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How to generate leads

Generating leads is a constant need for any business. While different methods of finding potential customers abound, many popular techniques of the past are no longer used. Needless to say, today’s favored lead generation tactics may not be around forever.

To consistently find new leads for your business, you might need to start thinking outside the box and be open to evolving your strategy. Stepping away from standard practices to try new approaches can help you generate leads in unexpected ways.

Not sure where to start? Try these 14 unique ways of finding new business leads from the members of Forbes Coaches Council.

Forbes Coaches Council members offer unique ways of generating leads for your business.

Photos courtesy of the individual members.

1. Create Your Digital Footprint

Creating your digital footprint is a multifaceted way to generate leads. This includes using social media channels, creating content such as opinion pieces, thought leadership and comments on third-party posts, engaging with the right focus groups through hashtags, upping your credibility through various associations, memberships and connections—the list can be a long one. Draw an action plan and go for it. – Arthi Rabikrisson, Prerna Advisory

2. Conduct A LinkedIn Lead Program

I think it really depends on the industry you are in and also the speed at which you need to turn leads into sales. For a longer game, I would suggest using content marketing, as this will draw people into your funnel by delivering value, potentially leading to sales in the long term. Otherwise, online is where everything is happening at the moment, so I would look at conducting a LinkedIn lead program. – Andrew Constable, Visualise Solutions

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3. Create Value-Based, Human-Focused Content

Create value-based, human-focused content in various mediums based on your unique buyer’s journey. Companies spend far too much time being product-focused in their content and not enough time correlating their products with how a client’s problems can be fixed. By taking a value-based approach to content marketing, companies will be able to bridge the trust gap and shorten the sales cycle. – Yunche Wilson, SolomonBell Consulting

4. Ask Satisfied Clients For Referrals

Your best way of finding great leads is always referrals from satisfied clients. Don’t be afraid to ask these folks for their ideas or for video testimonials, which you can put on your website or in short email links. Nothing is better for business than having happy customers talk positively about you and tell stories that will resonate with your prospects. – Jay McDonald, Middleton McDonald Group, Inc.

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5. Lead From A Place Of Passion

How do you attract those who would value having a relationship with you? Most will lead with a sales mindset. To differentiate yourself, start with understanding your “why” and lead with a passion for what you can contribute to an organization. When you lead from a place of passion, it will be accepted as genuine and can lead to trusted relationships. – Bryan Powell, Invite Change

6. Focus On Delivering Differentiated Value

“Go-givers” get more. The best leads are the ones that your current customers proactively generate for you. Therefore, a focus on making sure your customers gain differentiated value will be the key to generating leads at the lowest cost. – Venkataraman Subramanyan, Tripura Multinational

7. Host Educational Webinars

Webinars are wonderful, “one-to-many” marketing vehicles that allow you to share ideas, educate and demonstrate your skill for your target audience. Those who click on your invitation have an interest in your subject; those who attend likely have a real need and are worthy of follow-up. And webinar invitations sent via email and social media also serve as great branding tools. – Jennifer Wilson, ConvergenceCoaching, LLC

8. Write Blog Posts About Current Or Ideal Clients

Write blog posts, each profiling one of your clients or someone who is a good match for your target market. You’ll not only be helping them build awareness of their businesses, but the subjects of each post will also share the pieces with their respective networks. Their reputation and their trust in you will encourage others to get in touch with you. – Lee Eisenstaedt, Leading with Courage Academy

9. Position Yourself As A Thought Leader On LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a powerful tool to authentically generate high-quality leads. A third of my business comes by way of LinkedIn. The key to using LinkedIn is to position yourself as a thought leader. You can do this by delivering content that allows prospective clients to see your value. Clients will naturally seek you out as a result. – Kyle Elliott, MPA, CHES , CaffeinatedKyle.com

10. Know Where Your Target Market Spends Time Online

First, you need to know where your target market is and where they visit frequently. In the old days, it would be a physical location. Today, it’s a virtual location. Are they on Facebook or LinkedIn? What websites do they frequent? Once you know their hangout spots, you can narrow down your marketing to target those specific sites, locations or publications. – Cory Swain, Advisors Excel

11. Leverage Social Media Hashtags

It sounds quirky, but I had a third party generate a hashtag list for me. The hashtags were relevant to the clients I was seeking to attract. I found that every post was reaching more potential clients, as opposed to me just dropping information with my fingers crossed. Hashtags can be strategic and targeted, offering a great way to leverage your current social media exposure and attract new clients. – Amera McCoy, McCoy Consulting LLC

12. Ask For Testimonials

One of the best ways to generate leads is to ask for them. Testimonial advertising through word of mouth (face-to-face interaction) is the most valuable form of marketing. Asking your clients to share the work you do for them and the value it brings to their business is a great way to generate leads. Start asking your clients to refer names of people they know who could benefit from your services. – Jon Dwoskin, The Jon Dwoskin Experience

13. Talk To Your Ideal Clients About Your Offering

Combine the modern (technology) with the timeless (connection). Before launching a new program or service, think about five ideal clients you would like to work with. Reach out and just have a virtual conversation with them about your offering: How many times a week would they ideally like it? How much would they feel comfortable investing? How long would they prefer the duration to be? – Kyla Mitsunaga, WITH Warriors LLC

14. Get Crystal Clear On Your Brand Story

The easiest way to take the stress out of dealing with changing algorithms, updates on platforms, tools coming and going and comparing yourself to your competition is to get crystal clear about your secret sauce (aka your brand). What’s your story? What value can you provide? How do you do it? Who benefits the most from it? That fact is, your story is the only thing no one can compete with. A job can be done by anyone. – Petra Zink, impaCCCt

How to generate leads

As a small business, generating leads is a top priority. Luckily, there are many ways get more leads quickly and effectively.

