Lead Generation, It doesn’t matter how great your product or service is if you don’t have customers to pay for it, that’s why generating leads is the most important part of any sales funnel. In this guide, you will learn everything there is to know about lead generation, so let’s start at the top.
What is lead generation?
Lead generation is the act of attracting prospects and converting them into paying customers. It’s one of the essential processes in running a business. It’s usually executed during a potential customer’s first interaction with a brand.
Most lead generation actions happen online these days, but they can apply to physical situations too.
It is essential to implement a strategic approach to lead generation that can help you narrow down the pool of could-be leads into high-intent and highly qualified prospects. Marketing and sales teams run numerous campaigns and initiatives with the hopes of attracting the right leads, nurturing them with useful information, and eventually, getting them to buy your product or service.
Lead generation draws out details that can turn strangers into leads, leads into loyal subscribers, and loyal subscribers into loyal customers. Some lead generators are job applications, blog posts, coupons, live events, and online content.
These lead generators are just a few examples of lead generation strategies you can use to attract potential customers and guide them towards your offers.
Why is lead generation important?
Lead generation ultimately turns into customers who produce revenue for the company. This revenue covers all of the company’s operational costs, including employee salaries. It also enables the company to refine its products or services over time.
Other important benefits of lead generation are brand awareness, competitive analysis, product improvement tips, etc.
Lead Generation Process
Let’s walk you through the steps of the lead generation process.
- First, a visitor discovers your business through one of your marketing channels, such as your website, blog, or social media page.
- That visitor then clicks on your call-to-action-CTA (an image, button, or message that encourages website visitors to take some action).
- That CTA takes your visitor to your web page designed to capture lead information in exchange for an offer.
Note: An offer is content or something of value that’s being “offered” on the landing page, like a discount on some of your products. The offer must have enough perceived value to a visitor for them to provide their personal information in exchange for access to it.)
- While on the web page, your visitor fills out a form in exchange for the offer.
See how everything fits together?
To sum it up: A visitor clicks a CTA that takes them to a landing page where they fill out a form to get an offer, at which point they become a lead.
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What are the lead generation channels?
There are two ways to generate leads: through marketing and sales.
Also called “inbound leads,” marketing leads are potential customers who offer their contact information while engaging with your content. Common examples of marketing leads include people who:
- Click on your ads, get directed to a landing page, and fill out a contact form.
- Subscribe to your blog or newsletter.
- Download your content, such as an eBook or whitepaper. The more delighted a visitor is with your content, the more likely they are to click your call-to-action and move onto your landing page.
- Participate in a survey that your marketing team created.
- Go to your website and leave their information in a contact form.
Lead generation strategies for marketing leads
The key to an effective marketing lead strategy is to be deliberate about the content you publish. Each blog post, ad campaign, email marketing, eBook, or social media post should serve a specific purpose. When deciding which content will help you generate the most high-quality leads, consider the following questions:
- Know your target audience?
- What issues or challenges do they face?
- What do they care about?
- What value can you offer them?
- What kind of visuals will be the most compelling?
- How can you differentiate your content from your competitors’?
- What is your key messaging?
- What is your call to action?
Answering the above questions will empower you to create tailored, on-point lead generation campaigns that speak directly to your audience, capture their attention, and offer real value.
Sales leads, or outbound leads, are the people your sales reps identify as your product or service’s relevant potential users.
Imagine you own a company the produces Rice and sells it to distributors. Your sales team would determine a list of distributors in the location you target as outbound leads and reach out directly to them to pitch your product, even if the distributors didn’t previously show an interest in it.
Lead generation strategy for sales leads
Sales teams use a variety of tools and approaches to building cohorts of outbound leads. For example, many sales reps attend industry events where they network with possible leads and collect their contact information to pitch them later. LinkedIn is a popular tool because it allows users to search for individuals based on key parameters, such as company, position title, number of employees, etc.
Grow Better with Lead Generation
The importance of effective lead generation cannot be overstated. Successful lead generation makes the rest of your sales processes smoother and more productive and contributes to better business outcomes. Be in close touch with your sales team to make sure they are handing off high-quality leads regularly. Lastly, never stop testing. The more you tweak and test every step of your inbound lead generation process, the more you’ll improve lead quality and increase revenue.
Lead generation is a foundational marketing concept that refers to collecting much-needed information on potential customers to strengthen connections and build enough trust to lead up to a sale.
The idea isn’t so different when applied to email marketing. However, the tactics used to generate leads and grow email lists may not be as simple as the old “calling card in a fishbowl” strategy of traditional marketing.
Here are some concrete initiatives you can implement to generate email leads:
- Keep tabs on your competition.
- Use exit-intent boxes and other navigational tools on your website.
- Email drip campaigns
- Offer lead magnets with gated content behind them.
- Automate your email send schedule.
- Encourage subscribers to forward and share your emails.
- Consider a referral program.
- Hold contests or giveaways with relevant prizes.