Why does your company’s website need to be a lead generation machine? In a survey conducted by Forrester, 74% of business buyers said they conduct more than half of their research online before making a purchase.
What this means is that if you are not on top of the game with your website, you are missing out on opportunities to competitors who are better prepared.
What is a lead?
A lead is someone who has the potential to become a paying customer. Otherwise known as a ‘prospect’. In the world of digital marketing, it is someone who has shown an interest in your company’s products or services in one way or another. Generally, they have given you their email address in exchange for something that is of value to them.
Cold calling becomes a thing of the past.
These are warm, sometimes hot, leads who have volunteered their attention to your products or services without you needing to approach them. You then have the opportunity to communicate with them, and guide them along the sales funnel to eventually buy from you.
What is lead generation?
Lead generation is the process in which you attract strangers to your website and convert them into the abovementioned ‘leads’.
HubSpot’s Inbound Marketing Methodology outlines the process from strangers right through to on-going customers:
Today, we will focus on the ‘Attract’ and ‘Convert’ phases which cover the turning strangers into website visitors, and into to leads.
Building a campaign for your lead generation machine
A lead generation campaign is the most reliable way to boost your flow of leads. Your lead generation machine is built by consistently creating campaigns that attract your desired audience.
Before jumping into producing a campaign, though, you need to make sure you are on the right track to reaching better outcomes.
Set campaign goals
Knowing your goals clearly, on paper, guarantees your efforts are so much easier and more rewarding.
All your goals should be SMART goals: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely. For example: You may want to increase your website visitors by 20% for the month, and to have 3% of that traffic download your ebook.
The next step is to know who you will be targeting to fulfil your campaign goals.
Know your audience
You may have 2 or 3 different kinds of customers, or ‘personas’ you deal with. If you want results, you need to speak their language and solve their problems. Connecting to your audience at an emotional level means a far greater response.
Create your Lead Generation Campaign Elements
To attract your leads, you need to offer something of value to them. A lead magnet. This could be an ebook, a checklist, a webinar – just to name a few.
A number of items need to be in place so you can capture the prospects’ information before they have access to the prize:
The diagram above shows you a typical ebook workflow that starts with a landing page to capture your prospects’ information and add them to your mailing list. The Thank You page and associated email are triggered automatically on submitting the form, and a link to the ebook is supplied.
Once your elements are in place, you can start promoting your offer to bring traffic to your website:
- Create or edit existing relevant blog articles to include a Call to Action to take on the offer.
- Share the blog articles and landing page on your social media platforms.
- Pay for social advertising to promote your offer to a larger audience.
- Optimise your articles for Google, and gradually your pages will receive more and more traffic organically through web searches.
I recommend you create a new lead generation campaign every month or two, with a handful of relevant articles to point to it.
Analyse your results for continual improvement
Every audience is unique, so there is no hard and fast way to know exactly what to offer. As you create more campaigns, you will learn the types of offers that work best for building up leads, and which ones aren’t working much at all. This helps you steer your campaigns towards greater and faster success.
What happens once you have your leads?
You have at your fingertips a pool of people interested in your products or services. Email marketing remains to be the most cost-effective and reliable source of marketing to date. It gives you the ability to strengthen your relationships with your leads by continuing to share valuable information with them.