The following five ideas can be used by businesses of all sizes and most industries. The key is to test and modify to make them work for your customer base.

Here are five foolproof ways to generate leads for your business:

1. Facebook Ads

Facebook ads are one of the best ways to drive leads. If you’re willing to “pay to play,” you have access to specific targeting options, including age, location, interests, and more.

How to generate leads

To make your ads successful, and drive qualified leads, use best practices and follow your data. Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you create your first Facebook ad:

  • The ad should be closely related to the content people are clicking through to. If there’s any confusion, people are more likely to click away, assuming there was a mistake.
  • Use eye-catching, bright colors, rather than blues or whites. The latter tends to blend in with Facebook’s branding, suggests James Scherer of Wishpond.
  • Run your first ad based on a “lookalike audience,” which uses your list of imported customers to find similar Facebook users.
  • Know the difference between CPM (cost per impressions) versus CPC (cost per clicks). Read through Facebook’s guide on this before choosing one or the other.

2. Personalized email marketing

Email marketing is a great way to drive leads, especially when your emails are personalized to the person receiving it.

A study by Experian found that personalized emails generated up to six times higher revenue than non-personalized emails and campaigns.

Use your email platform to personalize your email greeting to include the recipient’s name. Group your contacts by name location, purchase history, or expressed interests.

This small touch can help you drive more leads while building brand loyalty with potential customers.

As you begin sending emails, it’s important to track your success. This allows you to test, modify and evolve, driving more leads with each send. Compare your open and click rates to the average for your industry, as well, to determine if you’re on par or behind.

Don’t forget to check where people are clicking within the email itself. If you place links in more than one place in your email — which you should to increase total clicks — track which ones are being clicked more often. Learning your subscribers’ habits allows you to be more effective.

3. Discounts and coupons

To drive leads with discounts and coupons, focus on “new customer coupons.” In a 2016 CouponBox survey, 75 percent of retailers polled said this was the best coupon/discount for increasing long-term revenue.

Once you’ve created your deal or coupon, it’s time to distribute — you can’t expect customers to find these discounts and deals themselves.

Share with current and future customers via all your online platforms, including social media and email.

Tip: Strike while the iron’s hot and add an introductory discount to your Welcome Email.

How to generate leads

If possible, create a banner ad or pop-up for your website as well, enticing potential customers to buy right then and there.

If direct mailing is part of your marketing budget, use this as a way to distribute discounts and coupons as well.

4. High-value content

Content is a great way to build search engine optimization for your website, show your knowledge as a business, and generate leads.

The first step in using content as a lead-driving tool is to remember that this term encompasses more than just blog posts. Content could be an ebook, guide, white paper, graphic, in-depth study, or video.

The content is then gated, so potential customers give you their contact information in exchange for access to it.

To make the most of this content, consider how you can make it most valuable and targeted.

For example, if your ideal customer is in the healthcare industry, create a piece of content for healthcare leaders. Learn about this audience, write about a topic that you’ve found to be most important to them, and in a format they prefer (I.E. ebook versus white paper) and then promote it accordingly.

5. Referral Partnerships

As a small business, you can generate leads by partnering with other small businesses. A simple way to facilitate this is with a referral partnership.

In this case, you receive a percentage of the revenue from referrals you send to the other business and vice versa.

Have your lawyers or legal team create and proof paperwork, to ensure both sides are clear on the stipulations. Include information about requirements such as quality of the leads, total sale amount, percentage tiers, and more.

How will you generate leads for your business?

Every business needs to drive leads. Using these proven strategies, you can drive leads, even with a small budget.

Consider which ideas are best for your potential customers and start testing!

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About the author: Jessica Thiefels has been writing and editing for more than 10 years and spent the last five years in marketing. She recently stepped down from a senior marketing position to focus on growing her own startup and consulting for small businesses. When she’s not working, she’s enjoying sunny San Diego with her husband and friends or traveling somewhere new. Follow her on Twitter @Jlsander07.

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Jessica Thiefels

Jessica Thiefels has been writing and editing for more than 10 years and spent the last five years in marketing. She recently stepped down from a senior marketing position to focus on growing her own startup and consulting for small businesses. She’s been featured on Forbes and MarketWatch and has written for sites such as Lifehack, Inman, Manta, StartupNation and more. When she’s not working, she’s enjoying sunny San Diego with her husband and friends or traveling somewhere new. Follow her on Twitter @Jlsander07.

The digital era has changed the way we do business, and it’s important for marketers to keep up with the demands of their prospects by building a well-oiled lead generation machine.

How to Generate Leads With Your Digital Marketing

  1. Use Content Marketing to Establish Thought Leadership
  2. Leverage Paid Social
  3. Optimize Your Site for Local SEO
  4. Segment Email Marketing

Lead generation is broken down into sets of marketing activities that correspond with stages of the buyers journey, starting with generating traffic, then converting visitors into leads, and eventually converting those leads into customers. In fact, according to the 2018 State of Inbound report, a marketer’s number one priority is converting leads to customers.

