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How under-watering a lead results in certain death

Leads are like plants: If you under water them, they will die!

I hit an important landmark in my life this summer – the planters that I bought for my back porch lived for eight whole weeks before they died (sigh). I always have good intentions, but somewhere in the busyness of summer life, I simply forgot to give them water. Newsflash: Regardless of how much you want, need, or love those plants, if you don’t give them the right amount of water, they will indeed die.

Our potential leads are just like plants. No matter how much you love, need, or want to keep them alive, if you do not provide proper nurturing, they too will die. You need to optimize your lead nurturing in order to see results.

“Lead generation is important – but it is only one piece of the puzzle” — Neil Patel

What is lead nurturing?

The goal of lead nurturing is to build up a relationship with a lead before pushing a sale onto them. Keep these points in mind when you’re building relationships with individuals who are not currently ready to buy but who could be ideal customers in the future.


According to Forbes, only 27% of leads are ever contacted. So, before you tackle anything else, put your lead-to-contact rate at the top of your to-do list.


At many companies, the average lead response time is nearly 47 hours. That time frame may have worked in the past, but online consumers have very little patience. If you want to convert leads into sales, timing is everything. But just how important is speed to conversion, and how fast should your follow up be? Let’s see what the numbers say.

According to a Velocify survey, lead conversions are 391% higher if you call within a minute of an online inquiry. Waiting an additional minute drops that to 120%, and if you wait an hour, it drops to 36%.

According to Dan V., a marketing expert at Skipio, “not all companies have the funding to to invest in a 100,000 telephone platform, thus the need to for Ringless Voicemail and automated texting options.” You can still contact them within a minute and achieve those same results.


Did you know that you can actually take all guesswork right out of caring for your plants by learning how to read a plant tag? Plant tags show you all the information you need to keep the plants healthy and growing – sunlight needs, watering requirements, growth rate, and more!

Potential customers, without knowing it, come with a set of instructions too. We live in a world of data-rich technology. Use that technology to make a “lead tag” and use it at every touchpoint. Here are some examples of data enrichments questions to ask your leads:

  • What industry are you currently in?
  • How many employees do you have?
  • Which products are you interested in?
  • What’s your company size?
  • What is your job title or role?

Despite the clear benefits of lead nurturing, a 2013 study by MarketingSherpa indicates that only 36% of marketers actively nurture their sales leads. That means 64% of marketers are likely pushing a sale on their leads before they are ready.

Lead nurturing is a lot like dating. Pushing that sale without first building a relationship is like asking someone to marry you on the first date. Sure, it happens with a small rate of success, but it’s certainly not recommended.

The result

If you have followed all of the instructions and a lead is still not responding, ask yourself, “Is the lead a good fit for my business? Or does this lead need more time?” There’s no amount of nurturing you can do to force a lead to convert if the fit or timing isn’t right. Know when to let go, and then do it. Once a plant is dead, there is no amount of money that will bring it back.