Lead Generation

How To Take Charge of Your B2B Lead Generation Strategy

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why TV Survivor is like a lead generation strategy

Only 1 and 10 marketers feel their lead generation campaigns are effective.

Why so low?

Lead generation campaigns can be complex, and it’s difficult to know where you might be going wrong.

However understanding why people bounce from your website, and then taking action to improve these issues is the first step to increasing conversions and revenue for next month, next quarter and next year.

Here’s what separates the rookies from the pros.


  1. How to Fix Your “Customer Journey” to Solve Sales: Figure out the customer’s journey that’s most relevant for your business and capitalize on it.
  2. Cold Email Templates: How to Get Customers, Land Press, and Drive Revenue: Prospecting and outreach for cold email templates does not have to be a painful process (although it often is), but it does have to be personal.
  3. 5 LinkedIn Prospecting Tips to Generate B2B Leads with Ads: After reading and implementing these LinkedIn prospecting tips, you will immediately start to see a higher return on investment and be able to improve the allocation of your online advertising budget.
  4. 5 Little Known AdWords Tips That Can Make or Break You: get started on your way to increasing results while keeping costs in check.
  5. 25 Simple, Yet Little-Known B2B Lead Generation Ideas: Most people that land on your website are going to leave forever. Resurrect your conversion rate with these 25 tips.

How to Outwit, Outplay and Outlast

One of my favorite T.V. shows is Survivor on CBS.

Most people are familiar with the reality game show where a group of strangers are split into different tribes in an isolated location.

They must provided food, water, fire and shelter for themselves, while competing in challenges for rewards — like food or comfort items — but the most coveted prize is immunity from being voted off of the game altogether.

At the final tribal council, the last seven to nine people vote for who should win a million dollar prize and the title of Sole Survivor.

In order to win the game of Survivor, the contestants need to outwit, outplay and outlast the other players.

How do they do that?

And how does this relate to lead generation?

Why Most Companies Fail to Generate and Convert Leads

According to HubSpot, generating leads is a marketer’s single most important objective.

Without leads, conversions are more or less impossible.

In Survivor, winning the million dollar prize and the title of Sole Survivor is a contestant’s single most important objective.

It is hard to get anyone to trust you in the game of Survivor.

People will do whatever it takes to win the million dollar prize and essentially “bounce” right off of you to get there.

If they don’t believe that you are a strong option that help them get to the end, then they will not hesitate to stab you in the back and betray you.

Survivor is very much a strategic game and without great strategy beforehand, you will lose your shot at what you value most.

This is similar to how potential prospects react to your company’s website.

You can’t just make random decisions on-the-fly and expect great results.

You have to do the research, run small experiments, try to align every step accordingly.

It might take some time to get up-and-running, but doing the hard work in the beginning will pay off over years to come.

Your online marketing machine will be more efficient, and your website investment won’t be wasted because you’re getting more value from the traffic that usually leaves forever.

A sound lead generation strategy will help prevent you from blowing your chance will all the prospects you worked so hard to lure to your website.

Time to outwit, outplay and outlast your competitors and generate the most valuable leads!

How to Fix Your “Customer Journey” to Solve Sales

how to fix your customer journey to solve sales

Nobody buys on their first website visit.

Somehow, someway, you need to interact with them – multiple times, in multiple different places – to start seeing meaningful increases.

Which makes digital marketing a little more difficult, and a lot more nuanced than most would believe.

Because if you want to increase sales and get more customer or clients to purchase, then you need to identify all of these places and invest accordingly.

But how do (a) track or measure all of the influential actions needed? And then (b) how do you make better marketing decisions based on this information?

Start with the customer journey

The Basic Stages of the “Customer Journey”

Everyone follows their own customer journey while purchasing anything of means (i.e. not a simple, split-second purchase for, say, a bottled water).

This customer journey says that before people will purchase your products or services, they need to evaluate their options, gather information, and obviously be aware they have a need for you in the first place. (These stages can also be boiled down into three areas of: Awareness, Consideration (Information + Evaluation) and Decision.)

Most visitors will be at different stages of this cycle at different points in time.

So if we’re trying to improve website conversions, we can’t treat these people the same.

They all have different mindsets, different priorities, and are looking for vastly different things.

While “branded” pages or offers might work great for people already in the Evaluation or Decision stages, they’re typically terrible for those who haven’t determined Awareness quite yet.

