Keep two things in mind as you research how to generate leads online. Develop trust and provide value to your audience. Most people will only give you their contact information or schedule a sales call if they have already received significant value from you.
In other words, before generating leads for your company, you must first lay the groundwork for your lead-generation strategy. Our demand generation guide covers everything you need to know about that process. If unsure what the difference is, bookmark our explanation of demand generation vs. lead generation.
1. Create Your Buyer Personas
To find leads on the internet, you must first understand who your buyers are. Create buyer personas that detail their desires, goals, and frustrations. Include key moments that motivate your customers to take action.
Here are some examples of personas created by other brands to get you started. Just keep in mind to think beyond the basic demographics and create psychological profiles that connect the person, their environment, and the moments that cause behavior changes.
2. Make a Customer Journey Map
The first step in developing your framework is to map the customer journey for each persona within each audience segment you wish to target. What motivates them to embark on their journey? What problem or frustration are they attempting to resolve, or what desire or goal motivates them to begin searching?
What sources do they consult for information? What websites do they frequent? What are their concerns, and where do they look for answers? How do they use Google to find solutions? How do they move from top-of-funnel general information seeking to the middle of the funnel, where they compare specific solutions? What factors do they consider before making a final purchase decision?
3. Make the Appropriate Offer at Each Stage of the Journey
You must make the appropriate offer at each funnel stage if you want more leads. If they’re still at the top of the funnel and just looking for general educational information, be as helpful as possible in answering their questions. Make only educational blog posts, articles, and videos available.
If they are in the middle of the funnel and want a more in-depth understanding of your solutions and a comparison of their options, give them all the details and key points of differentiation.
Consider that they are trying to make a final decision at the bottom of the funnel. Let them make an informed decision by providing calculators, tools, offers, comparison charts, case studies, and any other content demonstrating the ROI they can achieve.
4. Make Use of Creative Content Marketing
If you need help generating leads, look to these content marketing examples for inspiration. Content marketing is a powerful lead generation tool because it allows you to subconsciously connect with your target audience and memorably engage with them.
What makes the content interesting? Engaging copy draws in your readers. It arouses emotions, provides actionable advice, and entices users to read every word. captivating content also motivates readers to act. This is critical if you want them to share, link, bookmark, or fill out a form.
5. Make Use of Video Marketing
Well-crafted, optimized video content adds an experiential element to your marketing that other marketing formats cannot match. The video effectively elicits an emotional response from an audience, forming memories and increasing recall.
6. Optimize Your Website & Content
SEO is the only channel that aligns with how your target audience thinks. Every query, every annoyance, and every solution they seek is revealed in organic search.
When you use and optimize for these insights, you can create pages and content that align with your audience’s needs throughout the purchase funnel. As a result, you will not simply increase website traffic. You’ll be driving the correct type of traffic.
To begin, content can be used to attract and capture mailing list opt-ins and other types of leads. Beyond the initial capture, you can use organic search to nurture leads through the sales cycle by aligning with their interests and queries throughout the funnel.
7. Optimize Your Landing Pages
Start with a conversion-first mindset when creating web pages and lead-generation landing pages. Your pages must correspond to the intent of the audience member. However, they provide an opportunity to create more brilliant conversion funnels that will help you increase your leads. That guidance can then be baked into the page layout, design, messaging, and CTAs.
8. Use Press Releases (PRs) to Get Attention
Another effective way to generate leads is through public relations (PR).
Public relations frequently targets the top of the funnel to increase brand awareness.
When a campaign is innovative enough, it generates enough buzz. That can cause massive media coverage, social activity, and impressions, significantly expanding your reach.
Byline articles, guest blogging, newsjacking, events, and sponsorships are all effective ways to use PR for lead generation. You can use these PR vehicles to reach new audiences, establish authority, and bring leads to your door.
9. Concentrate on Referral Marketing
Word of mouth (WOM) and referral marketing are two of the most natural ways to generate new leads. The lead has a better chance of converting with the endorsement of someone the individual trusts.
Regardless of your other marketing efforts, referral marketing can be a powerful source of new, high-quality, likely-to-close leads for your company. Influitive, Insided, and Crowdvocate are examples of customer advocacy software for increased WOM marketing.
10. Use Display Advertising at the Funnel’s Top
If you want to raise awareness and get people into your funnel, display advertising is one of the quickest ways to reach many people.
