Following up with prospects is one of the most important parts of the sales process, but can also take up a huge chunk of time with additional e-mails and phone calls from your sales team.

Lead nurturing allows you to send targeted content to prospects in an attempt to gauge overall interest, buyer readiness and push them further down your sales funnel.

How does it work?

Let’s say you’re a large online shoe retailer. You’ve already provided a Top of the Funnel offer: A download entitled “The Top Shoes Trends in 2013.” Prospects that downloaded this document are probably not immediately ready to purchase a new pair of shoes, just researching what’s new and trendy. Any manual contact during this period from your sales team would be time wasted.

However, a nurturing e-mail providing information on “Choosing the Perfect Shoes for Your Lifestyle” pushes your prospective buyer further down the marketing funnel, into the middle and based on information received from that download form – you’ll send one final Bottom of the Funnel offer – a coupon which they will use when they are ready to buy.

This marketing automation assists your sales team in further qualifying prospects, pushing them down the funnel without manual phone calls and e-mails and completely streamlines your marketing process.

What’s left? Examining analytics and determining how well what we’re doing is working.