That means while your digital promotion efforts and website are converting “brand aware” people, they’re not helping you identify, reach, and bring in people who have no idea who you are yet.

So how do we fix this?

How do we adjust or change marketing activities and websites to do a better job of turning strangers into new customers?

How to Figure Out Which Channels Influence Your Customers

Answering these questions is not easy, because the customer journey is getting more complex all the time.

Customers won’t just use one channel before purchasing.

They’re interacting across various touch-points, and there’s a blurring of the lines between many popular channels that makes it increasingly difficult to track.

In order to figure this out, we can start with a simple gap analysis.

Google’s The Customer Journey to Online Purchase tool can help you figure out how different digital channels influence your customer’s path to purchases.

Let’s take a look at three different types of businesses to see how their customer journeys compare.

Example #1. Business (Services)

Awareness: Interestingly, Display advertising (think: banner ads) work best for gaining initial awareness. The important thing to remember with Display advertising is that there’s little-to-no intent. People aren’t looking for these types of offers, so they help reinforce awareness and assist actions in other channels, but won’t have a huge influence on direct sales

Consideration: Referral, Organic & Paid Search drive information gathering and evaluation. That means for services, people are going to find you only when they’re already looking for solutions you provide.

Decision: Email, Direct and Brand Paid Search drive decisions for services. That means new customers and clients only come after first building brand awareness and trust.

Example #2. Shopping (Products)

Awareness: Organic Search has more of an “indirect” relationship to product purchases, mostly assisting awareness and consideration (as opposed to driving direct conversions). Typically you’ll see people use it to pull up many different options, and then dive deeper into other channels prior to purchase.

Consideration Social, Generic Paid and Email help drive consideration. This is why the top, clichéd buzzword of all Kumbaya-singing “social media experts”, engagement, is so important. Engagement through social and email channels builds a bridge to product evaluations.

Evaluation: Referral and Brand Paid ads help drive people evaluating their options. Here, think about Reviews and branded advertising when people are already searching for your products by name.

Decision: Direct conversions for products come from Direct sources of traffic (meaning people typing in your website URL). Which makes sense. If you’re going to buy a product from Amazon, then you usually type in “Amazon.com” straightaway.

Example #3. Travel

Awareness: Again, organic search is mostly an “assisting” channel for travel purchases. It’s also important to remember that people aren’t searching for hotels specifically at this step, but more focused on geographical areas.

Consideration: Referral, Generic and Brand Paid Search aid consideration for travel companies. Think about how you evaluate travel options. After identifying possible areas of interest, you’ll usually start with TripAdvisor, Expedia or other similar influential third-party sites to get a lay of the land. Then after identifying a shortlist, you’ll go deeper.

Decision: Email and Direct drive the most decisions. This also highlights the importance of building (and investing in!) brand awareness to drive future demand for reservations.

4 Takeaway Tips and 1 Critical Caveat

There are 4 easy things you can do right now to improve your digital marketing performance:

  1. Figure out the customer’s journey that’s most relevant for your business
  2. Plot how the most popular marketing channels fit on your customer’s journey
  3. Track and measure how your activities are doing in each respective channel
  4. Based on performance, decide how and where to adjust your resources (i.e. labor, capital, effort/focus) to ultimately increase sales

While this sounds great, and easy-to-follow, there is also one HUGE caveat – Attribution problems.

If so many different channels influence a single purchase, then how do you properly (and accurately) say which channels are responsible for each conversion?

Many analytics packages will default with the “last-touch” – or the last source used to arrive at your site for a successful conversion.

However as discussed, that doesn’t take into account all of the other actions leading up to this event.

It commonly will under-report the effect some channels have on sales.

For example, social media. And it will over-report Direct, if your campaigns aren’t tagged properly (meaning email and social visits will be lumped under Direct by default).

Social media monitoring is an important tool in any lead generation strategy. Social listening allows you to identify who the social influencers of your target audience are, which will give insight on what content resonates most with them and how they feel about certain topics or brands – giving new ways for leads.

There’s no easy solution for getting attribution 100% correct, however are a lot of sophisticated ways to bridge the gap (but all are beyond the scope of a simple blog post).

However the end goal is to always (a) solve for the customer first, and (b) take small leaps of faith to test.

