Lead Nurturing Email Examples: The Good and The Bad

“Can you share some lead nurturing email examples?” is a frequent request that Brainrider receives when hosting webinars, presentations, and workshops. This better practice analysis looks at 3 lead nurturing email examples, including a special offer, an update, and an announcement email.

Lead nurturing objectives

The business goal of most nurturing programs is to get more prospects through the pipeline and qualified as sales ready. This business goal can be split into two main marketing objectives:

  • Extend prospect engagement, when you already have their attention.
  • Re-engage older prospects with relevant, useful content.

See Lead Nurturing Programs That Deliver Against Objectives, for more information on setting your objectives.

Effective tactics to extend prospect engagement include “what’s next” links, “thank you” content, auto-responder emails, and drip campaigns triggered by prospect activity. If prospect activity has stopped, timed email nurturing tactics like email newsletters, special offers, and announcements can help to re-engage inactive prospects.

Here are 3 timed lead nurturing email examples, along with an explanation of what they are doing right and what they can do even better:

Lead nurturing email example #1: “Hail Mary Call-To-Action”

Lead Nurturing Email Example: Liaison Technologies

 

This email uses a number of best practices:

  • CAN-SPAM compliant unsubscribe option and account address.
  • Clean, legible design with a strategic use of images and graphics.
  • Clear marketing call-to-action: “download this whitepaper”.
  • Personalized format that addresses the email to the reader.

 

Some quick recommendations on what to do better:

  • Like many B2C campaigns, this email is focused on a single “Hail Mary” call-to-action: “download this whitepaper”. While single CTAs are effective for simple, price-based email campaigns, they are often much less effective in complex sale B2B campaigns that address multiple audiences, different pain points, and different decision stages.
  • If you know that this specific whitepaper is timely and explains what this prospect wants to know, then this is a terrific CTA. Otherwise, you will get better prospect engagement by using a “Choose Your Own Adventure” approach.
  • The quick rule of thumb is “the more relevant links you can provide in a re-engage campaign, the more re-engagement you will get”. Go ahead and feature a high-value asset, but make sure you include additional content targeting different pain points and decision stages.
  • Use a thumbnail of the asset, not just an icon, to concretely illustrate the value of the resource you are featuring.
  • Provide more detail about the resource. Define what it includes and what it can be used to do.

 

Lead nurturing email example #2: “Missed Opportunity”

Lead Nurturing Example: Forrester Reseach Missed Opportunity

 

This email from Forrester is a terrific example of a number of best practices:

  • CAN-SPAM compliant unsubscribe option and account address.
  • Clean, legible design with a restrained use of images and graphics.
  • Effective use of a sidebar layout.
  • Segmented content based on prospect subscription preferences.

 

Some quick recommendations on what to do better:

  • Use a more descriptive subject line describing why it might be useful to read.
  • Make sure that you share more than one content asset if your goal is engagement. You have gone through the trouble of sending the email and, more importantly, your reader has gone through the trouble of opening it, so make it count.
  • Try sharing other related content, with a “Choose Your Own Adventure” approach, and include more sales readiness calls-to-action.
  • Use a thumbnail or a chart of the report to illustrate the value of the content.
  • Make sure you do a great job of merchandizing your content. In this case, the description is short, dense, and truncated. Give away some of the most valuable insight in the description to tease you reader with real value.

 

Lead nurturing email example #3: “All About Us”

Lead Nurturing Email Example: Alfresco Software All About Us

 

This lead nurturing email example from Alfresco looks terrific and it does a few things right:

  • CAN-SPAM compliant unsubscribe option and account address.
  • Clean, legible design with a restrained use of images and graphics.
  • Effective use of a sidebar layout.
  • Tests video as an innovative content offer.

 

As a nurturing program, it has some critical misses:

  • Corporate announcements, like introducing a new CEO, are often big news for the company and its investors, but they are much less relevant for customers and prospects. These announcements are rarely focused on what customers and prospects want to know about their own needs and pains, unless their pain was the old CEO.
  • While it is sometimes important to share company announcements with customers and prospects, make sure you take a customer-focused approach to the content.
  • Include some high value content, other than announcements, to let your reader know that you are thinking about their needs.
  • Merchandize the content. This is very important with videos because they are impossible to quickly to scan before a customers commits to watching them. Describe what the video will cover and why it is worth watching.
  • If the objective of your nurturing program is to engage your reader and profile their activity, then try to direct them to your website and prospect analytics. In this case, the video call-to-action links the reader to the company’s YouTube page instead of embedding the video on an Alfresco webpage. After watching the video on YouTube.com, your prospect will be easily tempted to watch other video content, rather than continuing on to the Alfresco content and messaging.

 

If your business needs help with their email marketing campaigns, Brainrider is here to help. Don’t hesitate to contact us, if you have any questions or comments.

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3 responses to “Lead Nurturing Email Examples: The Good and The Bad”

  1. Never heard “merchandise” used as a verb before (“Merchandize the content”).

    I like it… and might even start using it myself.

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