Lead generation is a marketing technique for a business to seek out new prospects to turn them into customers. A business can use both inbound marketing and outbound marketing to generate leads.
A business, especially a B2B (business to business) company, should have a lead generation strategy in place to constantly generate new leads and prospective customers to improve their bottom line.
Businesses should utilize lead generation tools to increase efficiency and they should also consider hiring a marketing agency to run lead generation campaigns.
Inbound marketing vs outbound marketing
Inbound marketing is when your prospective customers seek your business out, it’s considered passive, pull marketing. Outbound marketing is when your business actively seeks out new prospective customers, also known as push marketing.
Both methods are important to generate the maximum number of prospective customers for your business.
Inbound marketing & outbound marketing examples
An example of inbound marketing would be when a car company writes articles or make videos about car-related topics and a prospective customer searches for those topics.
The prospect will then read those articles or watch those videos then contact the car company to learn more, test drive, and eventually purchase a car.
For outbound marketing, the same car company would also create digital advertisements to show their prospective customers. The advertisement will contain a form to collect details about the prospective customers such as names, emails, phone numbers, and even types of cars they would be interested in.
The sales department will follow up on these prospective customers to provide them with more information, help them arrange a test drive, and answer any questions that they may have.
Lead generation strategy
You can formulate a lead generation strategy for your business with a simple process:
- Find out what your current buyers are interested in and use that as a reference
- Create content your prospective buyers would be interested in
- Collect their contact details and other relevant information
- Have your sales team follow up on them on their purchasing journey
- Feedback and improvements
Determine who your prospective customers are by using your past customer data as a reference point. You can segment your current and prospective customers by their demographics (age and gender), psychographics (interests and desires), life events that resulted in a purchase, and more.
Map out their purchasing journey and find any friction in their path to making a purchase from your business. Create some content on the issues that they may come across in their purchasing journey.
These include answering a question, providing a perspective, showing them how things work, and other topics that are related to your business and industry. For example, a car company could write articles on the cost of ownership versus renting a car or make videos to highlight essential car features for families.
Feature either your contact details or a lead form ready for your prospective customers, gently prompting them to contact you. Ideally, it should appear together with the content or right after they’ve done consuming the content.
Your sales team should then respond to the interested prospective customers immediately upon collecting their contact details. The quicker your sales team responds, the higher the chance that interested prospective customers will follow through to the next step. No one likes to wait and you shouldn’t make your prospective customers wait for you!
Finally, calculate the results and determine if there are any areas of improvement. Depending on the data gathered, you could write even more articles on a particular topic, or create videos to demonstrate a feature. Get some feedback from your customers too.
Lead generation tools
There are a few tools that can help you to generate and manage leads much more efficiently.
Hubspot is the industry leader when it comes to CRM (customer relationship management). They provide many features but it comes with a higher cost.
There are many alternatives available at a lower cost, such as Zoho and GetResponse, to choose from. However, you’ll need to figure out which platform suits your business best.
These tools also have the ability to create a landing page, allowing you to collect leads and manage them all in one platform.
For content, social media is still where content can be delivered at scale. Platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube are where the masses are.
You can run leads generation ads using Facebook and Google’s ad services, generating a steady stream of leads for your business.
WordPress is commonly used for blogging, or Blogger (by Google) to a lesser extent.
Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp Business mobile apps can also be used to communicate with your potential customers.
Lead generation marketing services
This whole lead generation marketing process can also be outsourced by a business to a digital marketing agency.
This is where we come in to provide the service of creating and maintaining leads generation marketing campaigns, allowing your businesses to do what it does best.