[This article is originally published in forbes.com written by Brandon Stapper - Uploaded by AIRS Member: Dorothy Allen]

In 2018, a one-size-fits-all approach to lead generation simply doesn't work anymore. Appealing to different market segments to generate leads requires an intimate knowledge of the different lead generation tools at your disposal. And knowing these individual tools isn't enough -- you must also create the perfect blend of lead generation tools to reach all corners of your prospective markets.

As a printing company, we market to a wide variety of clientele. From corporate businesses that need new signage and displays for promotions, to individual clients who need invitations and decor for celebratory events, we've had to learn how to market effectively to them all. Along the way, I realized that the engaging subject line sales email that worked for a company in the trade show circuit won't work for a bride looking to print her suite of wedding stationery. This doesn't mean I've had to choose one or the other, but instead I have had to make a plan to reach both efficiently and effectively.

If you would like to do the same in your small business and create the ideal mix of lead generation tools to work for your markets, here are some of the tried-and-tested tips that worked for me.

First off, what is lead generation?

Lead generation can best be boiled down to how you create and capture interest in your product. This broad definition encompasses a ton of different methodologies, from in person to digital. Most importantly, lead generation evolves with the times. As new technologies surface or the latest social media craze begins, lead generation aims shifts to meet each market segment where they're at.

The biggest trend to date is the desire for an organic lead generation. Cold calling is out and often viewed as an antiquated, interruptive and tiresome practice. Instead, customers prefer a soft sell, in which they organically stumble across your product or service and make the decision to buy.

Find your mix with these three questions.

The answer to how to create your lead generation mix can be answered in three simple questions and validated by on-the-ground research. Before blindly investing in marketing campaigns over multiple platforms, ask yourself:

  •  Where does a member of my target market spend most of their time?
  •  Why would a member of my target market need my product or service?
  •  What is the member of my target market's buying preference?

These three questions will help you suss out the best ways to position your product or service. Pay attention to the last question -- buying preference is a big one. If you're marketing to a younger generation, chances are you'll want to have a clean, uncluttered site with a quick checkout option -- and I mean quick. Filling in a bunch of questions and being taken through a cyclone of pages may convince your younger buyer to leave your product in their cart.

Allocate your funds accordingly.

After some thought, you probably have a pretty good idea of your ideal customer and where they buy most of their products (and why). Depending on the size of each ideal customer base -- like our company, you may have many -- allocate your marketing funds accordingly. If you primarily do business-to-business (B2B) sales, then email lead generation software and state-of-the-art trade show displays may receive the majority of your marketing support. If you're searching for a younger, hipper demographic, you may disproportionately put funds toward influencer campaigns, social media, and web design.

Here are some ideas to get you started.

If you're unsure exactly what tools are at your disposal, do some research by talking to and observing your target market. Here are some rules of thumb to consider in triangulating the perfect approach for an organic lead generation.

  • Content marketing: Writing helpful how-to articles establishes you as a thought leader that people feel encouraged to buy from. Guest posts on other sites are also a great way to gain visibility with new audiences and encourage organic lead generation. Depending on your industry, this approach is a great way to attract the eyes of young professionals looking for career advice.
  • Social media: If your product or service can be marketed visually, Instagram and Snapchat are great platforms to get the attention of younger millennials. Facebook marketing is a strength when appealing to middle-aged consumers. Keep in mind that mindless scrolling on Instagram and Facebook occurs during downtime, and Facebook is the main culprit behind browser tabs when professionals are killing time at work.
  • Trade show and professional networking: Consider joining your town or city's Chamber of Commerce or CVB. You'll rub elbows with decision makers who know other decision makers, and establishing yourself as a leader in your community or industry can easily create organic leads. Trade shows are also a good opportunity for B2B networking and lead generation.

There are too many other examples to count, but if you spend time putting yourself in the shoes of your target market and searching out the points where they would stumble across your product or service during the day, you can't go wrong. Crafting the perfect mix of lead generation techniques is a challenge, but a fun one -- especially when it pays off!

Categorized in How to

The online lead generation has become a vital sales strategy for businesses, especially in the B2B sector. With the rise of the digital age, businesses are opting for advanced and efficient methods to generate online sales leads.

This process of online generated is carried out by marketers before it is passed on over to sales. With new techniques and strategies being developed rapidly, it is hard to determine the best performing strategies.

