefty price tag. Now, thanks to creative, competitive marketing campaigns like this one, Apple is right up there with the PC, and some even view it as superior in many ways.
Industry expert campaigns
Now, your lead will be approaching the end of the funnel. Here, your lead nurturing campaigns should focus on reinforcing your brand and positioning yourself as an industry expert.
How is this done? To be honest, it’s not easy. You’ll need to produce high-level content and be recognized as an expert by third-party analysts. This is why platforms like G2 are so important. It allows real users to review the product and give an honest opinion.
But more than this, these campaigns should be designed to promote press releases, industry reports, and high-traffic content that you created. All of this is in an effort to brag without actually bragging. It lets the user know that others believe in your product, and they should, too.
An excellent example of this comes back to G2 again, with their awards. Each year, they give out awards to businesses that make strides in their industry, and it’s quite a big deal. Not only do you get the recognition from G2, but you get to boast about it to leads and customers with your own unique badge.
Promotional nurturing campaign
As your lead approaches the purchase stage of the funnel, it’s time to sell yourself. This isn’t as simple as throwing out deal after deal and hoping something sticks. Instead, it involves a well-timed promotion that is the perfect fit for the lead.
Here, you should highly consider offering special discounts, holiday specials, and even additional features to close the deal. Based on the user’s journey up to this point and their individual needs, it’s crucial that the marketing and sales team work hand-in-hand to give the lead precisely what they want.
This ad might look very similar to our first example on this list, but it is pretty different. The difference lies in the intention. You see, while the Kate Spade example was designed to welcome the new lead, this ad from American Apparel is designed specially to convert.
From top to bottom of this ad, there’s no “Fluff”. This means that it is purely an incentive to convert right now. You get a 15% off discount, and you can immediately apply it by shopping now. There’s no drawn out messaging, welcome note, or off-topic CTAs.
Now, we’ve moved beyond the funnel, and into the retention campaigns. Although this implies that the lead has already converted, that doesn’t mean that nurturing isn’t required anymore. Just remember that it costs five times more to acquire a new customer than it takes to retain an existing one. Keeping an existing customer happy is vital.
Onboarding a newly acquired customer is a must for a lot of platforms. This is almost always a high-touchpoint and manual process, but it ensures the customer’s happiness and keeps them on board for potential upselling in the future.
That being said, it’s not all manual. For example, you can send automated onboarding emails with helpful information when a new customer needs information on your product, when a new feature comes out, or when there’s big news regarding the brand.
This onboarding email from Howler Brothers is a great example. Sure, it has a lot going on, but that’s exactly how it was designed. Within this single email, the new customer has it all. You have a bold CTA at the top, followed by the latest clothing collection, another special collection, then the blog, and the social media accounts. As someone going through onboarding, you’re really not left with any questions. You have everything you need to get started, and maybe a little more.
With any brand that sells different tiers of products, upselling will always be a worthwhile investment. Think about it like this: The customer you’re upselling is already familiar with your brand. Getting them to upgrade to a higher-tier product will be much easier than convincing someone less familiar.
This style of lead nurturing also works with free users that convert to a premium account. They’re already using your product, so they’re going to be the easiest to convince to convert.
An amazing example of an upselling campaign is Spotify, the world’s leader in music streaming services. They offer a powerful, free product that a lot of people are very happy with. But, this comes with limited access. Upgrading to the premium account unlocks the app’s full potential, and they know that it’s worth it, and the 172 million + premium users they have agree.
How do they do it? Well, if you’ve ever used the free version of the app, you’d know their main strategy: commercials. For someone in a workout, busy cooking, or on a run, this is annoying, which makes it perfect for advertising a way to get rid of it. On top of that, Spotify lays out the benefits in a somewhat comprehensible way with all of their written advertisements.
What makes this work even more is that you have both versions laid out right next to each other. You have the free version and the short list of benefits on one side. Next is the premium version and the long list of benefits. What they’ve also done in this layout is provide a discount. Moving from a free version to only paying $0.99/month for that much longer list of features is a good deal and well worth upgrading.
A renewal nurturing campaign can serve two purposes. The first is that it reminds the user that their trial or subscription is coming to an end, and it’s time to renew. The second is that it keeps their lifecycle going within the company and that revenue continues to flow.
You can trigger emails to send near the end of the subscription, send a reminder to renew, and give them a quick way to do so through an actionable CTA.
Warby Parker does a great job with their renewal nurture campaign emails. As prescriptions for glasses expire, they send out reminder emails to get a new pair before it happens. For the users, this could be a lifesaver. Not only do they get a convenient notification, but they have the option to convert again and keep their glasses up-to-date.
At the bottom of this email, you can also see that they promote their optometrist services. This is basically a two-in-one nurture campaign. They can renew prescriptions for existing users and upsell them on other services.
You can even combine the step above with an upselling and renewal campaign. Take a look at this quick example from Squarespace.
In this case, the user’s free trial is about to end, so Squarespace has decided to email both to remind them of the fact and upsell them to a premium account. Here, you have all the benefits that the user would be missing out on if they go with a free account, offer connection to the support team for any questions, and get a nice, prominent CTA to get the job done.
Sales enablement campaign
Lead nurturing campaigns can also be used as a sales enablement strategy both internally and externally. In fact, it can be a cornerstone tool that helps enable your very own sales team. Nurturing sales with fresh marketing content can help sell more, increasing your ROI, just like lead nurturing works with a normal lead.
Internal sales enablement campaigns can include things like ebooks, datasheets, blog articles, product reviews, and a lot more. Depending on the size of your team, this could be a huge benefit. However, it would be a good idea to make these emails opt-in. The last thing that the sales team needs is to have their inbox cluttered with emails that they never intend to read.
Conclusions and takeaway
The takeaway from all of this is that your timing should be perfect. There are many ways to nurture a lead, but there are many factors to consider. Depending on your industry, goal, organization, and the position of the lead in the funnel, your lead nurturing campaign strategy might look completely different from the next brand in line.
All of this can be controlled by automating your lead nurturing process. If you have a massive database of users and leads, all with different criteria, segments, and funnel positions, sending out nurturing emails manually is impossible. No matter the size of the organization, be it 10 people or 100,000 people, you need email automation in your life.
Encharge offers a robust solution to your lead nurturing campaign needs. Set up triggered emails that launch based on behaviors and actions taken, understand the exact position of a lead within their journey with a unique Flow-Builder tool, and track user profiles for each lead.
Take your lead nurturing to new heights by integrating automation. Set your campaigns on autopilot, and focus on crafting the perfect email, ad copy, or content in order to really seal the deal. Try Encharge for free today, and up the game with your lead nurturing.