You’ll never have 100% data needed to make a decision – even when we’re practically drowning in data. So focus on a few key elements and simplify to take action.

And in that way, despite all the changes in technological options available and the evolution of consumer behavior, Marketing 101 hasn’t changed all that much in the last 50+ years.

Cold Email Templates: How to Get Customers, Land Press, and Drive Revenue

how to get customers, land press, and drive revenue

If you build it, they STILL won’t come.

Creating and possessing the best product in the world doesn’t matter if nobody knows it exists.

And unless you have a multinational’s budget, or a trust fund, then promoting your game-changing solution is going to take some elbow grease.

To start, you need to prospect.

That means being specific about who you want to reach out to, creating a contact list, and then prioritizing them based on relevance and importance.

Next comes outreach.

You need to message your contacts individually, compelling them into a one-on-one conversation in which you will hopefully find a way to help each other, such as earning a review or becoming partners.

Unfortunately for us both, prospecting & outreach is not a plug-and-play magic bullet, but a protracted, ongoing process that requires patience, attention and tact.

It requires piercing the veil of anonymous ambivalence found online, and connecting human-to-human.

You must attend to every lead individually like plants in a garden; they will not grow without your care.

But prospecting and outreach doesn’t need to be tedious and repetitive.

There are ways to maximize the amount of personal interaction you get while reducing the time burnt on trawling for contact info or sending out repetitive cookie-cutter emails.

Only if you can avoid these 4 mistakes that trip marketers up, and make outreach more of a chore than it needs to be:

Mistake #1: Not taking advantage of the tools of the trade

Back in my grandpappy’s day, if a man wanted to earn exposure for his business, he had to saddle up his horse, ride into town and Google each and every lead by hand on the village WiFi, digging through Contact and About pages and tapping out email after email until his fingertips were thick with callouses.

It certainly put hair on the chest, but thankfully we don’t have to live like this nowadays.

Thanks to tools like Link Prospector and BuzzStream, the tedious part of prospecting and outreach can be largely automated, saving you hours of listless browsing and messy contact management.

Both tools streamline the prospecting and outreach process by taking advantage of recent innovations in cloud-based black magic*, freeing you to spend the best hours of your day polishing that perfect email that you’re going to send to everybody.

*STILL haven’t figured this out

Mistake #2: Being a robot

I realize this headline will sound horribly insensitive in 40 years when robots actually ARE doing our marketing for us and/or have feelings, but in 2015, it’s still true.

Wait, you weren’t really planning on sending one static email to everybody, were you?

Were you about to start it with “Dear Sir or Madam?”.

Unless you are literally a robot, you should know better—The point is to start conversations, not avoid them!

To some extent, outreach is inevitably a numbers game, but you won’t get far sending “Look at my site it’s real good!!!” to 10,000 prospects.

You need to get real, and convince them that a real person is talking to them, and that needs to happen as early as possible.

If it’s an email, that means the subject line. Imagine the following three emails arrived in your inbox, and these are the subject lines:

  • “Check out my website!”
  • “Proposal for cross-promotional opportunities”
  • “Question about your ‘5 tips for better shipping rates’ post”

What happens to number 1? Mercilessly deleted. Possibly reported as spam. Uh oh.

Number 2? Might get a click. Your eyes become caked with a thick glaze and you are primed to skim and move on.

But number 3 has the ring of a real person who knows who you are beyond a cell in a spreadsheet.

It promises a conversation, and has primed you to be helpful.

Of course, you have to align the email body with your subject line, but the takeaway is that you need to promise a person-to-person connection from the get-go.

Nobody wants to talk to a robot… Unless it’s Siri—She’s delightful.

Mistake #3. Having no system of priority

That said, when we have contact lists numbering in the hundreds, it’s impractical to find out everybody’s favorite ice cream flavor and fondest childhood memory (for now—Get on it, BuzzStream!).

You must prioritize based on how valuable a lead’s endorsement will be to the people you want to win over.

For example…

First Segment – High Value Leads: Bespoke Approach

Major news outlets, highly authoritative blogs and reference sites like Wikipedia can be immensely valuable to building trust, and your efforts to woo them should reflect that.

Find out everything you can about the person you will be connecting with and do as much work for them as possible.

If you’re trying to get news sites to cover you, for instance, be sure to provide a press release with ample quotable material and juicy information.

