Let’s face it, your business can’t carry out its primary operations and offer services without attracting people first.
When it comes to a lead generation process, we need to be precise and thorough. We need to take into consideration everything that we might need for our plans.
Lead generation and management are essential for every business. Without leads, your company won’t grow and more importantly, earn.
Leads are basically those people who are showing interest in your offerings. They’re the people whom you’re going to market your products or services to.
What is Lead Generation in Digital Marketing?
(Image Source: Trinet Solutions)
The concept of the lead generation process is all about having people who might be interested in your product to convert into profitable customers and to have them engage with your business.
Digital marketing is proven to be effective in lead generation. With more than 3 billion people now on the internet, you’re bound to get leads. For everything you need to know about lead generation with digital marketing, check out our article about it here.
In this process, you have to engage with your prospects until they decide to consider what you offer but of course, you have to make sure that your offer is good enough for them to consider it.
Why Does Direct Marketers Practice Sales Lead Generation?
The lead generation process is vital for businesses in any industry. You can’t simply ignore it and pretend that it doesn’t exist because it’s one of the building blocks for your business to grow and even operate successfully.
Without a proper marketing lead generation process to follow, your brand won’t be able to facilitate its basic operations. In fact, your business may even fail and not survive in the market. Just ripping off the band-aid here.
For you to get ahead of your competitors, you should always be thinking of plans that can help you obtain a bigger client base and you can only do that by creating a strategy with lead generation.
Step by Step Inbound Lead Generation Process
(Image Source: OptinMonster)
Here are the lead generation steps you should follow for your business to generate more leads:
Step #1: Determine Your Target Audience
When generating leads, it should always be quality over quantity. There’s no use in getting as many leads as you can when they’re not a good fit for your brand anyway.
To make sure you’re attracting the right audience, you have to do your research and identify who your target market should be.
Who’s visiting your website?
Check out who’s clicking on your Ads or who goes directly to your website. Use Google Analytics to get data on who visits your website.
Who’s buying/using your products?
Get a list of the people who have purchased your products and organize them accordingly. Check out their demographics and see what the age range is, location, etc.
What are my competitors doing?
A great way to determine the best target market for your brand is by checking out what your competitors are doing. Find out what types of content they post and who they market to. From there, you can get some ideas you can apply to your own business.
With these information, you will have a better sense of what your target market is.
When you know everything there is to know about your prospects, that’s when you can start business development lead generation. You can mold your traffic channels and messaging to suit their preferences well.
Step #2: Set Campaign Goals
Every effective marketing campaign begins with identifying goals—specific ones. You don’t just say that your goal is “to obtain a lot of leads”, that’s not enough.
You can use your brand’s past performances as a benchmark to come up with an actual number of conversion rates, leads, and visits that you want to achieve in a particular period.
Strive to do better than the last time. If your campaigns haven’t gotten lots of leads before, change it.
Once you’ve determined the value of your average client, you can also identify how many you need from your lead generation management campaign to reach your goal.
From there, you can start calculating the number of leads that were converted into profitable customers. After that, you can use the industry benchmarks in estimating your conversion rate along with how many visitors you need to obtain to hit your sales goals.
Step #3: Find Out What Attracts Your Target Market
When visiting websites, you’ll notice different types of offers such as coupons, free trials, and more. It’s what gives the customers a taste of their products and services.
It’s important to determine what kind of offer will interest your target audience if you want results from your lead generation process.
Take Spotify for example. They have a bunch of offers like 1 month free trial for first time users, a student discount when you give an ID, and another discount when you subscribe for three months which is less than what you pay for in one month.
See? What they offer is something that prospects can use and benefit from.
For your brand to craft a winning offer, you have to know who’s going to use it first and in what stage they already are in their buyers’ journey. You can check out the buyer’s journey here.
In a survey from Regalix , 285 B2B marketers were asked about the best content to offer to their target audience at each stage.
Here are the results of the survey:
- Social media: 83%
- Blog posts: 81%
- Infographics: 81%
- White papers: 78%
- Websites: 75%
- Web-based events: 72%
- Website: 56%
- Case studies: 47%
- Research reports: 39%
- Videos: 39%
Tip: Your offer doesn’t always have to be content. It can be free consultations or tools as they’re also very effective in lead source generation.
