What is a lead?
In the most basic term, a lead is an individual/s who showed interest in your products and/or services offered. That interest may vary but in some cases, leads express interest either by sharing their personal information such as email addresses and contact numbers or by taking an online survey to learn more about a particular product.
Meanwhile, from the business perspective, a lead is the set of demographic data containing information about the person interested in a specific product and/or service. Those data are used by businesses to personalize communication with them and address lingering questions and problems that your business might solve.
From the word itself, Lead generation is the process of generating or attracting potential customers and nurturing them to convert into a customer. Blog posts and online events are just some of the many ways to generate leads.
Lead generation falls under the inbound marketing strategy that businesses use to attract customers. Unlike outbound marketing, this type of marketing strategy does not require cold callings, instead, it was designed to attract customers by creating valuable content that aligns with the needs of the target audience.
Leads Generation Process
Leads Generation happens when you reach out to potential customers that have first given an interest in your product or service.
Below are the steps of lead generation:
The process starts when a visitor figures out your business through one of your social media channels and websites.
Next, your visitor adheres to the CTAs (Call-to-Actions) that you have created and willingly clicked upon it.
The visitor will then be taken to a landing page where they will be prompted to provide personal information (lead information) in exchange for an offer – eg. ebooks, templates, courses, etc.
Once they decided to fill up that form, you have successfully generated a new lead!
Types of Leads
a. Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL). The Marketing Qualified Lead or MQL are those people who have actively engaged with your marketing efforts but are not ready yet to accept a sales call.
b. Sales Qualified Lead (SQL). The Sales Qualified Lead or SQL are those who have expressed an explicit interest to become a paying customer. A very good example of this is a contact who fills out a form to ask a question about your product or service.
c. Product Qualified Lead (PQL). The Product Qualified Lead or PQL are those people who have previously used your product and expressed an explicit interest to become a paying customer. Usually, PQLs exist in companies that offer free trials with options to upgrade to access other features. A good example of this is a person who uses a free version but expresses interest in the features that are only accessible upon payment.
d. Service Qualified Lead. A Service Qualified Lead are those people who have shown interest to become a paying customer through the service team. For example, a customer has shown interest to upgrade their subscription through your customer service representative, who, at that point, would transfer that customer to the appropriate team and/or representative.
How to generate quality leads
As the world continues to be rounded by different social media platforms, it is, by far one of the most effective ways to generate high-quality leads by clicking through your website.
Below are some of the tips and strategies you may use to generate high-quality leads:
1. Select the right channel/s to use
Before you go profound developing your strategy to generate higher quality leads, make sure that the social media channels that you are using are aligned and ideal for your business.
If you are doing fine without the use of social media, it’s fantastic! However, if you want to expand further your exposure or reach out to new and existing customers, you should consider at least one social media channel.
According to the study Sprout Social Index, Edition XVII: Accelerate, “88% of marketers report that their social media strategy positively influenced their sales.” Hence, it is important that what you are pursuing is ideal for your business, otherwise, your efforts might all go to waste.
2. Generate leads with LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a platform that generates the most leads for B2B as it is built for professionals and business owners to connect, hence, it is a safe place to start your lead generation journey.
When we talk about lead generation, LinkedIn rules. Since its inception, LinkedIn has proven its stake in the advertising industry. It created Lead Gen Forms, which auto-populate the user’s profile data once they click the CTA, making it simple to secure information.
3. Generate leads with Facebook
Frankly stating, Facebook is a great avenue for lead generation, however, it comes with a great cost. At some point, if you want to generate leads through this platform, you will need to allocate money and invest it in campaign ads.
Facebook Ads was launched back in 2007 and was designed to satisfy accounts that used paid advertising. From then on, Facebook also launched a feature that allows you to add a simple call-to-action button to your page, directing your followers to your website. Here are some examples to increase your leads through Facebook:
a. Consider it as your Sales Page. When you start venturing into lead generation, you need to take everything seriously. Provide a clear and direct CTA, take advantage of its features, and completely maximize its use. Consider it as one of your official sales pages — update regularly and upload high-quality content and professional photos.
b. Host online events. As people became more and more indulged in social media, take it as an opportunity to catch their attention. Run contests and giveaways. Squeeze your creative juices and think of any events that will allow people to voluntarily tick in your CTA box and input their names and email addresses.
