Creating lead generation strategies is essential to growing your business. Without leads, you can’t convert people into customers.
Whether you’re targeting B2B leads or B2C customers, you need several strategies to continuously bring in new prospects — the more qualified, the better. In this guide, we’ll show you how to put 12 proven lead generation strategies to work so you can boost conversions and generate more sales.
Lead Generation Statistics and Curious Facts
If you’re not convinced that lead generation matters, check out a few lead generation statistics that might change your mind:
- Fewer than one quarter of businesses are satisfied with the amount of leads they generate.
- Spending just six hours per week on social media can boost lead generation.
- More than 50 percent of marketers devote at least half their marketing budgets to lead generation.
- Fewer than 20 percent of businesses report getting quality leads from outbound marketing strategies.
- A full 70 percent of marketers report that they’ve made lead generation their top priority.
As you can see, lead generation has become one of the most important parts of growing a healthy business. But how do you do it? Let’s define a few terms, then dive into our 12 proven lead generation strategies.
What Is Lead Generation in Marketing?
In marketing, lead generation strategies refer to the act of acquiring information from consumers that can further the relationship between the business and the consumer. A lead can be an email subscriber opt-in, a sales prospect, or a follower on social media.
In fact, you can define a lead however you like. Maybe you’re collecting phone numbers for your outbound sales team, or perhaps you’re trying to grow your email list. Whatever the case, set a goal for acquiring more leads so you know exactly what you’re trying to achieve.
What Is a Lead Generation Strategy?
A lead strategy is the series of steps you take to acquire a lead. It’s how you formulate your lead generation strategies. It could refer to customer touchpoints, assets you build for your marketing team, or anything else that helps attract prospects to your business.
For instance, you might use content promotion to lure in prospects through search engine marketing, then create an enticing, relevant lead magnet to convince those prospects to sign up for your email list.
You’ll notice that I used two key words to describe a lead magnet:
- Enticing: A lead magnet needs to attract your prospect’s attention and force him or her to consider what you’re offering.
- Relevant: If a lead magnet isn’t relevant to your specific audience, you might generate leads, but they won’t necessarily be qualified.
A qualified lead is someone who is both willing and able to buy your product or service. For instance, if you’re targeting enterprise-level businesses as your customers, you don’t want to attract prospects who own small businesses. They aren’t in your target market. The best lead generation strategies focus on the buyer’s journey.
What Is a Lead Generation Process?
A lead generation process is the culmination of your lead generation strategy. In other words, it encompasses not only your strategy to attract and convert leads, but also the process of nurturing them once you’ve converted them.
Let’s say, for instance, that you’re attracting potential leads through a lead magnet and an email signup form. That’s a great lead generation strategy.
But what then? You have to send those subscribers compelling email content so they interact with your business further. This is the heart of most lead generation strategies.
Entice them to click through to read your blog content. Incentivize purchases of your products or services through coupons or promotional codes. Invite them to participate in contests or giveaways.
The process can carry through to a sales call, webinar, or something else entirely. Depending on your product or service, consumers might need to touch bases with your business in several ways before they decide to hand over a credit card number.
12 Lead Generation Strategies That Will Work on Any Business and Increase Revenue
Now we get to the good stuff!
It’s important to understand what lead generation entails, but it helps if you have a blueprint you can follow to bring in more prospects. Plus, you need to know how to effectively convert them.
That’s what this guide will teach you. We’re going to go through 12 proven strategies that can increase your conversion rates and help you sell more products. Plus, we’ll explain why each strategy works and show you examples to help you visualize how these strategies might work for your business.
1. Use Social Media Lead Generation Strategies
Let’s face it: Social media isn’t going away anytime soon. In fact, it only grows in popularity with each passing year.
New social media platforms spring up, existing platforms develop news ways for users to interact, and consumers and brands become “friends.”
So, how do you harness social media for lead generation?
The most important thing is to make sure you’re using your chosen platform socially. What does that mean? Interact with your followers. If they comment on your posts, answer them. If they like your content, thank them.
Increasing engagement on social media almost always correlates to more leads because you’ve shown the human side of your business. Consumers want to buy from companies that are willing to interact with them on a personal level.
Generating leads via Facebook typically involves improving click-through rates, especially to optin and landing pages. You need compelling headlines and CTAs. Images and videos perform well, too.
Often, giveaways and contests help boost engagement on Facebook. Invite people to sign up for your email list in exchange for an entry in the event.
Many businesses forget that social media is an extension of their businesses. If you maximize traffic between your website and social media profiles, you’ll get more leads. That’s where Hello Bar comes in, but we’ll show you that trick a little later.
Even though Twitter has recently increased its character count limit, it still restricts your content. Plus, Twitter feeds move rapidly for most users because they follow so many people.
