lead generation services

Lead Generation Services: What They Are and What To Expect

Businesses must find new ways to reach their buyers today more than ever. Mass advertising and general email campaigns had their heyday. In this era of rapid digital transformation, businesses and consumers alike are using the internet and social media to research, evaluate and select the services and products that fit their needs. Businesses who figure out how to carry out lead generation online to reach potential customers are finding exciting growth and new sales online, and outpacing competitors. Rebuilding their lead generation tactics from the ground up is delivering excellent ROI. Meanwhile those who still struggle with digital marketing lead generation fall further behind.

Today’s growing businesses are looking to professional lead generation services companies to assist in building their marketing strategy. Let’s take a closer look at what they are and what to expect from lead generation services.

The Evolution of Lead Generation and Sales

The traditional model of lead generation, also called new business development, involves cold calling, email marketing campaigns, trade show attendance, advertising and sampling campaigns.

Marketing campaigns and sales campaigns were built off-line to find potential buyers and generate interest. The lead was a name and phone number that the sales rep would then call and start a sales qualification process. A successful lead was “qualified” and then entered into the sales pipeline, which meant that the sales rep would continue with follow up activities including educating this prospect on the features of the company’s offering, and the superiority of the company’s solution as compared to its competitors.

The internet transformed the lead generation process once buyers could find sellers online. Buyers don’t wait for a sales rep to come calling. Instead they are empowered by the internet to carry out their own research thanks to search engines. Today buyers do their own research over a wide range of online channels. In fact 60% of buyers prefer not to interact with a sales rep as the primary source of information and 68% of them prefer to research on their own, online (source).

The result is the buyer now controls the sales process and the language has shifted, focusing on the buying process. This has caused lead generation to become a great deal more about content. This content fills the buyers needs at each stage of the buying process. The digital transformation of lead generation as a business practice has shifted the conversation from selling products and services, to solving problems. A valuable lead generation strategy delivers content that responds to the questions buyers have at each step in the sales process. A successful lead generation campaign delivers well qualified leads to sales reps, so they can focus on building relationships and closing sales with buyers who already have a familiarity with the company thanks to its great content!

 

Outbound, Inbound, or Both?

Outbound

As a first step in understanding lead generation strategy, it´s valuable to clarify the difference between outbound and inbound lead generation. Outbound lead generation uses outbound marketing channels such as advertisements and cold calling to capture the attention of potential buyers and create some awareness and interest in your services. This is also called “push” marketing – you “push” people towards your brand offerings.

Outbound lead generation examples:

  • Word of Mouth (WOM) marketing – disseminating your message through customer interactions.
  • Cold Email marketing – purchasing lists of company decision makers and their email addresses, and sending them information on your offering
  • Inside Sales – Sales personnel use phone and email to find prospects who otherwise had no knowledge of the company.
  • Social Media – Sharing content and running paid social campaigns to grow followers, leads and sales
  • Direct Mail – Sending print materials to targeted audiences such as your customer base, or to a purchased list of companies who you would like to do business with
  • Trade Shows – Participating at an industry event to meet new and existing clients
  • Events – A wide range of private events, such as a fundraiser. Also experiential marketing events including sampling campaigns in high traffic public areas to get product samples and information into the hands of potential new customers. Experiential marketing includes stunts, aimed at grabbing attention and generating viral social media content in order to educate and attract new customers.

Inbound

Inbound lead generation employs your website and the power of the search engines to identify potential buyers based on their online behaviour and bring them to your website’s targeted content. Your content and offers are delivered to them based on their search queries. This is called “pull” marketing.

Inbound lead generation examples:

  • Topical blogs
  • Social media campaigns (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Pinterest, TikTok)
  • Ebooks, infographics, white papers, case studies
  • Search Engine Optimized (SEO) website text.
  • Videos
  • Webinars

Using both outbound and inbound

Some of you might ask which one is the right one, and a good portion of you will ask why not both?

While those traditional methods may still work for your company or industry, they have become outdated and companies are rapidly transitioning to finding the most effective online strategies to ensure growth.

Some businesses are using a hybrid of both, introducing online strategies into their traditional methods. It is common for companies at trade shows or events to encourage their booth visitors to take social-friendly photos or seek to create viral content to extend awareness and interest from off-line participants to on-line audiences.

Inbound marketing offers answers to valuable online buyers, helping solve real-time problems, introducing them to your company and exhibiting your expertise, your trustworthiness, and your fit as the solution they seek. The tools of digital marketing will bring these leads to you much more efficiently than your marketing department and sales teams can find them, offering a compelling ROI and opportunity to improve your sales team’s performance and productivity.

What are Lead Generation Services

Many companies are in the dark when it comes to lead generation. They continue to rely on their traditional sales and marketing techniques. In house teams, proficient at the current methods and processes, don’t have expertise to navigate a rapid leap to new lead generation strategies which rely on many digital marekting tools. When it comes to the best performing lead generation strategies and tactics, there is a lack of understanding on how to do it properly. This work is domain and expertise of a full service digital marketing agency with experience in B2B lead generation.

Many types of talent are required for success, including website developers, SEO specialists, content writers, graphic designers, landing page experts, copywriters and more.

A range of technologies are employed as well to carry out thorough and ongoing website audits, the track and measure progress, to monitor conversions, and to gather leads.

These are 3 components to many lead gen campaigns:

1. Develop Premium Content

If you have ever researched content marketing, you are familiar with the expression: “Content is king”. Today’s content is user-focused, responding to each step in the buyer journey. The lead generation campaign includes a content strategy, keyword strategy, and the careful articulation of the buyer persona, or archetypes of the ideal customer. Developing premium SEO content ensures that the search engines can serve your content to qualified buyers, and that those online website visitors will take the time to read and engage with your content.

2. Tailor Landing Pages

You have heard about calls to action (CTAs) and how important they are in leading your buyers where you want them. This is where landing pages come in. Landing pages provide your buyers with a detailed description of your offering, as well as eye-catching visuals and easy-to-fill order forms. Get the composition of your landing page right and you will see the power it has in lead generation. A strong landing page requires technical expertise, strong copywriting skills, a capture tool to gather customer details, and a marketing expertise to craft a compelling offer to create those valuable conversions into leads.

3. Reach Target Audience through Social Media Marketing

Social media such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn can be valuable tools for lead generation. You can find almost everyone online. This means buyers at all stages of the buying cycle are spending time on these platforms. They are using these channels to discuss, share and find information about pretty much everything, including products and services.

Businesses can ensure their brand stays visible, relevant and engaging with a strong social media strategy. Which channels will work for your type of business? This requires competitive research and an evaluation of platform fit to the company and lead generation goals.

 

What is the starting point for lead generation?

There are so many things to consider in embarking on an exciting lead generation campaign. In working together, we start with an evaluation of your current website and its ability to bring in leads. From there we carry out a competitive analysis and keyword research. Next comes persona development, and from there the development of the right strategy for your business right now.

Creating a successful lead generation infrastructure will turn your website into a healthy source of new business into the future. With a fresh abundant inflow of qualified new leads, your valuable sales reps can focus on closing sales and helping customers. Overall the organization sees a lower cost per lead, and increased sales force productivity creating a proud, successful sales team, satisfied customers and delighted business owner.