Are you constantly spinning your wheels to generate more leads? Do you know exactly how many leads you need to meet your revenue goals?
Step 1: Set Your Lead Goal
Knowing your lead goal is the first place to start! Before we get into the details of how to generate more leads, use our lead goal calculator to find out how many leads you actually need to meet your revenue goals.
Now that you have your real lead number, let’s talk the dirty details to generate more leads.
What is a lead?
A lead can be a very vague term, with much debate among the marketing and sales teams especially. For the purposes of this blog post, when we talk about leads, we refer to Kevan Lee’s definition (which we love):
A lead is anyone who has shown interest in hearing more from you — and (this is the important part!) has given you a way to stay in touch with them. – Kevan Lee, Buffer
Step 2: Define Your Leads and Lead Process
Now maybe you’re looking at the lead goal you just set, and are thinking, “that seems low.” If you think you need a huge lead goal, because you can’t ever seem to get enough leads to convert into sales, you’re not alone – and your challenge may be best addressed partly by understanding and defining the difference between a marketing qualified lead (MQL) and a sales qualified lead (SQL).
The importance of defining your MQLs and SQLs all goes back to understanding the journey your prospects take to make a purchase (the buyer’s journey), and how close each individual lead is to making a purchase (i.e. where they are in their buyer’s journey). This is what a typical buyer’s journey looks like, though it varies by business…
When you know where your prospects are in their customer journey, you can actually generate more revenue with fewer leads. – Jenna Puckett, Technology Advice
For the most part, MQLs are leads that fit the overall description of a customer – the right segment, the right industry – and knowing this helps marketing create programs that target the right type of leads. An SQL is usually attained after an MQL has been nurtured through the buyer’s journey, and is warm-hot and ready to be contacted by sales. SQLs typically have a few more boxes checked – the right budget, the right decision-making authority – and defining this helps to create a lead process for when marketing hands leads off to sales.
Step 3: Get Leads!
We joke all the time here, that there is no magic “Get Leads” button in your CRM (but wouldn’t it be great if there was?)
Once you have your lead goal and you’ve started to define MQLs and SQLs, you’re probably thinking about that “Get Leads” button. So, let’s get tactical! There is no template for a lead generation strategy, and rather each strategy should be customized for your business and buyers. With that in mind, there are a wealth of resources out there to start brainstorming about lead generation.
Here are several great ideas from some more lead generation pros at a few of our favorite marketing platforms:
Use social media to generate more leads
Check this out: 90% of top decision-makers say they never respond to cold calls. On the other hand, 76% of buyers are ready to have a conversation on social media. Is it time yet for your business to adjust your sales outreach strategy?
Perhaps the greatest benefit of lead generation using social media specifically is the ability to focus on highly qualified leads through advanced targeting. – Christina Newberry, Hootsuite
It is possible to target your exact audience and reach your buyers using social media. However, always remember that your potential buyers have a journey they need to undergo to make a purchase. Adjust your expectations and carefully study your strategy to align your goals and tactics with your buyer’s journey. You can also check this site for effective services to increase your likes and view counts and draw new followers and enhance your social media marketing campaign.
Some great tactical ideas that Christina mentions include: Sharing links to gated content, running contests, using social media advertising, and more.
Create an email course to generate more leads
One of the best ways to attract and convert new customers for your business is to educate them. No one likes to be sold to, but everyone wants to make informed decisions. – Tyler Basu, Instapage
Convenient with a low-commitment level, an email course is a series of lessons delivered via email over a predetermined period. Email courses serve as lead generation, and along the way help nurture your prospects through their buyer’s journey. At the end of these lessons, you invite your prospects to purchase your product or service, by showing them how it can help them with the particular problem/topic that your email course focused on.
Provide content that generates more leads and nurtures prospects
According to an Accenture study, 94% of B2B buyers conduct online research at some point in the buying process. And according to Forrester, 59% of buyers prefer to do research online instead of interacting with a sales rep.
As Skyword points out, human help is still the gold standard for customer service and troubleshooting; but your customers are also looking for resources to learn and prepare to make a purchase (and they don’t want to talk to your sales team!). Make sure you have content and resources available and easily accessible on your website for your potential buyers to find the information they need as they move through the process of making a purchase.
Lay everything out, make the experience simple and easy, and let the user do the rest themselves. – Kyle Harper, Skyword
Do you have a lead generation strategy? How is it going? We’d love to hear more about it – tweet me! If you’re just getting started, do try out our Lead Goal Calculator as a jumping off point.