Let me paint a picture for you. Your boss says, "We need more leads and because you're the Marketing Manager it's your job to supply those leads." Don't panic, you're a marketing Yoda and know just how to drive those new leads, right? Well...
If you could use a little help creating that cascading waterfall of leads that will make your boss slap you with a big fat raise, here are six ways to succeed. These tips don't deal with cold-calling, they won't have you buying email lists that put you on spam watch lists, and they won't have you throwing marketing dollars into the blackhole of broadcast advertising. This strategy calls for implementing the inbound marketing methodology and it will help you bring qualified people actively searching for your services.
The only problem you'll have after you put the wheels in motion is what to do with all the leads!
1. Create a Business Blog
A blog, wait what? A blog isn't just a web page that people use to pour out their hearts or talk about their hobbies. A blog can be set up on your company website and used to solve your customers' problems. Don't use it to constantly talk about your business, use it to help people. Your product or service solves a problem. Create content that addresses a problem and it will draw people to your company. It will position you as an industry leader and drive qualified leads to your website.
2. Be Dynamic, Be Remarkable
The blogging secret is starting to get out. More and more businesses are creating unique content for their sites. Most of it is about as exciting as a spoon to the eye. Many businesses just talk about themselves. That strategy only attracts about 1-2% of people. The people who are at the bottom of the funnel. These businesses are missing out on attracting the vast majority of people. Create "How to" posts, informative videos, creative photos of your team, or anything that shows you are human and separates you from the competition.
3. You Have the Traffic, Now CONVERT
After consistently blogging and creating remarkable content for about 3-5 months you'll start to see nice increases in your website's organic traffic. Everyone knows that more traffic equals more leads and sales, but the real secret sauce is increasing that conversion rate. Turn more of that traffic into real sales.
Let's say your average marketing campaigns bring a conversion of 3-5%. What if I were to say that an average conversion rate of a successful inbound marketing campaign brings in conversion rates of 25-35%. Not only is your site traffic up, but a higher percentage of it is converting. I know what you're thinking...how?!
4. Call To Actions and Give to Get
Now you have all this traffic, how do you get it to covert like a rockstar? With these magical tools called Calls To Action. At the end of every blog post and the bottom of every site page should be a Call To Action. We want these visitors to convert, so let's just ask them. That action is to fill out a form. You want to collect their information so you can put them into an email list, move them further down the sales funnel, and contact them when the time is right. However, asking them to fill out a form and give you their personal information isn't going to work; you have to give them something.
Have you ever heard the phrase, "You always get back what you put in?" It holds true for marketing as well, it's called the Rule of Reciprocity. That's why we at Impulse Creative like to develop tools such as informative eBooks, case studies, and webinars to give away as part of our CTAs. The more valuable the free gift, the more fields in your contact form you can ask for.
5. Pay-Per-Click Advertising
This lead generation tool is a little different than the content creation model, but is still considered part of an Inbound Marketing strategy. Pay-Per-Click or PPC, is advertising done on search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo. You'll create ads that target keywords that your prospects, or Buyer Personas, will likely be searching for. When Customer Carrie types in, "Shoe store in Naples, Florida," your business will show up in the ads at the top of the search results or on the right had side. It all depends on the bid amount for each keyword. The PPC strategy is more of an instant gratification model and doesn't have long term results like content creation. Once the bid budget is turned off, the traffic it generates is too.
6. Be Human, Be Social
Social Media is everywhere and it can be a powerful marketing tool if done right. How would you like a community of thousands following your brand, actively talking to you, and sharing your content with their friends and family? Sounds like slam-dunk, right? This medium, maybe more than any other, is where content becomes so important. People aren't on social media to buy things and be interrupted by businesses, they want to have fun, engage with friends, and talk about their interests. That's what you as a company have to do as well.
Show your social audiences your human side. Show them behind the scenes photos, answer their questions, entertain them with creative blog posts, and prove to them that you care. Social media is the perfect place to build trust. If you have that trust then you'll have a brand advocate willing to buy and tell others about you.
These six tips will put you on the right path towards filling up your sales system with qualified leads. If done right, you'll have such a great amount of leads, that the hardest part will be following up with them all. This will not only send your boss into a state of joyful bliss, but will make you the MVP of your company.