Want to know what is lead generation and how marketers generate leads for their clients pr businesses? You are at right place. In today’s competitive business environment, the secret to success lies in capturing the attention of potential clients or customers and make them covert to profitable partners. This conversion can be made possible only when there are quality leads. So, ultimately, it is the power of lead generation that sets the ground for other efforts.
Whether you are a startup or a multi-national conglomerate, lead generation is always an essential component of the sales process. There are several ways of lead generation that are primarily centered around sales and marketing. When done correctly, lead generation can do wonders to your business.
What is lead generation?
Put simply, lead generation refers to a process that helps brands and businesses in capturing the attention of potential buyers and gaining their interest in the offered products or services. The primary objectives of lead generation are:
- Gather relevant information about potential clients/customers
- Qualify them as sales leads
- Nurture them smartly to make them become profitable customers
DO YOU KNOW ONLY 5-10% OF QUALIFIED LEADS GET CONVERTED INTO SALES? - Adobe
What does a lead mean?
Popularly known as a prospect, a lead refers to a person who has show interest in your business’s offerings but he is not yet a customer or buyer. There are two commercial categories into which leads can be categorized – business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C). B2B sales leads are for business-to-business transactions, whilst B2C sales leads are for individual transactions. Lead generation for businesses and consumers has different demands, difficulties, and possibilities for each.
The lead generation process
Below is a description of lead generation process.
- First and foremost, a customer gets to know about a business via one of its marketing platforms, such your website, blog, or social media.
- A call-to-action (CTA) is a picture, button, or message that prompts website visitors to take some form of action. This visitor then clicks on your CTA.
- That CTA directs the user to a landing page, a website created to collect contact information from leads in return for an offer.
- Your visitor submits a form on the landing page in return for the offer. Voila! You now have a lead. That is, if you adhere to standard practises for lead capture.
Why is lead generation so important?
There are several things emphasize the importance of lead generation for businesses. Getting lead generation properly is crucial to reaching your company’s sales and marketing objectives as it may provide several benefits to companies of all sizes.
Here are the top five benefits of an effective lead generating strategy:
- Better Sales
It is always beneficial for businesses to identify potential clients that can show genuine interest in the offered products or services. This is because this increases the likelihood of getting them converted into profitable clients which means more sales and revenue for the business. It can also be determined that:
Powerful lead generation = better audience targeting and improved audience targeting is equal to improved sales.
- Improved ROI
Making the most of your marketing and sales budget by concentrating on the most trustworthy or profitable leads will result in a high return on investment (ROI) thanks to an efficient lead generation approach.
A well-planned sales strategy also makes it simple to assess your progress and identify what is working and what needs to be changed. After all, ensuring that your ROI is at its highest requires careful monitoring and optimisation.
One for your CFO is this: In comparison to other marketing strategies like advertising, lead generation is the most economical technique to attract new clients when done correctly.
You may concentrate more of your efforts on converting those leads (rather than persuading them) if you target people who you know are likely to be interested in and perceive value in your product or service.
- Better brand awareness
A effective lead generation strategy’s ability to raise brand recognition and position companies as market leaders is another benefit. If you or your team are effectively reaching out to the correct kinds of businesses with the appropriate kind of outreach, you will be developing credibility and trust for your brand.
With the skill of consultative selling, you may offer insightful information and suggestions to establish a connection that soon becomes crucial to your prospect and any companies they refer you to.
- Smarter customer insights
One powerful method you and the rest of your sales team may learn important information about the requirements, preferences, difficulties, and behaviours of your clients is through lead creation.
Having this knowledge can help you design better sales strategies, marketing campaigns, products, and customer services. It’s all positive outcomes.
Types of Lead Generation
There are primarily two types of lead generation – inbound and outbound.
- Inbound Lead Generation
This type of lead generation entails producing informative content and employing various marketing strategies to draw prospective clients to your company. This covers items like articles for blogs, social media marketing, SEO services, and free materials like e-books, webinars, and whitepapers.
- Outbound Lead Generation
Nevertheless, outbound lead generation entails actively contacting potential clients in order to produce leads. Methods including cold phoning, email marketing, direct mail campaigns, and advertising are available for this.
Both lead generation strategies aim to connect with prospects by identifying their wants and pain areas and portraying your service or product as the answer to their issues.
