When you operate your own small or medium-sized business, it can be hard to find the time and resources to gather new sales leads. These leads are often the lifeblood of a business; few companies survive without continuously bringing in new customers. Lucky for you, it’s easier and more efficient than ever before to generate new leads, as long as you know how to do it. Use the following strategies to gather leads and keep your small-to-medium-sized business booming.
Content marketing is becoming a must, even for small and medium businesses. It doesn’t have to be complicated; you can do a few small content tasks and get a big payoff. Here are a few simple content strategies you can execute to bring in more sales leads:
- Blog: Establish yourself as an expert in your industry with a thought leadership blog. Post regularly about topics that are relevant to your customers. They’ll read and want to learn more about you and your products and services. Consider guest blogging on other related sites to build brand equity and recognition.
- Ebooks, White Papers, Case Studies: Put your best stuff behind a content wall. We’re not suggesting you make potential customers pay for your content with cash—you’re not the New York Times or the Wall Street Journal. Your readers will pay with their information. Generate leads by placing forms in front of your top content, so readers have to enter a few pieces of information, like their name and email address, to access it. Once you have that, you can put them into a lead-nurturing program or send them straight to your salespeople.
If you haven’t optimized your website for lead gen, you’re already losing half the battle. Try a few of these simple tips to bring in more leads on your site:
- Exit Intent Popups: Offer visitors an opt-in newsletter or other email subscription when they’re about to leave your website. This is a strong cue to give information for customers who are sincerely interested in your business.
- Calls to Action: No lead gen optimized website is complete without several calls to action. Invite and entice your visitors to take action and learn more about your product or service. The more convincing your language is, the more likely you are to increase your sales leads.
- Social Proof: Nothing convinces customers to buy a product or service like seeing their peers satisfied with it. A recent Nielsen survey found that 84% of consumers trust recommendations from family and friends. With those numbers, any quality social proof featured on your site is sure to generate more leads.
If you’re reluctant to create profiles and post on social media platforms, you may be missing out on tons of leads. Many platforms, like Facebook, can collect leads for you on their own often inexpensive ads. This data can be extracted into a spreadsheet or any other format that suits you. This cuts out a lot of the hassle for you and your salespeople. Posting and advertising on a variety of social media platforms is also a great way to drive more traffic to your website, where you’ve hopefully optimized pages for lead generation as we discussed above. If you have limited time and can’t maintain many profiles, think about your customers and where they spend most of their social media time. Focus your efforts where it will pay off the most, and you’ll see leads start coming in from several avenues.
Sometimes, nothing works like the good, old-fashioned tried-and-true methods. Like we said before, recommendations are powerful in convincing new customers to buy your product or service. What better way to find new leads than by hitting up current satisfied customers? If they are truly happy with what your business is doing for them, they’ll enthusiastically give you at least a few names of other potential clients. Be warned, though. If your customer isn’t actually satisfied with your company, this plan could backfire. Double-check with your customer relations expert(s) to make sure you’re talking to a happy customer.