How to generate leads

Yet, lead generation remains a real challenge for most, even with the plethora of lead generation software available. As data indicates, 88 percent of consumers research their buys online before making a purchase. As marketers, we need to build a digital marketing strategy that provides value to the buyer through that research process, generating not just traffic but qualified leads.

Below we offer four tips that will help you build a well-oiled digital marketing, lead generation machine.

Use Content Marketing to Establish Thought Leadership

If you haven’t started producing content already, this should be one of the first steps in your lead generation strategy. According to a survey by Demand Gen Report, 96 percent of B2B buyers want content with more input from industry thought leaders and 47 percent of buyers viewed three to five pieces of content before engaging with a sales rep.

Garner leads by becoming a subject matter expert on topics or pain points that your product or service solves. Regularly post blogs, news, and tips regarding your industry. Also, produce extensive guides that visitors can download on your website. This allows you to collect data from people that download your guides so you can enroll them into lead nurture programs and keep them engaged by sharing more about your product or service. You may even turn them into customers.

Don’t forget to promote the content you create using online marketing methods such as SEO, social, and email. Great content won’t make a difference if people can’t find it. A survey done by FormStack suggests that organic search is the largest source of high-quality leads, so be sure to spend some time optimizing your content for search engines.

Leverage Paid Social

Social media can be a powerful channel for lead generation. In order to be successful at acquiring leads via social media, you must invest time and effort in building an engaged audience so you can convert those individuals into leads. The first challenge is figuring out which tool is right for your business. You can run paid social ads on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and even Pinterest.

Most internet users are on Facebook, so around 84 percent of marketers choose to use this platform to drive traffic and acquire leads. One of my favorites for lead generation is Facebook Lead Ads. This ad format allows contacts to submit their information without ever leaving Facebook. Strategies for campaigns can include “Subscribe to Our Newsletter” or “Limited Time Offer – 20% Off Your First Purchase.” Lead Ads is also a great outlet for remarketing campaigns because most of the time your website visitors will see the ad and you can use this opportunity to provide an incentive to send them back to your sales funnel.

Facebook removes the friction and lowers acquisition cost, providing a much better user experience and hopefully driving more leads for your business.

Optimize Your Site for Local SEO

Organic search is arguably one of the most valuable long-term lead generation strategies. Yet, with over 200 factors influencing how Google will rank your website within SERPs (search engine results pages), it’s difficult to know where to start. I believe a heavy hitter for lead generation is spending time optimizing local SEO. According to WordStream, 72 percent of consumers who did a local search visited a store within five miles of their location they searched.

Local SEO will allow your business to tap into the surrounding community and help users find you when you’re needed most. As mobile continues to dominate, local SEO can make a big difference in driving more customers to your front door. Start by ensuring your NAP (Name, Address, and Phone) is consistent on your website and within listings such as Yelp, Facebook, and Google My Business. Another good idea is to ask satisfied customers to leave a review or make it very easy for customers to review your business. Reviews on third-party platforms increase your chances of being found by qualified prospects without having to pay a dime! Also, ensure your website Title Tag includes a main key phrase that you want to rank for in addition to your city, state, or neighborhood (e.g., “overnight fly fishing Colorado”). Give it some time, and then test your business by searching your keywords and seeing where you rank.

Segmented Email Marketing

Although it may be one of the older tactics, email marketing can be a very powerful tool when trying to reach prospects or upsell existing customers. It’s important to adapt your email marketing strategy by tailoring your messaging to target specific segments of your customer database. Right now, marketing automation is a popular method to help marketers automatically send highly targeted emails to leads. Synced with your CRM, leads can be placed into a workflow so once they fill out a website form they are nurtured with content that matches their specific interests. This could include follow-up emails with great content and a CTA (call to action) to subscribe to your blog.

As you learn more about each lead, you can tailor your messaging to move them down the funnel. According to Forrester Research, companies that nurture their leads see 50 percent more sales-ready leads than their non-nurturing counterparts at a 33 percent lower cost. Having the ability to capture website visitor data and couple that data with behavioral triggers has allowed marketers to get a lot smarter about the inbox.

Though we’ve only named a handful of lead generation strategies, whichever you choose to experiment with next, be sure you keep testing. This will help you gain an in-depth understanding of how to effectively strategize and implement digital marketing campaigns in order to move the bottom line.

This blog was originally published in June 2015 and been updated since.

Mobile technology continues to play a huge role in how we market to consumers, and that trend doesn’t seem to be going away any time soon. In today’s market, users spend 59% of their time online on their mobile device versus a desktop. Therefore, it’s becoming even more important than ever for businesses to cater to that experience to attract more leads, and generate more conversions and revenue.

But all that’s easier said than done. With mobile phone technology being everchanging, marketers constantly have to adapt their marketing strategies to better reach and engage consumers. Luckily for you, we have a few tips and suggestions that will help you be on your way towards creating a mobile marketing plan that gets results:

1. Ensure your website and forms are mobile friendly

Before you fully dive into mobile marketing, you should make sure you have the essential elements in place. This will give you a good and healthy foundation from which to launch the rest of your marketing efforts, and improve your overall chance of success.

To start, you want to make sure your website is mobile friendly. Not having a mobile-friendly website will negatively impact your Google search rankings, so it’s necessary if you want to attract inbound traffic in the first place. But, more importantly, your website is an important marketing tool and serves as the main hub of information for your users. Making sure it’s easy to navigate and view from a mobile device will result in a positive customer experience, motivating your audience to learn more.