While both inbound and outbound lead generation tactics have a chance to be successful, it’s crucial to pick the one that will work best for your target market, product or service, and overall sales objectives. For instance, you might want to put more of an emphasis on inbound lead creation if you’re selling a complicated product that calls for extensive education and awareness-raising. Outbound strategies like as cold calling and cold emailing may be more effective if your solution answers a simpler need.
The importance of sales & marketing in lead generation
There is tremendous importance of sales & marketing in lead generation as it tends to benefit the process in numerous ways defined below.
- It helps in better understanding of target audience
Together, your sales and marketing teams can create a thorough grasp of your target market’s needs, preferences, pain spots, and purchasing habits. As a result of the level of personalisation involved, this will aid in developing a method for lead creation that is more successful. In the long run, this makes firms stand out.
- A smarter sales funnel
You’ll get to see a far more distinct and effective sales funnel when using this magic marketing and sales mix. And it’s something that will help not just your sales staff, especially for those getting onboarded, but also your potential clients as you guide them from first awareness through a final conversion.
- Seamless messaging across channels
Your company can ensure that its messaging is consistent across all channels and touchpoints, which helps to develop trust and credibility with potential consumers, by coordinating your marketing and sales activities.
- Qualitative leads
To ensure that you get the best quality leads, you may work as a team to define and classify leads. After all, the leads you want are the ones most likely to turn into paying – and ideally, long-lasting and loyal – clients, aren’t they? The total ROI of your lead generating activities will increase as a result.
- Better ROI
Together, the two divisions can develop an outgoing and inbound lead generating strategy that is more unified and efficient. In the end, this may result in more sales and business expansion, which is good news that everyone in your organisation enjoys hearing.
Now, let’s delve deeper into the world of qualified leads.
What do you mean by a “qualified” lead?
A quality lead can be defined as a potential customer who has disclose a relevant need for your products and/or services. He should be backed by a strong urge to purchase them, and has the financial resources to do so. Not every lead is made equally. According to their level of interest in your goods and services or where they are in the customer lifecycle, leads must be qualified:
Types of Qualified Leads
- Marketing qualified lead (MQL)
MQL is a reasonably simple in its idea. It is a potential client who has been examined by your marketing team and met the necessary requirements to be forwarded to the sales division.
A business may choose from a wide range of criteria to qualify leads. You should base the particular choices you make on elements like the market you serve, the price of your goods, and your intended audience.
The one factor, nevertheless, that each company should consider when vetting leads is whether the potential customer has voluntarily engaged in significant interaction with the brand, signalling their interest.
- Product-qualified Lead (PQL)
A lead that has seen the value of the product through a free trial or a freemium model is known as a product qualified lead (PQL).
But that doesn’t mean you can label a customer as a product-qualified lead just because they joined up for a free trial or a freemium model. Before classifying a product as a PQL, the user must explore various product aspects and finish a number of tasks.
Another fallacy regarding product qualified leads is that if you choose a product-led growth model, marketing is not necessary. Because customers only realise the value of a product after choosing a free trial or freemium model, marketing is essential to the product-led growth strategy.
- Sales-qualified Lead (SQL)
A sales-qualified lead (SQL) is defined as a lead which carries a high chance of getting converted in a client. An SQL has demonstrated a desire to purchase and has fulfilled specific criteria that provide a suitable fit for a good or service. Depending on the size of your business and its product offerings, the lead qualification requirements may change, but generally speaking, a sales qualified lead is known to have a genuine need for your brand’s product or service, express true interest in your business and its offerings, and most importantly has the resources to buy the product or service.
- Service-Qualified Lead (SQL)
A service-qualified lead refers to when a person or organization that communicates to your customer service or sales staff shows interest in purchasing your product and/or service. Because people approach you and make an offer to buy your products or services, it is considered the most qualified type of lead. An existing client wishing to upgrade to a more premium version of your product or service can also be considered a service-qualified lead.
A lead needs to be validated after it is produced. Typically, a lead is qualified by the information relevant to it. A website visitor who looks forward to getting updates on your goods and services furnishes his contact information, can be a qualified lead. Concentrating on quality leads tends to boost your return on investment and increase overall sales conversion rate.
