FACT: Leads, sales and cash are the lifeblood of business.
Without leads, you can’t find new clients, you can’t expand your influence and you can’t increase your revenue.
This is why it’s critical to have a system that generates quality leads on a consistent basis.
At first you might have to put in significant legwork to get your lead generation machine working, but ideally your system will require little input from you – you don’t want to spend hours every week generating leads if you have other important business tasks to attend to!
In addition to getting leads every day, you need leads that are targeted – leads that are actually going to translate in to new clients and additional business for you instead of leads that don’t get you anywhere.
- Know your niche
In order to get targeted leads it’s critical for you to know your niche and to cater to them. If you have existing customers, examining their preferences, lifestyles and characteristics will help you learn valuable information about your potential customers.
If you’re starting from scratch, don’t fear – there are plenty of ways you can research your target audience to learn how to reach them.
Social media is one of the first places to start. Your target customers are online expressing their opinions, talking about their frustrations, giving details about their lives and supporting organisations and businesses that they like.
It might require a bit of “stalking”, but you can certainly learn a lot of information about your target customers by observing their habits online.
- Build a community
Building a community – online or in-person – is an excellent way to start building a lead generation machine.
Have you ever come across highly-targeted Facebook pages or groups? Something like “Single Dog Lovers” or “Hispanic Single Moms”?
Highly-targeted groups and pages exist for all kinds of niches, and although some of them might not have a huge following, they usually have an engaged following if the group or page is active.
These communities shouldn’t be focused on your company or product, and they shouldn’t be a place for you to spam followers with constant advertisements. Instead they should be a place where people can learn from others and contribute their own ideas and content.
Of course, you should post about your product or service from time to time – and encourage others to do the same! Communities are a perfect way to start generating leads.
- Start an email list
As you build your community, create an email list so that people can receive content from you directly.
Send out emails on a consistent schedule so that you can continually touch base with your subscribers. Like your community, your emails shouldn’t read like advertisements.
Instead, use them as a chance to share useful information with your readers. Your emails can also be used to cross-promote your social media pages and your website.
Naturally, people will unsubscribe from your list, so in order to grow you need to keep new email addresses coming in.
There are hundreds of ways to grow your email list, but some basics include hosting giveaways, using paid marketing methods, writing a blog, having a video series or doing a webinar. As your email list grows your content and brand will reach plenty of new eyes.
- Set up a marketing funnel
If you’ve used a funnel you’ve noticed how the opening of the funnel is wide at the top and narrows toward the bottom.
Anything that goes into the funnel is pushed toward the narrow opening and eventually ends up in the container below.
A marketing funnel is similar – you can use a series of steps to drive your prospects toward a desired action. As a business, that desired action is probably a purchase of some kind.
Funnels come in many shapes in sizes.
For example, your marketing funnel could be a series of emails that go out during a specific period of time and promote a particular product or event. Your funnel could also be a webinar, a workshop or some other valuable offering that people can’t refuse. Create urgency in your funnel by putting a time limit on whatever you’re offering – that will help persuade people to act quickly!
Again, it’ll be less work for you if your funnel is passive – meaning you create it, put it out there and the rest of the work is done for you.
Passive funnels can be incredibly powerful because they allow you to take a step back and free up your time to focus on other high-level tasks within your business.
It requires some work upfront to get a passive funnel going, but once it’s churning along you shouldn’t have to pay much attention to it unless it needs to be altered in any way.
- Create an evergreen lead magnet
Evergreen lead magnets are passive methods of advertising that remain relevant and useful for long periods of time.
They can include blogs, video series, eBooks or recorded webinars. These lead magnets are worth having because they can function on their own and are always relevant. It may take a bit of legwork to update the content on your blog or video series so that it’s always useful to new readers, but it’s worth the investment.
- Use chatbots to keep in touch on social media
On some social media platforms like Facebook you can send out automated messages to keep in touch with your followers. Use these to your advantage – automated messages are great for touching base with people when you don’t have the time or resources to write hundreds of personalised messages.
- Use reviews to your advantage
Reviews are another powerful tool for bringing in customers.
A large number of positive (and even neutral or negative) reviews shows people that you are doing business and making things happen for your customers – even if everyone isn’t 100 percent happy with your work. Display reviews prominently on your social media pages and your website.
People trust the opinions of fellow purchasers, and your reviews can go a long way toward generating more leads for your business.
- Consider paid advertising
In this day and age it’s pretty simple to create highly targeted ad campaigns. For instance, on websites like Facebook you can design incredibly detailed ad campaigns that target very specific demographics. Google also has similar advertising capabilities.
If you’re willing to spend a bit of money, you can experiment with paid ads to see if they work well for your business. Again, there are hundreds of routes you can take with this approach – do a bit of research to see what appeals to you and your business.
- Generate buzz
It’s easier said than done, but some businesses are able to rocket toward popularity by creating viral content, participating in or hosting special events or by having a product that is completely different from anything else on the market.
If you can take advantage of any of these positions you may have a stream of leads from the get-go – but you’ll want to be sure to capture them through email marketing, social media or some other tried-and-true method.
- Keep touching base with your silent subscribers
The work isn’t over once you have a steady flow of leads. Now, you need to keep those leads engaged.
Remember that some people might sit silent in your group or your email list for months, or even years, so don’t write someone off if they don’t respond to your first attempt at interacting with them.
Instead, keep reaching out to these people and try using creative, non-salesy methods to get responses from them – polls, fun social media posts and freebies are a good place to start.
You might even consider making a special reactivation or retention funnel to engage with these particular customers.
- The final step: convert your leads to customers
Once you have leads coming in, it may take some time and experimentation to convert your leads to customers. You may need to try different approaches, different forms of communication or different offerings to get your leads to convert.
If you aren’t making sales after some considerable effort, it’s possible that your funnel needs to be tweaked or that you need to narrow or broaden your niche – it’s okay if it isn’t perfect from the get go!
Entrepreneurs are constantly learning and trying new things; that’s the nature of the game, so don’t get discouraged if you aren’t seeing results immediately. But do keep up the hard work and consistent efforts!
P.S. Here are 4 ways we can help you accelerate your lead generation results on social media and beyond:
- Grab our free 4-Week LinkedIn Profile Optimisation Course
It’s the road map to positioning your profile in the top 5% of the 550 million LinkedIn users currently active – Click Here
- Join our LinkedIn Group and connect with entrepreneurs who are scaling too
It’s our Facebook community where smart entrepreneurs learn to get more leads and smart ways to scale using LinkedIn — Click Here
- Join our LinkedIn Influencer Program so you can “Show out” instead of just showing up
Every 8 weeks we have a new intake into our 12 – week Influencer program… Click Here for more details
- Work with our team privately
If you’d like to work directly with us to create new marketing opportunities send us a quick message Click here … tell us a little about your business and we’ll organise a time for a deeper chat