As of October 2021, there are over 4.55 billion active social media users around the world. Over 400 million users joined social media just this year — that’s 13 new users every second.
Keeping your sales funnel full has to be your number one priority, and generating leads through social media is going to be one of the core tenets of your success.
But putting theory into practice is harder than it seems — in fact, it’s something most social media marketers struggle to do.
In this article, we’ll give you some top tips to utilize the power of social media for lead generation.
Any social media strategy requires thorough preparation.
First off, figure out who your target audience is. What segments are you aiming for? Does your business have a type of clientele that it wants to capture? What are their pain points and what does your company offer to address those points?
Secondly, define what a lead will be for your business. This depends heavily on what kind of business you run, your industry, and your end goals. Having concrete, measurable goals will let you know whether or not what you’re doing is actually working.
It can also be helpful to use good lead generation software if your budget allows for it, as most will also include an analytics dashboard to visualize your results. This gives you the insight to better optimize your future social media lead generation strategies.
By knowing your audience and their pain points, you can really drill down into what will get them to opt-in to what you’re offering.
Let’s put ourselves in our audience’s shoes.
When you go on social media platforms, do you go with the intent to purchase something or do you want to see something entertaining or interesting? People are innately drawn towards something that enriches their experience.
To get prospective customers to give you information, you need to offer something in return. For you, that means creating content that has value, something they can’t get elsewhere.
Social media is inundated with ads — “spam” is the death of any marketing campaign. But educating your audience has a much different effect. You’re not selling something, you’re giving something freely.
You’ve got tons of options for this kind of approach: instructional videos, quizzes, infographics, your company blog. If you’re a thought leader in your industry, you already have the resources you need. And if you aren’t, this is your chance to become one.
Gated content is simple — once you’ve got something valuable to offer to your audience, simply ask them for some information before they can access it. For example, you could interface this in your email marketing strategy by asking your audience for their email address and sending them the link to that gated content in a welcome email.
Creating gated content goes hand-in-hand with offering something valuable. People are highly unlikely to offer personal information if they aren’t going to get something in return.
What you want with your gated content is concrete, tangible benefits for this exchange. Lots of smaller companies or even solo entrepreneurs utilize this idea to great effect — since their market is, by necessity, smaller, they can create content that is specifically tailored to their niche audience, delivering something that no one else can and offering a fantastic value proposition.
This tip is especially good for creating focused leads since you should be able to predict what segment of your audience will sign up for the content you’re offering. And a specific topic that captures that audience and directly addresses their pain points can be all the push they need to opt-in.
Yes, we know we mentioned that social media is full of ads. But that doesn’t mean they’re all bad.
The name of the game here is targeted ads. If you already know your audience’s interests and pain points, then you should be running ads to address those points. Since it’s highly targeted, you might see favorable results much quicker as compared to organic lead generation.
This really works spectacularly with specific subject matters and a reward of special discounts or coupons in exchange for customer information.
When you combine this with the gated content strategy, you hit them with a one-two punch — not only are you giving them content that they want, you’re giving it to them for a better deal than they would have gotten otherwise.
You’ll primarily see subscriber-based services employing this, as getting people to sign up (even if only temporarily or at a discount) is already a huge win for their marketing strategy.
For even more powerful retargeting, you can also use automation tools such as Novocall — which allows you to integrate click-to-call to your Facebook Lead Forms. This way, your prospects can request callbacks from the Facebook Lead Forms itself.
Once prospects sign up, you can then funnel them into your email lead nurturing strategy to build a strong relationship with them.
Since social media lead generation is directly tied to how many eyes actually see your posts, doing it alone can be troublesome if you’ve only started growing your audience.
An easy way to quickly increase your views is to partner up with another business in the same industry or with the same kind of audience.
This type of collaboration is especially important with start-ups. If you’re a relatively small business, working with similarly-sized brands can help you target a more narrow and specific audience because of the general nature of startups, to begin with!
Of course, this doesn’t mean you’re going to work with your direct competitors. A good strategy is to engage with a brand that complements the services and products you already offer.
Bringing it back to the preparation stage of your lead generation strategy — what pain points have your audience expressed? If there are things you can’t address directly, then perhaps a partner that specializes in those areas could be a good fit.
The benefits of this strategy should be immediately obvious. Not only do you learn from the lead generation experts of your partner, but you also reach your followers and those of your partner brand, allowing you to offer the expertise of both brands. By doing so, you can give your audience unique content that they can’t get anywhere else — just like we said in tip number one.
While you can attempt to do everything yourself, you can run the risk of either running out of content to produce or coming off as too spammy — neither of which is a good look.
As a complement to your existing lead generation strategy, you can enlist the help of other content creators and influencers. Having a respected and reputable personality discussing subject matter related to your brand can help create awareness about what you offer.
Whereas a traditional ad is usually served up to your audience without any context, a brand feature from a content creator or influencer is often embedded in the wider scope of their subject matter for that particular video or post.
This way, the information that your audience receives has context and meaning that instantly makes it more relatable and meaningful to them — it’s already connected to a topic that they’re interested in.
Of course, this only works if you already have a good knowledge of the content creators and influencers that are in the same wheelhouse as your brand. Consider doing this research as part 3 of your initial preparation before starting your lead generation strategy.
This is by no means an exhaustive list, but it’s a solid start for your lead generation in 2022. Your key takeaway from today’s article should be this: what you offer to your audience has a direct impact on what they’ll give in return.
Create killer content, give people an opportunity to opt in, and use diverse means to get eyes on your brand—do all these things and you can be sure that your sales funnel will stay full.
As a whole, lead generation on social media doesn’t cost much, but it requires you to have a good fundamental understanding of your brand, your audience, and your value proposition. It’s always hard to predict what strategies will or will not work for your business.
Even if it doesn’t work perfectly, keep your eyes on the prize—do this by measuring the impact of your efforts in relation to your goals. That way, you can iterate on your approach. The best social media marketers experiment and keep trying new things to generate leads.
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