To check if your website is mobile friendly, you can use Google’s Mobile Friendly Tester . If it’s not, Google’s guide on mobile-friendly sites can provide suggestions on how to optimize it for mobile devices.

To make the online experience even more seamless for your prospects, you should also have mobile-friendly lead generation forms on your website. This will make it easier for prospects to sign up for more information, resulting in higher engagement and conversions.

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2. Create mobile-friendly email

Email plays a very important role in both attracting and nurturing leads. And with mobile email users expected to reach 2.2 billion by the end of this year , it’s important to ensure that any messages you send be easy to read from your customer’s phone. This will allow you to make a good impression with your customer, get your message across and make it easy for them to respond to any call to action within the email.

Not sure how to make your emails mobile friendly? The process is actually pretty simple. With the right marketing automation solution , you should be able to test and optimize your email campaigns for mobile users.

3. Run ads on social media and take advantage of geotargeting

Chances are your customers spend a good portion of their day on social media, and many of them will do so on their mobile device. So why not use it to your advantage by placing ads where your customers will see them? A native ad is a promotional message embedded in your customer’s social media feed, and it’s a simple and easy way to get started in mobile marketing.

You can promote a content piece, a specific product or even redirect customers to your website using anything from an eye catching graphic to a fun video. And with many new features being added to social media platforms every year, there are always new and interesting ways for you to engage your customers.

You can make your ads even more effective by implementing geotargeting. When creating your next mobile ad, choose to promote it to customers located in a specific area, within a specific age range and with certain interests that match those of your customer persona. That way, your ad will get seen by the right people and help you get the most bang for your buck.

4. Develop a mobile paid search campaign

In today’s world, the answer to our most burning questions are just a Google search away. Therefore, you can likely expect your customers to conduct searches for businesses or services right from their phone when they are on the go. Developing a mobile paid search campaign will ensure your business shows up in those search results and generates interest from your target audience.

If your business depends on local traffic, you can improve your chances of getting seen by making sure you’re showing up in local mobile searches. If not, you could be missing out. Moz has this useful tool to help you check if you are.

How to generate leads

5. Make your mobile content interactive

Interactive content is a fun way to get your audience to engage with you right from their mobile device. You can create games, quizzes, puzzles, booklets – anything to keep people interacting with your brand.

If you’re giving a speech or presentation and want to engage your audience through their smartphones, consider using a tool like TwtPoll to create a poll the audience can respond to via their devices. It’s a great way to take advantage of mobile in a B2B environment and engage prospects with your brand.

Here’s a creative way to create engaging, interactive mobile emails. Zembula makes it easy to send messages with a lottery-ticket-like interface. The recipient can swipe the screen with their fingers to reveal an offer or call to action right from their phone or tablet.

Interested in exploring other types of interactive content? Here are some more ideas of how you can use interactive content to generate engagement.

6. Use SMS at events and trade shows to capture leads

Nearly all of your business prospects can read texts via their smartphones. Why not use that to your advantage? You’ll need an SMS service provider to help you (since running SMS campaigns can get technical), but this is an under-utilized technique that can and should be taken advantage of by B2B marketers. Try texting about your break-out session or special show-only offers.

7. Harness the power of video

You’ve probably seen video becoming more and more popular recently, and that trend will continue to grow. Experts predict that video will make up 78% of all mobile traffic by 2019 , and 50% of those views will occur on mobile devices. Creating video content is a must if you want to promote your products, services and company.

The wonderful thing about video is that there are so many ways you can use it at every stage of the funnel. You can make video ads for social media to inform prospects about your products, you can record customer interviews to email to leads who are in the decision-making process, and you can also incorporate video clips throughout your website to make the mobile browsing experience more enjoyable. Leveraging video through mobile will attract prospects, keep leads engaged and moving through the sales funnel, and eventually lead to more conversions.

How to generate leads

Increasing sales is important for businesses. But getting sales can be quite challenging when you’re constantly running out of prospects to nurture and convert.

Nowadays, lead generation has become a bottleneck for many businesses. According to HubSpot State of Marketing Report 2021 , generating leads is the marketing priority for marketers.

Many businesses focus on increasing traffic to their website. You may be getting many visitors, but are you generating leads from them?

Without the right strategies and tools, you can’t convert visitors into leads. To do that, you’ll need to learn how to generate leads online.

Ideas for Generating and Capturing Leads

The main essence of getting more leads is finding a way to effectively capture them. You must be able to continue a conversation with them after they leave your website. You’ll need a few lead capture mechanisms that could attract leads and convince them to exchange their information for something else of value.

Here are some ways on how to generate leads from website visitors:

Build a Chatbot

One of the most common lead generation website best practices is to build a chatbot for the website. The chatbot could serve a couple of purposes, like:

  • Answering queries,
  • Dealing with customer service concerns, and
  • Engaging with people by asking an ice-breaker question.

Having a chatbot helps initiate a conversation with your website visitor automatically, which it can then forward to a representative when necessary. For example, you’re offering a marketing tool that could help increase social media followers. Your chatbot could start with a trigger that says, “Do you need help getting another 1,000 Instagram followers? Talk to us today!”

The chatbot could then provide a flow that gathers information like the person’s name, email address, Instagram handle, and marketing goals. A sales representative can then use this information to find the best package for the client.

