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2015 Lead Nurturing Benchmark Study: Aligning Nurture Programs To The Buyer’s Journey

Lead nurturing, an important piston in the demand generation engine, is growing in sophistication and moving beyond simple campaigns that blast the same email to the entire database. Marketers are seeking to improve their use of data to target their lead nurturing campaigns to prospects in various stages of the buying cycle and predict who will be more likely to convert.

These are some of the main findings of Demand Gen Report's 2015 Lead Nurturing Benchmark Study, our second in-depth examination of the strategies that successful B2B marketers are employing to drive prospects through the buying cycle.

"We are definitely seeing marketers ready and willing to take nurturing to the next level, moving beyond drips to more sophisticated campaigns that align to the buyer's journey," said Cari Baldwin, Partner and Founder of BlueBird Strategies.

Now that a fair number of marketers have logged some experience with lead nurturing campaigns — 42% have been implementing lead nurturing tactics for more than two years — they have a taste of the benefits of lead nurturing and want to build on that momentum.

While lead nurturing is not a new tactic, there are still a number of marketers who are just beginning to explore the benefits of lead nurturing programs. Twenty percent have been developing lead nurturing programs for less than a year, so there is still significant untapped potential.

Two-thirds (66%) of respondents to the benchmark study describe their lead nurturing programs as more personalized, as they send prospects on different nurture paths depending on their actions and interests. This is a significant indicator that predictive marketing is having an impact on how lead nurturing programs are executed.

Marketers are no longer limiting their lead nurturing programs to emails. More than one third (38%) say that they are nurturing prospects by interacting with them on social media.

"While email is still a very effective channel, buyers are using an array of channels to gather information, conduct research and also communicate with their peers and social media is one of the most effective channels for this," said Carlos Hidalgo, CEO and Principal at ANNUITAS.

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