I recently did a podcast interview with Kavit Haria from Insider Internet Success about how to follow up with and nurture leads–an often-neglected part of a small business’s marketing system. Click the video below to watch the interview, or read the transcript below.
Kevin Jordan: Hi, there. It’s Kevin Jordan, owner of Redpoint Marketing Consultants and a certified Duct Tape Marketing Consultant, here with another episode of “The Small Business Marketing Minute Show.” Which is a show that helps you, the busy small business owner, with simple, affordable, and practical tips to grow your business and teaches you the famous Duct Tape Marketing System.
My special guest on the show today is Kavit Haria, and Kavit is the owner and founder of Insider Internet Success, and with his flagship program called Automated Business System, he helps new business owners go from zero to 6 figures of revenue within their first year. You know, at Duct Tape Marketing, we are all about marketing systems, so he’s going to share a little bit about his marketing system with us today and teach us about how to generate and nurture leads. Let’s hear what Kavit has to say.
Kavit, thanks for coming on the Podcast.
Kavit Haria: Oh, my pleasure, Kevin.
Kevin Jordan: Today we’re talking about the lead flow and lead nurturing, and I think, for a lot of local business owners, this idea that there’s going to be some time in between when someone first learns about their business and the time they actually write them a check and that space used to be filled with something, is a little bit of a foreign concept. Duct Tape Marketing, we talk about the “marketing hourglass” and building “know, like, trust” and then having the “try” and the “buy,” but a lot of business owners just try and go right from the know to the buy. Tell me a little bit about what the purpose of lead nurturing is and why it’s important and maybe some best practices about the process.
Kavit Haria: Sure. I think it’s a fantastic topic as well, Kevin. I’ve been a fan of John and Duct Tape Marketing for many, many years and I’ve been reading the blog, a lot of the guides, so I’m familiar with the hourglass concept. What really strikes me as the place to make money, if you like, the sweet spot, is not getting people to your website and not actually closing the sale, of course, that’s what converts the sale, but it’s the space in between, where somebody could come to you and right away is immediately ready to buy, and somebody could come to you and is not ready to buy. There’s a whole lot more percentage of people that are not ready to buy right away, so what do you do with them?
What I like to do is give them something of really good value immediately. Really get them, as quickly as possible, to know me, to like me, and to trust me. It could be a free report, it could be a free video, it could be a guide, it could be a best tips document, it could be a cheat-sheet, it could be a formula. It could be something they take away, if you’ve got a shop, that, for giving you their information, they take something away that you’ve created and that could be the value that they leave with.
Now that you’ve got their information and you’ve got their permission to be in touch with them, on a regular basis, you can start to send them e-mails or letters or people do it by SMS or by video or whatever it would be. Let’s just use e-mails as the example. You can send regular e-mails with a regular schedule or automated to get them to know who you are, to get the prospect to know what exactly it is that you do, the case studies that you might have, or the success stories and testimonials that you might have that could enhance their opportunity for trusting you, which then moves them a lot more closer to the sale.
What I’m getting at is that anybody who has a business that is driving a lot of people to the business, whether it’s on the website or on your landing page or to the store or to the shop or whatever it is, you’ve got so many people. They are coming, but what are you doing to then, those that don’t buy, to make sure that you maximize the opportunity over the next 4, 10 weeks, 2 months, 6 months, 8 months, a year or 2 years, to get them to really form a very close, strong bond and connection so that they know who you are and what you’re about so they can move on to want to do a deal with you or purchase some of the stuff that you have?
Kevin Jordan: Right, exactly. I think something that a lot of people don’t understand is that it doesn’t really cost you anything to have people on your e-mail list that aren’t engaging with you and might not want to buy anything from you right now. People say, “Well, they’re not opening my e-mails. My open rate’s only 50% or 30%,” or whatever it happens to be, but the thing is, if they’re still getting the e-mail, they probably will see it, even if they’re just deleting it without opening it. Then, all of a sudden, that day, when they do have a need for your service all of a sudden, there’s your e-mail again and this time they open it.
It’s not like it’s costing you anything extra to have more people on your list than just not doing anything with them.
Kavit Haria: Right. For me, lead nurturing, just my own business, lead nurturing is 100% responsible for all our sales revenue. I say that because all the marketing that I’m doing is to get people to take away some of the great stuff that we’ll offer for free in exchange for our permission to keep in touch with them. Just by keeping in touch with them on a regular basis, we’ll get an inquiry for a sale and that sale will come through, and then we’ll go back and look at the software to see when this person actually signed up, just to get some statistics and analysis, and they’ll have signed up 2 years ago.