High-value leads get the bespoke treatment; the trust you earn from their endorsement pays dividends to your bottom line!

Second Segment – Moderate Value Leads: Tailored from a Template

Moderate-value sources could be amateur, single-author blogs, second-tier news outlets or non-competitive industry blogs.

It’s worth customizing for them, but you can recycle most of your email in most cases.

The moderate-value sources will not have as big of an impact on your credibility, but “schmoozing” with them will help you build a basic network of trust; their cumulative value is undeniable, and may lay the groundwork necessary to get attention from the big guns.

Third Segment – Low Value Leads: Template

Leads that have questionable relevance to your business, low viewership or a not-so-outstanding reputation may not be worth reaching out to at all.

There must be a cutoff where you decide that a lead is not worth reaching out to, and if you do, a simple “ping” message (Hey, dig your website, let’s hang out) might be the maximum amount of energy that you’re willing to spend.

Prioritize your outreach such that most of your effort is going into your highest value prospects.

It’s a mistake to give equal attention to every contact.

When in doubt, focus on being more personal with a smaller number of contacts.

This approach will build more trust than reaching a broad range of people without much depth.

Mistake #4. Reaching out to everyone

Don’t try to reach everybody at once.

Pick a segment of people that fits your goals and go for that.

Let’s pretend you invented a process to turn grass clippings into an effective asthma medication, and you want to get word out to the medical community.

If you just start searching for “doctors” and casually corral them into a mammoth contact list, you will waste a lot of time sifting through irrelevant, low-percentage people.

You’ll either waste a lot of time sorting, or even more time reaching out to the wrong people.

Either way, that’s less time for me to spend on those few high-value prospects that we talked about in the previous section.

That’s why you need to get specific about whom you want to reach.

Explicit specificity will give focus to my prospecting efforts and purpose to my messages.

So for your grass-medicine, maybe you can search for authors who write about homemade remedies to common ailments.

They go on their own list.

Next, you look for blogs by doctors who specialize in pulmonary medicine—or even asthma specifically.

They get another list.

Now that you’ve got these two specific groups, you can start working on a message to each of them.

You’re not wasting time trying to get the attention of heart surgeons or lawnmower enthusiasts, and you have more time to focus on the people to whom my content is relevant. Focus!

It may sound counter-intuitive to purposely limit the number of people you reach out to, but correctly identifying search intent helps narrow down your target audience and create a content marketing strategy that meets their specific needs.

You can be personal and efficient at the same time! Awesome!

Key Takeaways

Prospecting and outreach for cold email templates does not have to be a painful process (although it often is), but it does have to be personal.

Tools can help you filter out the noise and manage the mess.

But at a fundamental level, outreach is about starting conversations with people in order to build trust, and so far, no tool can do that.

Not even Siri.

5 LinkedIn Prospecting Tips to Generate B2B Leads with Ads

LinkedIn’s reach is nowhere close to Facebook, Twitter, or even Youtube.

But if you’re trying to get your foot in the door of another business, then it’s one of the single most effective ways to sidestep gatekeepers.

In this post we’re going to discuss five key elements, often undervalued by marketers, which can (and should) be used to create successful LinkedIn advertising campaigns.

To illustrate the following 5 steps, we’re going to show you some experiments we’ve been running for our own company.

After reading and implementing these LinkedIn prospecting tips, you will immediately start to see a higher return on investment and be able to improve the allocation of your online advertising budget.

Element #1: The Offer

The offer is the glue that holds an ad together.

To determine if you have a good offer, ask yourself, what is the biggest problem or issue your prospects have?

And how can you provide them with a simple, pain-free method for getting a “quick win” without the sleazy sales pitch?

If your offer is outstanding, the ad pretty much sells itself.

On the other hand, if you don’t have an extraordinary offer, then your customers will never proceed to click on your ad.

For example, we are currently advertising an offer for a free one-on-one website evaluation.

A good offer is only the beginning to a successful advertising campaign.

Through testing, we’ve found this to be a better, concrete solution than an intangible “free consultation”.

People can understand exactly what they’re getting, and almost everyone in an organization is painfully-aware of how their site should improve (even if they rarely all agree on the same things).

Where to start with crafting an irresistible offer?

Sell the hole, not the drill.

Element #2: The Channel

How is LinkedIn a better communication and advertising channel than Facebook or Google, when they have far less people?