Create a Lead Magnet

Many successful websites capture multiple leads, and clients do so by offering a lead magnet . A lead magnet is a piece of content that provides educational value to people. The most common forms of lead magnets include the following:

    • Guide — Create an ebook that will teach or educate readers around a field topic in your niche. If you’re in roofing, create an ebook that teaches people the importance of using quality materials when building roofs and tips to getting roofing right. Provide a visually appealing book. Remember to add product information at the end.
    • Industry Report — This might have the same format as an ebook (often in PDF), but serves a different purpose. Instead of giving tips and best practices, it will offer studies and insights on the industry, including statistics and analysis that lead to some recommendations. Say, for instance, you’re a management consulting firm. You can create an industry report that shares statistics on employee engagement and determine areas for improvement.
    • Free Consultation — You may also try offering a free consultation with a potential client to help provide contextual guidance. When a prospect books a sample session with you, they are closer to making a buying decision than someone who is browsing your website and reading your blog posts. It allows you to nudge an interested prospect into becoming a new client.
    • Pre-recorded Webinar — Video content is one of the most active ways to bedazzle leads. If you’re a subject matter expert, create a thirty to a sixty-minute webinar and offer it as a freebie on your website in exchange for contact information.
    • Assessment or quiz — Give a free assessment in the form of a quiz in exchange for people’s information. Some examples of assessments are financial health analysis, credit scores, personality quizzes, and so on.

    Run an Online Event

    Another of the more effective website lead generation strategies is to run webinars and events for free or at an affordable rate. In response to the pandemic, many professionals are open to joining webinars and online events. In fact, 93% of organizers plan to continue investing in virtual events moving forward.

    Mount a conference or event and use the RSVP as an email list for future offers, promos, events, and product introductions.

    Invite other subject-matter experts to your event and allow them to share their knowledge with your audience. You can also opt to record the webinar and use it later as a lead magnet for your website.

    Create an Automated Sequence

    When you capture leads, you also want to be sure to keep them engaged so you don’t lose them.

    One way to nurture leads is to put them in an automated sequence that offers more freebies and value-add content such as blogs, podcast interviews, or other lead magnets that could help build trust and establish strong relationships so you can convert sign-ups and close a deal.

    Offer a Discount or Promo

    If you have a physical or digital product to offer, another great way to capture leads is to offer a discount code for the first purchase. Get people to sign up to an email list and set up a trigger that sends them a voucher code when they sign up. This strategy can also hit two birds with one stone as it also gets you a quick sale on many occasions.

    How to generate leads

    Tips When Capturing Leads

    All lead capture strategies boil down to one tool— a lead capture mechanism, which will include the lead capture form, email list, and autoresponders that come along with it. Here are some tips when creating that lead capture mechanism.

      • Simplify the opt-in process — One common mistake when creating a lead capture form is asking for too much information. Only take information that you absolutely need. In most cases, the first and last name plus the email address should be more than enough. In other cases, you can take people’s phone numbers too.
      • Segment your leads — When capturing leads, it’s good to segment your email lists based on the source of the contact so that you will be able to determine which lead magnets or strategies convert best for your context.
      • Stay conversational — Copywriting is an important aspect of the lead capturing and nurturing process. Conversational write-ups tend to work best compared to those that seem more stiff and formal.

      Finally, work with professionals

      Optimizing your website to generate leads is not as easy as adding a CTA (call-to-action) button on your homepage. Often, businesses need marketing professionals and designers to build a strategic approach.

      Lead generation is just one task to master if you want to obtain a job with your marketing major .

      A good marketing professional will assess your marketing systems objectively to bolster what’s working and eliminate what’s not. Hence, make sure to hire the right experts in your company to ensure success.

      If you’re like many businesses, one of your biggest challenges is figuring out how to generate more leads from your website. Proper lead generation and understanding how to track website leads are two of the best ways to grow your existing customer base and gain several new customers.

      A good lead generation website can also help your sales team close more business by filling their sales pipeline with warm leads. If you’re struggling to get website traffic, one of these ten factors might be the culprit.

      Summary Why Your Website Struggles to Generate Leads

      1. Your Website Is Outdated or Unresponsive
      2. Your Website Doesn’t Have a Value Proposition
      3. You Don’t Have a Social Media Presence
      4. Your Website Isn’t Part of a Strategic Plan
      5. You Don’t Have a Target Audience
      6. Your Website Isn’t Getting Enough Hits
      7. You’re Not Producing New Content
      8. Your Content Isn’t Engaging
      9. Your Website Lacks a Call to Action
      10. Your Website Doesn’t Have Landing Pages

      By streamlining your digital lead generation strategies, improving your lead generation marketing campaigns, and adequately optimizing your online presence, you will have more customers visiting your website and increase your customer conversion rate exponentially.

      1. Your Website Is Outdated or Unresponsive

      Outdated or unresponsive websites seriously impact your business’s SEO and could even make your online presence obsolete in extreme cases. So often, B2B companies let their web presence lapse, a bad mistake regarding B2B lead generation.

      Regardless of who your end customer is, they still expect a smooth user experience . Ensure that people can view your website easily on a mobile device, that it’s intuitive and easy to use, and that you’re using contact forms intelligently to capture leads from website viewers.

      2. Your Website Doesn’t Have a Value Proposition

      A value proposition lets your customers know what they can expect from their investment in your company, and it’s one of the critical factors of proper lead generation marketing. Don’t just talk about yourself on your website. Make a point to address your customers and let them know what benefits are in store if they invest.

      Testimonials are also a nice touch because they are outside sources confirming what you’re saying. Include them prominently right on your homepage.