Kevin Jordan: Right.
Kavit Haria: They’ve never contacted us, they’ve never written to us. Some of the e-mails, most of them in the early days, they might have read and then they took a whole chunk of time where they didn’t read anything.
Kevin Jordan: Right.
Kavit Haria: Then they read the last 2 or 3 ones, and there you go, you’ve got a sale.
Kevin Jordan: Right.
Kavit Haria: They’ve been on the list for so long, it’s taken that long for them to nurture. Here’s the thing: Everybody has different buying cycles. You go to a car shop to buy a new car and you may be the kind of person that, within a week or 2 weeks, you’ve made your decision. All it took was one test drive. You may also, on the other hand, be the other kind of person, in which it takes 6 months to buy that whole process. We’ll basically create this whole structure of how you follow up with them on a regular basis so that they actually buy. It doesn’t matter what their buying cycle is, basically.
Kevin Jordan: Right.
Kavit Haria: Another example: My dad, he bought a television. I remember when I was younger he bought this brand-new television, the flat-screen ones. We used to have the big, block ones, and now he bought the flat-screen one. It took him 6 months to research a TV that was about $800. Six months, can you imagine? People just walk in the store immediately and buy. That company that he then bought from, if you look back at all the marketing they did, they were connected were connected to them on a regular basis through their fliers, through their online marketing, all sorts of things. All of that is nurturing, fostering a relationship that gets him to trust them, to say, “You know what? I’m going to go with this company?”
Kevin Jordan: Right. Let’s go back to that first contacts, where you’re actually trying to get the person on your list, get their information so you can begin that process. We often speak of lead magnets, in other words, something that’s going to attract them to you so you can capture their information. What are some of your favorite lead magnets? You mentioned free guides, free reports, that kind of thing. Can you give some specifics as to things that you’ve seen work really well for that?
Kavit Haria: Yeah, sure. One of my favorites is a free CD or a free DVD. Especially for local businesses, because everybody’s driving around. They can easily put a CD into the car and listen to a 60-minute or a 45-minute or even a 30-minute advice guide, where, let’s just say, you’re looking for advice on how to do online marketing. Let’s just give that as a really simple, basic example. That, if you were selling services on how to do online marketing, you could put together a CD that people could take away for free if they come to you or you could post it out to them for free, and in exchange, they get to listen to that, you get their value, their information, and they get some great content, like a free seminar in the car as they drive. That’s really one of my favorite ones.
I see a lot of people doing webinars for free, which is a fantastic way to collect information and give great value. The simplest of them all would have to be a guide or a free report or a free guide or a free white paper that they could download off the site. It doesn’t have to be very long, 5 to 6 to 7 pages maximum, I think, with some really good information that solves some of their best problems that they have. As long as you’re solving the number 1 or number 2 or number 3 of the biggest problems and challenges and issues, then I think that you have a great guide that people will definitely want to download.
Kevin Jordan: Yeah, absolutely. You might be thinking, if you’re listening to this, “Well, I’m a plumber. People don’t want to learn anything from me, they just want their pipes fixed,” but if you’re a plumber and you are going to people’s homes to fix their plumbing, they’re homeowners. Homeowners have all kinds of problems that they need help with. Anything that you can do to help them save time or money, whether it’s directly related to plumbing or not, is something that you can teach them about. It could be from you or from strategic partners that you have. You could get a couple different businesses who serve homeowners to teach them just best practices about how to better maintain and care for their home. There is always something that your target market needs, information that they want to learn, that you can provide them.
Kavit Haria: Yeah, exactly, and one of the greatest things you could do on any of these pieces is, if you had a 3 or 4 page guide, add an extra 4 or 5 pages, but fill them with testimonials, fill them with case studies, fill them with letterhead pieces that those companies or other clients have sent to you to say how great your work has been. That’s going to do all the selling for you.
Kevin Jordan: Yeah.
Kavit Haria: It will shorten the lead-generation timeline.
Kevin Jordan: Yup, absolutely. In Duct Tape Marketing, we call that the marketing kit. I can’t remember the episode, but I have a previous episode where I teach you how to create exactly that. I’ll make sure to reference that in the show notes. We’ve talked a little bit about the nurturing process. Can you share a case study about a specific campaign that you’ve put together for a local business that you can use to illustrate this a little better?
