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Four email marketing drip strategies to rehash leads that didn’t sell

Every home improvement company is unique, based on the products they sell, the services they provide, and the areas they serve. But, in our years working closely with this industry, we’ve seen that every home improvement company has the same goal: to generate a steady stream of leads. One way to get more leads? Drip marketing.

Home improvement contractors spend a lot on lead generation. And, in our experience, most companies do a good job of tracking these leads by channel in their CRM and reaching out to them via phone calls to set up appointments. But, the outreach generally ends there.

Phone calls vs. emails

Think for a moment about how many phone calls from unknown numbers that you get every day. Personally, I’ve received nine in the past week (I even got one while writing this article!) Do you know how many I answered? Not a single one. I always let those phone calls go straight to voicemail, and if they continue to call, I may block the number.

Now, as a comparison, think about the number of email messages you get every day. Likely dozens, and sure, you probably don’t even open all of them. But, I know that when I’m going through my emails, at the very least, I read the subject line to determine if I want to open it or immediately delete it. It gives companies an opportunity to reach me with little effort on their part and little annoyance on mine.

While calling leads can be an effective marketing method, and it’s not something you should completely abandon, we believe that people are much more likely to open an email than answer a phone call. If your email marketing strategy does not consist of sending targeted email messages to the unsold leads, you’re missing out on an important opportunity.

Things to know before getting started

Before we go any further with telling you who to email and what messages will resonate with them the most, here are a few things to keep in mind:

Is your CRM up to date?

Your CRM and the data that lives in it is one of your most valuable assets. Drip marketing messages will only be effective if the data in your CRM is clean and you’re sending appropriate messages to the right people.

For example, you wouldn’t want to send a customer who just remodeled their bathroom with you a message that says, “Still thinking about a bathroom renovation? Here’s 15% off just for you.”

What is an email drip?

We’ll use this term throughout the article. A drip campaign involves sending out multiple pieces of content (in this case, emails) over a period of time to lists of prospects/leads that you’ve captured in your CRM.

For example, an email drip may include an initial email with a survey asking the lead why they changed their mind. If they fill out the survey, a second email may automatically be triggered to send that thanks them for filling out the survey and includes an exclusive offer for them based on their response (i.e., If they answered that the price was too high, you could offer them $500 off their original quote).

What does “rehash” mean?

In this context, “rehash” means sending new messages to leads that previously showed an interest in your services and then went cold again.

Email marketing best practices: the four email drips you should be sending

Email Marketing

1. Email drips for “sit-no-sell” / “demo-no-sale” leads

Scenario:

A salesperson goes out to a lead’s home and gives their sales pitch, but the lead doesn’t buy.

Anytime your sales team does an in-home presentation for a lead that doesn’t end up buying, you should update your CRM accordingly and move that lead to a “rehash” bucket. Then, pull a report of all “rehashed” leads so you can add them to your email drip.

How to reach them in a meaningful way:

Send these sit no sell leads a simple email with a built-in survey and a customized message along the lines of “You trusted us to come in your home…” The survey should ask if they’re still interested in the project you quoted or what made them change their mind.

Other emails in your drip may include more information about your installers’ process, previous customer testimonials, etc. The final email in this drip series should include a special, limited time offer to entice them to buy, with a clear call to action.

Why it matters:

Between the cost of your lead source and your salesperson’s salary, leads who have had an in-person appointment can cost you hundreds or thousands of dollars. These are some of the most valuable leads in your CRM, but they are time sensitive because you know they’re serious about hiring someone soon.

Reaching them with a targeted message and a special offer based on their appointment could be the difference between them choosing you over another vendor.

2. Email drips for previous customers

Scenario:

A customer has previously purchased something and you want to entice them to buy a different product or service you offer.

You should already have all of your previous customers in your CRM and marked as such. If you offer multiple services, you can use this as an opportunity to show them your other services and try to get them to buy. For example, if you did a minor repair on their home, you should market to them for a bigger project.

How to reach them in a meaningful way:

Try to entice them to purchase another project by showcasing your other services. We recommend specifically tying your email to their previous purchase so it seems more personal.

So, if you have replaced the doors in a customer’s home, this is a great opportunity to email them about your window replacement services. Similarly, if you replaced their roof, email them a special offer for gutter replacement.

Why it matters:

These customers have already purchased something from you, meaning they’re more likely to do it again, if they receive the right messaging. You also want to stay fresh in their mind so that the next time they think about a home improvement project, you’re the first ones they turn to.

3. Email drips for leads who canceled prior to issue

Scenario:

A lead filled out a form on your website, a salesperson reached out to them to set up an appointment, the appointment was confirmed with the lead, but then the lead cancels before the salesperson comes to their home.

In this situation, you have a lead that took the first step to convert, but something made them change their mind at the last minute. You’ll want to try to reach them quickly to see what changed and if there’s something you can do to reschedule their appointment.

How to reach them in a meaningful way:

You should start by checking to see if they’re still interested. Your first email in this drip series could include a survey asking if they still want to upgrade their home or asking why they changed their mind. You should also include a special, exclusive offer to pique their interest.

In subsequent drips, you could include blog posts from your website that show the value of your products and services and include testimonials from happy, previous customers. In your final email of the drip, include information about your financing options and invite them to contact you so you talk more in-depth about their specific project.

Why it matters:

Similarly to “sit-no-sell” leads, you know these leads were interested enough in your services to initially book an appointment, but you don’t know what caused them to change their mind. If you can figure that out, you have a real shot at setting up another appointment and eventually making the sell.

4. Email drips for warming up cold leads

Scenario:

A lead filled out a form on your website, but they haven’t yet been contacted by a salesperson.

You know this lead has at least a preliminary interest in your services, and if sent the correct messages, they could turn into a sale worth thousands.

How to reach them in a meaningful way:

At this point, you don’t know how much the lead knows about your services or what they need from you. Use a drip series to survey them about the services they’re most interested in and tailor subsequent messages accordingly.

For example, if you send a survey in the first email and they indicate they are looking for a bathroom remodel, your next email could include a blog post about the benefits of a walk-in shower or the types of tubs you offer. Then, the following email could include a special offer specific to bathroom remodels and an invitation to set up an appointment with a salesperson.

Why it matters:

Not all leads are ready to buy at the time they enter your system. These leads already took the first step to show they’re interested in your services, now they’re expecting you to convince them why you’re the right choice for their needs. Sending them an automated email drip with relevant messaging could be all it takes.

The importance of quality CRM data

As we mentioned at the start of this article, these email drip campaigns will only be successful if your data is tended correctly. If you’re not already sorting your leads, you need to start today!

Why is it so important? Well, imagine emailing a customer who just purchased new windows with a message that says, “We’re sorry you didn’t purchase anything.” This will make a bad impression with the customer and it will likely cause them to turn to another contractor for future home improvement work.

Unfortunately, updating the information in your CRM isn’t something your marketing agency can do; it must be done internally to truly be successful because only your employees know the true ins and outs of how your business operates. But your marketing agency should be communicating with you regularly about when your data is updated so they can complement that with appropriate messaging.

What’s the return on investment?

We get it. All of this sounds great, but if it’s not helping you make money, what’s the point?

On average, if you can get 3-5 sit-no-sell leads to sell in a year, you’ll cover the cost of your marketing agency. Sounds pretty good, right?

Obviously, this is just one part of an overall marketing plan, but when it works, it really works.

Need some help getting started? Set up a free 30-minute consultation to see if we’re the right fit for your organization.

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Ashley is our Communications Specialist. She covers topics related to email marketing, SEO, and digital marketing.

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