Is it possible to be successful without leads? In the short-term, sure. But for long-term success, you need to be generating new, quality leads that will end up generating more brand recognition, loyalty and profits.
Back in the day, generating leads was done primarily with buying lists and making cold calls. Today, we’ve got better strategies that will yield great results in less time. However, it’s not as easy as it once was. In fact, research suggests that more than six in 10 marketers consider lead generation as their biggest challenge. Additionally, 53% of marketers spend half (or more) of their budgets on lead generation efforts.
But here’s some good news. There are strategies you can use right now to start pulling in more leads, boosting conversions and gaining more interest in what your business is doing.
1. Great Leads Start at Home: Sharpen the Messaging on Your Homepage
Most of the promotion that you do on social media, other websites and search engines will send visitors to your company's homepage. It's one of the most highly trafficked tools in your arsenal. So, show it some love and make sure that the messaging is on point. It can increase your leads exponentially. Be sure the navigation options are clear to prevent any confusion. Likewise, it should be in sync with the messaging and tone you've used in other content to create a cohesive customer experience. A few extras to consider include:
Create a resource library that houses useful information and gated content like webinars and reports
Adding a lead generating popup to capture more information
Offering a free trial or options to sign up for a newsletter or special offers
2. Content Really is King: Optimize Content for More Leads and Boosted Conversions
Content marketing generates roughly three times more leads than traditional marketing efforts. That underscores just how important the content you’re creating is. It’s an effective strategy for building trust and loyalty and can help you expand your pool of potential customers. Start by providing value to your audience. Consider potential pain points and offer solutions. Be interesting. Be unique. And of course, make sure you include a killer call to action to keep those leads coming in and moving through the funnel.
3. Gated Material Opens the Door: Link to Webinars, Reports and E-Books
Gated content is the stuff that you only give users access to once they complete a form. It's essentially locked until they do so. And once they fill out the form, you've got a brand new, shiny and beautiful lead. This piggybacks perfectly on the previous hack, because it also relies on the old adage that content is king. In this case, you use specialized content like e-books, reports, white papers and webinars to attract leads who are already interested in topics that are aligned with your brand.
4. There’s Power in Technology: Leverage Automation
Today’s marketers wear many hats. That leaves you without tons of time to take existing leads by the hand and gently nurture them, let alone generate more. There are many automation tools out there. One of the best for generating leads? Chatbots. This technology provides 24/7 access that you can personalize to mesh with your brand's identity and personality. So these automated bots are essentially an extension of you.
Users can interact with chatbots to gain more information, and the chatbots can set up a meeting with a live employee or suggest that the user submits more information. Exit-intent popups can also be helpful. When users are ready to leave, these automated messages can give them a special discount code or an enticing offer in exchange for providing their email address. Lead captured!
5. Google as a Login? Yes, Please!
Connecting with individuals rather than addressing potential customers as a broad group is like lightning in a bottle. That’s why you might consider using this under-the-radar hack. Google already stores all the information you want to know about someone who’s signing up or signing on. By using their Google account as a login, you make it easy for the individual, offering them a flexible, fast and easy sign-up. No need to fill out long forms. This limits the amount of information required from them while giving you everything you need for them to become good, qualified leads.
One perfect example of this in motion is Pinterest’s offer for users to sign up using their Facebook accounts. Since it started using this strategy, the social media platform gained millions of loyal and active users.
6. An Offer They Can’t Refuse: Create High-Value Offers
It’s the ultimate goal, right? To get people to say, “Yes” to what you’re offering. If you're having trouble generating leads, it might boil down to offers that aren't compelling enough to get people to take that next step. But when you mix the right level of persuasion with a high-value offer, you're going to find that people find it nearly irresistible. And your leads are going to soar.
Ideally, your offer should not just be relevant, but also scarce, in-demand and with an air of exclusivity. That stokes the fires of desire among consumers. Case in point: when Google first launched beta testing of Gmail, it invited 1,000 leaders to try it and share their opinions. Those leaders were able to invite family, friends and fans to test it out too. Demand grew into a frenzy and Google started selling Gmail service at one point. It was so popular that people were buying invitations on eBay for $150 a pop.
See how that worked? A free email service created the perfect storm of demand. And it was so effective that people were willing to pay for the opportunity to sign up for a free service. That’s powerful.
Want another example of this hack in action? Consider the history of Domino’s Pizza. The chain was on the brink of bankruptcy when it came up with an offer that people were simply unable to pass up: the prospect of getting their deliveries within 30 minutes or their orders were free. That simple concept changed everything and brought so many leads into the business that it was able to start thriving again.