This column is authored by Amberlynn Adam, Blogger, Content Developer & Editor at DataCaptive
“Running out of leads”- is a common complaint which a majority of sales reps raise in their organizations. Only salesmen understand the true joy of having a solid lead in hand. Lead generation has been in the sales business since the beginning of trade. Merchants used to travel far and wide to meet their potential clients for the purpose of business just on the hopes of hints and references. But today Lead generation itself has turned to become a huge business segment in the current corporate world.
In simple words, Lead generation can be defined as the process of raising buyer interest and generating inquiries from prospective clients, often in the form of name and contact information. These leads are then analyzed and sorted for their ability to make the purchase of the product or service. 74% of marketers spend more than $50 on each lead generated, with 5% spending over $1,000(Mintigo). Hence for marketers, leads are a stand-off between quality and quantity. The leads generated should be of enough quality and quantity that the sales team can use it for attaining customers and finally generating revenue.
LEAD GENERATION IN THE MODERN WORLD
According to Hubspot’s State Of Inbound Report, Generating leads has been found to be one of the major challenges faced by most marketers. This has resulted in marketers being on a continual search for newer lead generation tactics. Unlike the traditional models which marketers used for generating leads, the modern techniques and tools are mostly online but the fundamental idea of demonstrating expertise and building relationships remain the same. But what marketers have to keep in mind is that how you use a Lead Generation channel is more important than what lead channel you use.
There are different opinions regarding which method is the best. According to Hubspot’s study of B2B lead sources, SEO is the most suitable Lead Generation channel while according to Chief Marketer’s data E-mail marketing is the best technique. There are other surveys which say that Social media and content are the most important platforms for Lead Generation.
THE ONLINE LEAD GENERATION STRATEGIES THAT CONSISTENTLY COME ON THE TOP ARE
“92% of digitally literate adults use email, with 61% using it on an average day.” – Pew Research
Even though it has been 23 years since e-mail was introduced, it’s still one of the few marketing channels that have stood the test of time and stays on the top of many marketers’ lists of B2B lead generation strategies. Even email marketing has changed a lot through the process of automation. Marketing automation tools are hybrid tools that can be connected with the CRM that enable the marketers to send highly targeted e-mails and then nurture them accordingly for generating revenue.
Organic Search Marketing is one of the most important long term Lead Generation strategies in the current business world. Today the chances of a prospective client searching for a query regarding a service or product in Google are really high. A Search Engine Watch survey suggests, Eighty-five percent of retailers surveyed said search marketing (including paid and SEO) was the most effective customer acquisition tactic. Thus, Search Engine Optimization can provide tools to marketers which they can use to match qualified clients with their online content.
Lead Magnets can prove highly useful to marketers in Lead Generation. Lead magnet in general means content given away to someone in exchange for their e-mail address.Training video series,Surveys, Free trial, Webinars, eBooks, White papers are some of the common Lead Magnets.
Nearly every website or company with an e-mail list uses lead magnets for Lead Generation. In Today’s world, people’s inboxes are so submerged in emails, newsletters and offer advertisements that the lead magnet must be truly stellar to get people to add one more to their inbox. Simply inviting people to sign up for your list is not enough to achieve better results. Lead Magnet works on the concept that something of value must be given in order to receive something of value – here it refers to customer’s details.
Most websites are designed in the form of a Jargon filled, firm- centric manner, instead of the intent of generating leads. If the visitors do not understand the services provided or the problems that can be solved with the services, they will go elsewhere. Marketers & designers should optimize the website in a manner that attracts visitors to respond to the website in a positive way.
Adding personalized CTA-tools, Landing pages, Thank You pages, doing enough A/B tests etc are some of the ways to increase Lead Generation through Websites.
SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING
There are different opinions in regards to how Social Media Marketing helps in Lead Generation. There are many reports which say that Social Media channels are the least effective Lead Generation mediums. But there are marketers who argue that it’s because most companies have ill-fitting social media strategies. It’s the quality and reach of the networking you do that matters in social media. The style of interaction varies greatly from Twitter to LinkedIn to Facebook, so it is about making the right connections with the right people.
Identifying the Social Media Marketing KPIs to Track Success for effective Lead Generation.
- Awareness: How far your brand’s messaging could spread
- Acquisition: The growth of your online community
- Activation: How successfully you are engaging with your community
- Satisfaction: How your audience feels about your brand
Social Media Marketing can produce the reputation and referrals even associated with traditional business networking.
No matter on what your business is based, Content is still the King. Blogging is one of the primary avenues through which B2C and B2B marketers drive Lead Generation. Blogs actually do not generate a lot of direct leads but it is the most effective driver of leads to websites. This is mainly because, blogs allow creating a wide range of keyword laden content that can be found in the search engines and draw qualified prospects to your website.
The most important thing while using content whether it’s in the form of microsites, blogging, research reports, or infographics is to test what does and doesn’t work so that you can gradually refine your lead generation over time.
FINAL STEP OF LEAD GENERATION – MERGING ALL IN THE RIGHT PROPORTIONS
Marketing sometimes can turn out to be a long process. Integrating all the above mentioned techniques in the most proper way can build Lead Generation in an effective manner which is the ultimate goal of every marketer. But only the willingness to experiment with the tactics and trying to combine the techniques accordingly for the campaigns across various channels can result in perfect lead Generation.