Lead generation strategies can be difficult to conceptualize and implement. Yet, it is a crucial part of any business to acquire new leads and keep the sales funnel full.
With so many different ways to generate leads, it’s no wonder businesses have difficulty finding the right strategy.
So, to support you on your road to business success, we reached out to 13 thought leaders to share their take on effective lead generation.
We asked them:
1. What can businesses do to be more effective in generating leads?
2. What does lead generation look like for your business?
Let’s find out what some of their lead generation tips and strategies are!
First, they need to make sure their sales and marketing teams are truly in alignment.
Marketing and sales teams are often speaking different languages which require us to find a commonality that resonates on both sides.
And that commonality is data. Bringing validated data to the conversation and making decisions based on that data helps bridge that gap and get everyone on the same page.
Secondly, firms should start thinking about each and every one of these not as a lead, but a relationship waiting to happen.
Relentlessly focusing on these relationships has a waterfall effect: if someone has a good experience with your brand (even if they don’t purchase), they’re more likely to talk about it with colleagues and peers.
This helps build brand awareness and makes future lead generation incrementally easier so that your lead generation efforts become more efficient and effective.
At the end of the day, it’s about putting in a lot of effort into the very beginning of each customer journey. This ensures that you provide the best experience possible.
If you don’t offer a good experience from day one, what’s going to keep people coming back?
Businesses have to provide something of value – greater value than they can find elsewhere – so they want to raise their hand and give you their contact information.
In the B2B space, eBooks, white papers, events, and webinars all tend to work well.
As for Jason, he approaches a front door and a back door approach.
The back door is either reaching out to prospects and personally delivering such gated content through email, or inviting a prospect to come on our podcast.
People who land on specific pages of your website are likely to have questions regarding your product or service. You can take this opportunity to determine if the visitor in-conversation is a sales qualified lead or not.
With targeted posts for your customers, you’ll increase engagement and attract marketing qualified leads.
Platforms such as Reddit and Quora will help you understand the growing concerns and needs of your target audience which you can address through your product or service as a solution.
To avoid roadblocks in their lead generation process, ProProfs has successfully learned how to pay attention to growing demands and market their products with emerging times.
This has resulted in more leads for their business and delighted customers at the same time.
Work on retention and customer lifetime value (CLTV) to shorten the payback period, and reinvest that money into acquisition.
Your product also needs to be present in every place your customer is. It can be anywhere from offline ads or events, and social media.
Besides, if you’ve found a good product-market fit, word of mouth referrals will naturally increase and more user content is generated around it. In turn, leads are generated for you.
Here are a few strategies for both lead generation and engagement that have been successful for NetHunt:
A community group adds immeasurable value to your product – networking opportunities that offer another reason to stay with your business.
They gain a group of like-minded professionals that share similar values and pain points to soothe. They can bump heads on business-related issues, share challenges that they face, and offer a helping hand to each other.
Linkedin and Twitter are powerful channels to access potential buyers and generate leads.
Our goal here is to establish ourselves as experts by sharing actionable tips and industry-related news and be the first name that pops up in the head of potential buyers when the need for a product arises.
Now is the time for companies that have similar target audiences to come together and generate leads.
Partner webinars and newsletters, guest posting, and bundle offers are things that we prioritize, often bringing fruitful results.
Monika shares that aligning your content to each lead’s sales stage helps in educating and nurturing your prospects. Having an effective content strategy for nurturing leads can help build a healthy pipeline.
At MyOperator, they generate leads solely through online mediums. Based on their buyer persona, they curate content that helps educate prospects such as sharing industry case studies and product use cases to help them better understand the benefits of their services.
Establish a compelling offer that gets leads through the door. This can be an offer such as a webinar or low-ticket service that drives targeted leads into your funnel.
The offer has to be a no-brainer, without friction, and of high value.
By directing targeted traffic to such a power offer through blog posts, email lists, ads on Facebook or Google, or social media, you can fine-tune your upsell messaging to only interested parties. This is not only more effective, but cheaper to convert leads.
For Charlie, he believes in not putting all their eggs in one basket as channels may become more costly over time or unavailable. At Ampfluence, they use social media outreach, paid advertising on both Facebook and Google, content marketing, and SEO.
First, businesses need to clearly define their target audience. They can make a list of the right people on LinkedIn before proceeding to scraped that list using a tool like Dux-Soup,
The next step is then to follow-up with these leads. Businesses should email those leads at scale and follow up with them using CRM automation like Salesflare.
Two things here are key: very strong targeting and flawless follow-up.
