Most manufacturers and industrial companies use email marketing as a way to keep in touch with new leads and existing customers. This usually means sending out a bi-weekly or a monthly email newsletter.
It has been my experience within the industrial sector that these companies rarely use email marketing proactively for lead generation. Here I am not referring to new subscribers to newsletters and free content. To me, those contacts are prospects and not leads. There is a difference. For more on that, refer to my post, “Subscribers to Free Content are NOT Leads.”
How to generate quality leads using email marketing
Email marketing is an effective tactic for generating high-quality leads from an audience of engineering, industrial and technical professionals. However, it does require you to think about emails somewhat differently.
First, you need to look beyond open and click-through rates from standard email tracking reports provided by your email service provider (ESP). You need an easy way to monitor site interactions after you send out an email. This will help you gather lead intelligence that is important for segmenting and improving relevance.
In short, you need to marry emails and website analytics. Don’t hit the panic button yet!
You don’t need complicated behind-the-scenes coding that requires heavy involvement of your IT people. Nor does it require an expensive site analytics package.
How about free? For step by step instructions on how to add Google Analytics (Free) to your emails, head over to my post, “Add Google Analytics to Emails and Gain B2B Lead Generation Intelligence.”
Next, make the content of your emails highly relevant based on behavioral patterns from your site after the contact receives your email. Here, I am referring to adding dynamic content to your emails. Yes, it does require some effort but it doesn’t cost anything extra.
I have written about this in more details in my post, “Boost Email Relevancy With Dynamic Content.”
The last step needed to convert email marketing into a lead generation tool is some form of automation. Automatically triggered emails (personalized and customized) based on certain events, dates and/or rules will make the entire process function 24/7 without manual intervention.
While this may sound complicated, it isn’t. And the good news is that you probably already have this feature available from your ESP at no extra cost. I am talking about auto responders or as some like to call it “email marketing on autopilot.”
Check out my post, “Using Auto-responders in B2B Demand Generation” for more on this and how to use it in your email marketing.
What I’ve described here may sound a lot like Marketing Automation (MA). However, some of my industrial clients have lists and budgets that are too small to justify the cost of a full-blown MA package. They do however use email marketing regularly, just not for lead generation.
It may be time for you to rethink what email marketing can do for your lead generation.