Generating new leads is the most important task when starting or growing a business. Unfortunately, it is getting harder to gather leads using traditional marketing methods such as trade shows and adverts in magazines.
Online methods are proving far more effective. Here is a checklist for your marketing department to capture and nurture your prospects, and convert them into paying customers.
1 – Your website
Your website can be your most powerful tool and it is important to optimise it. There are simple things that can be added to a website to help you capture those all-important leads. A ‘subscribe to our newsletter’, ‘call me back’ or even ‘download this whitepaper’ button are all great ways to get the details of potential customers.
If someone walked into your shop, you wouldn’t let them leave without asking if there was anything you could do to help? They’ve walked into your shop with the intent of finding something.
Your website should be no different. Offer visitors the opportunity to find out more about you, and although they may not be ready to buy at that moment, you’ll have their information so you can nurture them until they are ready to buy.
Another great tip for your website is to include customer testimonials. Did you know that over 90 per cent of consumers now read online reviews before making a purchase?
2 – Content
Another powerful lead generation tool, and as Bill Gates once said: “Content is King”. Content can be in the form of many things, including blogs, eBooks, videos, infographics, articles, white papers and other insightful and educational forms.
Generate content that your customers will find useful, or share to their social media. For example, a pet grooming company may post blogs of different brushing techniques for different types of dog fur, and a recruitment company, information for interview techniques.
By posting relevant content, your viewers will be more inclined to subscribe to your newsletter or contact you for more information.
There are other benefits from posting content. Google rate websites that are updated regularly highly and posting content is a great way to ensure this. And if the content directly related to your services it will help more customers to find you from organic searching on the search engine. It also helps you become an expert in your field – often known as a thought leader. By establishing your company as the leader, customers will be more inclined to trust you and therefore buy.
3 – Emailing
Now you’ve got some email addresses, it is time to nurture your customers. Did you know, that less than 30 per cent of leads are ready to buy when they are first generated?
Email is a great way of moving potential customers down the sales funnel. Send helpful and informative emails, encourage people back to your website through links. Keeping your list informed of recent blogs or events will keep them up to date with your company, when they might not have seen the blogs etc.
Just be sure that they’ve opted into receiving these emails from you. If a customer has given you their email address under the pretence of downloading a whitepaper, they will not be expecting your monthly newsletter. Be sure to include in your sign up form the option to subscribe or unsubscribe from the newsletter for all email capture forms.
4 – Direct Mail
Who said direct mail was dead? On the contrary, with our inboxes overflowing with emails, it is hard to cut through the noise.
Direct Mail is a far more personal way to market to your customers, and direct. lf you provide a brochure or voucher, customers are far more likely to remember you and buy. It is important to track the engagement from a campaign like this, so create a new landing page or unique phone number for the materials you’re sending. This way you can see how many people engaged.
5 – Social Media
You can be guaranteed that your audience is on social media. It is an extremely fast way of reaching your audience, and it’s free! Post your helpful and informative blogs to your social following, but also partake in ongoing conversations, by offering advice to problems or offering solutions. By becoming a prevailing presence on social media, you can help drive these users to your website and become customers.
Attracting and engaging with customers on social sites will show them you’re a real company, it adds a human touch to your business which customers really relate to. This will in turn, encourage them further down your sales funnel.
One thing to note for all these types of lead generation techniques is that it’s about quality. The quality of the lead. So it is important to market the correct things to your leads, so as to focus in on the high quality leads, and keep a good conversion rate. Your content must be relevant, helpful and informative in order to secure potential clients.
Lead generation is a long-term and continual process. It is important to put a dynamic strategy in place, using the checklist above and watch your business grow.
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