How do you generate leads from Twitter? You give people a compelling reason to click.
Start with your images. I recommend custom graphics if you want to grab your followers’ attention. Startle them out of their scroll so they read the text on your tweet.
You’ll also want to get more Twitter followers. That will provide you with a larger pool of prospects to convert. Adding click-to-Tweet buttons on your website can help. So can promoting your Twitter account via other social channels.
Since Instagram is owned by Facebook, these two social channels make a perfect pair. You can construct social ads on both platforms via the same page, but you don’t have to pay to play.
Instagram thrives on imagery and live video. The latter offers an awesome way to increase conversions through lead generation.
If you “go live” on Instagram by creating Instagram Stories, you can directly ask your followers to visit your website and sign up for your email list or buy a product. You can even offer an incentive just for the people who watch your Stories, such as a bonus product or a coupon code.
If you’re targeting B2B customers, LinkedIn is probably your best lead generation source in the social sphere. It’s built to help professionals find one another, which means that your target audience probably spends time on the platform.
Publishing content on LinkedIn is an excellent way to round out your lead generation strategies. You can either publish original content or publish excerpts from the content on your blog with a link to click through. Either way, make sure to include links to landing pages.
Lots of businesses discount Pinterest as frivolous, but nothing could be further from the truth. While you might not want to pin images of haute couture or delicious recipes (unless you’re selling clothing or kitchen utensils), you can still use this platform to generate leads.
Infographics are among the most high-performing image types on the Internet, and they work great on Pinterest. In fact, there are tons of pages on Pinterest that are dedicated to infographics. That’s why so many marketers include Pinterest in their lead generation strategies.
Include your website URL on your infographic so people can easily find the source. Then target those visitors with an enticing offer just for them.
2. Optimize your website for mobile users
Do you look up websites on your smartphone? If so, you’re not alone. In fact, mobile Internet usage has become even more common than desktop and laptop Internet usage.
That’s an opportunity for you if you make sure your website is mobile friendly. In other words, it should render beautifully for users no matter what device they’re on. Otherwise, your lead generation strategies won’t produce the results you want.
Start by using a responsive web design. That way, text and graphics will automatically conform to the user’s screen size.
Next, make sure the images you use don’t overwhelm the page. You don’t want users to have to slide their fingers all over their screens to read what you’ve written or view an entire image.
Many premium WordPress themes allow you to adjust specific elements based on the screen size. That’s an incredible asset when you want maximum control over how your site looks. You can also adjust specific Hello Bar settings to suit mobile devices.
If you want to maximize lead generation, you can create Hello Bars specifically for mobile users.
3. Use awesome lead magnets in your lead generation process
A lead magnet is a marketing asset that website visitors can download or access for free after performing a desired action, such as signing up for your email list. It’s a key part of most lead generation strategies.
Lead magnets should be so appealing to your target audience that they can’t turn them down. You could create an e-book, calculator, template, form, checklist, or anything else you think your prospects might benefit from.
Promote your lead magnet via a Hello Bar. It might look something like this:
When visitors click on the call-to-action (CTA) button, they’ll arrive at the landing page where you collect email addresses.
Play with different headlines and calls to action to figure out which converts leads best. Hello Bar allows you to run A/B tests on various bars, then automatically provides you with the results.
4. Post more blog content with valuable information to get more leads
Did you know that business owners who blog at least 16 times more month get about 3.5 times more traffic than those who blog less frequently? Make no mistake: More traffic will translate into more leads if you use the tools available to convert those visitors.
Keep in mind that lead generation strategies don’t work unless you have sufficient traffic.
Posting more blog content will make your website more discoverable via search engines. Plus, you can interlink your content so people stay on your website for longer periods of time.
Blogging has the added benefit of establishing yourself and your business as the primary authority in your industry. If you demonstrate your knowledge, people will come to trust you. Consequently, they become more likely to buy from you.
Create an editorial calendar for your blog so you know what posts you’ll publish at least a month in advance. Outline those posts so you don’t feel overwhelmed when you sit down to write, then schedule then to go live ahead of time.
5. Use strong calls to action in your lead generation strategy
I’ve already touched on CTAs, but they deserve special attention. A CTA is a word or phrase that compels visitors to take some sort of next step, such as signing up for your email list, buying a product, or investing in a service.
Lead generation strategies simply won’t work unless you tell your visitor what to do. It’s that simple.
CTAs often work best when you use “I” phrases. For instance, we created a Hello Bar above for a lead magnet.
What if we changed the CTA?
Now, I’ve used an “I” phrase, which can help the user feel more comfortable with your website. Conduct an A/B test to see which CTA works best for your audience.
CTA phrases can be long or short. Sometimes, it’s enough to say something like “Download Now” or “Sign Up.” For other audiences, you might need a longer CTA phrase, such as “Sign up for your free trial immediately!”
