How to create a winning online lead generation process
Imagine this – business is slow. You decide to promote a competition to get some interest. After much thought, you offer a free TV as a prize. It doesn’t matter that you don’t sell TVs. You just want more leads, right?
Everyone enters your competition. Suddenly you have thousands of emails to add to your database. But when you follow up on your new leads, you realize that they’re not interested in your business. They just wanted the TV. All that time and money setting up the competition was wasted.
There’s a much better way to generate leads. All it takes is a little groundwork. Read on to learn how to create a winning online lead generation process that will bring quality to your business.
Make a plan
Take the time to draw up a strategy. Ask some hard questions – getting answers now will save you time and money in the long run.
Who is your target audience?
Everything starts with understanding who your audience is, and where they are spending their time online. Understanding this will help you shape your communication plan and help you select what platforms you’ll use to reach them.
The more you know about who you’re selling to, the higher chance you’ll have of reaching them with the right message on the right platforms. Use targeted ads and valuable content to increase your online presence and inquiries. Then, make sure you are nurturing the people who inquired – answer their questions, understand their needs, offer to help. All these things can help you convert inquiries to sales!
What are your goals, and how will you achieve them?
What exactly do you want to accomplish with your business? Once you know what your goals are, you can plan how you will achieve them. Set yourself some timelines and stick to it. Draw up a table of business and marketing goals to help map out your plan. Make sure you quantify your goals where possible.
|Business goal||Marketing goal to reach business goal||Measurement metric|
|Increase leads by 20% in three months||Improve website headlines and calls to actions.
Create an ebook to gather email addresses for your lead pool.
Offer a discount for first-time buyers.
|Clicks on website and inquiries through website contact form.
Number of downloads and emails collected.
Account sign-ups and purchases.
Establish your platforms and your earned and paid media
Earned media are things like SEO, social media content, and blogs. They’re things that don’t need advertising spend.
Paid media are things like Google Ads or Facebook ads that do need advertising spend.
What platform does your target audience use the most? And what kind of content gets their attention? Asking yourself these questions will help shape your ad messages and content.
Earned: Content, content, content
We can’t stress this enough! Your content is essential to creating a winning online lead generation process. It’s why 70% of marketers actively invest in content marketing – it’s what catches your target audience’s interest and keeps them on your page. It also encourages them to give you their information.
So think about what content you need to create. Go back to your strategy. What are your target audiences’ interests? What platforms do they use? Some ideas are:
- Blog posts
- ‘How To’ guides
- Webinars or online courses
Now that you have your target audience’s attention, it’s time to generate some leads! Your amazing content gives your potential leads a reason to hang around. Now you need them to share their details with you. Do this with:
- Landing pages
- Contact forms
- Site-wide opt-in forms
- Specific content downloads
The biggest mistake businesses make in their marketing is that they talk at their customers, not to them. Once you truly understand your audience, their interests, their desires, and their needs, your content will become much stronger.
Content not only helps build trust and loyalty but it can put you on the first page of Google. Create useful and valuable content that encourages inquiry from the reader. If you can connect with them – you’ve got yourself a lead!
Earned: Set up marketing automation (email marketing campaigns)
Not all leads are ready to convert when they first sign up. Not to worry – simply put your marketing automation plan into action.
Email marketing is the most popular and easy way to do this. Studies show that emailing leads has the highest return on investment for small businesses. Use platforms such as MailChimp to schedule emails to your leads.
Paid: Google Ads, Facebook, and Instagram Ads
Investing in platforms like Google Ads is a sure-fire way to bring leads into the business. Google Ads put your website on the first page of Google and drive results a lot quicker than SEO can. If you’d like to launch a Google Ad campaign, book a free consultation with us to discuss your strategy.
Facebook advertising is constantly evolving. You can now set up a store from your Facebook page to sell your products or services. You can also run engaging ad formats to drive leads. Facebook advertising is a cost-effective way to generate leads, but you need to make sure your messaging, band, and creatives are ON POINT!
Housekeeping: Ensure that everyone is on the same page
Does your business have several departments or teams? They will need to collaborate together if your strategy is going to be successful. So make sure that everyone knows the plan. Do this by:
- Building a close relationship between your marketing and sales staff and giving defined roles for each of them.
- Investing in a shared CRM tool. That way, all interactions with leads are correctly stored.
Monitor your results
Don’t forget to continuously check your data and results. This way, you can learn what works and what doesn’t.
Review your success (and failures)
Time to take stock and look over your results. Did you reach your goals? If yes, how did you do it? What worked best? If not, what can you change? How can you improve?
Remember, not achieving what you set out to do isn’t a failure – it’s an opportunity to learn. Maybe you’re focusing on the wrong audience. Perhaps the platform you’ve chosen isn’t quite right. Either way, you will take away valuable information you didn’t know before.
Still, feeling overwhelmed? Need help building a winning strategy? Let Southern Digital Consulting help you! Contact us here to speak to one of our consultants.