Ignite your growth in 2017 with these 50 Proven Lead Generation Methods
Lesson 12: 50 Proven Ways to generate leads for your business.
Included FREE in this lesson: Over 200 lead generation ideas in this lesson and from other resources.
Looking for ways to stretch your small marketing budget?
How can you get the word out about your business in the most affordable way when your competitors are spending millions?
But what is that’s not REALLY the issue?
The internet and social media have levelled the playing field for people like you and me compared to the $1 BILLION advertising budget that Coca Cola has.
So whether it’s you or Coca Cola, getting leads for your business isn’t the issue.
The new problem is this.
Company Owners Are Addicted To Business Morphine
The great writer Roy Edwards pointed out that pain is a warning to your conscious mind to say, “Hey, smarty pants, we have a problem!” that requires your immediate attention.
Every business person in financial pain also has their business telling them that they have a problem.
Slow traffic, low conversions, declining sales are just symptoms of a problem.
And so marketing and advertising experts have a whole range of gimmicks that just act as morphine. From logic to emotion, from scarcity to value, everyone peddles the same business morphine.
And it works for a little while.
But then the REAL problem kicks in.
What a business needs is a profitable, committed customer. One who buys more and often.
But unfortunately for you as a business owner, commitment by your customer is very rarely an “I’m all in and ready to buy right now” thing.
Customers are far more likely to make small, micro commitments at first and then increase that commitment by degrees as they trust you.
You learned how this works in Lesson 10: The Value Journey Canvas (What? You have READ this haven’t you? If not, go here) and now we’re going to implement the first two parts of that journey.
The Practical (You Can DO This) Guide To Lead Generation
Before you start this bit, grab a coffee, take five and come back ready to work.
What Is Lead Generation?
Lead generation is very simply the process of attracting strangers or prospects from your target market who have expresses some interest in your company’s products and services, THEN converting them over time into customers.
We used the Customer Journey Canvas to describe this process.
The process works by offering insane value, freebies, goodies or other useful content to attract them into your business to learn more about your brand. That’s it.
The reason this is important is that by opting into your business, your prospect has initiated the relationship with you and therefore more inclined to buy later.
Now, let’s talk about the ways in which someone can actually show that interest.
How to Generate Leads: The Mechanics of Lead Generation
Here’s a typical Landing page in ClickFunnels below that has all the elements you need to capture the lead generation data.
The landing page is a web page in ClickFunnels that a visitor lands on in order to claim something of value in return for their personal details..
The Call-to-Action (CTA) button: A call-to-action or CTA is an image, button, or message that asks your visitors to take action. Here, it says “Yes, I want access now!”
The form is a series of fields hosted on a landing page or anywhere on your ClickFunnels software and website.
The offer is the content or something of value that’s being “offered” on the landing page that has enough value to persuade your visitor to provide their personal information in exchange for access to it. In this case below, it’s a video.
See how everything fits together?
50 Ways TO Generate High Quality Leads For Your Business
Consistently generating high quality leads is a business owner’s most important objective.
A successful lead generation engine keeps the funnel full of sales prospects even while you sleep.
The typical lead generation process involves you creating content or an offer that your customers are looking for while at the same time capturing leads using optimized calls-to-action and forms.
From there, the lead can be used in your email system to build a relationship with that customer that leads to a sale.
Even so, only 1 in 10 marketers do this well.
The Customer Journey Canvas is designed to ultimately get people to say “yes” to our offers.
When an offer is exclusive, scarce, or in high demand, it becomes more desirable. If we create offers that incorporate these desirable elements, whether they’re white papers, free trials, memberships, sales promotions, or downloads, we can overcome a potential lead’s typical friction, doubt, or concern.
These elements work because they trigger a physiological reaction that makes an offer more valuable.
People need to perceive the value of your offer to be greater than what you’re asking for in return.
The higher the perception of value, the more irresistible the offer.
So now let’s look at the lead generation ideas that will help grow your business.
This section is broken down into two parts:
Practical, easy and cost effective ONLINE Lead Generation:
- “Coming Soon” approach–Even if you haven’t launched your business yet, you can use ClickFunnels to set up a “coming soon” landing page and advertise to get prospects to sign up for notifications by offering exclusive deals for your new to-be-launched products or services.
- YourFacebook Page–You MUST create a Facebook Page and post (interesting updates) to keep fans hooked as well as use paid advertising to get new leads.
- Free Trials or Try Before You Buy – Trying a free sample is proven to lead to purchases as it’s considered less risky.
