In marketing, lead generation is the initiation of consumer interest or inquiry into products or services of a business. Leads can be created for several purposes including list building, newsletter list acquisition, or sales leads. The methods for generating leads typically falls under the umbrella of advertising, but may also include non-paid sources such as organic search engine results or referrals from existing customers.
Hubspot Academy defines a lead as: “A person who has indicated interest in your company’s product or service in some way, shape, or form.”
Essentially, a sales lead is generated through the collection of information. There are 4 key steps in the process of lead generation:
While most marketers are aware of this process, it is important to ensure specific targets are met at each stage to ensure products and services get sold to the right audience. Here is a brief description of the process:
“The lead generation process starts by finding out where your target market ‘lives’ on the web.” – Wayne Davis
Start the search process. See where your leads would be, what social media platforms they are active on, and the kinds of interests they have. Based on these insights, create content in the form of ebooks, blog posts, whitepapers, photos, infographics, and videos that fit your business and your target audience. Share this content on all your social media platforms and track progress.
“Making your prospects feel like they have an exclusive membership in a club makes lead generation a positive customer experience.” – Eric Brower
Once you have visitors to your website, focus on nurturing those leads. Provide them with relevant and accurate content and free downloads that are informative and beneficial to them. Once they see quality content and start trusting your brand, they will automatically be willing to pay for what you have to offer.
Once you have a set of leads that are ready to pay, it’s time to seal the deal. Here, it is important to make sure you do not try to oversell as many buyers are smart enough to realize when you are doing this. That could simply destroy what would otherwise have been a done deal.
Simply closing the sale is not the end. The last step in lead generation is to delight your customers. This can be done through follow up questionnaires or surveys that help you know what your customers want and need. Not only that, you can also continue providing free material and downloads. This helps to keep customers loyal to your brand.
Without leads, your business is most likely not going to go very far. Qualified prospects that turn into customers and then, brand ambassadors, can help your company establish a solid place on the front lines of your industry’s market.
Want to know how to take your lead generation to the next level? Click on the link below to watch a quick video and to download the whitepaper. What Is Lead Generation?