Basics of Lead Generation
Leads are the fuel that keeps your business booming. Lead generation, the process of obtaining your leads, requires you to take on many roles which can often be troubling for some.
The following is a breakdown of the entire process; understand these basics and you’ll develop a highly valuable skill.
What is Lead Generation?
Lead generation is simply this: getting people interested in your offer.
What you do with the lead, after they’ve discovered your offer, is entirely up to you and your business model. Some people build email lists, others drive home the sale.
There are many different ways of obtaining leads, including:
- Content marketing
- Social media participation
- Search Engine Optimization
- List building
Each requires you to perform different tasks and functions for them to be viable in your business.
The Lead Generation Process
Because each form of lead generation requires different roles and tasks, we’ll be going over the fundamental idea and process behind what works, especially online.
There are multiple strategies for each variation of lead generation:
- Give away something free such as an eBook
- Solve a problem for the individual
- Build a trust-worthy brand in the open
- Create a relationship with the individual
- Leverage your knowledge
- Use a funnel
The interesting part, of these, is that all of them interrelate to another including the methods described in the earlier section.
For example, you could use a blog, where you share your knowledge of an industry, to begin gaining traction in search engines all the while building your presence through social media. As the initial traffic trickles in, you can use their feedback to develop a product and begin building a list. Once everything is running, you can re-use different elements of your content for internal and external lead generation.
Lead Generation in Practice
Need something definitive? Try this:
- Research and determine a common problem within your industry (use feedback, polls, keyword research, and other methods to find these problems).
- Publish a short but highly informative eBook about the problem you’ve found (make sure it represents your brand and offers what people can’t find elsewhere).
- Setup your website and begin sharing your best information through articles, interviews, and other forms of media (use your keyword research skills to ensure each page ranks well).
- Use a combination of networking, advertising, content marketing, and other traffic generation methods to drive visitors to your website.
- Send qualified visitors into your lead funnel such as into an email list (use your eBook as an incentive for opting in).
- Run tests and garner feedback to find the likely candidates that are real leads (place a few small barriers to weed out freebie hunters).
- Split your list into qualified leads and begin the sales funnel process (make sure you’re doing timely follow ups).
The big difference between a website visitor and a lead is that the latter is willing to pay for your offer.
In terms of business, you should always seek qualified leads over simple exposure. Your time is extremely valuable so you’ll want to be spending it on the individuals that will make your business money than entertaining those that are freebie hunting.
A Handful of Lead Generation Tips
The overall idea of lead generation is easy to process so you probably want a few tips and tricks for getting it up and running. Here are a few suggestions:
- Repurpose blog posts and articles into an eBook if you already have a lot of information that could be distilled into a single download.
- Try recording a special set of videos or an audiobook based around the content you’ve published and mark it as a premium product.
- Conduct (and participate in) interviews with star players in your industry which increases your credibility and authority all-the-while siphoning part of the community from either participant.
- Invest a great deal of your time into search engine optimization and content marketing to gain higher traction in search results; more traffic makes it easier to find qualified leads.
- Use a highly focused landing page to weed out unqualified leads all-the-while capturing the valuable ones onto a list.
- Use some of your funds to advertise in blogging contests, Google Adwords, Facebook ads, and other advertising platforms. Use your data so your message is directed to your ideal lead.
In all, use the fact that the web is extremely flexible to try and test new lead generation tactics. Each week, invest a portion of your time to experiment with different strategies while building upon successful campaigns of the past.
Did this help you understand lead generation?