6. Optimize your website for conversions and get more leads
Conversion rate optimization (CRO) has become just as important as lead generation. Think of these strategies as two sides of the same coin.
CRO involves optimizing every aspect of your website for conversions. You want to give your prospects every opportunity to convert on your offers and become leads or customers.
There are several places to put CTAs on your website:
- On a Hello Bar
- Ends of blog posts
- Within body content
- On landing pages
Go through every page on your site and find at least one place to put a CTA. Just make sure it’s relevant for the page’s content.
To put even more emphasis on your CTA, make it animated. Hello Bar allows you to animate your bar so it attracts more attention.
7. Nurture your leads through email marketing
Email marketing has become a pivotal way for businesses to stay in touch with their prospects, generate more sales, and build stronger communities. Some entrepreneurs even consider their email lists their most valuable assets.
However, email marketing only works when done properly.
First, make sure you’re consistent. If you tell your audience that you’ll email them once per week, send them weekly emails on the same day. If you tell your subscribers that you’ll send coupon codes, make sure they’re included.
Keep your emails as short and engaging as possible. Focus on one topic per email, and optimize the subject line to get people to open your emails.
Most importantly, make sure everyone can read your messages. Include an HTML option for people who don’t load graphics in their emails.
8. Consider applying lead scoring to your lead strategy
Above, I mentioned the importance of generating qualified leads. A lead who will never buy your products or services isn’t very valuable to your business, right?
One way to evaluate leads is through lead scoring. This is a methodology that gives each lead a score based on how qualified the person or business is.
For instance, let’s say that you’re targeting B2B leads. You could score leads based on social media following, Alexa rank, the lead’s job title, the company’s size, or the business’s total revenue.
When you apply lead scoring, you know which leads deserve the most attention. This is particularly valuable when you’re qualifying leads for your sales team. You don’t want your sales associates to spend time wooing prospects who will never convert into customers.
9. Start your lead generation strategy on your website’s homepage
It’s true that many of your website visitors will arrive on interior pages of your website. They might first visit a blog page they found via a Google search, for instance.
However, think about your own habits as an Internet user. Even if you first visit a website’s interior page, what do you do if you find the content intriguing?
I’m guessing that you click on the “Home” button in the navigation menu. You want to start at the beginning.
This is basic human psychology, and it can work to your favor.
Consider adding an exit popup to your website’s homepage. If a visitor attempts to leave from that page, they get an incentive to remain on your website and, more importantly, become a lead.
10. Use webinars as one of your lead generation methods
A webinar is a live or pre-recorded video that teaches your audience something valuable. Generally, marketers start webinars as live events, then publish the recorded versions on their sites or use them as lead magnets.
During a webinar, you’ll teach your audience something valuable, and at the end, you’ll provide a coupon code or other incentive to drive leads.
11. Use strong verbs and words to draw the most attention from your website visitors
Just as compelling imagery can force visitors to stop and give your content another glance, strong verbs and other words can likewise command visitors’ attention. Strong verbs are also best for CTAs because they urge your visitors to take action.
Consider these two CTAs:
- Boost your leads with these strategies.
- Get more leads with these strategies.
Which is more powerful and succinct? The first one, right?
“Boost” is a strong verb. It’s specific and compelling.
12. Use the right landing page conversion techniques in your lead gen strategy
A landing page is a standalone page on your website that serves a specific purpose. In many cases, it’s designed to convert prospects into leads or leads into customers.
An optin email page is an example of a landing page. It has one purpose: Get people to sign up for your email list.
However, landing pages fall flat when they don’t offer a compelling reason to stay.
Experiment with different headlines, graphics, and CTAs. Make sure you provide just enough information to convince someone to convert. Anything more is overkill.
Consider using a tool like Crazy Egg to track movements on your landing pages. If you know where your visitors look and what patterns they follow on the page, you’ll know where to position key elements.
Lead generation is the process of acquiring information about your website visitors and interacting with them. The whole lead generation process involves capturing leads, communicating with them, and converting them into customers.
It often starts with a single touchpoint, whether it’s on your social media profile or a blog post found via search engine.
To maximize lead generation, you need a proven strategy. I’ve offered you 12 ideas to implement on your site. Best of all, they don’t conflict. You can experiment with every one of them.
First, sign up for Hello Bar so you can immediately add CTAs to your website, whether you want a bar at the top of your page or an exit popup. Then add landing pages and CTAs to other parts of your site.
Remember to blog frequently and to include CTAs. Invite people to sign up for your next webinar or to join your mailing list.
Score your leads, use strong verbs, and A/B test every element of your lead generation strategy. Make sure your landing page is optimized for maximum conversions.
What’s your favorite lead generation strategy?