If you don’t know who your perfect buyer is, you’ll never be able to find them.
Take some time at the start of the process to define your ideal customer. Build up a portrait of the exact customer you want to attract, then use it to find similar people in decision-making roles.
This is absolutely critical for effective lead generation.
Both your sales and marketing teams must be working in tandem, chasing the same leads, and tracking the same metrics. One simple thing you can do is put the two teams under the same umbrella.
Sales alignment shouldn’t stifle your marketing operation. Lead generation depends on having a consistent pipeline of quality leads.
Your route to achieving that is through having multi-channel marketing.
Start a blog, publish quality content aimed at your ideal customers, run paid ads, and email campaigns.
If you’re working at a startup or scaleup company, you can’t afford to waste weeks before making adjustments to your strategy.
Select your metrics and track them weekly. If you see a drop in performance, identify where the problem is and fix it straight away.
If your company is selling software, it is important to work on the optimization of the website, creating appealing and useful content around your product. This will assure your audience that you are an expert in your field and that they can trust you.
Another very important thing is retargeting leads and reminding them about your product or service.
RSS’s main focus is on SEO and PPC campaigns. As a low-cost SaaS product, they are looking to create content that solves their target audiences’ issues through the sales funnel.
Once they have the lead in the pipeline, they manage them with lead nurturing campaigns to help them through the onboarding process to become paying customers.
Sam shares that many businesses make the mistake of marketing to everyone when they should focus on people who are interested in what the company has to offer.
If you’re generating leads via outbound sales, connect with relevant prospects on multiple channels. The easiest way to do that is to use a sales engagement platform. These platforms are user-friendly and contain a lot of robust personalization features.
At Mailshake, they preach sales engagement and practice it in their outbound sales efforts and when following up with inbound leads.
They get most of their website traffic via organic search to their blog and marketing website. Mailshake’s sales team will connect with their leads on LinkedIn, and follow-up with a phone call.
But the majority of their leads come from the sales team proactively engaging with leads and prospects via email, social, and phone.
Generally, SEO improves your organic traffic and gives you quality leads. But note that there is both an art and science aspect to an effective SEO strategy.
Use a mixture of statistical analysis, machine learning, and our own injection of innovative creativity to identify areas of opportunity to help you drive results.
Local SEO is a subset of SEO and while they each run on two different algorithms, they do overlap.
Local SEO takes everything the normal organic results would encompass and applies a location angle on it. This is why you’ll see different results when you search for things like “dentist” vs “dentist Chicago”.
By optimizing your site, you can improve your local search rankings, which results in increased traffic to your site.
Existing pages can be much easier to rank because they may already have some existing equity in the form of links and established topical authority.
Pages that load slowly have a negative effect on your search engine rankings. You want your pages to load fast primarily for user experience reasons (which do directly impact conversion rates).
If you can measure something, then you can improve it.
Being able to measure your performance is extremely important when it comes to SEO. The Performance Report within Google Search Console (GSC) is an extremely useful report for assessing your site’s SEO health from a very high level.
Each business has a different product and market fit so there’s no “best” strategy – the usual advice is to try different marketing channels and see what “sticks”.
But as a productized service company, where monthly fees are higher than your typical SaaS, social proof is also super important.
So they rely a lot on word of mouth and recommendations. Reputation plays a big role in their strategy. As a young company themselves, they also do outreach via email and LinkedIn, but they keep this manual and low-key, to make sure that they remain authentic and not spammy.
Businesses have to understand who their target market is to be able to become effective in their lead generation efforts. Sudeepta shares a broken-down version of this strategy:
1. Understand who your customers are (what they like, what makes them stick)
2. Determine what messaging works best for your target customers (what appeals to their emotions)
3. Understand what channels work (and what doesn’t)
4. Combine the learning from the points mentioned above
5. Iterate to get the perfect recipe
One important enabler of this strategy is the type of tools you use throughout this process. Unless the process is scalable, it isn’t efficient (even though it may be effective at an individual level).
At InsightCraft, they practice what they preach. From defining their ideal customer profile to iterating the communication (strategy, messaging, and format), to the use of tools that make the entire sales outreach process smoother with every run.
While the process follows the same structure, it varies from client to client, depending on their niches. For example, InsightCraft’s lead generation efforts may begin from LinkedIn, then an email, followed by a phone conversation, then to a Zoom demo call before it gets to a closure.
And there you have it! Lead generation doesn’t seem so scary now, does it? 💪
We hope that this expert roundup has provided you with some useful and actionable tips to propel you towards business success! For more helpful advice from business leaders, check out our interview series!
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