Despite having a “smaller audience” than Google or Facebook, you can create a more precise audience sample with the various “firmographic” targeting options.

Therefore your ad spend is better utilized, resulting in more total conversions, at a better rate, than other similar options.

And you can reach these people with two basic advertising models – display ads and “sponsored” content.

Display ads are obvious – the image, headline and text usually displayed along the right hand side of the page.

Sponsored content lets you take a piece of content and expose it to a far greater reach.

The key to understand with both of these models, is that there’s (usually) no intent.

That means the people seeing these ads aren’t looking for them.

Which means anything overly-commercial won’t work.

This is why the channel you’re using (in this case, LinkedIn advertising), has a huge bearing on how successful your offer will be with your audience.

Element #3: The Audience

Before creating your first ad, you’re able to select viewers based on their industry, job function, seniority, geography, location, company, industry, job title, schools, degrees, skills, gender, and age.

Basically you can pre-qualify prospects without ever having to speak with them.

The optimal audience is between 60,000 and 600,000 members, and it’s always a good idea to segment your audience into separate campaigns if they’re vastly different or motivated by different things.

If you’ve already done the hard work of creating detailed buyer personas, then the audience should be the easiest part to this puzzle.

Element #4: The Ad Creative

While the ad creative element seems like the easiest part, it’s actually one of the trickiest.

And that’s because of two reasons:

  1. It you’ve never used this (a) offer with this (b) channel to reach that (c) audience, then it’s going to take A Lot of experimentation to find the right “match”, and
  2. If an ad’s Click Through Rate (CTR) falls below .015%, then LinkedIn will stop showing it

So the best way to get started, is to simply get started.

It’s important to run multiple tests to determine the best performing ad creative out of the bunch.

You can start by creating numerous variations of an ad, including different pictures and headlines.

Once you have your trial ads, you should run these ads for about a week in order to pull enough data to determine the best performing ad.

Once you’re able to identify at least one good performing ad, then you can now use it as a model for the next variations.

You may repeat this process until you have optimized your ideal ad creative.

Using this tactic, you will be able to create many “best performing ads”, which will seriously improve the amount of clicks and conversion on your ad.

Element #5: The Landing Page

Last but not least, after a visitor clicks on your ad, they should proceed to a simple, clean landing page that provides additional information and context.

Here, you can provide more details about your offer or your business, and then a clear Call To Action (CTA), like a form for your customer to fill out.

Besides delivering you a new lead, this CTA will help your track performance data that you can take back to improve your ad campaign.

If you’re using a simple opt-in page with a compelling value proposition, then you should see conversion rates in the 6-9% range. (If you’re not, then follow these landing page best practices for actionable tips to improve yours.)


Most advertising campaigns aren’t an instant success overnight.

It takes many test runs to determine the right formula for success.

When campaigns like this don’t go well, people start by messing with the landing page or changing the advertisements.

But those aren’t always the root problem.

And they often don’t provide the biggest changes in improvements.

By working backwards through these 5 elements, all the way back to your original offer at the beginning, you should be able to pinpoint any problem areas holding you back.

Because even the best landing page or most effective advertisements can’t cure a poor offer or bad audience fit.

5 Little Known AdWords Tips That Can Make or Break You

5 Little Known Adwords Tips

Most businesses fail to grow because they lack a simple, repeatable way to get new people through the door.

Online, AdWords is one of the best ways to combat this.

The Google Display Network reaches an amazing 80% of U.S. internet users.

However it can be very expensive (and extremely confusing if you don’t spend all day on it).

So reaching the right customers and increasing your ROI requires a unique strategy.

Don’t fret! With these five simple AdWords tips, you can get started on your way to increasing results while keeping costs in check.

Tip #1. Know Your Buyer Personas

Let’s face it, when it comes to AdWords it can be difficult to know where to start.

It’s critical to know who you are trying to reach, because everything you do must be tied back to who your buyer personas are (and what will motivate them to click, or not click, on your ads).

Instead of trying to reach “everyone”, focus on those who are most likely to be your customers.

According to HubSpot,

“Buyer personas are semi-fictional representations of your ideal customer based on real data and some select educated speculation about customer demographics, behavior patterns, motivations and goals.”

Need more details? Start here.