Step #4: Create a Post-Click Landing Page
Now that you’ve already determined the best offer for your prospects, you can now put your offers in a pretty package.
This is where the post-click landing page comes in.
This page is a standalone and persuasive page that’s different from your website. It’s disconnected from your website via navigation links in a footer or a menu. By creating this, you can up your chances of getting more downloads of your offers.
It can be for newsletters, eBooks, or free trials, whatever you can think of.
Here are the elements you should include in your post-click landing page:
A benefit-Oriented Headline
Perhaps you already know the power of headlines. A great headline can attract more people than the body of your content.
According to David Ogilvy, the father of modern advertising, 8 out of 10 people read the headline, only 2 read the whole article.
8 out of 10 people read the headline, only 2 read the whole article Click To Tweet
“On average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar.”
That’s why you have to make sure that your headline consists of big and bold words and is positioned at the top of your page. By doing this, you can encourage your potential clients to read the rest of your content.
Also, you have to communicate the benefits of your offer. If your target market doesn’t understand what’s in it for them, they would less likely continue reading your content.
Most people are visual learners, meaning they learn more by looking than by listening. This means integrating videos and images in your ads is a great way to capture your audience’s attention. It is also an effective way of conveying information.
You can include video testimonials, video case studies, explanation videos, infographics, and hero shots. These can help your prospects understand your offer and the reasons why they shouldn’t miss the opportunity of claiming them.
93% of marketers are using post-click landing pages because it can increase your conversion rate by 80%.93% of marketers are using post-click landing pages because it can increase your conversion rate by 80% Click To Tweet
Marketers today have been stuffing their post-click landing page with long-form block text enumerating the benefits of their products.
Remember, 8 out of 10 only read the headlines.
That’s why you have to explain to them why they should get your offer in the shortest way possible.
You can keep your text to a minimum, use bullet points, and break up your content into small paragraphs.
Not everyone likes seeing big blocks of texts so keep it short and make it good.
Show, don’t tell. People would see why your offer is worth claiming by showing them proof.
Let those who have had good experience from your services speak on your behalf.
You can present case studies, authority badges, testimonials, and positive reviews to show your target audience that your current partners and customers trust your company.
If big brands like Entrepreneur, TechCrunch, and Wall Street Journal, and a lot of people shows trust in your business, then your visitors will too.
A Well-Designed Form
To make direct marketing lead generation work, you should have well-designed forms on your post-click landing page.
You can do this by identifying the information you would need from your prospects. Start by listing everything that may be necessary like their name, work phone, email, annual revenue, company size, and so on.
(Image Source: mktoolboxsuite)
After that, you can cross out from the list the data you can do without. Determine which of the following does not assist in lead generation group of answer choices.
For instance, you can ask yourself whether the company size really matters or can annual revenue do the job? Also, is asking for their work phone necessary or will their email address be enough?
Sometimes when it comes to forms, less is more.
There’s a bigger chance your prospects are going to convert when you ask for less information from them. Try making your form as short as possible, only including the most necessary parts.
Another thing that you should consider is your offer. It should be enticing and valuable enough so your audience would be more than willing to provide their information.
Make sure that it’s easy to fill out your forms. You can include labels above your fields. It would even be best if the labels don’t disappear when they start typing to avoid confusion.
On top of that, you can consider autofill so your prospects can import their personal information from Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn in just one click of a button. That spells convenience right there!
However, if you really need a lot of information from your visitors, you can break up the forms into multiple steps. People would find one long-form intimidating while a few short ones would appear like less work to them.
A Strong Call-To-Action Button
A US lead generation process requires a call-to-action button that your prospects can click. For it to effectively convert leads, it has to be attention-grabbing and persuasive.
(Image Source: GoSquared)
For starters, your audience can’t click on something they couldn’t find. So make sure that it stands out on your page. You can also have visual cues like a model’s gaze or arrows in the photo.
However, even if they find it and your button doesn’t excite them, they may not click on it. Instead of using that traditional button copy like “Submit”, “Subscribe”, and “Sign Up” you can use something like “Send Me Expert Tips!”
You have to put emphasis on what they’re going to get and not on what they have to do to get it.
