6 B2B Email Marketing Tips
It’s safe to say that email marketing tips differ depending on the types of campaigns you are sending out. We’ve all heard of the standard B2C lifecycle campaigns. The welcome campaign. The activate campaign that encourages the first purchase with some kind of discount. The reactivate campaign for the lapsed customer who needs an incentive. The VIP incentive campaign. They’ve been around the block and back again.
While B2B have also adapted and capitalised on these campaigns too, they aren’t the ideal campaigns to target every stage of the B2B marketing automation lifecycle.
That’s why we’ve sat down and had a think about the 6 email marketing campaign ideas & tips that work best for your B2B customers. Use our examples to improve your own customer marketing.
1. Pre-sale: Generating interest & nurturing leads
Before the B2B lifecycle can begin, you need to generate leads for the cycle process. Quarterly campaigns that capture website leads, inbound leads and data lists are an excellent way of achieving this.
Staggering your quarterly campaigns into four levels: intrigue, discover, consider and decide, will allow you to subtly introduce prospects to your business and guide them to the relevant areas on your website.
Leads that fit your target profiles will engage with this campaign, depending on the content topic that is relevant to them week-on-week and move through each level until they are ready to talk to sales.
You should use certain types of email at each stage in this process. So what stages need what?
What types of emails should you send to nurture leads?
An engaging email for web visitors you’ve paid for via PPC or social media
Your paid for website traffic is the next most important target audience you should engage with. Not only to make the most of your marketing budget but also because you can lose their attention if you don’t act fast.
You know that most leads you call up aren’t ready to buy the first time they hear from you. Or even the second time. Perhaps not even the third time. Rather than wasting your time constantly scheduling callbacks, take advantage of the automated email marketing campaigns your marketing teams can set up.
Use plain-text, Outlook-style emails to make it sound like your emailing the masses 1-2-1 and send targeted emails based on what they’ve looked at on your website. Then, when their score climbs to a certain number, you’ll know when they are ready to hear from you – the salesperson.
The email you send them should be engaging, whether you provide them with content they need or give them a quick introduction on the free tools on your website they can use whenever they like.
The more value you add in this email, the more you invest in your business relationship with them and the more likely they are to turn to you when they get around to looking for a product.
What kind of emails should you send to hot leads?
A sales message to your hot leads
For those prospects that you know are definitely interested in your business, you need an email that can push them through into getting in contact with you. This is where your sales message is the most effective.
The email should entice them to get in contact with them, so don’t give away everything about the benefits of doing business with you. Instead, make your unique selling points intriguing but to the point. Your product should speak for itself and stand on its own two feet.
Hot leads are likely already interested enough that this little nudge will tip them straight into your sales teams laps.
2. Pre-sale: Educating about your products
This campaign tends to be related to specific products or services that you offer. It’s designed to tell your prospects and leads how they can use your business to solve their pain points.
You can use this educational email series to prove yourself an expert in the industry, as well as establish your prospect’s requirements before they move onto having a conversation with sales.
What kind of emails should you send to educate about your products?
A downloadable email series to nurture organic web visitors
Each web visitor on your website takes a different user journey. Even prospects who are after the same product will be different. They may interact with different parts of your website or have organically come to you via different methods.
To make sure every organic lead on your website is getting the information they need, you need emails to be triggered based on what they interact with. This allows your prospects to get the relevant content they are after at the right time for them, improving your chances of converting them to hot leads.
Set emails based on key trigger pages
Now, if you use email marketing with lead generation tools such as IP lookup and lead scoring, sales and marketing might start seeing eye to eye on what makes a qualified lead.
A great email tip is to look at setting up email campaigns off the back of certain web pages. Retarget those inbound website leads and associate a score with their visit. As their score builds, you can start to see which leads are showing buying behaviour and focus on getting in contact with the hot prospects.
Certain pages on your website are clear indicators that your website visitors are interested in buying your product. A pricing page for example or a free trial page. These visitors, in particular, need an email that encourages them to act urgently.
Keep these emails personal, short and to the point to make them sound like they are coming directly from a sales executive who is watching them on the website. This direct connection will make your website visitors feel a personal connection with your business.
It will also make them more likely to act on their impulses and feel more comfortable talking to a salesperson immediately.
For more ideas on automation emailing check out our guide to creating highly effective B2B email marketing campaigns.
3. New customer: Welcome Pack
You might think that once you’ve gotten the lead and nurtured them to a point of sales-readiness, email marketing is no longer relevant. But once you’ve closed the deal, you don’t just cut off all contact with your new customer. That screams, “now we’ve got you, we don’t care about you anymore.”
Instead, once you’ve closed the deal, make sure they get the welcome series email campaigns, the monthly updates with the latest best practices and a personalised check-in email every once in a while, asking for feedback or a call to discuss how they are getting on.
The welcome series should reflect the personality of your business. Introduce them to the key people they will be developing working relationships with. Let them know the next steps in their journey.
From what to expect in the first 3 months to where they should be at 6 months. Use this email campaign to help them envision how their first year as your customer is going to work.
4. New customer: User Training
A lot of the time in the B2B world, training is required in order to make sure your new customers get the most out of your business. Setting up a marketing campaign that delivers automated prompts to book in with trainers is a good example. You could send training guides, or use email campaigns to remind them to complete certain actions in order to start using the product successfully.
5. Existing customer: Date-led campaigns
Once your customer is comfortable working with your business, email campaigns should be based around when you need to get in contact with them. This could be just touching base, reminding them of product enhancements or loyalty programmes to give you a few ideas. The main email campaign that springs to mind is a renewal process.
6. Existing customer: Recommendations
Finally, your long-term valued customers should expect recommendations based on their previous experience with you. You should know your clients well enough to know which product enhancements they’ll want and be able to keep them intrigued, interested and happy with the continued improvements to their business with you.
For example, Brakes used GatorMail to create genuinely tailored email messages. They don’t just stick their name at the top and pretend it is personalised.
Instead, the email shows them products they have purchased in the past or related items based on their purchase history. Need more inspiration and ideas for your customer lifecycle marketing? Read our B2B lifecycle marketing blog to give you more best practices for your customer marketing or our 5 marketing automation workflows you should start using.