Generating More Leads Through Online Marketing Channels
What Is Lead Generation?
Hubspot defines lead generation as “the process of attracting and converting strangers and prospects into someone who has indicated interest in your company’s product or service.” Lead generation occurs after you’ve attracted a prospect and are ready to turn those prospects into leads with content that’s of interest to them. Potential customers can be nurtured through the sales funnel, tracking them with a lead scoring system, until they are sales qualified leads.
It may seem simple, right? Believe it or not, 61% of marketers believe that generating leads and traffic is their top challenge, according to HubSpot. However, the strategic use of marketing channels such as search, social, email and paid, can make lead generation easier.
The lead generation process will allow you to find out four important pieces of information:
- Your target audience’s interests
- The products/services you can sell to them
- Their pain points
- How to turn them into paying customers
This blog post will take you through how to utilise these marketing channels for driving leads…
Organic Lead Generation
According to HubSpot, “Google processes approximately 70,000 search queries every second, translating to 5.8 billion searches per day and approximately 2 trillion global searches per year”. Even without adding in search traffic on other search engines such as Bing, that’s a huge audience that you can tap into for your lead generation. One way to tap into this search audience long term is through Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), which aims to increase traffic to your website by increasing your visibility in search engines for keywords that are relevant to the products and services you offer. SEO can compliment lead generation efforts by increasing overall organic traffic to your website, driving more visitors at every stage of the buyer’s journey to relevant landing page content on your site, measured through Google Analytics, and increasing awareness of your brand.
Here are 5 steps you can carry out to improve your search engine visibility and increase lead generation.
A website audit allows you to identify a range of technical, content, and user experience issues across your website, which are all opportunities to improve your search engine visibility. Using a website crawler like Screaming Frog, SEMRush or Moz will let you crawl your website to identify on-page optimisation opportunities, broken links, duplicate content, slow loading site pages, low traffic pages and much more.
Keyword research is essential to driving relevant leads to your website, as this process helps you understand how your target audience searches for products and services like yours. Using paid keyword tools such as SEMRush, Moz, and Ahrefs or free tools such as Google Trends, AnswerThePublic, and Ahrefs Keyword Generator can help you identify relevant high search volume keywords for your business and find related keywords to attract potential leads. Once you have identified your target keywords you can use tools such as SEMRush, Moz, and Ahrefs to monitor your ranking improvements for those keywords over time.
Once you have identified your target keywords you need to make sure they are included in key areas of your content including your page title, meta description, page heading (H1 tag), and opening paragraph. You want your keywords to fit naturally in your text so don’t stuff keywords into your content for the sake of it, the aim is to try and provide relevant and useful information to your end-user on the topic related to your keywords. This might mean you need to extend your content to provide more in-depth answers and a more valuable overall resource.
Ongoing Content Strategy
Regularly creating fresh content on your website that provides value for your target audience is highly beneficial for traffic and lead generation. Potential leads will be more inclined to sign up for a newsletter or marketing information if they know you consistently offer valuable and relevant information. When you are trying to rank for a range of keywords you also inevitably find that you need to write new content to target those keywords to attract new search traffic.
To ensure you have an ongoing content strategy, you should make sure to share your target keyword and topic lists with your content team and have a shared content calendar in place. This will help your team to create new content ideas and publish new content regularly.
Backlinking happens when different websites link to each other. Backlinks improve ranking but they need to make sense. A backlink should be from a trustworthy site with relevant quality content. Seems simple, right?
Google is highly suspicious of artificial linking activities and can penalise sites that pay for links or use link creation schemes to try and manipulate Google’s search results. You should look at your website’s current backlink profile using tools like Ahrefs and see if you have any suspicious links that might be best to remove. The best way to gain links to your website is by earning them by publishing high quality, unique and useful content. You can help this process along by reaching out to relevant sites to pitch your content to them, just make sure to ask nicely, don’t spam other sites with requests, and make sure your content is really worth the other website’s time.
Social Media Lead Generation
Social media is an underrated platform for driving and generating leads. If you get it right, social media can be a valuable strategy for generating leads. One huge benefit is the different platforms you can use to drive leads through; Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook to name a few. Social media marketing your products and services through sharing content on social posts or gated content to capture email addresses.
The first decision to make is which channel to use. According to research from Social Media Today, 82% of marketers feel that Facebook is the best social media platform to use for lead generation, due to it being the most populated platform with 2.45 billion monthly users.