Display advertising certainly presents several challenges. It’s costly, and the benefits vanish once you stop paying for it. Furthermore, banner blindness is actual and hampers any hopes of getting good results from display advertising without spending a fortune. However, the display is a highly scalable marketing vehicle if you need to spread the word quickly.
11. Run PPC Campaigns at the Bottom of the Funnel
If you want to reach your audience quickly but at the bottom of the funnel, you can rely on PPC. Paid search allows you to get people precisely when they are looking for your products, services, or solutions.
However, it is costly, just like display advertising. And, as with display advertising, when you stop funding the effort, your results immediately drop to zero. When generating leads, PPC deserves to be considered, but it may not be a long-term solution.
12. Develop Relationships With Influential People
Working with influencers allows you to get your brand in front of a passionate audience that is already listening to a voice they trust.
However, don’t just send your pitch to any influencer. The key is to conduct research and pitch influencers who are a good fit for your brand. If B2B, this could include the following audience attributes: industry, department, title, company size, geographic location, main business goals, pain points, and so on.
13. Identify Site Visitors via IP Address
When considering how to generate more leads, please don’t fall into the trap of believing that you must always capture their email on the first site visit. People who visit your website but still need to submit a form, register for a webinar, request a demo, or otherwise give you their email address are an often-overlooked source of leads.
This is where IP detection software comes into play. The software allows you to see which companies are on your website, what those visitors are viewing, how long they are viewing it for, and in what order they are considering it. Furthermore, if the individual is already in your CRM database, it identifies them individually.
Many visitors need to convert while on your site, but they may still be good prospective leads. IP detection software allows you to quickly follow up with site visitors and accounts with the appropriate contextual message at the right time.
14. Retarget Lost Audience
Retargeting those who have visited your website but have yet to convert is another way to re-engage them. After they leave your site, show them advertisements. Make the ads contextually relevant to what they were looking at on your site to make an effort even more effective.
Retargeting is effective because you know they are interested in your solutions. They might need a nudge or a reminder to return to your site.
15. Be Active on Social Media
If you’re stuck on where to find new business leads, social media may be one option if approached correctly. Social media platforms such as LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter allow you to interact with your target audience in a non-sales manner. This will enable you to show your true colors and let your personality shine.
Social media can help you generate leads by promoting free content such as white papers, research reports, webinars, and other online events.
However, don’t be slack and connect with people on LinkedIn to send them an automated sales pitch. Get to know people in your field. Share their content and participate in relevant discussions. Potential customers will be more open to candid conversations about your services if they see you as a leader. This method takes longer, but it is worthwhile.
16. Use Automated Email Marketing
Even if they sign up for your mailing list, they may not be qualified sales leads. You can set up various automated email marketing sequences to nudge them towards actions that increase their lead score and qualify them as “sales-ready.” This helps to direct the specific behaviors displayed by your most promising prospects.
And make sure to limit yourself to more than one automated email sequence after opting in. Use behavioral segmentation to get the most out of email marketing sequences.
17. Carry Out A/B Testing
Make sure to conduct various A/B testing to maximize your lead generation results. The key to A/B testing is to develop a strategy, think holistically, and test as many aspects of your lead generation activities as possible.
A/B test your messaging, for example. Evaluate your landing pages. Determine which CTAs are the most effective. Validate your online forms. A/B test your lead nurturing emails after they’ve opted in.
You can truly maximize your leads if you conduct 360-degree testing. Optimizely, VWO, A/B Tasty, Adobe Experience Cloud A/B Testing, and SiteSpect are all useful A/B testing tools.
A Reminder When It Comes to Lead Generation
The most effective way to generate leads for your company is to connect with potential buyers at the right time via search-optimized content.
To build awareness, you can create valuable content marketing campaigns centered on infographics and free tools at the top of the sales funnel. As they get closer to making a purchase, share relevant content about the pros and cons they should think about, as well as case studies.
Use pop-ups strategically to collect contact information, such as phone numbers or email addresses, to build your email list. Finally, use marketing automation to nurture leads until they are ready to speak with one of your sales representatives.
Inbound lead generation is both an art and a science. Campaign ideas and messaging should be innovative. To cut through the clutter, you must carefully target your audience. Furthermore, you require a framework to ensure that the leads continue to flow over time. To that end, implement the lead generation strategies and tactics outlined above to give your marketing strategy a competitive advantage.