If you’re in sales, then you know that generating leads is essential to your success. Without leads, you have no one to sell to! That’s why it’s so important to have a steady stream of lead generation ideas that you can use to keep your pipeline full.
Luckily, there are plenty of ways to generate leads. In this blog post, we’ll share some of the best lead generation ideas that will help you close more deals. Keep reading for everything from tried-and-true methods like cold calling and networking to newer strategies like social media outreach.
What is Lead Generation?
The lead generation process is all about identifying and targeting potential new customers who may be interested in what your business has to offer. By providing them with information about your products or services, you can help to cultivate their interest and build a relationship with them.
Lead generation is the process of creating interest in a product or service through marketing efforts. It typically involves creating content that educates potential customers on the benefits of the offering and providing a way for them to get more information or take action.
This is where companies get a pool of potential customers that can become loyal clients.
Every company, big or small, needs a steady flow of new leads to stay afloat. Lead generation is an important aspect of any successful marketing strategy.
B2B Lead Generation Ideas: Stages of the Lead Generation Process
The processes and ideas for generating sales lead for different types of businesses vary.
For e-commerce websites, this could be the number of purchases made, while for others, it’s filling out forms and getting new email addresses.
The lead generation process typically consists of four stages: awareness, education, evaluation, and purchase.
In the first stage, awareness, marketers attempt to make their prospects aware of the key positioning of their business by analyzing their journey and knowing their interests.
In the second stage, education, marketers build trust for their products and services with the help of consistent newsletters, events or seminarswebinars. This stage is designed to showcase a company’s expertise, resources, and experience.
In the third stage, evaluation, prospects evaluate the brand as a whole. Marketers can further convince leads with demos or free trial offers in this stage.
The final stage is purchase. In this stage, marketers show their leads how they can get desired results with their solution.
The above framework for a sales pipeline can be used to create the perfect end-to-end sales process.
7 Proven Lead Generation Marketing Ideas You Need to Try
What methods do you use to generate leads?
One study found that 68% of Canadian millennials have made a purchase because of FOMO marketing, and 45% can’t go more than 12 hours without checking social media. This means that businesses need to focus on creating a sense of urgency and exclusivity in their marketing to reach this demographic.
FOMO, urgency, scarcity, exclusivity, surprise, and social proof are all powerful lead generation marketing strategies that you should consider using in your business.
While these lead generation techniques may work, there are many other ways to generate sales leads that are just as good. However, these other techniques have been forgotten about or aren’t as well-known.
Here are 7 lesser-known ways to generate leads for your business. Consider how you can implement each of these lead generation strategies to boost your lead gen efforts.
1. Don’t ever tell your visitors that you’ll protect them from “spam”.
Wait, what? You’re saying that offering to protect your website visitors from spammers actually decreases your lead generation?
It does, but not for the reasons you might think.
You’re an ethically-minded marketing professional. Your customers are always your top priority.
You’d never trick them into buying something, even if you could make a quick escape (and make a hefty sum).
In your sign-up forms, you promise never to spam your subscribers. You do it the same way that Content Verve does:
When using a “100% privacy – we will never spam you!” disclaimer on his sign-up form, Michael Aagard found that conversions were reduced by 18%.
If you want to increase your leads, avoid using the word “spam.” Even though you may mean it in a reassuring way, saying the word can actually scare off 18% of potential leads.
If you want to increase your leads, start by reassuring your prospects that their privacy will be protected. Just avoid using the word “spam” altogether. This simple change can make a big difference in how your prospects perceive you and your business.
Don’t use words that will sabotage your conversions. Be sure to avoid these words at all costs.
2. Use Case Studies
B2B marketers rate case studies as one of the most effective content types. In fact, they are often ranked as the number one most effective. This is because case studies provide a real-world example of how a product or service has been used to solve a problem.
The evidence for and against using case study marketing is conflicting, but the general takeaway is clear: they convince.
If you want to create case studies that will actually be read, you need to put a little more effort into them. So many business websites have 100-200 word mini case studies that follow the predictable and boring ChallengeSolutionResults formula. If you want your case studies to be read and persuade your readers, try following a more creative path.
That’s not necessarily a bad thing. But case studys that get actually read usually follow a creative route.
If you want to increase your leads, you need to write your case studies the right way. This means including them in your funnels wherever possible to push prospects in the consideration phase to take the next step. By doing this, you’ll be able to create a more compelling brand story that will cause buying action.