Step #5: Design Your “Thank You” Page
One of the lead generation business processes steps you should not take for granted is creating your “thank you” page.
After your prospects have claimed your offer, you should direct them to a “thank you” page.
It may sound simple but this page shouldn’t only be about thanking your audience for downloading your offer. Instead, you should try to continue the conversation to maintain the lead gen flow.
(Image Source: Perfect Audience)
Now, the question is, “how to set up lead generation ‘thank you’ page?
Thank your customers for taking your offer. Explain to them where they can find the resources they need now that they’ve successfully filled out your form. Can they download it on the spot or do they have to wait for you to send it on their email?
Step #6: Integrate with Technology
Although you think you can manage on your own, you may need the help of technology to accomplish your marketing goals.
Your inside sales lead generation process can take advantage of several tools to effectively generate leads for your brand.
LeadFuze offers a market based search where you can harvest leads based on their demographics. Many businesses have already had great success with LeadFuze. With market based search, you can find anyone with the specific factors you take into consideration when qualifying a lead.
LeadFuze gives you all the data you need to find ideal leads, including full contact information.
Go through a variety of filters to zero in on the leads you want to reach. This is crazy specific, but you could find all the people that match the following:
- A company in the Financial Services or Banking industry
- Who have more than 10 employees
- That spend money on Adwords
- Who use Hubspot
- Who currently have job openings for marketing help
- With the role of HR Manager
- That has only been in this role for less than 1 year
They can position ads on your preferred websites to encourage potential leads and customers to visit your post-click landing page and reconsider your offer.
Next is CRM software such as Zoho or Salesforce. These can score and sort your leads into different categories after they convert. With the help of these software programs, your sales team will be able to follow up more effectively.
Remember that there’s no best tool or the right number of software to use. The effectiveness of each solely depends on how you use it.
Step #7: Test Your Campaign
In conducting lead generation, it’s essential that you test your campaign first before driving any traffic. Get a feel of what your campaign looks like.
Included in the lead generation step-by-step guide is the testing of your front end and back end campaign.
You can act like a prospect trying to make your way through your company’s post-click landing page. Begin by making sure all the links to your page are working the way you want them.
Test every link wherever they are. May they be on sponsored social media posts, PPC networks, or emails.
Find out if all the links are driving you to the post-click landing page like they’re supposed to. Also, check if everything looks the way you want it to appear on every browser.
You don’t want it looking like this:
(Image Source: Instapage)
If everything looks great, start interacting with your page. Try abandoning it, adjusting the window size, and of course, converting.
Did the error messages appear when they’re supposed to? For instance, when you forget entering your information in a required field.
Is the CTA button working? Are you retargeted with ads when you abandon the page? Does the page act accordingly when you try adjusting the size of the window?
Once you’re done with that, you can continue to evaluate your “thank you” page. Check if the links are working and if the offers you send go straight to your inbox, or they end up in the spam folder.
After checking everything on the front end, proceed to the back end of your campaign. You have to ensure that your leads are being scored and sorted correctly, your tags are working, and your conversion pixels are firing.
For your campaign to be successful and for your general lead generation system to work, both ends of your campaign should be working smoothly.
Step #8: Drive Traffic
One thing you need to understand in lead generation business development is there’s no right way in driving traffic. The success of this will always depend on your strategies.
You can use your buyer personas to determine where your target audience usually hang out online. When you have that information, you can cross-reference those locations with your brand’s most profitable channels.
It’s crucial that you focus on top-of-funnel metrics than your bottom-funnel ones.
For instance, you may generate more leads from Facebook but your conversion rates are low. On the other hand, you may obtain fewer leads on LinkedIn, but most of them convert into high-paying clients.
For your lead generation engine to work, you have to consider obtaining leads in all channels and of course, you should not stop testing your campaigns.
Also, you have to learn how to recognize bad traffic, be fully aware of unproven PPC networks, and invest in channels where your prospects are usually hanging out.
Lastly, keep a close eye on your key campaign metrics to determine where you should allocate your budget. What is a lead generation process without one.
For harvesting qualified leads, make sure to explore all of the options as the results will always be different for one platform to another.
Lead Generation is a long and complicated process but when done right, it’ll be the best thing for your business. Having a concrete plan and strategy on how to get qualified leads will greatly help you and your business.
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