- Free ‘X’ When You Buy ‘Y’ – Great lead generation technique for new customers or stealing customers from competitors by offering more value.
- Free Report, Case Study Or Consultation – This offer reassures your prospects that you know your subject and can trust you.
- Appreciation Sales Offers – Advertise exclusive sales, coupons or codes in return for obtaining sign ups. People are often attracted to buying at a discount and cant’ resist genuine offers.
- Video or Photo Contests –Valuable not only because these attract high levels of participation and engagement, but they’re easy to enter and prospects and customers give you user generated content that you can use later.
- Vote contests – Voting contests attract huge entries on social media and you can use the data to create a mini data study and share the results in return for an optin.
- Feature placements–If you have a range of products, pick one every week and feature it front and centre on your site and promote a specific deal on it in return for an email address.
- Webinars – Host your own free webinar or partner with another business for twice the expertise (and twice the promotion power). Webinar are a great source of business leads.
- Free Giveaways – Seen as the most powerful word in marketing, FREE creates a sense of reciprocity, i.e. the need to give back to the giver at some point.
- Two For One –Sometimes called “Buy One, Get One Free, this is useful if you have a high ticket item, such as an event or high end restaurant.
- Product packages or bundling – Group together a choice or selection of similar products based on a theme (e.g. colour, gift ideas, season).
- Offer samples – If you’re new to the market or introducing something new, providing a free or low value sample product is a great way of allowing people to test before they buy.
- Free consultation – if you’re in the consulting, coaching or service space (e.g. dental practice), you can “pay it forward” by offering a 30 minute free consultation as a way of generating a lead. If you’re a bricks and mortar retailer you can also offer a free “personal shopper service” to attract new customers.
- Competitions – The higher the value of the prize, the more entrants you’ll receive. Examples could be a high end barbeque grill, a foreign holiday or a product targeted to a specific market, such as a spa weekend for women.
- Advertise on other people’s e-newsletters or blogs – Find popular e-zine and blogs that update regularly and who also accept advertising for your target market.
- Email Marketing – Email marketing is a great way to get new visitors engaged with your business, as well as maintain relationships with your existing customers. Use Constant Contact, Aweber or Mailchimp to create automated email messages that follow the Customer Journey Canvas process. Slowly nurture your subscribers via email until they are ready to become paying customers.
- Newsletter subscription – Ask new website visitors to sign up for your newsletter by offering bonus content, offers or something of value in return for subscribing (e.g. get a free ebook showing you how to make a healthy smoothie sign up for our Smooth Shakes newsletter).
- LinkedIn – is a professional site with millions of uses and hundreds of thousands of groups in your niche. So use content to drive visitors to sign up to your business.
- Web banner ads – Buy banner advertising on websites that target your specific market. One popular idea is to include a trivia question in your ad and offer a discount or deal if the user gets it right.
- Bloggers in your niche– Do a search on Google Blogs for whatever industry your products are in and then approach the ones with the largest following and ask to create sponsored content on their sites in return for a link back to your website.
- Pinterest leads – Create a “free stuff” Board and pin updates on your “free stuff” Board linking back to your email-gated website content. Use the keywords and keyword phrases for your business in your pin descriptors to get your content found by interested people using Pinterest search.
The most repinned content on Pinterest are coupons and deals which you can create on your website and give away for the cost of an email address.
- Viral video – harder to do but if you have the content and talent to create funny or impressive Youtube videos, promoting them can rapidly attract a huge audience.
- Video testimonials – ask happy customers to tell their story on camera and weave these testimonials into your TV or Youtube campaigns.
- Submit articles to online magazines – writing guest posts for blogs in your field is a great way to get your business out there.You can start by posting about industry hot topics, topical news, trending topics to associate your business with the latest trends.
- Keep social tabs on competitors – Facebook business pages allow you to follow other accounts so you can follow your competitors and see what they post and what popular (i.e. which posts get the most shares and likes).
- Paid Advertising on Social Media–Depending on your market and business, Facebook and Twitter offer paid advertising to target the right consumers for you by getting you leads and customers. Drive traffic to your online store’s URL, not your fan page.
- Make contests super sharable – This means adding “share this contest” buttons if you have an entry form on a website, or simply encouraging social sharing in general. The more people who know about your contest, the merrier (for you anyway)!
- Offer bonus points for sharing – If you offer users bonus points for sharing news of your contest via social media, they’ll be much more likely to concede. Tools like Rafflecopter make it easy to offer users extra entries for different actions (e.g. Joining the mailing list = +5 entries. Sharing contest on Twitter = +2 entries).