Try using “success stories” instead of “case studies” in your CTAs!
3. Create Attractive Button Copies
You’re probably aware that the copy on your buttons affects people’s actions. But do you know any proven formulas to make your button copy more effective?
You’ll increase your leads.They’ll help you write your button’s copy faster so you can have more success with your landing pages and increase your leads.
You won’t have to waste so much of your time AB Testing.
Master Copywriter, JotForm’s very own, Joanne Weibe, shares her favorite Call-to-Action buttons.
Start with “Download.” This is a great way to get people to take an action that leads them further down your funnel.Start with “Discover.” We want to discover things, especially if they’re going to help us in some way.Start with “Find Out How To ____” or “How To ____” and fill in the blank.
People are always looking for how-tos!If you’re looking to improve your button copy, simply start with the phrase “I want ____” or “I want to ____”. What you put in the blank goes on your button as its copy. You could also start with “Get”, “Download”, “Discover”, or “Find Out How To ____”.
Your button copy is one of the most important elements on your page. Here are a few tips to make sure it’s effective:
Make sure you give your visitors all the information they need before clicking your button. You don’t want them to click and then be disappointed because they didn’t get what they expected.
Make sure your button is easy to find and click. You don’t want people to miss it or have difficulty clicking it.Ensure that your visitor desires what your button copy promises.
If you’re offering a discount, make sure it’s a good one that will entice people to click. And if you’re promising something, make sure you deliver on that promise.
Finally, use strong action verbs and add a sense of urgency to your button copy. “Save 25% now!” is much more effective than “Click here for a discount.”
4. Figure Out Specific Phrases And Words Your Market Responds To
Are you familiar with the specific phrases and words that will resonate with your demographic?
Because if you do, you’ll generate more sales.
But wouldn’t that be expensive and time-consuming? Not any more.
When you take the time to study your market online, you can get a decent idea of what they want and need. This research can be easily done and doesn’t have to be expensive.
Many entrepreneurs fail to do proper research before launching their online business.
Check out these two examples:
B2B Lead Gen Example: Software Review Sites
If you’re a business-to-business company, you should be rejoicing at the rise of new software reviews sites like G2Crowd. These sites provide free, valuable research.
The first 3 reviews of a CRM system called “PipeDrive” all talk about how easy it is to use. They also talk about how customizable it is, and that it’s a complete system.
Some users find that Pipedrive doesn’t offer enough differentiation from other CRMs on the market, and that it can be buggy at times.
Yes, that’s right. Marketing your CRM system is all about finding out what your users want and don’t want.
On your own, you’ll of course want to look at more reviews. And it’s always a good idea to cross-reference them with other B2B software review sites.
B2C Lead Gen Example
B2B research can be more limited than B2C research, but there are still plenty of ways to gather information. Try looking for customer reviews on sites like Amazon.
Smaller, more specialized sites often have user reviews.
When you’re looking for patterns, a quick analysis of customer reviews can be really helpful. For example, taking a look at the reviews for Nature Made Super B Vitamin Complex on Amazon can give you some insight into what consumers are looking for.
Report that their skin looks healthierFeel like they’re getting sick less oftenSay it’s helped with their digestionConsumers who take Nature Made Super B Vitamin Complex report feeling more energetic, having healthier skin, and improved digestion. They also say they get sick less often.
Get more restWake up feeling refreshed improved mental clarityNo longer feel jitteryReduced anxietyFewer headachesWhen you switch to our product, you’ll enjoy that you don’t have to drink multiple energy drinks every day. You’ll get more rest, wake up feeling refreshed, and experience improved mental clarity. You may also notice reduced anxiety and fewer headaches.
in your mouthI’m so glad the softgels don’t leave a bad taste in my mouth. They’re easy to take and I don’t have to worry about any unpleasant aftertaste.
Market research really is that straightforward.
When it comes to understanding your market, there’s no substitute for good old-fashioned research. Make sure to stalk Pinterest, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, or other social networks to get a feel for what your target market is interested in.
Billion-dollar corporations are often so focused on their own success that they don’t realize they can use the same methods to increase their leads. However, by doing this, they’re missing out on a huge competitive advantage.
If you want to increase the number of leads you’re getting, start by looking at the words, phrases, and concepts that your target customers frequently mention. Then, use those same words in your copy for ads. This will help you build stronger connections with potential customers.
