A Simple Formula for Concise Lead Nurturing Messages

October 24, 2017 by

Last month, while writing several lead-nurturing emails for a client, I was reminded of a technique which is so easy and effective, I’m surprised I haven’t written about it before.

It’s a great technique for quickly generating effective lead-nurturing messages of many kinds. In fact, I used this same technique in every email in the series, even though each promoted a different type of content. That’s why I want to share this technique with you today.

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Why lead nurturing messages should be concise

Prospects on your house mailing list know who you are. They know your brand. They’re familiar with at least some of your offerings. They’re interested in your expertise and the solutions you offer to solve their problems. They’re just not ready to buy, yet.

They may not have budget right now, or maybe they just need more information. But whatever the reason, you want to be ready for them – and you want them to be ready for you – when the time comes.

So, you want to keep them engaged. Maintain their awareness. Build greater trust. Provide that additional information they need. You also want them to be aware of any new helpful content you’ve just released, new products or product upgrades, exclusive offers, or anything else that might be of interest to them. That’s what your lead-nurturing communications do.

You need to remember, though, that prospects on your opt-in list already trust you to some extent; they don’t need a lot of convincing. And they’re busy. They want to find out quickly if your message is relevant to them. They want you to cut to the chase.

That’s why your lead nurturing communications should be as concise as possible.

The not-so-secret formula for concise lead nurturing

The technique I alluded to earlier is based on a formula commonly used in B2B messaging, but in a most abbreviated form. It’s extremely concise: a headline plus six to ten lines of text – usually less than 120 words. It’s also quite versatile: usable for emails, PPC ads, landing pages, ads in your company newsletters, and other lead-nurturing communications

And it’s simple: Problem – Solution – Call to Action.

Now, you may be thinking. “Well, heck, we use the problem/solution formula every day, in all kinds of promotions. That’s hardly news.” The trick here, though, for a lead-nurturing application, is to strip the formula to its essentials. Make it as brief as possible.

Here’s the problem/solution formula for lead nurturing in more detail:

  • Headline: Brief and to the point; grab the target prospect’s attention.
  • Problem: One paragraph of two or three sentences; provoke the reader’s concern.
  • Solution: Another single paragraph of two or three sentences; briefly describe your content offering and its primary benefit to the target prospect.
  • Call to action: A phrase like “Learn more: Download our…,” followed by a link to your content download or landing page.

Here’s an example of this formula in the body of a lead nurturing email:

Why every company needs an arc flash risk management plan

European safety standards obligate companies to provide for the safety of workers doing work on, with or near electrical installations. Yet, these same standards are not specific in how to assess and manage the risk of one of the most dangerous of all electrical safety hazards: Arc flash.

Discover the fundamentals of creating an effective arc flash risk management plan for your facility. Elektrolik has put together a free Arc Risk Management Guide to help companies assure compliance with European safety standards.

Learn more: Download our Arc Risk Management Guide <link>.

As you can see, this email begins with a brief headline that addresses a specific target prospect: plant or building safety managers and electrical safety engineers. That’s followed by a two-sentence paragraph which outlines the problem and gives the target reader reason for concern. Then, there is another two-sentence paragraph which offers both a helpful solution to the problem, and a desirable benefit to be gained. Finally, we have a simple call to action that follows the formula. Length: 101 words.

Also, note the word ‘discover’ which opens the solution paragraph. This is a great technique to set up both the introduction of your content offer and your call to action: a sort of “heads up” to your CTA.

Variations on the theme

There are at least two slight variations on this quick, problem/solution formula. The ones I can think of are the challenge – solution, and the news – find out more variations.

The challenge/solution variation is for case studies or customer success stories. It’s basically the same as the problem/solution format, except the opening paragraph usually says something about the customer profiled in the story. This first paragraph may also highlight a ‘challenge’ – for improvement, to reduce risk, or for the company providing the solution – rather than a problem to be solved.

Here’s an example of a challenge/solution lead-nurturing email:

How Elektrolik helped PNF achieve a higher level of safety

Petrolio Nazional Fredonia (PNF) is Fredonia’s largest natural gas provider, producing some 17 billion m³ of gas each year. At PNF, safety is paramount, as it is throughout the oil and gas industry. In an environment filled with flammable materials, an arc flash in an electrical system could easily lead to disaster.

Discover why PNF chose Elektrolik to perform an arc flash hazard analysis on its facilities. Our new case study describes how Elektrolik worked with PNF during the risk assessment process. And you’ll find out why PNF are convinced their decision has had a profound, positive impact on safety – for both their company and their work force.

Learn more: Download our case study <link>

Finally, the news/find-out-more variation is a good format for informing your prospects of new offerings and product upgrades. It can help you get brochures, data sheets, trial software and free tools into those prospects’ hands. Here’s an example:

Announcing LVnet 4.0 and its unique ArcHaz module

Elektrolik’s design system for configuring low-voltage networks is now even better. Along with an upgraded user interface and appearance, LVnet 4.0 introduces ArcHaz, a new module which allows power system design engineers to perform a comprehensive arc flash hazard analysis on networks they are designing. ArcHaz also helps engineers mitigate arc flash risk using Elektrolik safety products.

LVnet 4.0 is the only free tool that allows engineers to perform arc flash hazard analyses on their designs.  The LVnet 4.0 brochure has all the details – including how to download your free copy of LVnet 4.0 with ArcHaz.

Learn more: Download the LVnet 4.0 brochure <link>

Here, as you can see, most of the email is devoted to the ‘news.’ The second paragraph acts as a bridge to the ‘find out more’ call to action.

Take-away Points

Prospects on you opt-in list know you. They don’t really need convincing of the value your content offers. But they are busy. They want you to get to your point quickly. That’s why your lead nurturing messages should be concise.

A very concise format for effective lead-nurturing messages is the problem/solution formula.

The problem/solution formula consists of four parts:

  • Headline
  • Problem
  • Solution
  • Call to action

Variations on the problem/solution formula include:

  • Challenge/solution (for case studies)
  • News/find-out-more (for new offerings and upgrades)

Next Steps

Need some lead-nurturing communications written to support a new campaign? Call CopyEngineer at (+39) 011 569 4951. Or drop me an email at info@copyengineer.com.

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