Lead Nurturing

How to Lead Nurture for Multiple Products

Written by in Lead Generation on August 28, 2014

Recently one of our clients came to us with these two questions…

  1. “How should we organize our lead nurture program when we have multiple product lines?”
  2. “How do I know what content we should be providing to who?”

A large technology company, with a suite of offerings, wanted to ensure the offers they sent to prospects and customers were relevant to their interests. With strict corporate controls governing the volume and frequency of their outreach, they also needed a way to determine which product managers and sales reps should be communicating with their key target accounts.

Since then, we’ve heard the question several more times.

Some clients weren’t sure how to decipher clues from their inbound website traffic – especially when visitors would click through to several seemingly unrelated Awareness assets. Others weren’t sure how to diagnose “pain points” for newly acquired leads or data.

Here’s some advice for all of you out there struggling with similar issues.

Start with Your Buyer Personas

Before you look at more advanced techniques, sometimes simply looking to your buyer personas can give you the insights you need to determine what type of content a prospect should receive.  For example, if you’re a software company with a suite of products that sell into different departments, simply segmenting your messaging by function is a great place to start.

However, for many companies, simply looking to buyer personas won’t be enough.

A common point of confusion is when many of your products appeal to the same folks. Which content should take precedence?

Lead scoring is the way to find out.

Implementing Lead Scoring

For the uninitiated, Sirius Decisions defines lead scoring as “a methodology used to rank prospects against a scale that represents the perceived value each lead represents to your company.1 The resulting score is used to determine which function (e.g. sales, product managers, etc.) will engage, in order of priority.”

When scoring for multiple product lines, each product will be given its own scoring goals. After achieving a pre-defined score for each product, the prospect will then begin receiving information about that product.

But how do you gather the information you need?

There are basically two ways: Ask prospects to tell you, and look to their behavior for clues.

1. Ask Prospects to Tell You

The fancy term for this, is “explicit lead scoring.” As a little bit of additional insight, explicit is defined as “stated clearly and in detail, leaving no room for confusion or doubt.”

As marketers, we usually collect this data through landing page forms, through sales conversations, or responses to other direct outreach.

For example, back in the heyday of direct mail, Microsoft used to send IT folks thousands of pieces of direct mail each year. To increase their relevance, they conducted an annual “Get Better Mail” campaign, asking the IT folks to identify their products and topics of interest.

The mailing generated a 10% response, and allowed Microsoft to deliver more relevant marketing to prospects.

Explicit responses will carry more weight in your lead scoring model, as the prospect is telling you precisely what they want. No need to ask them twice.

But what happens if they won’t tell you exactly what they’re looking for? Then you must…

2. Gather Clues

The fancy term for this is “implicit lead scoring”, implicit defined as “implied though not plainly expressed.” So with implicit lead scoring, prospects don’t directly tell you what they’re interested in, they give you clues.

Their clues can come from a variety of places, including web pages, interactions with content or downloads of assets.

The first step to getting started with implicit lead scoring is to define your implicit profiles.

How many views, or interactions must a user have with your company before they are dropped into a given nurture track? What weight do each of these individual interactions carry?

While an entire book could be written exploring the nuances of this approach, a good place to begin is by incorporating the following interactions:

  • Website visits: Consider adding points when a lead downloads specifics assets, visits your site a number of times, or accesses several pages in one visit.
  • Form submissions: Where possible and relevant, include profiling questions to gather more information.
  • Emails: Consider assigning different values to opens, clicks and downloads.
  • Events: Consider adding points when contacts visit your booth, attends your dinner, or otherwise engages at an event.

By tracking a contact’s interactions with your company, over time you’ll get a good understanding of the best way to engage them.

Share your expertise: Do you have any other creative ways to build lead nurture programs when nurturing for multiple product lines?

P.S.  Have you downloaded our free Marketing Automation Nurture Campaign Template? Get on it!



Troy O'Bryan About the author: Troy O'Bryan

Troy has over 15 years of experience delivering high return on investment marketing initiatives for his clients. Prior to Response Capture, Troy served as an account lead for direct and database marketing campaigns working with many global clients such as 3M, American Express, EMC, Intel, Microsoft, Océ, Planar, Siemens, and Tektronix. The successes of his client campaigns have been highlighted in DMNews and B2B Magazine.


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