There are numerous online lead generation strategies and tips available on the web to boost sales. The following are the 10 best online lead generation strategies that have proved to be successful-

1.Email Marketing

Emailing is an extremely efficient and flexible medium that provides access to any number of prospects who are otherwise inaccessible. Direct email can be used for various purposes such as to sell products, generate sales leads, follow-ups, keep in touch with customers, referral marketing etc. You are able to consistently present every benefit or your product or service. You can contact prospects who are everywhere at any time. Reaching the right set of prospects with the right message and the right offer is the key to a successful lead generation campaign. The most important aspect of any online lead generation campaign, especially email campaign, is the number of sales inquiries it generates.

Source: MarketingWizdom.com

ImageSource: DigitalMarketingPhilippines

ImageSource: DigitalMarketingPhilippines.com

2.Website Lead Generation

A good website needs to be able to generate leads and not just attract traffic. Many websites are not designed to generate leads. They are mostly focused around propagating their products or services via brochures and banners. This makes the visitors passive. A good lead generation website needs to have a user-friendly description of your value proposition and provide information on the key problem or requirements that you can fulfill. Unless the visitor acquires this information upon visiting your page, they’ll go elsewhere. A lead generating website also needs to be easily accessible, provide valuable information, offers opportunities to sign up and provide contact information that easily accessible.

Source: Kyle-irving.co.uk

ImageSource: VTLDesign

ImageSource: VTLDesign.com

3.Automate Your Online Lead Generation

The online lead generation has given rise to various online lead generation tools and services. Using such lead generation tools and services saves a lot of time and resources and also help in acquiring qualified leads. Various web-based prospect and lead generation tools help mine qualified leads from various online sources. Such tools also provide you with lead management features where you will be able to edit, categorize and manage your leads in an organized manner. You can further automate this process by opting for advanced lead generation services. These prospect and lead generation services provide you with a processed list of qualified leads that is specifically built for you. This list contains leads with qualified contact details with email addresses and can be provided within 48 hours as per your requirements.

best lead generation tools | aeroleads

4.SEO, SEM, and PPC

Gabriel Shaoolian, the CEO & Founder of Blue Fountain Media says that generating leads through SEO and PPC is the best lead generation strategy for IT companies or B2B companies for the lowest cost per acquisition. He feels that way as whenever people require IT companies or IT services, a large majority of people search via Google. To capture these people, you need to increase the effectiveness of SEM and PPC campaigns. Brett Prince, President of Marketaire, says that his can be achieved by using long-tail keyword phrases. These keywords are highly targeted and drive targeted traffic due to their specificity, and they’re less competitive than related, shorter search terms, which tend to be higher in volume and more competitive. For SEO purposes, you need to focus on offering something informational or beneficial to the audience. You can rank faster and start generating traffic and leads once you identify your target keywords and create content around it.

Source: CIO.com

ImageSource: SearchEngineLand

ImageSource: SearchEngineLand.com

5.Online Lead Generation via Social Media

As per the report of Global Digital Statistics, Stats and Facts, social media is one of the most effective sources of lead generation. Social media is a very important channel not only in engaging or connecting with your targeted audiences, but it has evolved into a new digital marketing culture that has a strong influence on consumers’ buying behavior. Forbes indicates that up to two-thirds of the top sales experts in the world categorize social media as an important lead generation and sales channel. Another market research expert, Chadwick Martin Bailey, reported that up to 67% of twitter users and 51% of Facebook users are most likely to purchase based on recommendations from the brands they follow or their followers. This is the impact of social media on lead generation and sales. As per the report on US Social Network Ad Revenues by eMarketer, revenues are expected to go up exponentially through social media.

Source: DigitalMarketingPhilippines.com

Image Source:

Image Source: BMA Carolinas

6.Landing Pages

Landing pages which are created around the intention of online lead generation have a very specific purpose. Such pages are used to capture user data such as email addresses, names, phone numbers etc. Their only purpose is to collect such information so that it is available to you later to market your product or services to them. Acend2‘s  landing page optimization page survey reveals that 93% of respondents said increasing conversion rates is one of the most important objectives of a landing page strategy. Improving lead quality came in second at 58%. Landing page visitors are specifically directed to a page from a social media page, an email, a paid ad or similar source of traffic. These visitors are not coming to the page blind, and they expect it to be consistent with the content that brought them there. According to Marketo, you can make your landing page copy and CTAs clear and direct by going through these 4 steps: 1. Set up the problem, 2. Talk about the solution, 3. Point out the WIFM (what’s in it for me), 4. Deliver the goods.