      3. You Don’t Have a Social Media Presence

      If you want to stay competitive, don’t overlook social media lead generation . Social media is vital for every business, even those B2B operations. Make sure that the type of social media that you’re using is conducive to your customers and that you’re engaging them with a variety of different posts.

      Social media also increases your overall digital footprint, helping you rise in search engine rankings. This digital footprint enables you to improve your SEO lead generation because more people see your website and socials and click on them often.

      4. Your Website Isn’t Part of a Strategic Plan

      Your website needs to be part of your strategic plan and overall lead generation campaign. It’s your digital marketplace, the first thing that most prospective customers see and an integral part of your business. So if it’s been a while since you’ve updated your website, it’s time to get to work.

      Your website can be the focal point for smart lead generation strategies if you take the proper steps to ensure that it’s designed to get leads . Think about where you want your business to go, and optimize your website to help you get there. The work that you put in now will pay off hugely in the end.

      5. You Don’t Have a Target Audience

      One of the golden rules of any successful business strategy is to know your audience. Having a target audience helps you hone in on your message and create tailored, sharp content that will appeal to them.

      The first thing that you need to do is identify your target audience , then revamp your website to speak to them specifically. At Whittington Consulting, we can help you rapidly discover who you should be marketing to and tailor your online presence accordingly.

      6. Your Website Isn’t Getting Enough Hits

      Sometimes it’s just simple; your website isn’t getting enough hits. There are several reasons this could be happening, such as problems with your SEO strategy, a bad social media strategy, or if your website is not responsive, Google could penalize you for it.

      There are many ways to direct traffic to your website and get some fresh leads. Start implementing them today, and you should see some real progress.

      7. You’re Not Producing New Content

      Content is definitely vital. If you’re not producing sound, tailored content that your audience wants to consume, you’ll simply lose traffic. Think about what would appeal to your target audience and consistently create fresh content for them. You can also promote your content on your social platforms for extra exposure.

      8. Your Content Isn’t Engaging

      Having content is one thing. Having engaging content that keeps your audience on its toes is something even better. It’s essential to understand your customer’s buyer’s journey and create compelling content that puts them in the center of the narrative. Focus on the benefits, not just what you can provide.

      Making content part of your inbound marketing services is an excellent way to develop lead magnets and grow your business.

      9. Your Website Lacks a Call to Action

      One of the best ways that you can get people engaged with your website is by telling them what they should do. If your website doesn’t have any calls to action or directives, it’s simply not going to get you the results that you want. Utilizing buttons and forms can help guide your viewers to take action on your site.

      10. Your Website Doesn’t Have Landing Pages

      Landing pages are fantastic ways to improve your online footprint and increase SEO performance. In fact, according to HubSpot , companies that have over 30 landing pages get seven times more leads than those with only one to give.

      Landing pages are also great ways to tap into new markets or geographical locations. So make them a significant part of your strategic plan and aim to add as many as possible.

      How to generate leads

      Are you getting as many leads as you could? At Whittington Consulting, we’ve helped countless mid-sized businesses increase their leads, customer base, and online presence. We are a top lead generation consultant. Let us help you develop lead generation outsourcing strategies that work.

      In his book Ultimate Guide to Twitter for Business, online marketing expert Ted Prodromou offers an easy-to-understand guide to using Twitter that will help small-business owners generate leads and connect with customers. In this edited excerpt, the author outlines his 14-step process for developing a lead generation system that brings in new customers. Buy it directly from us, click here, and SAVE 60% on this book when you use code SOCIAL2021 through 5/27/21.

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      Twitter is a great tool for finding potential customers, whether your company sells business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C). The easiest way to generate leads on the internet is to create an interesting free report or informational video that talks about one of your customers’ biggest problems. In the report or video, you focus on “why” they need to change something in their business to become more successful or profitable. The report or video doesn’t have to solve their problem. You just want to focus on telling them why they need to change the way they’re doing business if they want to see better results.

      The lead-generation process is very simple and can be broken down into 14 steps:

      1. Survey your followers.
      If you don’t know what your customer’s biggest problem is, survey your customers and ask them. You can also Tweet the question to your followers and see how they respond.

      2. Offer a solution.
      If you don’t have one already, create a product or service that solves their biggest problem.

      3. Educate your customers.
      Create a free report or informational video that focuses on why they have that problem and why they need to change something in their business to overcome the problem. You’ll tell them how to solve the problem after they hire you.

      4. Create a landing page for the video or report.
      Create a landing page on your website or blog. A landing page is a page on your website that doesn’t have a navigational menu or anything that would distract the web visitor from reading the content on the page.

      Related: Using Twitter for Sales and Marketing

      5. Collect contact information.
      The only content on the landing page is a headline describing [your customers’] biggest problem and a few paragraphs describing what they’ll learn about their problem by reading the report or by viewing the video. The purpose of the landing page content is to get them to fill out the web form. You don’t want to talk about your product or service that will solve their problem until later. Right now, you just want to collect their contact information.

      6. Use an email marketing tool.
      You need an email autoresponder program such as AWeber.com or Infusionsoft.com so you can set up web forms to collect names and email addresses. You don’t need to collect more than that.

      7. Set up your email campaign.
      Install the web form on your landing page so you can collect their first name and email address. Your email autoresponder program will have detailed instructions to help you set up your email campaign and web form.

