Email Drip vs. Lead Nurturing Campaigns – What’s the Difference?

In Client Retention, Lead Generation by Kari SwitalaLeave a Comment

One size does not fit all when it comes to automated marketing campaigns. It’s important to identify your target audience and the goals of your campaign prior to determining your course of action. Two great marketing approaches – email drip marketing and lead nurturing marketing – both ensure excellent results  when utilized appropriately. Let’s explore what differentiates these marketing approaches so you can determine which one is the most fitting for your next campaign! (And pssst! It’s ok to use both!)

What is email drip marketing?

In much the same way a drip coffee pot brews coffee one consistent drop at a time, email drip marketing sends out identical automated emails to every prospect or customer on a set time schedule. In this way, the only factor that dictates this process is time. Same recipients. Same message. Predetermined time interval.

When should I implement email drip marketing?

Before you start to think that email drip marketing sounds like a cop-out, rest assured that it certainly has its place! Drip marketing can be very effective when it comes to:

  • Keeping your brand top-of-mind
  • Educating your prospects on your product or service portfolio
  • Showcasing your best-selling products
  • Introducing your prospects to new products and services

The goal of an email drip marketing campaign is to achieve an immediate ROI by guiding prospects quickly down the sales funnel towards conversion. An IBM study reports that email drip marketing yields a 48% increase in repeat sales!

A word of caution with email drip marketing, however. Avoid sending out these emails too frequently or they may be perceived as spam. Remember, you want to keep your prospects engaged with your brand – not annoyed by it.

What is lead nurturing marketing?

Whereas time is the only factor that affects email drip marketing, lead nurturing is dictated by prospect behavior, or the way prospects engage with your brand.

How does a lead nurturing marketing campaign work?

When your prospect engages in a predetermined behavior, they receive a targeted email. For example, your prospect may receive a targeted email when they:

  • Read a certain whitepaper on your website
  • Visit a certain page on your website “x” number of times
  • Search your website for a specific category of products or services
  • Attend a webinar
  • Browse your blog posts predominantly along a certain theme

The goal of a lead nurturing marketing campaign is to deliver pertinent emails at crucial points in the sales cycle. A study by Marketing Sherpa reports a 45% higher ROI with lead nurturing as opposed to other non-lead nurturing marketing approaches on account of the customized nature of the campaign. When prospects receive emails based off of their behavior patterns, they feel a growing sense of trust and relationship with your brand. Clearly, you are their go-to for a specific product or service because you “get them.”

While both of these marketing approaches can individually and effectively engage prospects with your brand, enacting a combination of the two campaign strategies creates top-of-mind awareness while at the same time quickly converting ripe leads. You may even determine that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

If your automated campaigns could use some help, or if you’d like to get started on implementing an automated marketing campaign for your business, contact us today. We’d love to help you reach your goals.

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