Source: Digioh.com

ImageSource: DCDAgency

ImageSource: DCDAgency.com

7.White Papers or E-Books

This is one of the most common and successful online lead generating techniques. This lead generation technique works on the simple principle of give and take. White papers or E-Books can help in establishing credibility and generating leads. These downloadable can be offered on your website or be distributed through third party services. For the website visitor to obtain such downloadables, registering with an email id must be necessary in order to generate leads. Such downloadables also make a great PPC offering. A variation on the white paper is the e-book. Typically longer than a white paper, it serves a similar function. If you e-book goes into great depth on a subject, it can generate a great deal of buzz and establish your reputation and help boost your online lead generation campaign.

Source: HingeMarketing.com

ImageSource:

8.Online Lead generation via Blogs

Online lead generation is all about engaging your website visitor with content. Blogging is such a phenomenon that is all about sharing great content with your website visitors. Offering content that helps readers solve their business problems or provide some value will have them coming back and share your site with other people. Blogging isn’t as instant as some of the other suggestions but is very beneficial in the long run. You can have dedicated members from your team to write such valuable and insightful content that helps readers. This should be a good way to get a lot of posts written fairly quickly. Once you get the ball rolling, you can reduce to around 2-3 blogs per week.

Source: CoBloom.com

ImageSource: WrittenT

ImageSource: Writtent.com

9.Growth Hacking

Growth hacking is a revolutionary way to spread awareness of your business. Offering free trials, freemium versions and free credits are good ways to start online lead generation via growth hacking. You can make this valuable and addictive element of your website accessible to a larger audience by sharing and inviting new users which will expand your leads tremendously in a short span of time. Whether it be free credits for use of a particular plug-in or a queue jump of some kind, create a simple problem with a simple solution. The best aspect of growth hacking is that it is more so an inbound lead generation technique as you get the people to do the work for you. People will spread the word about your value offering and gradually, more and more people will come to your site, which provides an opportunity for more leads.

Source: WhoIsVisiting.com

ImageSource: StartUpNation

ImageSource: StartUpNation.com

10.Webinars for Online Lead generation

Webinars are the best ways to engage your audience and in turn, provides an opportunity for an online lead generation. When you host a webinar, you can reach a new audience of people interested in your topic. They may not know much about your brand yet, but they probably know that they’re interested in the webinar subject. Once your webinar event concludes, make sure to continue to nurture your leads with appropriate follow-up content. Thank them for attending, send them more relevant articles or downloadable resources, invite them to your next event, and survey them regarding their experience. Webinars provide information to attendees that your potential customers can actually use. You can increase your event’s draw if you partner with an industry influencer to promote or co-host your event. That way, your influencer can advertise the webinar to their audience, introducing more of them to you in the process.

Source: Business2Community.com

ImageSource: ReadyTalk

ImageSource: ReadyTalk.com

Online lead generation needs to be done consistently and always ensure you monitor your campaigns. Analyzing the progress of your various online lead generation campaigns can help you improve your campaigns.

Comment below and share your insights on online lead generation.

 Source: This article was published aeroleads.com By Vedh Jagadish

Categorized in Online Research

Lead generation is one of the most, if not most, important functions a successful business has to master in order to survive and thrive. Lead generation is the process of attracting and converting strangers and cold prospects into warning qualified leads who are potential candidates for making a purchase of your product or service offering.  For a business to survive it needs a continuous stream of new potential customers. A lead is a person who has indicated interest in your company’s product or service in some way, shape, or form. Whenever a cold prospect shows an interest in your business, it’s the prospect that’s initiating the relationship with you, rather than you, the business, initiating the relationship with the prospect. This makes it easier and more natural for the prospect to want to make a purchasing decision from you somewhere down the line.

This article covers 10 of easy to implement and ideal ways you can create potential customers for your business starting today.

What is a sales lead?

qualified lead with purchasing intent is a potential buyer of an item or service. A lead is generated for your business when an individual or business demonstrates an interest in your product or service and in turn for something of value provides their contact information. This value proposition is what we call a sales hook. A qualified lead is vital to your business being able to eventually generate revenue and profit and is done by matriculating the lead through your sales funnel pathways. A successful business should have a well-defined lead generation strategy in order to procure the best quality leads, at the lowest price, which has intent to make a purchasing decision at a later date. Business’s engaged in lead generation activities can generate qualified leads any number ways, such as online advertising, social media promotions, trade shows, email, as well as numerous other marketing techniques. The list of potential lead generation techniques is endless and only bound by one’s creativity.

Look at it this way, if you generate more leads, but only have an average product, you still win! This is because leads mean more revenue for your business. And revenue means there’s the potential for more profit.

How to generate leads online?

