Having a consistent stream of leads coming in is as important to a company as its revenue, for in the end there won’t be any revenue if lead generation—inbound or outbound—isn’t happening. Some companies (relatively few these days) only cold-call for leads—but most are always seeking additional ways to reach their prospective customers and cause them to reach back, thus creating inbound leads.
There are definitely levels of intelligence in regards to that outreach. Some think you can simply put up a website “and they will come” not realizing that something must lead people to that website. Others realize that they must put out some kind of promotion in order to get leads coming back to their websites—but are “frugal” and just send out some emailings to rented lists or the like. Others are truly smart about it and reach out through as many marketing channels as possible.
The Hard Truth of Inbound Leads Generation
Because we’re living in a digital world, we tend to forget that many of the same truths of inbound leads generation that applied in the brick-and-mortar environment of yesterday apply in this one, too. For example you probably recall seeing the guy who decided to open a shop of one kind or another, let us say selling hats. He spent all the money he had on inventory, another good chunk on rent and employees, opened his doors and waited for the customers to show up. None did. He failed to realize that unless you tell people about it, nobody’s going to know.
That’s a rather crude example but one which takes place to varying degrees in the digital world, too. There is of course the company who only puts up the website—and we’ve all seen examples of that. Then there’s the enterprise that only issues promotion “when they can afford it”—preferring instead to pay high salaries and rent premium office space. There are yet other organizations that source weak leads through fly-by-night companies in order to save money. Barring some miracle all of these businesses will eventually fail.
The cold hard fact of the matter is this: You obtain inbound leads to the degree that you accurately and plentifully market your products and services. And there is no other answer to lead generation.
Quantity and Quality
It is always true, when it comes to inbound leads, that any promotion is better than no promotion, so failing to promote while waiting until the company can afford a high-end slick website or some such is a fatal error. Get the quick website up while the nice one is being designed. Get the emails out to whatever list you’ve got, even if they’re only text. Add the cool graphics to the next mailing, and work on building a better and bigger list of potential prospects.
Quality doesn’t just mean higher-end graphics and more captivating copy, although that’s certainly part of it. Quality also stems directly from knowing exactly who your customers are, where they can be found, how best they can be reached and what messages will interest them. There is a total science to finding those things out, and every bit of it should be applied. As you find out how to connect to your prospective buyers, you need to reach out to them on every channel you can: email, newsletters, blogs, social media, PR articles, trade shows; keep on finding new channels and using them all.
Business must often learn the hard way—and fortunately many actually do learn it—that you can’t spend too much money on correct marketing. This is especially true in the beginning when nobody knows who you are. But any company is going to want to make it “to the next level”—and it will take lots of clever marketing to get them there.
Monitoring What Works
While you’re doing all that marketing, you’re going to need to closely monitor leads as they come in, to know which of them work well and which don’t. To do that you need an intuitive CRM solution that allows you to track your leads all the way through the sales process.
So the big secret to lead generation—creating tons of inbound leads—is marketing: as broad, as plentiful and as accurately as can be done.
What kind of CRM solution should you utilize in monitoring your lead value? Find out here.