      8. Create a ‘thank you’ page on your website or blog.
      This page should use the same template as your landing page. This is the page they’ll be redirected to after they fill out their web form. They can download their free report or watch the video on this page.

      9. Direct followers to your landing page.
      Now you want to send a Tweet with a link to the landing page. The Tweet should mention the problem they’re having and hint that there’s a solution to their problem. You want to use a URL shortener that tracks the clicks on the link. HootSuite, www.bitly.com, and www.budurl.com all shorten and track your links.

      10. Set up auto-response messages.
      After they fill out the web form, you’ll have their contact information. In your email autoresponder program, you can set up a series of automatic email messages. You’ll create one message that will be sent immediately after they fill out the web form thanking them for joining your email list. You should also tell them how to download their report or where to watch the video.

      11. Send reminders.
      Set up a series of five or six emails that will be sent every other day. The first couple of emails will talk about why they have the problem and that many businesses have the same problem. You can share some stories about other businesses that struggled with the same problem and overcame it with your help.

      12. Don’t sell your product just yet.
      The emails should transition into “what” they can do to solve the problem. Don’t tell them “how” to solve the problem yet. You can create more free reports or videos that teach them how they can solve the problem by making changes to their business. Don’t try to sell them your product or service yet. Just get them focused on what they can change in their business.

      13. Explain how to solve their problem.
      The last few emails should start talking about “how” they can solve their problem. Once they start understanding how the problem can be solved, you can start offering products and services that will solve their problem quickly.

      14. Repeat the process.
      Do this for each problem your customers have so you can build an email database of customers and prospects for your business. This way you can build a relationship with them and retain them as customers for a long time.

      Did you enjoy your book preview? Click here to grab a copy today—now 60% off when you use code SOCIAL2021 through 5/27/21.

      How to generate leads

      There are more than 1 billion monthly active users on Instagram and 500 million access the social network daily.

      So how does your brand tap into this pool of potential customers and generate new business out of it?

      Let’s look into some tips and tricks that can help your brand create a successful Instagram strategy and translate it into lead generation.

      1. Create an attractive business profile.

      You never get a second chance to make a good first impression. And your Instagram business profile is the place to start.

      Make sure that your leads understand what your brand stands for and try to grab their attention to your products or services.

      Here are a couple of things that you should keep in mind:

      • Shape your Instagram grid.

      Instagram is a visually-oriented social network and your grid should represent your brand’s identity. It’s like a first date that potentially can grow into a partnership or sale with your lead.

      In order to grab the attention of the right audience, make sure you know your buying persona’s behaviour and interests. This will guide you into shaping visually appealing Instagram grid with the right content.

      How to generate leads

      Revisiting your grid every couple of months will also help you adjust your strategy and offer quality photos or videos on your profile.

      • Optimize your profile description.

      Your profile description is the main real estate your brand has to utilize in order to sell itself. So use it wisely!

      Using keywords and hashtags in your profile can increase your chances of people finding you on Instagram. Also, the ones who already landed on your profile will understand better if you are a good fit to them.

      Here is an example from GoPro’s Instagram profile description and grid that shows how the brand attracts the right type of leads.

      How to generate leads

      To learn more on how to shape up your ideal Instagram bio, read this .

      2. Utilize your call-to-action options on Instagram.

      The opportunities to send your leads from Instagram to your website may be limited but they’re quality ones. Here’s how you can take advantage of these features.

      • Link in bio

      This is the only link you get in your business profile! You can use it to generate traffic to your website, specific landing page, or your latest content magnet. Test and find the most relevant way to use it to convert your Instagram leads into customers.

      • Stories’ swipe up

      Instagram Stories have been a leading type of content for a while. They also offer the opportunity for brands to link to a relevant piece of content and start the customer journey for their leads.

      • Action buttons

      The action buttons are part of your business profile and can include a link to your email, phone number, or business address.

      Use them wisely especially if you are a brick and mortar business, because leads tend to look for your brand’s contact information directly on Instagram.

      • Call-to-actions in Instagram posts

      Even though you can’t have active links in your Instagram posts, you can always activate your leads to take action in various ways by asking them to check your website or Instagram bio.

      3. Use targeted hashtags.

      Instagram hashtags translate for search keywords via which leads can find your brand. You have the option to add hashtags to your Instagram bio and in your posts.

      There is a limit of 30 hashtags that can be used in your content so it’s a good idea to create a list of relevant keywords and feature those in your posts.

      According to Falcon’s own social media manager Tondreanna Esquilin , Social Media Manager, Falcon.io, here’s a three-tier strategy. Your hashtag strategy will significantly determine the reach that you are able to obtain on your post on a non-follower level. On Instagram, you want to focus on a three tier strategy.

      Tier 1: large, generic most popular hashtags within your niche (ex: travel, food, workout). While this approach will not land your content a spot on the top posts section of hashtag pages, it’s important that your content is directly classified within its niche.

      Tier 2: branded hashtags. These are going to be either your brand’s hashtags or hashtags within campaigns that you are running.

      And finally Tier 3: less popular, very niche hashtags that relate to the content or your industry (ex: #foodielovernyc instead of #foodlover). Using very niche hashtags will increase the probability of your content ending up on the top posts section of the hashtag page.

      4. Create content that converts.

      Your Instagram content is the main magnet for your potential customers. Here are some tips to keep in mind when building your content strategy.

      • Mind the lead’s stage in your sales funnel.