Nowadays to generate leads online has become a lot easier due to the availability and multitude of online platforms and channels. For example, social media provides an excellent communication conduit for promoting and engaging your brand with consumers by directly connecting with them anywhere in the world. It’s almost a given that your business must have an established brand presence on social media channels as well as a clean and modern website that leads can easily find and review the products or services you’re offering. Given this, it’s easy to understand that online promotional activities are one of the best lead generation techniques in modern marketing.

The following are ten lead generation techniques that you might consider incorporating into your marketing mix.

target leads with content marketing

1. Target Leads through Content Marketing

By now, it should be obvious that content marketing is one of the staples behind driving quality web traffic to your website in an effort generate consistent leads that will eventually turn into sales. The more focused your content marketing is on solving pain points of your targeted audience, the more likely those website visitors will be likely become loyal consumers of your brand’s product or service. Your content marketing efforts must focus on one thing and one thing only which is providing value to your target audience in the form of tips, tricks, how to’s, and more. If you remember to focus on solving your target audience’s pain point on every content article you carefully craft, you will eventually find success in generating well-qualified leads. High-quality content can also be a benefit for your business as it will draw more attention to your site from influencers and others within your industry in the form of backlinks. Backlinks are one of the most important aspects in getting your content and website ranked on the first page of Google’s Search Results Page (SERPs). Be sure to add relevant pictures, video, and infographics to expand the reach and engagement of the article, as well as give your target audience a more visual way to absorb your content (not everyone learns the same way so mix it up to appeal to more than one type of learning pathway). By allowing our site visitors to self-discover your interesting tips, event, how to, or news interest piece, will help to establish your authority and brand presence in your given niche.

target leads on forums for lead generation boost to your website

2. Be Active in Discussions and Forums

Potential clients are everywhere throughout the world and they’re most active on all discussion sites also better known as forums. Forum users will discuss any and all issues related to a business’s product or service. Forum users are there most of the time posting about these issues in order to interact with other skilled people who can help them. This is the place your organization can provide solutions to these problems as well as keeping your brand center stage with them. This is the one best lead generation techniques you can use that doesn’t cost money. All you have to do is search the forum discussion boards and have an active presence on them and make sure you’re timely in responding to inquiries on a consistent basis.

use quora for lead generation

3. Connect with People through Quora

Quora has been proven as one of the best lead generation techniques you can use to actively engage with consumers and answer their questions regarding your product or service. What makes Quora an excellent lead generation technique is that it connects you with your target consumers in a question and answer format. As an online advertiser, you can make a profile and answer questions and can interact with the people in need. It’s a good platform to generate sales leads and very helpful in the b2b lead generation side.

The purpose of Quora is to connect skilled individuals and company’s who have the information and skill sets with those who seek it. The focus is on uniting individuals with varying points of view in an effort to diversify one’s way of thinking and/or learning on any given subject. Quora provides everyone with a chance to share their insight and unique perspective they may have gained from practical application and experience. You can easily participate in this knowledge sharing social media platform and promote your business without spending a dime. Additionally, you will get first-hand experience and knowledge in order to know and understand your target audience’s pain points and how to provide them with a solution which will amplify your lead generation efforts many times over.

lead generation tip share videos on social media sites

4. Share Videos on Social Media Sites

Sharing videos on social sites is one of the best lead generation techniques that doesn’t require capital to begin doing. There is the number of web-based social networking platforms like YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and so forth, each having a unique way to engage with your target audience. YouTube is the most popular social channel for sharing video content. YouTube isn’t only a video sharing site; it’s also the 2nd largest search engine behind Google. This social platform allows your organization to create and maintain your own channel where you can share recordings with respect to specific occasions and events, instructional based videos, and just about anything you cant think of. This will help your company stay in front of your rivals which helps in your lead generation activities to procure new and ongoing sales leads. All you have to do is create a video, add it to your channel and share the simple, concise and easy to digest product videos in order to attract new leads that will eventually land on your company’s website.

website optimization for increased lead generation

5. Optimize your Website

The leads you obtain are only as good as the website that produces them. If you look at examples from some of the top converting lead generation sites, you can learn what and why works on that site and apply the same techniques to your website. As a general rule, there are general elements that should be found on every landing page you use, which includes: company phone number, short contact forms (example: full name & email), social proof in the form of customer testimonials, videos that directly speak to your audience, the use of powerful action verbs such as “get”, “feel” and “have”, with a consideration of your end-goal (get their contact information), and always test, test, and split test again. Additionally, you must follow the best on-page SEO techniques to ensure your content gets listed by the search engines.

lead generation tips for online audience discovery

6. Discover Your Target Audience through Social Media

The one thing you should take into consideration when using social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram is that you can showcase your brand in front your exact intended targeted audience. With the internet and social media, everyone is online 24/7 and using social media platforms consistently, with reports showing user averaging several hours per day. Thus it’s a platform where you can find the sales leads and by sharing the quality information lead generation can be done more easily.