Kavit Haria: Yeah, sure, absolutely. Now, most of the work that I do in terms of lead nurturing is online, but the businesses are offline. This is really quite interesting, because there’s a company called SIR 101 in Canada. They have 3 clinics, they’re basically a hair restoration company, so people that are balding or have hair issues, they basically help sort those things out. Here’s a company that charges $2-$3000 for their service. They have a website which is really poorly done and they were getting some traffic to it, but they were not doing anything with it. They are the kind of people that are getting a lot of people to their site and even to their store or to respond to their ads, but, apart from those that buy, they don’t do anything with those that don’t buy.
What we did is we helped them put together something called a free hair analysis, so that was their lead magnet, essentially. The free hair analysis is something that you fill out online, it’s a form, and you basically talk about your hair issues and you give them your name, your information, your gender, your age range, et cetera, and they ask a few extra things, so it’s a bit of a longer-winded form, but it qualifies because it then says that, “This is the right solution for you,” or “This is not the right solution for you,” et cetera. Then what happens is, as soon as somebody fills out the form, the information goes onto their database.
They immediately get thank-you e-mails. “Thank you for filling out this form. We’ll be in touch shortly. By the way, we’re also going to send you, over the next few days, a few really interesting tips and tricks that I think that you’ll find really interesting and useful as you wait for us to talk to you.” They get the thank-you e-mail and then, over a period of 2 to 3 weeks, they get a series of e-mails every 4 or 5 days that gives them insights and ideas and things that they could be researching and looking at and reading. Interesting articles, news posts, maybe celebrities with the same issue that have gone through the process, case studies, and before-and-after pictures of people that have had hair issues and then they look really good because their hair issues have been sorted.
Then what they do is, the people that are on the hair analysis get a phone call to say, “Well, we got your hair analysis request. Here’s what we can do for you and here’s the price.” They have 40% of people that, because they capture the information, first of all, go ahead and purchase. Then the rest of the people that don’t purchase get the rest of the e-mail sequence.
Kevin Jordan: Okay.
Kavit Haria: The e-mail sequence gets them to say, “Well, if you still are interested, we’re happy to help you. Click here to call us or click here to e-mail us and we’ll call you back.” Now that e-mail sequence has upped the conversion rate by another 25%.
Kevin Jordan: Right.
Kavit Haria: Now they’re converting the whole traffic at about 65%, and in just 4 months of having this sequence, they’ve done over $45,000. Just from this sequence. That shows the power of following up, keeping in touch, building relationships, and generating trust.
Kevin Jordan: Yeah, I love that example because it speaks to such a common problem that I see, where a business gets so excited when they see a lead come in and they call them up and the person says, “Thanks, but no thanks. I don’t want to buy.” Then nothing ever happens with that person again. That just goes to show that you need to keep following up with that person. When someone says no, that’s not a no forever. In most cases, it’s just a no for right now. The company that spends the time and energy to continue the follow-up process is the one that’s going to eventually get the sale.
Kavit Haria: Right, exactly. You know, just as a last point, I guess, if there’s ever an audience that is a perfect match for you, I don’t think you can ever get a no. The no is just temporary. The only way you can get a permanent no is if there’s a mismatch in your audience and what you do.
Kevin Jordan: Right. In which case, you don’t want them as a customer anyway.
Kavit Haria: Exactly.
Kevin Jordan: All right, so we’ve shared a lot of great information today. Why don’t you tell listeners and viewers how they can learn a little bit more about you and stay connected with you and continue the learning process?
Kavit Haria: Yeah, I appreciate that. I’m Kavit Haria and you can find me at InsiderInternetSuccess.com. I-N-S-I-D-E-R, InsiderInternetSuccess.com. The work we do is about helping established businesses and start-ups essentially automate their marketing so they get more results out of the work that they’re doing and they get a lot more sales revenue from that. You can find me there. Join our e-mail list. We write a lot of great e-mails and hopefully you’ll benefit from some of that stuff. If you ever want to talk, then I’m on social media too.
Kevin Jordan: All right. You’ve got a lot of great videos on your website too. I was watching some of them before the interview, so definitely check out that. I’ll make sure and put that link in the show notes and the blog post for this episode. Connect with Kavit and continue learning from him about lead nurturing and automating your marketing process. Kavit, thanks for coming on the show and thanks for all the great information.
Kavit Haria: I appreciate it, Kevin. It was good fun.
Kevin Jordan: All right.