Gaining a new lead for your business through your marketing efforts requires a ton of strategic and creative energy (not to mention the financial costs).

Build on that effort by establishing relationships with your leads so they become not just customers but promoters of your business.

Can we talk about the word “nurture” for a moment? The word literally means: 

  • to support
  • to encourage
  • to foster, and
  • to educate another.

A well-developed lead nurturing program will do exactly that. 

Hands giving water and fertilizer to five plants in different stages of growth

Nurture + Leads = Relationships

Effective lead nurturing builds relationships with prospective customers with the expressed hope of earning their business when they're ready

Lead nurturing with this mindset is an important tenet to inbound marketing because when you consider nurturing leads as an opportunity to provide true value to your leads and customers,  you help them grow with your business. 

Why should your business set up a lead nurturing strategy?

Because effective businesses say that lead nurturing literally opened up their inbound marketing efforts, bringing in: 

The fact is that without nurturing your leads, 79% of them won’t convert to customers.

But if you take the time to nurture your potential customers, you can make a big difference to them AND your business. 

Lead Nurturing Basics

Lead nurturing comes down to approaching your prospect at the right time with the right information. 

How do you know IF a potential customer wants to be approached by your business?

Through their actions:

  • Requesting more information
  • Downloading a product guide, or
  • Accessing a white paper, checklist, tool, or free offering on your website.   

Marketing automation through HubSpot makes it easier to deliver answers at the right time and help your marketing and sales teams scale their efforts. 

The next thing is to determine 3 other foundational factors:

  • How they want to receive information.
  • Where they prefer to receive information.
  • When they are ready to hear you out. 

The How

Once you’ve identified your buyer personas, create content specifically for “these, your people” in a way that they prefer to receive it. Use what you know to provide them with answers, solutions, and assistance vs. “products and services.” 

Remember, it’s a mindset. It’s a give without a get. 

Know who needs what you’re uniquely qualified to offer (know your buyer personas) and create content specifically for them.

The Where

Show up ready to serve in the email inbox, social media feeds, and Google searches of each of your buyer personas. Engage and delight them with your brand, your information, and your unique value right where they are. 

The When

Some people are ready to buy, and some are still thinking about it.

Know the difference and act accordingly. That means serving people exactly where they are. One is not better than the other. They each just need different approaches.

Have a strategy for each stage of your buyer’s journey and meet them exactly where they are. 

Pro Tips: 

  • Be Responsive: Be quick to respond when people engage with your content, email, social media post or ad, website CTAs, etc. This is a strong indication that they are someone you can help in some way. 

Building relationships with people who reach out to you starts with being responsive in a way that shows them you’re right there. It’s also your first opportunity to show what kind of customer service you offer.

At every turn, show them what you’ve got.

  • Be Human:  Just because we create digital content, we don’t have to act like robots. The most delightful communication comes from humans being human—even in the automation process

Using automated responses that are appropriate and specific to every type of engagement on your website can be done in a way that helps both your leads and your business.

Again, engage, delight, foster, protect. 

Also, talk to people in your social media comments and feeds.

Reach out in order to serve a need. When you engage leads with a spirit of service (not with the mindset of selling), people who need you recognize your value and become not just customers but evangelists for your business. 

This is the key to gaining customers with whom your business has a long-term relationship. It’s the mindset that allows your business to create a long-lasting, positive impact on your industry. 


At the end of the day, the responsibility for lead nurturing should absolutely focus on engaging with your leads and customers in a way that encourages them to progress toward a specific action that will sustain them AND your business. 

If you consider nurturing leads as an opportunity to share something of value with people who can really use solutions that only you provide in exactly the way you provide it, you build more than just a business. You build relationships with people who will grow your business. 

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