- Private Sales –Everyone loves to be involved in exclusive deals and treated as special, so as well as normal sales, use private sales to offer products and services to only specific customer segments. Alert customers and prospects via Facebook advertising to your website, direct mail, letters, email or even phone calls and alert them to a special sale good only for current clients and new customers.
- Limited Availability Offers–It’s ingrained into our nature that we want what we can’t have to use limited availability to limit the number of products or services on offer. So for example, if you’re a consultant, advertise that you’re only able to take on five new clients. If you’re selling a premium product, make only a small number available as a special price in return for a sign up.
- Grand opening party—do this even if your launch is online.Create a buzz around your business by hosting a physical party, informing local dignitaries, PR companies, influential bloggers and potential customers.
- Ongoing giveaways – use this on your site to engage customers, generate content, and build up subscriber base. e.g. “Answer Today’s Q&A and you’ll be entered to win the Awesome Gift of the Month.”
- Welcome video – for your site on your home or about page works really well in getting new subscribers.
- Use Twitter – to tweet and get FREE stuff by running contests.
- Cross promote – align with other non competing brands that have similar customers to yours and reach new customers by offering and getting privileges from other brands for YOUR customers and theirs.
- Free Shipping – Offer free shipping or faster shipping for purchases made within a certain time or over a certain dollar amount.
- Club membership –create exclusive customer club with dedicated benefits (such as private newsletters, coupons, special events, extended hours) and offer free membership with any purchase over a set dollar amount.
- Add an ‘About’ page to your website – People want to know who they’re dealing with before hiring a new business so list your skills and experience and ask for sign ups.
Practical, cost effective OFFLINE (Human to Human) Lead Generation:
- Exhibit at trade shows – The best place to gather substantial numbers of new leads if done well, trade shows can work really well if your stand is visually appealing and has plenty of marketing collateral and facilities for visitors to linger, such as free coffee or soft drinks.
- Brown bag luncheons—provide short talks during lunch breaks at companies and schools and creatively and subtly promote your business with special offers that encourage sign ups rather than sales.
- Networking events –you can’t beat face-to-face contact impact and two-way dialogue. Go online and book yourself into as many networking events as you can and present for free.
- Telemarketing–can be used very effectively with other types of marketing, such as direct mail. It’s a great way to build relationships and gently lead prospects to purchase with small commitments. Telemarketing is also great for customer feedback and qualifying customers.
- Sales letters – should be sent out to qualified groups that you think might be able to use what you sell by describing your business in ways it helps solve your prospect’s pain point. Learn to drop a business card in every letter you send out then follow up periodically with postcard mailings.
- Partner with local businesses – Introduce yourself to as many local business as you can and work together to promote each other’s businesses.
- Referral Programs–Boost your online and offline sales by offering current customers a discount or free item for referring their friends.
- Guerrilla Marketing – emphasizes creativity over budget, using tactics that are often local, cheap and easy to implement, especially when localized. For example, broadcast your Twitter handle with sidewalk chalk, use an abandoned storefront as a canvas for street art, or plaster custom stickers on urban décor that makes those who stroll by look twice.
- Product comparison guide – in today’s complex markets, customers often get confused with the wide range of options for your product and service. Help prospects with a comparison guide either for your products and services or for those that relate to your audience’s business or life. Provide the guide in return for an sign up.
- Join your local Chamber of Commerce–as well as your industry associations, trade press and local business networking groups. They all offer valuable help, give you networking opportunities with other local business owners and prospects who will provide new leads.
Useful resources for further lead generation ideas:
Take Action Now!
- Select the email system you want to use and connect it to your ClickFunnels account.
- Design the landing page(s) you need to capture email addresses in ClickFunnels
- Select the top TEN online lead generation ideas that you believe will attract your target market to your offer.
- Select TWO of the offline human to human lead generation ideas and put them into action, ensuring you have business cards and forms (either paper or on your laptop) to capture email addresses.
- After a month, move onto the next 10 online lead generation ideas and the next 2 offline ideas. Keep doing this until you build a strong email list of customers.
Yes, but hang on a minute!
What about lead magnets, free offers and giveaways?
Where can I get those from?
Relax. It’s in the next lesson. Lesson 13 covers the best “lead magnet ideas” for your business.
All the best!
PS – If you’re stuck, email me directly at email@example.com and I’ll personally help you through your business issue. No call centres, helpdesks or customer services. Just me, wondering if I should play leapfrog with an unicorn.