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Lead generation is a strategy that is as old as time. For as long as human beings knew how to trade, they were always on the lookout for a good lead. Soon, ancient merchants became modern-day salespeople, and now lead generation has become both simple and complex with the use of technology. Technology and the Internet explosion have provided marketers with ways to entice prospects, turn them into leads, and convert them into customers.
What is lead generation?
So how do we understand lead generation? From a marketing perspective, lead generation is how marketers initiate customer interest into a service or product offered by a business. The endpoint of any lead generation process is conversion – to transform this interest into sales.
“Old school” lead generation practices could range from door-to-door offerings, direct mail, networking, open houses, or putting up “for sale” signs. These traditional tactics are still effective to a certain degree, depending on the nature of the product or service. As long as the tactic generates demand for the product, the old ways of lead generation still work. However, with more and more customers relying heavily on the Internet for product searches, marketers are now challenged to use social media to generate customer leads.
The importance of generating leads
If you’re not already doing so, your business may have missed the chance of boosting revenue through lead generation. Lead generation is now a must-do for small businesses seeking growth. Why must you generate leads? It’s quite basic. If you’re a business, you need customers. To access these customers, you must first get their attention. This basic business-building element is called lead generation.
Leads can be forwarded to the sales team so that they can be converted to buying customers. This process usually entails building an email list so these leads can be further nurtured. Now that advanced analytic tools and business intelligence software are within reach, you can have the ability to track customer trends and track product/service derived from the lead generation data.
Lead generation is not just a hype that businesses should hop into to be trendy. Lead generation is vital if you want to grow your business. Think about it. If your website can create massive traffic, it could lead to greater sales and more importantly, higher conversion. Having a good lead generation traffic allows you form a target group to anyone using the Internet for information search on a product or service and to buy it.
Remember that most of the client pool uses the Internet to buy products. Google has made it especially easy for businesses to connect with potential clients who are searching for products and services you offer. Connect with them and let them know how your business is different and better from your competitors. If your potential client comes across great content they identify with and like, it may turn into a lead and eventually, a purchasing client. Having an effective lead generation process helps search for your ideal customers.
Yet turning a lead into a client requires that you know how to succeed with lead generation. The advantages of having a lead generation campaign are manifold. A mere six hours a week of using social media can improve your lead generation. Yet, not even a quarter of companies approve of the amount of leads generated.
Lead Generation is the most important aspect of the marketing funnel.
Pexels photo by Pixabay
While lead generation is a desirable marketing idea, executing it is another thing altogether. A survey suggests that 85% of marketers agreed that lead generation is a primary weapon in their marketing tactic, yet only 42% of entrepreneurs have a lead generation plan in place. You know what they say, when you fail to plan, you plan to fail. This sets apart successful businesses that use lead generation for their competition advantage from those who don’t.
Effective lead generation strategies
A lead generation plan needs to integrate tested and proven lead capture tactics that will surely improve the amount of generated leads. Here are some pro tips:
- Website forms
Placing a basic form on your business website pages and requesting interested users to complete it and in return, get great content such as a checklist, how-to video, an eBook, a webinar, or a simple newsletter can work wonders for capturing leads. The idea here is to perfectly blend your website design with the lead capture form. Remember, you can’t just offer anything without seriously knowing your potential customer. Give them something that speaks to them or sparks their interest, whether that is visual content or life hacks article or a video.
- Google Ads
Google provides an efficient platform to capture potential leads. Targeted ads containing relevant keywords can guide a potential client’s attention when they do their online searches. That user will be directed to your website or a landing page which can significantly boost lead generation. It’s economical too, since you pay only when the user clicks the ad. Business owners have a lot to gain if they emphasize the use of Google Ads in their lead generation plan.
- Direct emails
Sometimes, the most ideal way to capture a lead is to do it organically. Growing your business, after all, isn’t done overnight. Direct emails are a natural way of capturing new leads. People use email as their official communication platform, and this is where most users interact. If you are a business owner, you can send direct emails in your immediate community to get you noticed. By email, for instance, to all homeowners in your area, you instantly announce your product or service but also inform them of promo codes to use to gain more value for their buck. Emailing may seem so “old school” but the returns on your leads are great!
- Email lists
Ensuring an email marketing plan in your overall marketing strategy cannot be overemphasized. Email is a proven method of capturing new leads and attracting new customers. Continuously growing your email list is a crucial lead generation strategy. Why so?
An email marketing database actually is cut down to over 22.5% yearly. As contacts go through life and change, many of your email addresses would have been abandoned or unused. Hence, marketers need to always refresh their email list through their email marketing campaign. With an updated email database, you can send leads to potential clients, sending them great content and updates.
- Social media
Last and certainly not least, succeeding in lead generation cannot happen without maximizing the social media platform. Your lead generation plan should take you to places where your potential customers are, and people are on social media more often today like never before. It is estimated that people use social media five to six hours a day on average. So you should plan your lead generation efforts around popular platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to touch base with your potential client list. Engaging with users on social media can be achieved by delivering great content that really captures the interest of potential customers. Some pro tips include launching social media content contests as a way of engaging with potential clients.
Getting leads should be on every business owner’s marketing plan. By having a plan and making most of the strategies listed here, you can improve your leads and boost conversions! Remember, lead generation doesn’t have to be hard; it could be fun and easy, as long as they are effective in hooking prospective customers.