Tip #2: Have a Clear Goal

What is the purpose of your AdWords campaign?

It is essential to have a clear goal in mind when developing a new campaign.

With that being said, you need to know what specific action you are trying to get your buyer personas to perform.

Is it making an online purchase? Signing up to receive an eBook? Or requesting more information about a product?

Once you have identified a concise goal, then you can start to think of how that will impact everything.

For example, what “intent” will people have when looking for your goal (and how will that affect their keywords)?

How will your landing page and the “sequence” of actions your leads take change depending on your goal?

Making the visitor’s “path” through your website, goal, and post-conversion follow-up uniform and seamless will get you much closer to gaining new customers.

Tip #3. Quality Score is Key

Google Quality Score diagram

(Image Source)

Don’t under estimate the significance of each keyword’s Quality Score in your Ad Groups.

The Quality Score is one of the main clues to see how well you are managing an AdWords campaign, because it dictates how many people see your ads, the effective cost per click you’ll pay, and the overall cost per conversion.

Start by addressing the “low hanging fruit” by looking at popular keywords with low quality scores.

You can quickly increase your ROI by spinning these keyphrases out into their own, more specific Ad Groups and new landing pages and ad text.

Raising your quality score will reduce costs and place ads in a higher position in the ad ranks.

Tip #4. Always Utilize Negative Keywords

There are a lot of avoidable mistakes in SEO, but some just involve failing to use the tools at your disposal, such as negative keywords.

Negative keywords can help you ensure that ads are not being showed to users who would not find the ads relevant.

For example, someone using the word “engineers” in a search might see many different types of results… like “Civil Engineers”, “Computer Engineers” or “Electrical Engineers”.

Each of these audiences is vastly different, and the information these people might be interested in differs as well.

Negative keywords can prevent your ad from being shown to someone searching for something you don’t offer.

Tip #5. Ongoing Maintenance & Optimization

The fifth and final tip to becoming an AdWords connoisseur revolves around campaign management and optimization.

A successful campaign starts with a weekly analysis of what is working and what is not working.

By monitoring your campaigns and quickly iterating based on what’s working (and what’s not), you can lower costs by eliminating ineffective keywords, underperforming ads, or discover new ideas to boost your bottom line.

Here are some simple tweaks that you can do in order to lower costs:

  • Pause keywords and ads with low click-through rates
  • Lower keywords bids if a campaign is hitting maximum daily budgets
  • Adding new versions of a copy if ads are under-performing

Utilize The Tips

Successfully setting up, monitoring, and optimizing AdWords campaigns are a full-time job in-and-of itself.

But with these five simple tips, anyone can get on the right track to start generating consistent leads (while avoiding going broke in the process).

25 Simple, Yet Little-Known B2B Lead Generation Ideas

25 Simple yet little-known B2B Lead generation idea guide

Most people that land on your website are going to leave forever.

Average website conversion rates hover around 1% for eCommerce sites (or sites that sell products and low priced services directly) and around 5% for lead generation sites (or sites that sell complex services where the transaction happens offline).

That means the overwhelming majority of visitors — the ones you worked so hard to lure in the first place — will leave your site and probably never return.

What good is it to put time and effort into your marketing promotional efforts if your website conversion rates suck?

More importantly, how do you fix them?

Here are 25 B2B lead generation ideas to help get you started…

Understanding Visitor Intent & Buying Cycle

  1. By understanding where people are at in the buying cycle, you will be better able to give your target audience more of what they want (and need) in order to purchase from you. Let’s break it down into phases:
  2. Awareness: The buyer doesn’t have a need or want for product/service. He or she found you from basic google search. For these individuals, it’s crucial to have plenty of basic information about your company, service, and product available on your site.
  3. Information: Buyer has developed a want or need and actively searches for a solution. These individuals are generally only interested in soft opt-ins (such as giving out their email address and other basic information).
  4. Evaluation: Buyer begins considering and comparing alternatives. Find ways to demonstrate value to these individuals and get permission to follow up one-on-one to discuss their needs in more detail.
  5. Purchase: Buyer commits to taking action. These customers are ready to purchase! They arrived at this point by clicking on a link in an email or from going directly to a specific landing page. These folks don’t need another overly sales-ey message – they want to get right down to business.