Ways To Qualify A Lead
When it comes to qualifying a lead, you can refer to the following steps:
- Determine the interest level of the lead – First and foremost, you need to check the information that is made available by the person while submitting the enquiry form. Since a lead is primarily about the information that is furnished, it necessary to verify the same. Also, it should be kept in mind that this information may differ from company to company or the associated product or service.
- Lead score – Lead scoring is a way of allotting a rank to the lead and setting its priority given its importance. This further helps the sales & marketing team to concentrate on the same. A lead with higher rank tends to get more importance from the sales team. Lead scoring includes putting numbers on leads in order to categorise them on a range from “interested” to “ready to buy” depending on a number of characteristics. The traits and weights will differ from business to business, but they must be consistent across the organization’s sales and marketing teams.
Are sales lead generation and sales prospecting different?
Sales lead generation and prospecting are not same. Though both of them refer to potential customers, they really refer to different stages in the journey of a buyer. Let’s get to known both of them in detail.
What is sales prospecting?
Sales prospecting refers to act of determining and contacting potential customers or clients, commonly known as prospects. A prospect can be either an individual or a business who has shown interest in your products or services.
Sales prospecting largely comes under the purview of sales and most likely taken care by the sales team. In some cases, account managers or account executives may also involve in this process.
In a typical scenario, sales executives find, contact, and qualify prospects with a purpose of scheduling personal meetings with their account executives, who then look after the next level and guide prospects through the below given sales funnel until the closing of the deal.
What is sales lead generation?
In the process of lead generation, marketing team gets involved by building brand awareness, incite interest in the market about a product or service, and eventually fetch relevant information to get prospects.
The main objective of sales lead generation strategies is to build a steady stream of leads with a high likelihood of becoming customers after being qualified and nurtured by the sales team.
Marketing qualified leads (MQL) are inbound leads that have interacted with you in some manner, demonstrating interest in your business and product.
Proven Lead Generation Strategies For Effective Lead Generation
Irrespective of the industry your business lies in, you can refer to the following steps to get the most out of your lead generation efforts.
1. Search Engine Optimization Services
This is a wonderful strategy that can optimize your online lead generation efforts. SEO is important whether you’re talking about a landing page, a blog post, instructional videos, etc. The amount of organic traffic you may anticipate will be heavily influenced by your position in Google’s search engine algorithm.
The top three results on a search result page (SERP) will receive the lion’s share of traffic, setting aside paid ad content for a second. Following this, traffic numbers dramatically decrease. This graph displays click-through rates for branded and non-branded keywords dependent on SERP position.
The greatest clickthrough rates for position one are above 30%. Position three onwards has a decline below 10%. You can notice that anything after the first page of results receives virtually no returns. Though not all search phrases are created equal.
Four or more words are used in long-tail search keywords. if you prefer higher-quality traffic than traffic with a bigger volume. Choosing these sorts of phrases as your objective may be more fruitful. Customers that look for lengthier terms are frequently further along in the purchasing process.
Pre-qualifying leads is accomplished by targeting these terms. Due to their greater interaction, these leads will be simpler to convert from your landing pages. This indicates that compared to general traffic with a bigger volume, this kind will provide higher conversion rates.
Must check our SEO packages to generate leads organically for your business.
2. Lead Magnets
A tried-and-true method of getting qualified lead is to use a lead magnet. A free-to-download item like an eBook, market research study, or anything like is known as a lead magnet. However, in order to download, a client must register an email address.
The whitepaper would be a lead magnet in the lead generating scenario we discussed before. The benefit of these free resources is that you can be certain that any email addresses gathered are those of users who are interested in the subject.
Pre-qualifying in this way is quite effective in persuading people to buy a related item or service. Your sales team will receive very useful pre-qualified traffic if you address frequent problems in the content for which your product offers a solution.
3. Targeted Advertising
Advertising efforts are not an exact science, and not all of them will be successful. Advertising that targets particular audiences may boost interaction and drive more targeted visitors your way. For instance, if you’re promoting an office space in London, you’ll need to use keywords like “office space London” or focus on local audiences that live nearby.
Better lead targeting may enhance lead generating success rates by up to 50%, according to a study by FinancesOnline.
