Who is your audience? How do you attract and nurture them? How do you determine which leads are qualified?
It is helpful to break down a lead generation program and address specific areas in order to improve it as a whole.
1) Your Target Audience
Identifying who your target audience, and being as specific as possible, is one of the most powerful tools in your marketing strategy. Specify your ideal client, and then target your strategy towards providing value and resources for that audience. What problem are you solving for them?
Your lead generation efforts should speak directly to your ideal customer.
When defining your target audience, look to your current clients. Who are they and how have you helped them? Do they reflect who you want to work with going forward?
Building buyer personas is a very effective way to identify your target audience and understand what will resonate with them.
2) Rating Your Leads
We recommend taking the time to research your prospects and determine if they are high-quality contacts. There are resources easily available, such as LinkedIn or the company’s own page, to learn about a prospect and the organization with which he or she is associated.
Talk with your prospect and understand where they are in their buyer’s journey. Understand their needs, their timeline, budget, and decision cycle so that you can accurately assess the opportunity.
Rate your leads so that you can determine how you are going to manage your pipeline and where you should commit the most time.
Which leads should get the most attention? B2B Sales Leads – Where is the Real Opportunity offers an insider’s insight.
3) Lead Magnets
A “lead magnet” is something that attracts people who visit your site and encourages them to engage with your content… but only by making it possible for you to contact them.
For example, your lead generation efforts might include an ebook or a pdf download that is free to anyone who gives you their email address. Magnets help you get your foot in the door, and their presence can measurably improve your final conversion rate.
A lead magnet is about offering value to your prospects. Become a source of quality information and you will become a trusted source that could be the start of a longer term relationship.
4) Consider Outsourcing to the Experts
Past a certain point, no one person can successfully manage the stream of leads your business will be generating, and it doesn’t always make sense to hire more and more people to help handle them.
Consider outsourcing all or part your lead generation efforts to a company that can dedicate their full attention to outbound cold calling. Lead generation is a core competency that is most often done best by the experts.
5) Don’t Rush the Sale
Have you noticed that many business accounts on social media have content that isn’t business related? There’s a good reason for that. Today’s business audiences are not interested in just being marketed or sold to all the time.
Instead, people want to connect with companies on a more personal level. Don’t rush your sales process when your leads aren’t qualified to the point of being a sales qualified lead. It’s good practice to slow down a bit and play a longer game with some of your leads. Ultimately, what matters the most is your long-term success.
6) Educate Your Customers
Use your lead generation efforts to educate customers – in particular, focus on listening to the problem and business pains they are experiencing and offer up how you can help them solve those problems. Tell them how your product, solution, or service has helped others.
The more help you offer, the more likely prospects will consider buying whatever products or services you’re selling – feelings of reciprocation are a powerful tool, and you should use them.
What areas are you focusing on in your lead generation efforts? I appreciate your feedback, please leave me a note in the comments.