How to Generate Leads at Each Phase of the Buying Cycle

  1. Use Google Analytics to compare Top Acquisition Channels with your most popular content in order to see what kind of information people gravitate towards.
  2. Spend some time playing around with the User Flow feature to see how and where people go after they arrive at your website.
  3. Using this information, start to make some educated guesses (using your understanding of your target audience and customer base) about who these people are, where they’re at in the buying cycle, and what they’re interested in
  4. Mimic the customer journey. Detect (and fix) any glaring issues or errors that might cause people to leave your site or get distracted from opting in. Mimic the path that has led your most loyal users to purchase and create new opportunities based on that. Pay attention to what people are doing and adjust accordingly.
  5. Consult with others regarding any changes that may need to take place on your site. (i.e. changing a discount code or “free consultation” message to a simple email signup). Changes like these do not happen overnight and typically need many skill sets (i.e. marketing strategists, designers, developers, copywriters, etc.). Getting other opinions can help you to decide on the best course of action.

Trust + Connection = Sales

  1. Year after year, the best way to stay connected and generate leads through your customers/target audience is still email marketing. This subject could take up an entire blog post in itself, but here are a few quick tips to keep in mind to get the most out of your email marketing campaigns:
    • a) Segmentation: separate email subscribers into small, targeted groups with specific wants or needs.
    • b) Frequency: Don’t be afraid to contact your subscribers OFTEN — if they say YES.
    • c) Calls-to-Action: Make it easy and painless for people to take the “next step” in your relationship.
  2. Content is another critical way to build trust with your customer base. Whether it’s through a blog, guest posts on other websites, or speaking engagements, creating useful content will be instrumental in getting your name out there. By giving people an idea of the knowledge and expertise that you are capable of providing, they’ll know to expect the same high quality material when they make the decision to buy from you.
  3. You didn’t think I would talk about connecting without mentioning social media, did you? This is another big one. And if you can manage to do it right, its benefits are endless. Here’s how…
  4. Use the right channels: Want to engage with customers? Use facebook. If you’re more interested in staying up to date with the latest news in your field, twitter may be the place for you. Decide what your goals are and choose social networks that will help you reach those goals.
  5. Do less: Don’t waste your time with spreading yourself too thin across too many networks. Instead, focus your energy on developing a select few.
  6. Automate or Delegate: If you have the time to send out engaging updates and posts every day, great. If not, social media scheduling tools like Buffer may help. And if you really don’t have the time, hiring someone to do it for you can also be a great option.
  7. Don’t Be Selfish: No matter how many times a day you tweet or update your Facebook status, no one will care about what you have to say if you only talk about yourself (or your company, brand, etc.) Take some time to consider who your target audience is and what they want to hear and post accordingly. And inject some personality!

Still No Leads? Lower the Barrier to Entry

  1. People won’t become customers if you are failing to show them why they need your product or service. Provide something that’s easy to understand and easy to purchase. And if a simple and straightforward approach isn’t working, it’s time to get creative and try something new…
  2. Getting potential customers to spend their first dollar is a pivotal step. And sometimes it’s necessary to create a new lower-priced product or service for the sake of getting people to commit to some small action.
  3. Creating a low-priced, recurring options, with the goal of increasing customer loyalty and improving the lifetime value of each customer is another effective tactic.
  4. Don’t forget about “perceived” discounts! Anchor your pricing with more comprehensive, higher priced options to make the initial investment seem smaller and easier.
  5. For higher priced services that can’t (or shouldn’t) be discounted, just do a really good job of selling the problem. Demonstrate your audience’s pain points and show how your product or service fulfills each one — better than other alternatives.

Don’t Underestimate the Importance of Customer LTV

  1. You have a better chance of continuing to sell to existing customers than you do of getting new ones. So prioritize the time and money spent on lead generation by selling new services or products to existing accounts.
  2. Amazon Prime is a perfect example, as 80% of their business comes from 20% of their customers — the Amazon Prime members. “Locking” customers in to receive such amazing upside also makes it much more difficult for them to later switch to someone else.
  3. Overdelivering & Superpleasing. Make your product, service and experience so wonderful that customers can’t even think of going anywhere else. Many times that means over-delivering by investing more time in the relationship and other “non-billable”, intangible events.

These 25 tips should provide enough ideas to get the ball rolling.

But they’re only the beginning…

The key to generating a steady-stream of new leads and customers is through a consistent, focused effort.

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