And that’s more quality leads.
5 Get the Perfect Testimonial
The CEO of a hedge fund turned blogger, James Altucher is notorious for his witty and humorous anecdotes.
He needed to raise money for one of his hedge funds. He visited his neighbor’s boss.
The boss was unwilling to help. He let him down easily, telling him:
“James, we’re happy to have you on board. If you want to work with us, then that’s great.”
But we don’t know why you would even want this money. And here at Bernie Madoff, our reputation is impeccable.”
So, someone vouches for everyone. That’s why you need to write convincing, believable, and authoritative testimonial.
Not just the generic, “You Rock!” messages.
According to entrepreneur and marketer, Derek Halpern, the perfect testimonial should answer the following questions:
Here’s the gist of this video:
If you want to create a powerful testimonial that will actually convince your ideal customers, here’s what you need to do:
First, the testimonial should highlight a problem that your ideal customer is currently facing. Second, it should detail how your product or service solves their problem. Third, you need to truthfully highlight the results that they achieved after using your product or service.
Finally, you need a “perfect testimonial” from each different type of ideal customer that you want to serve.
But can you think of any times where you received testimonials like these?
It only takes a few minutes to reach out to your happy customers. Ask them if they’d be willing to answer a few questions.
If you’ve worked with a customer before, ask if they’d be willing to write a glowing review for you.
How to increase lead conversion: You saw how using testimonials can increase your conversion rate.
Get the perfect testimonial. It’ll help ease fears, build connections, and win over more clients.
6. Present The Offers Your Prospect Want
This is probably the most complicated part of sales. You could spend days reading up on different strategies.
Finding the perfect offer you can present to your prospects can take some trial and error, but the results can be well worth it.
For creating effective offers, consider these key points:
To create an effective offer, make the content valuable and focus on emotion. Solve a problem or hit a pain point. Match the type of content to the right stage of the buyer’s journey. Only write on topics you have expertise in. Test like crazy.
How to increase your business: Know your target clients. Offer them something they need.
Keep testing until you’ve found the perfect fit.
7. Include Emotions
Your lead gen strategy should include emotions.
Many beginners and intermediate marketers in lead gen believe that only logical thinking is used by their target audience.
Buyers may claim to be logical, but their behavior and research indicates otherwise. This was summarized beautifully by Kapost from CEB’s research.
Check out this research from CEB, which summarizes it nicely:
Renowned business writer, Robert “Bob” Bly, has 30+ years of copywriting experience and an impeccable reputation for his work. He offers this advice:
“Include emotional hooks in your headlines and opening paragraphs.
Emotionally connecting with your prospect is much stronger than logically selling them on your product. When you understand how your prospect feels about your product or service, you can better tailor your pitch to their needs.
So, while emotion does play a large role in a buyer’s decision, they do also use a lot of logical reasoning to back up their decision.
A recent Google, Movista, and CEB study also found that, “Not only did the business-to-business (B2B) companies in the study create more emotional connections with their audiences, but they were not even close to their consumer counterparts.”
To gather the data, the researchers conducted a survey of 3,000 consumers of 36 different business-to-business (B2B) companies. They used the same method as in the consumer survey.
Why is this the case? Because the stakes are much higher for business-to-business (B2B) sales.
Not only do they have to make a decision, but they have to get it through 7-20 people. The purchase could cost seven figures. That’s why we’ve put together this guide on the best ways to increase your B2B leads.
And if the decision maker doesn’t choose your company, they could get fired.
Compare that with how customers behave. They either return the product or request for a refund.
How to increase your business: Buyers want more than just facts. They want emotions too.
Balance emotion and reason when writing your ads.
How to implement the lead generation ideas and best practices
Whether your business is a business-to-business (B2B) or a business-to-consumer (B2C), understanding your buyers and choosing the right lead gen channel is important. Generating new sales opportunities is not the end goal, but an ongoing process of engaging with customers and potential customers.
Follow these tips for generating more business, retaining customers, and accelerating your revenue.
As different lead generation ideas and practices can have varying levels of success, it’s important to measure each one against the sales funnel. This will help businesses determine which initiatives are more successful at driving conversions, so they can focus their efforts accordingly.
If you’re looking for ways to generate more leads, then these lead generation ideas are a great place to start. From cold calling and networking to content marketing and social media outreach, there are plenty of options available. So get out there and start generating some leads!