What is Lead Generation and how does content help with it?
Lead generation is essential for B2B marketing strategies to attract and convert potential customers. To generate leads, various techniques are used, such as lead nurturing, lead scoring, lead qualification, lead generation software, and more. In this article, we will discuss the basics of lead generation and how content can help generate leads.
What is a lead?
A lead is someone who has shown interest in your products or services. Leaving contact information, such as filling out a form on your website, downloading a whitepaper or e-book, or signing up for an event or newsletter, makes it possible to approach the lead and provide more information that can help them make a decision.
What is lead generation?
Lead generation is the process of attracting potential customers to your business and converting them into customers. This is done by identifying interested individuals and providing them with information that helps them make a decision to work with your company. This process mainly takes place online, using various techniques to generate and qualify leads.
The evolution of lead generation: from outbound to inbound marketing
In the past, leads were generated by purchasing a list of names, which was then used by the sales team for cold calling potential customers. Nowadays, leads are increasingly generated based on specific data and information collected by companies. Customers have access to an abundance of information through search engines, social media, blogs, and other online channels. Therefore, it is important to create content that matches their specific questions and needs. Companies that have a clear understanding of their target audience tailor their content accordingly. This is done through Inbound Marketing.
How to generate leads?
To effectively generate leads, you need to know some crucial components of the process. Below we discuss some important parts.
The landing page is a specific web page that the visitor lands on for a defined purpose. The advantage of a landing page is that visitors have to make less effort to orient themselves, allowing you to focus better on the stage of the buyer journey in which the reader finds themselves. Your landing page often generates more conversions than other pages because it contains a form that you can use to collect information from visitors.
Forms are fields on your landing pages that ask for information in exchange for an attractive offer. The information you ask for from your visitors should be proportionate to the content they receive. Additionally, your landing page should clearly indicate what this content or offer is.
Offers are the valuable content you offer on your landing page. This offer must be valuable enough to convince the visitor to leave personal information.
Call-to-action is an image, button, or message that encourages visitors to take a certain action. The CTA encourages visitors to fill out the form on the landing page. It is important to make your CTA buttons as clear as possible; they must really catch the eye. By adjusting the size, using bold, contrasting colors, and carefully considering the placement, you can achieve this.
Workshops and courses, expert advice, and videos: this is the valuable content you offer to your target audience in exchange for their data. Workshops and courses can increase your brand awareness and strengthen your company's image. Expert advice invites potential customers to ask questions and sign up for a session. Then you can offer a downloadable summary or a video as a piece of content on your website or social channels. Video marketing has been on the rise in recent years. Show some attractive visuals at the beginning of a video and then ask the viewer to provide their information (at least their email address) to continue watching. The secret is to stop the video at the most interesting moment.
By implementing these elements, you can increase the effectiveness of your lead generation. It's important to integrate these steps in a smart way into your marketing plan to help grow your business.
Why buying leads is not a good choice for your sales funnel.
Many marketers and sales representatives want to fill their sales funnel as quickly as possible and are tempted to buy leads. It seems easier, faster, and less effortful. But why is this actually a bad choice for your business and your sales funnel?
First of all, the purchased leads don't know you. Usually, this data comes from other websites where they signed up. So, they signed up for something, but not for something from your company. When you approach them with messages, they perceive it as unwanted and intrusive. It's likely that these 'prospects' don't know your company and are thus disturbed in their daily activities.
Moreover, you run the risk of the purchased leads marking your emails as spam because they have no interest in them. This can have consequences for your IP reputation and delivery rate, potentially causing you to end up on a blacklist that's shared with other email providers. It's very difficult to get off such a blacklist.
Finally, you have to take GDPR into account. This European law is about personal data and aims to protect consumers from spamming and phishing. Legally speaking, you're not allowed to send emails to people who haven't explicitly stated that they want to receive information from your company. There are some exceptions, such as legitimate interest. Therefore, inform yourself thoroughly before you start sending out emails.
How to get more out of your leads after lead generation and lead scoring?
After lead generation and lead scoring, it's important to further develop leads through lead nurturing. The marketing team ranks leads based on demographic data and behavior to determine which leads have priority. Marketing qualified leads (MQLs) are good for lead nurturing, while sales qualified leads (SQLs) are almost ready to buy and require more direct follow-up from the sales team. With marketing automation, leads with a lower score can be nurtured using email marketing and relevant content.
How alignment of marketing and sales leads to better lead generation
Good collaboration between marketing and sales is essential for effective lead generation and management. Both teams play an important role in finding and converting leads. Lead generation and management are nowadays the responsibility of both teams. Good alignment between both teams leads to better results and higher conversion rates.
When you're looking for leads, it's tempting to just buy them. But generating organic leads is always the better choice because it yields much more in the long run. It may take a bit more effort and time, but the result is much more sustainable and provides greater satisfaction. Moreover, it leads to better results in hard sales.
Do you want to know more about generating organic leads and how to approach it best? Our (Inbound) marketing specialists are ready to help you. Feel free to contact us for more information.
Dit blog is geschreven door de specialisten van Intracto.
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