4. Generate leads with Twitter
Although Twitter is still a relatively new player in the game, amongst other social media platforms, it is one of the most used and available platforms.
Twitter has Twitter Lead Gen Cards, a tool quite similar to that of Facebook ads which allows you to generate leads without any trouble leaving the site as you can do it directly in a tweet. With the use of this card, the users just need to click “Submit” to become a lead as their information – name, email address, and username – is automatically registered in the card.
Another gimmick that you may do on Twitter is hosting live events such as AMA (Ask Me Anything) on Twitter Chat. Aside from you building a connection with your audience, it is also a great opportunity to indirectly promote your company through plugs and CTAs while creating substantial value.
5. Pay-per-Click Lead Generation
Pay-per-click (PPC) refers to advertisements that appear on search engine result pages (SERPs). As Google receives 3.5 billion searches/day, it became one of the primary ad campaigns, particularly in lead generation.
The success of your PPC campaign is heavily dependent on how smooth the user flow is, as well as your budget allocation, keywords, and other factors.
How to organize leads?
According to HubSpot, successful marketing campaigns are attained through the use of a system that organizes and tracks your leads. Lead tracking is the phase that involves monitoring leads from across different channels and includes determining lead sources, selecting the best tracking tools, and nurturing leads.
Woffice CRM is one of the most convenient and affordable Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software that will provide you with the best leads gen experience. Woffice CRM allows you to create leads from the front and backend of your WordPress ERP and has features such as:
Learn more about this product here.
Read further to know the steps on how to organize leads effectively:
1. Determine lead sources
Lead sources are those channels from which the customer/s heard about your company. It could be through social media, emails, blog posts, television and radio, and other relevant channels.
Tracking your leads is important to minimize the risk of spending on channels that are actually not working and maximize the budget for those channels that work best in generating and converting leads.
To determine the leads coming from a particular channel and how many are converted into actual paying customers, you need a lead tracking tool such as CRM to capture data on leads’ email opens, social engagement, page visits, and content downloads.
In choosing the right tracking tools, you need to be aware of several factors such as how much time you can devote to manual data entry on spreadsheets in cases there is an influx of large volumes of customer data or how much money you can invest to lead tracking CRM solutions such as WOffice CRM.
2. Test your CRM
After selecting the best lead tracking tool for your business, test it and help your team understand how to organize leads using the platform. Some of these CRM Tools come with a live demo and tutorials that will help you get started.
Also, before buying, you may take advantage of the free trials it offers to identify if it is suitable for your business or not. You may check its interface and features. Is it convenient to use? Does it resolve the issue you experience in your business?
If, at some point, you find insufficient features, try to either make changes to the configuration or select add-on features.
3. Process and input leads
After testing your tool and letting your members know how to use it through onboarding and/or training sessions, it’s time to input your leads to your lead tracking system. You can do it manually or by importing data from a spreadsheet or from your existing CRM.
If you are using spreadsheets, it is important to note that manual data input can cost you a lot of time particularly if there are tons of data to input. However, in contrast, if you are using lead tracking software like Woffive CRM, data entry can be automated, allowing you to save more time and effort.
After loading your leads in, assign them to the appropriate team members who will then be tasked to nurture them and close deals.
4. Nurture leads and track activities
Nurturing your leads is one of the most important phases in the sales funnel. This is where building strong relationship happens and where conversations and follow-ups with leads became crucial.
Lead nurturing aims to convert leads into customers, therefore, your team should be proactive and persistent enough to get in touch with the lead until it converts to a paying customer.
If you’re using CRM tools, it has features such as call recording, email tracking, and engagements to help you keep track of the lead nurturing process. Meanwhile, if you’re using spreadsheets, you may opt to integrate a drop-down option and input the lead tracking information/status.
5. Prioritize leads
Prioritizing your leads is the process of differentiating and separating quality leads from those who are less likely to show interest in your product. This is to allow your team shifts their focus on leads that are most likely to purchase.
Lead prioritizing can be done through lead scoring – a system that ranks prospects based on their characteristics, behavior, location, and engagement with your business.
Lead generation is a challenging part of having a business and what you’ve just read is just the tip of an iceberg. Regardless of how big or small your business is, proper lead generation and organization will do you nothing but a good outcome. The more you try and create great offers and CTAs, the more you’ll get high-quality leads and ultimately, a more profitable business.