The first step to any sale is lead generation: getting potential customers interested in the product and gaining their contact information so the leads can then be successfully managed. Effective lead generation saves time and effort as it brings in increasingly large pools of quality prospective leads on which you can focus your attention.
Traditional Mediums: Mail and Telephone Marketing
Traditionally, lead generation companies would create huge lists of people which they would then sell to companies and agents for their marketing campaigns. Two ways in which these campaigns would be practiced in through mail and telemarketing.
Using traditional paper brochures is still an important part of marketing. It arrives in the target’s mailbox for easy accessibility. However, it depends on that prospective lead to take the next step, which is personally calling or writing you. The disconnect between the two actions – receiving the brochure and then acting upon what they read – loses potential prospects.
Telemarketing is even more problematic in the days of no-call lists. While it does allow the potential customer to immediately express their interest, cold calls turn off huge numbers of people, regardless what you’re selling.
Various types of digital marketing are becoming increasingly important parts of lead generation. This includes email, social media, and websites. All of these sources can provide immediate connection should the customer be interested in reaching out to the company. They can also easily provide additional information through links that the prospect can use to further educate himself about the product.
Moreover, these methods are paper-free and far more cost-efficient. An ignored email simply goes into a trash folder, while every ignored brochure is a wasted printing job. This is good for your bottom line and good for the environment.
Generating Better Digital Leads
On the Internet, there is more of everything, so effectively using it takes finesse. One of the primary things to understand is Search Engine Optimization, or SEO. This involves understanding what words potential leads are likely going to search for, then correctly using them in materials so they place higher on returns in search engines like Google.
In short, you can’t simply put your information out there like a billboard, because there’s too many billboards. You need to make sure the right people are seeing the right materials before that of other companies. You also need to give an immediate reason why you have something more to offer than competitors.
While a benefit of online marketing is the amount of information you can provide, you also don’t want to the reader with information, particularly information that may not be applicable to them personally. This requires the correct structuring of content so the most basic information is available to all, and then intuitive, clearly labeled navigation directs the reader to additional pertinent information.
In short, it’s very easy today to get out information. The question is: which information do you put out there, and how do you steer it toward likely leads? And while online marketing does save money on printing costs, it should never be thought that it is less complex than a traditional marketing campaign.
Both traditional and digital forms of marketing have their uses, and using them together can be particularly useful, such as having mailed flyers direct a person to a website for more information. A solid marketing plan is the best way to generating quality leads, no matter how you end up doing it.