      When creating Instagram content always consider where your lead stands in your sales funnel. Do they discover your brand for the first time? Or maybe they’ve engaged with it already on a certain level?

      Planning content that serves the needs of your leads on any level will help you optimize the social media channel and convert your leads into customers.

      • Experiment with content formats.

      Instagram offers various opportunities to showcase your products and/or services, and all of those are very visual. The social network even announced that they are planning on focusing more on video in the future.

      Your ability to generate leads on behalf of your business is a key performance indicator for your success. The measurement of your lead generation process is used by the marketing and sales department to find out if you're making progress in reaching out to your target audience to purchase your product. You must be creative with your lead generation process to establish a long-term relationship with your target audience. In this article, we discuss what a lead is, define what lead generation is and show you how to generate leads for your business.

      What is a lead?

      A lead is when an individual or a business is attracted to the product and service you're trying to sell them. An example of a lead can be if they take a company survey about a service needed in their home. The answers provided by the lead give you a better idea about how to frame the next email you send over their way to service their needs.

      Let's review the different types of leads a company can attract:

      Marketing qualified lead: A marketing qualified lead is someone interested in your product based on the way you've marketed to them. Usually, they have an increased chance to purchase from you in comparison to other types of leads considering the engagement level marketing campaigns have with the user. A lead may have filled out a contact form on your website, used a product demo or have visited your website multiple times. However, they might be willing to hear your sales pitch that moves them into the buying stage. You'll need to identify where opportunities lie in your SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis to earn leads.

      Sales qualified lead: Sales qualified leads aim to make it clear to you that they're interested in buying your product or service. You need to research the company and follow your organization's guidelines to find out who's qualified to be a customer. This is a combined effort from sales and marketing teams, and you can gauge their interest to buy by checking if they opened emails sent to them or attended industry webinars you've hosted.

      Product qualified lead: A product qualified lead is a potential paying customer that used your product in the past. They could have used it if they received it as a gift or sampled it at a brick-and-mortar store in a mall or shopping complex. For a digital product, the lead might have downloaded a free trial to have the opportunity to evaluate their experience with it. Your sales representative can call the lead once they finished the trial to find out if they plan to buy your product and what reasons lead to their decision.

      Service qualified lead: A service qualified lead notifies your company that they're ready to buy your product. They may want to purchase an annual subscription or make a one-time purchase to see if they plan on buying more of your product. A sales representative can give this lead an exclusive offer that can give them a chance to buy more products for less than face value.

      What is lead generation?

      Lead generation is a method of sales and marketing that is initiated after a company sends a communication soliciting action from a user and is considered a substitution for cold calling a prospect. In other words, it's a part of a company's effort to transition a customer from a visitor of a website to an avid buyer and user of the product. In a business-to-business (B2B) environment, it's ideal for a business to have customers give testimonials about how much they like a product and the customer service they received throughout the process.

      How to generate leads

      Review this step-by-step guide for you to generate leads for your business:

      1. Conduct research to pick your target audience

      Market research is a key tool that can help you target new leads with your lead generation process. You'll need to emphasize the area in which they live in addition to their age, annual income and previous buying habits to have efficient leads and improve the performance of your marketing campaign.

      2. Choose the appropriate promotional channels

      The promotional channels you select should focus on getting as much exposure for your product as possible. Normally, this part also falls under your marketing plan, and you'll need to brainstorm with your coworkers and managers before you proceed.

      Let's review the channels that can augment your lead generation process:

      Content: Content can come in a variety of ways such as writing, graphics and video, but its main purpose is to provide valuable information to your target audience that they can use to improve their products or use of your products in their everyday life. Ideally, you include a call-to-action within your content, so they can interact with your website, which can get them closer to buying your product.

      Emails: Email helps you contact customers with previous exposure to your company. This way, you can reach out to contacts subscribed to your emails, create content that attracts further interest and request them to go to your landing page. Produce a strategic plan to contact previous customers, along with new customers to have a diverse set of leads.

      Blogs: Blogs can be written to promote your offering to the customer while enticing them to proceed with your call to action. For example, you can write a blog about the importance social media has on a brand and solicit the business to fill out a contact form and you can contact them if they're interested in purchasing marketing services from you.

      Social media: Social media is an interactive platform for users to see your product and the human side of your brand. Your brand's reputation is essential in driving leads, so they can become consistent buyers. Produce story-based social media content that communicates directly with your audience and makes it easier for them to understand your call-to-action and how it influences them.

      Free trials or samples: Product trails and samples can address the doubts customers may have in wanting to buy your product and give you additional sales opportunities that offer new products and add-ons to current products they purchased. Video games have additional downloadable content, whereas you may see infomercials that can give you a discount on practical household products of your interest.

      3. Establish a plan to collect data from leads

      Collecting data from your leads is important because you can insert them into lead generation software and document the likelihood they have of responding to marketing and sales pitches you make with your content. You can gather data from leads if they fill out a contact form, where you can render an incentive for interacting with your brand.

      4. Use your promotional channels to produce relationships and create new leads

      Out of all promotional channels, social media is indispensable in engaging with leads and giving your product meaning to your target audience. A professional sports team speaking with fans during a game is an example of an interaction that makes them feel a part of the organization's efforts, which they are.

      A full-time social media staff member can comment on content posted on social media platforms and respond to direct messages that address concerns that arise. Remember that marketing dovetails your public relations efforts, so be conscious of distributed press materials regarding new developments with the company to give you clues on what your target audience should look forward to in the future.