4. Software Support
Once a plan has been established, a large portion of the lead creation process can be automated. The return on your investment might be significantly larger if you use the proper software. All of the top marketing automation brands, including Leadfeeder, Hubspot, and Salesforce, provide lead generating features.
These programs passively gather information about site users. Long signup forms may no longer be required as a result of this. In order to develop customer profiles for lead generation and ad targeting, you may then combine this with your CRM system.
You may gain considerably deeper insights into client behaviour by integrating this type of data into your records management. You may improve this process as you go by taking into consideration client satisfaction scores and comments. Remember you adhere to established practises while gathering client feedback for the greatest outcomes.
Best Sales Lead Generation Practices
If you want to master the art of lead generation, you must need to look at the following best practices for sales lead generation. By using them smartly, you can invite more leads to your sales funnel and transform them into valuable clients or customers.
1. Keep in mind the end goal
Explain in detail what a lead represents to your company. Do you classify as a lead everybody who registers for your offer, fills out your contact form, or even someone who wants a callback.
Whatever your objective, it’s critical that you specify it right away. Even if it’s simple, it must be done before continuing. It serves as the foundation for the metrics you’ll use to gauge how well your lead generation strategy is working.
2. Clearly define your target audience
According to recent surveys, 48% of consumers are more willing to explore solutions that are tailored to solve their particular company problems.
You can truly understand your target client by developing the appropriate consumer personas for their purchasing cycles.
If you select the wrong buyer personas, your conversion rate will suffer since you’ll be targeting consumers who, despite how fantastic your product is, don’t actually need it.
3. Create interactive content
Users tend to get engaged by interactive stuff while also receiving genuine value from it. You receive their contact details in exchange. Customers are often happy to divulge pertinent information if they receive some benefit in return.
As a result, you can utilize this data to develop a thorough consumer profile and segment your audience appropriately.
4. Rely on competitive analysis and SEO
Due to its cheap client acquisition cost, search engine optimisation (SEO) is one of the online lead generating tactics with the best return on investment (ROI).
By doing keyword research, you may create tailored leads that will increase the lead-to-sale ratio. Start by looking up broad subject concepts in SEMrush or Ahrefs that are pertinent to your company. They provide you with long-tail keywords, which are more targeted and enable you to more accurately target your ideal client.
5. Try paid media campaigns
This is one of the finest lead generating tactics in digital marketing, unlike SEO, to advertise your content and increase visibility right away. Examples of paid media include Facebook advertising, Google ads, and sponsored updates on LinkedIn.
Facebook lead advertisements are the finest aspect of Facebook advertising. Instead of forcing visitors to leave the platform or complete long forms on other websites, they enable businesses to collect leads immediately within the advertisement.
Its technical side is what makes a lead generation campaign on various platforms successful. You will lose money if you make a small error, such as inputting the incorrect link, and you won’t get your money’s worth.
6. Social media marketing
You will most likely need to launch social media ad campaigns if you want to collect lead data on social media.
However, organic social media continues to be a useful complement to your lead generating plan. Thus it may facilitate communication with your intended audience.
Here are some best practises for social media:
- Make a profile or profiles on the social media sites frequented by your target market.
- Post engaging material on social media to reach your target consumers.
- Prioritise original content, but don’t be scared to provide links to your website (or other places).
- Engage prospective clients by striking up discussions and responding to their inquiries.
- Observe engagement analytics to determine the most successful postings, and make adjustments as necessary.
Showing advertisements to those who have visited your website but not converted is known as remarketing, or retargeting. Reengaging these prospects and converting them to leads is the goal.
Because website visitors have previously shown an interest in your business, this might be a useful lead generating approach. They could only require a little more time—or persuasion—to provide their information.
Or maybe they were never really on the same page to begin with.Make strategic decisions while creating your remarketing ads to save expenses and increase conversions. You might target potential customers who have visited important landing pages on your website.
8. A/B Testing
A data-driven technique for comparing two versions of a webpage or other marketing material is called A/B testing, sometimes known as split testing.
The working of a typical landing page is given below:
- Prepare two copies of your content: the variation and the control.
- Show the variation to half of your audience and the control to the other half.
- To determine which version works better, compare crucial metrics.
- To increase conversions, use split testing in conjunction with other lead generating strategies.
