Does Lead Generation Make Sense For Your Business?

When you make the business decision to jump into lead generation understand the risks as well as the rewards.  Any professional service or small business that relies on transactional customer engagement can improve their bottom line by adding lead gen into their marketing mix.

lead generationLead generation can even out the slow times by providing additional business opportunities. Acquiring leads also provides an entrance into a new market without committing all of your marketing dollars. Let others build the platforms and create the marketing, you just pay for the qualified leads.  Lead generation can also get you into a market niche quickly.

Before you pull the trigger and fast track lead generation consider this; many 3rd party lead generation providers will sell you on the benefits of their leads and their lead quality, but your business must be prepared to handle the volume increase of leads with a solid lead intake process. The real truth is that an investment in thousands of dollars for a large volume of leads, will not guarantee a positive return on your investment if you lack a clearly defined lead intake process. Without a solid lead process and highly trained staff to handle these leads, you could be wasting valuable marketing dollars.

How To Succeed With Lead Generation – Four Essential Tips For Effective Lead Gen

1. Be Crystal Clear About Your Value Proposition
Clarity about what your are offering needs to be omni-present and in your “Call To Action”.  Be as specific as possible.  If you’re promoting a give away product like a free guide, say “Download our FREE guide to x”. If you are offering a free webinar, say “Register for our FREE webinar on x”.  The X product or service must clearly convey the compelling benefit of receiving the offer for your intended audience. Successfully answering the “WIIFM” value question is much more effective than “Download Stuff” or “Get a Free Article About Something That’s Truly Boring”.

2. Be Data Driven

Use measurable tracked data as a resource to drive your results. Establish key performance indicators (KPIs) for measurement. Understand your unique audience for lead generation. Many potential clients or  customers that come through a lead channel will want to keep the interaction online, so tracking phone calls may not the the best metric to measure. Some of the KPIs to watch might include:

  • the click-through-rates of your PPC campaigns,
  • your website bounce rate,
  • the number of lead inquiries (chats, emails or form submissions),
  • lead response times,
  • appointments generated,
  • appointments kept,
  • sales, sign-ups, or new clients.

3. Focus On ROI

Manage to the KPIs, but focus on your return on investment. When you take this approach to lead generation, it’s easy to identify where the ball is being dropped. Make sure that anyone who handles inbound leads is properly trained, and then hold them accountable. Once you have established what your targeted KPIs should be, then look for the deviation from the norm. If you are having problems with lead volumes, you might have a problem with your PPC marketing or website. If you are having problems with low appointments, you might have a staff issue. Often it’s something as simple as responding to the customer / client in a timely manner. An auto-generated email may not be the personalized response the person is generally looking to receive. When ROI is the core definition of success, it assures that your lead generation marketing campaigns are truly producing leads.

4. Be Consistent But Be Adaptable

If you’re not having great success with your lead generation efforts, try another approach and see if things improve. If not, it may be time for a personnel change or time to invest in some professional assistance or training. The most successful marketers in lead generation are also nimble and open to change. Test often to identify new opportunities that might be right in front of you to keep ahead of the competition.

How Do You Get The Best Results With Lead Gen?

The interaction between your audience and your business is a reflection of your organization and overall operations.  Make sure that the lead interaction is handled professionally. If you have a defined lead process it will produce a consistent experience for your audience and deliver solid results. Managing to the metrics with established KPIs’ sharpens the focus on you ROI. Be adaptable to changing marketing conditions always looking for new opportunities for your products or solutions. When all of your leads are being processed in identical fashion, your chance for success and improved ROI increases dramatically.