That being said, 89% of B2B marketers believe LinkedIn is the best platform for lead generation, as LinkedIn drives over twice as many leads as other platforms.
Once you’ve decided on a platform, your next step is to optimise your profile. Your contact information should be available for customer inquiries, whether it’s through email, phone or live chat. Call-to-action buttons can be added on Facebook and Instagram, and links to your website can be added to your bios on your various platforms.
Choosing your content to post is next. You need to have compelling, click-worthy content to catch potential leads’ attention. You also must have a link to click in addition to this content, whether it’s to your newsletter, or your website, or your e-commerce store.
If you’re linking to a landing page on your website, it must be relevant to what the visitor has clicked on. The landing page should have all the information the visitor is looking for, as well as being easy to navigate and visually appealing. If there’s a form, it should be quick and easy for a potential lead to fill in.
When you’ve exhausted your organic social media lead generation options, you can also use lead ads on various platforms.
Facebook Lead Ads
Facebook Lead Ads are set up as an ad through Facebook Ad Manager – customise your target audience and features, creative assets and budget. Facebook will then show your ad to users that come under your target audience to find potential leads. It shows up on the news feed as a “sponsored post”.
If a user sees this ad and clicks the CTA, Facebook will display a form that is filled automatically with the visitors’ information. Once the user submits this, you have a new potential lead to nurture!
LinkedIn Lead Gen Campaigns
LinkedIn allows for access to demographics you wouldn’t find as easily through Facebook and Twitter if you’re a B2B company. LinkedIn’s version of lead generation is their Lead Gen Campaigns. This adds a CTA to your ads and sponsored content so you can link potential leads to sign up to your newsletter, download an eBook, visit your website and more.
A Lead Gen Form will then appear with the user’s details filled in too so all the user has to do is click submit. These forms can have a huge impact on form conversion rates as the user won’t have to leave LinkedIn to visit another page.
Twitter introduced Lead Generation Cards in 2013 to allow users to securely share their email addresses to connect with brands without leaving Twitter. However, in 2016 the Lead Generation Cards were discarded, and Twitter Business became Twitter’s new lead generation platform.
Through using Twitter Business, you can use a CTA button on your profile in addition to URL cards. Users can then interact with your brand easier and this can increase the number of leads generated.
Generating More Leads Through Email Marketing
Your email list can be a vital asset when it comes to marketing. But how do you get leads into your email list? First, you need to identify your target audience for your email marketing campaign. This will involve developing a buyer persona to help you understand their pain points.
Once you know your target audience’s pain points, you’ll be able to create a solution to these problems to attract them. This is what is known as a lead magnet.
A lead magnet could be a whitepaper, a free PDF checklist, a report or downloadable content with information the user is looking for. All the user has to do is submit their name and email address in order to get the incentive.
If the user has opted-in to receive emails from you, they’re officially a lead but this is only the start of the customer journey. You need to nurture and engage the lead consistently with personalised content, whether it’s through personalised email marketing campaigns or newsletters.
Paid Search Lead Generation
Paid search advertising or Pay Per Click (PPC) search advertising can have a huge impact on lead generation for any business. Benefits of PPC for generating leads include the ability to target ads towards a specific audience, a solid ROI, faster results than with SEO or social media, and knowing where your leads are coming from through analytics.
We released a podcast about paid advertising for generating leads, which you can listen to on Stitcher and Spotify. Here are some of the tips discussed, that you can listen to in more detail on the podcast episode.
Bid On Your Own Brand Terms
This is something your competitors are likely doing and it’s relatively low competition. It’s cost-efficient as the cost per click is generally a few cents. Bidding on your own brand means it’s high relevance due to it being your own brand – with great CTR. You can also gain great insight for your SEO team into what keywords your target audience is looking at.
Optimise Your Ad Copy
You need to ensure your ad copy is accurate and enticing to potential leads. This is a big factor in how visitors convert on your website. You need to test your ad copy with various combinations of the copy and see what version works best in response rates and performance.
Negative Keywords and Targeting
Creating a list of negative keywords and negative targeting can be extremely cost-effective. Since you’re not spending money on extra keywords that aren’t relevant to your business, this will qualify the leads you do get. You’ll get more relevant traffic and genuine interest in the products and/or services you offer.
Increasing lead generation and lead quality can be achieved in so many ways through many different marketing channels, but we hope the above gives you some ideas on where to start. It’s so important to treat driving leads as one part of a full inbound marketing strategy to incorporate SEO, social, email and paid advertising for your business.
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