You may contrast the headlines on landing pages, for instance. Find the most effective ad kinds. Additionally, try several quotations in your case studies.
What is lead nurturing?
After getting a long grasp on lead generation, it’s time to take further step by understanding lead nurturing. Lead generation is about building relationships with your prospects in order to secure their business when they’re ready. Because it gives you the chance to add value to your leads and customers and support their growth alongside your business, lead nurturing is essential to inbound marketing.
How can I connect with my prospects and convert them into customers in the most beneficial way? is a question you could be asking yourself as an inbound marketing specialist. The solution is lead nurturing.
Things To Consider While Choosing A Lead Generation Company
If you are looking to hire a lead generation company to hire professional lead generation services, there are several things you need to consider. A reputed lead generation company fully comprehends the market and can assesses the actual difficulty a business is having producing excellent leads. They comprehend the wants of your clients and look for novel approaches to introduce your company to fresh markets.
A seasoned lead generating company’s job is to make sure your company receives a steady stream of high-quality leads. They often go via a process that begins with problem-solving, lead segmentation, and content targeting. Although there are many lead generating ideas on the market, pros will employ strategies that are best for your company.
Let’s look at the factors that must be kept in mind while hiring a digital marketing company.
Modern technology and their use are essential for a competent lead generating company. Today’s marketing demands using technology and looking at all of its facets. This makes it a necessary trait in your vendor. The business has to be knowledgeable about technological elements like marketing automation, analytics tools, and CRM systems.
A thorough grasp of technology ensures the development of high-quality leads and aids your colleague in quickly putting your company in the driver’s seat.
The experience of the lead generating firm in your niche should be the first and most important factor you take into account when choosing one for your organisation. There are probably thousands of suppliers out there boasting loudly about their lead generating prowess, but you should opt for the one with solid expertise in your particular market.
Your partner must comprehend the nature of your firm and the dynamics of this industry. For instance, there are significant differences between how the software and fashion industries run and their respective consumer bases. As a result, the strategy for lead creation will differ for the two industries.
Analytics are crucial in determining how successful a lead generating strategy was. It is crucial to upgrading the strategy and a relatively new possibility for firms to explore uncharted territories.
Modern marketing is becoming more complicated, thus it requires someone with analytical abilities to read between the lines and understand which strategies are actually yielding good outcomes. You should seek for lead generating businesses with a solid crew that have analytical abilities.
Your firm will benefit from working with a lead generating company that has good communication abilities. It makes sure that information between your business and your consumers seems to flow easily. By bridging the communication gap through effective and efficient content generation, the vendor gains new clients.
By incorporating content marketing into their lead generation approach, the vendor is able to produce original blog posts, e-books, and other types of material. Your lead generation company’s amazing communication abilities will do wonders for your business while creating awareness about it.
The main reason why the majority of you outsource the lead generating process is to put the assignment in the hands of professionals. The lead generation experts will be aware of the best strategy to employ for your company to get the required results.
These professionals become one of your most valuable assets by using their expertise to improve your company’s chances. Despite the dangers, they bravely explore uncharted territory and end up with some incredible outcomes that would be difficult to attain otherwise.
Lead Generation Cost
The pricing is the next factor to take into account when choosing a lead generating firm for your organisation. A provider that is within your budget should be chosen. Hiring a lead generating company that is outside of your price range might jeopardise your present business operations.
Although you want to make money, it is never a good idea to spend more than you have budgeted for; you don’t want to do this at the expense of your main company activities.
Pay attention to the price the firm charges you, and if they actually meet your needs, talk to them about your budget; they will make concessions to get your business.
Know how much does digital marketing cost.
You must determine whether the agency uses a transparent strategy. They must be truthful and open about all of their procedures. They won’t try to surprise you in any way. When it comes to your lead generating strategy and your business objectives, you and your partner should be on the same page.
Your hired lead generation agency should keep you informed if any of your scheduled plans fail rather than keeping you in the dark. The key to a lasting partnership is maintaining honesty.
The secret to a successful business model primarily depends on the quantity and quality of the leads you get. However, when it comes to mastering the art of lead generation, both skills and experience are required. You can refer to various lead generation tactics given above that can help you get most out of your efforts and investment. If you would like to add a new item in the list, do share in the comments below.
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