With Facebook and Instagram leads are created by socio-economics, for example, age, sex, occupation, single, married, area, instruction, interests, with the sky being the only limit. Putting your capital resources to work in social communities may be one of the best methods to promote online, given the present market conditions.

lead generation get attention of the press and media

7. Catch the Attention of the Press

This old-school marketing tactic is one of the most reliable lead generation techniques. There are numerous reasons for including press releases as part of your overall marketing strategy, they can play a very powerful role in making your target audience take notice of your business. Simply put, your target audience can not conduct business with you if they do not know that your brand exists. This being the case, a press release can generate awareness of your brand.

When you launch a new product or service, one of the first things that should be done is to issue a press release informing the public of it. You have to provide the context as to what the main pain point is that your product or service solves. If you remember to answer the question, “Why should I care?” for both the journalist who will be reading your press release and the target audience interested in your niche, you will be able to get it in front of a large number of eyeballs which translates into web traffic.

Press release distribution platforms such as PRNewsWire will get you traffic from various local and national media houses. However, if you self-publish your press releases on your own website it will count towards your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts in order to drive free traffic from search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing

google adwords for lead generation

8. Use Google Adwords Paid Ads for Lead Generation

Using Google Adwords pay per click (PPC) online advertising model to generate qualified leads with intent is a great way to generate more leads for your business. No matter what industry and niche you are in, you can reach your target audience who are ready to buy from you on a daily basis based on understanding their search term patterns.

One of the main things you should focus on is your quality score which Google rewards advertisers who have a high enough score with a lower cost per click (CPC) and higher ad positions.

In order to improve your Adwords Quality Score (QS), you have to stop targeting junk keywords and try to increase your bid with match keyword phrases.

Remarketing also can increase your Quality Score, because you will be targeting people who have already shown interest in your product or service from a previous ad from the initial search query they performed.

It’s important to recognize the impact of mobile devices have on your Adwords advertising activities so that you can optimize your account accordingly. My past experience shows that it’s a lot easier to convert mobile users who click your ads, on both search networks or display networks, mostly due to the intimacy a mobile device provides. Just like we touched on earlier, make sure you optimize all of your landing pages, so that web visitors can easily find the information that they came to the page for or the action that you want them to take next.

lead generation tip public speaking

9. Public speaking as Lead Generation Technique

Another low or no cost lead generation technique is to give a keynote presentation at an event like trade shows, conferences, and business events. Talking on an occasion and introducing your brand instantly gives you name recognition, popularity, and acknowledgment as an authority leader in your given industry. This will actually raise you from the several different merchants or specialist co-ops attempting to get noticeable. What’s more, by catching up with individuals you meet at the event in a convenient manner, you remain in their mind. The people remember more what they have heard rather than what they have seen, thus making it an excellent method to generate leads and sales.

lead generation use seo for best lead gen activities

10. SEO (Best for Online Sales Lead Generation)

Google is continuously improving and changing which makes the search results more relevant and useful for the end user. Given that over 90% of all search result clicks are not paid advertisements gives us reason to invest significantly more resources and thought into SEO strategies than attempting to blackhat hack Google’s algorithms in order to rank quickly on the search engine results pages (SERPs) with techniques that will eventually get your site banned and forever delisted. A safe and sound approach you should take is focusing on longtail keyword phrases that your target audience conducts searches on. For example, whenever somebody enters a particular keyword phrase, your website could be listed at the top of search engine page for that particular keyword, given the competition is low enough and that you have high-quality content with a word count of at least 1500 nowadays. It is imperative that your website has solid on-page technicals for Search Engine Optimization (SEO) to occur. This means before you worry about backlinks for authority sites in your space, you must focus on each pages content and structure.

To generate leads and sales you have to have a solid knowledge base SEO practices and tactics. After strictly following the best practices, SEO will be one of the best lead generation techniques that will bring a continuous stream of website traffic for years to come. If you are unsure of these best practices you can always hire an SEO agency to conduct search engine optimization in order to ensure best long-term results.

Conclusion

Now that you’re aware of top 10 Lead Generation Techniques to Increase Your Online Sales, you should start with the first technique, learn everything you can about it, prior to implementation. Once you build up your skill level in these techniques, it will be much easier for you to get optimum results and an increase in sales. These lead generation tactics are a few of the best methods for online advertising and are used by a majority of Digital Marketing experts and business owners around the world.

Source: This article was published marketingmediawizard

Categorized in Research Methods

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