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  • Improving Your Lead Generation with These 5 Best Practices 

    Inbound and outbound lead generation best practices to improve your results

    Generating leads is one of the biggest challenges faced by marketers today. With the cost per lead ranging from hundreds to thousands of dollars, having an effective lead generation strategy is essential for any business.

    Fortunately, there are a variety of lead generation tactics available, both inbound and outbound. The key is to use a mix of tactics to maximize your lead generation efforts and ensure you get the most out of your marketing budget. Today, we’ll help you break down a few best practices to help you achieve that goal.

    Key Takeaways:

    • To make the most of your lead generation strategy, you can use a mix of inbound and outbound strategies.

    It’s Time to Amp Up Your Lead Generation – Here’s Why

    Any successful marketing plan uses a lead generation strategy that offers insight into your ideal customers and can increase conversion rates. However, it can be expensive and requires a mix of digital and traditional tactics to be successful.

    It’s a fresh new year, which means a fresh start for your business. If you haven’t been prioritizing your lead generation strategy, now is the time to start taking steps to do so. Here’s why:

    Generate More Awareness

    Implementing a strong outbound lead generation strategy can help you reach your top content goals, like boosting brand awareness and conversion rates. For instance, using content syndication tools can help put your brand in front of thousands of new potential customers by sharing your content with relevant websites that share your target audience.

    Content Marketing Goals for 2022

    Image Source: The State of Content Marketing 2022 Global Report via Fit Small Business

    Saves You Money

    When you find a lead generation mix that works for you, you can build on that success. It’s more cost-effective to get quality leads than to waste money trying to generate masses of generic leads that may not follow through via other lead gen methods that may or may not work.

    It takes time to collect enough data to prove which methods work best. Still, once you do, you could be saving thousands – if not millions – of dollars, as research shows that poor data quality alone can cost organizations an average of $12.9 million per year. A well-researched strategy backed by quality data will not only help with improved lead generation but also result in better relationships with your audience.

    Increases Time with Qualified Prospects

    With the right lead generation strategies in place, you’ll find that you’re spending less time generating new leads and more time building long-lasting relationships with qualified prospects already interested in what you offer. Instead of having to track them down, they’ll start coming to you through referrals, lead magnets, and organically via search engines.

    Lead Generation Best Practices That Will Get You Results

    With those benefits in mind, let’s discuss lead generation best practices to help you see the results you need. Here are five to get you started in the right direction:

    1. Have a Solid Content Marketing Strategy in Place

    Having a content marketing strategy is a non-negotiable component of any successful business. It helps you build a loyal audience and generate more sales-ready leads. A successful content marketing strategy is designed for a specific audience and backed by relevant data that outline their:

    • Wants
    • Needs
    • Pain points/challenges
    • Relevant demographic data
    • Interests

    Even better, when you include a variety of media formats (e.g., videos and blogs) in your strategy, it helps ensure your audience is getting the information they want/need in a way that’s most comfortable for them.

    Top Media Formats Marketers Use

    Image Source: HubSpot – State of Inbound Marketing Trends 2022

    2. Create Offers for Visitors in Each Stage of the Buying Cycle

    Creating content that appeals to visitors at each stage of the buying cycle helps you reach a wider audience while also showing your audience that you recognize their unique needs and concerns.

    For example, those in B2B could split their content as follows:

    • Awareness Stage: Informative content such as blogs, videos, and podcasts
    • Consideration Stage: Interactive content, live videos, and webinars
    • Decision Stage: Competitive comparisons, testimonials, and demos/free trial offers

    3. Implement Some Customer Delight Ideas into the Mix

    Creating excitement around your brand is a great way to generate brand awareness and increase leads. While many brands focus on creating a “fear of missing out” (aka FOMO) to do this, there are methods to generate excitement and demand for your offers.

    Some excellent customer delight ideas include:

    • Customer referral programs
    • Personalized communications from the CEO
    • Social media shout-outs
    • VIP product tester programs

    4. Gain Trusted Backlinks

    Inbound marketing strategies such as guest blogging, broken link building, and networking can help build brand awareness and improve your backlinking strategy. Neglecting to build backlinks into your content marketing strategy can hurt more than your SEO ranking efforts. Without trusted backlinks to your site from other high-quality sites, you could lose out on many potential customers.

    When a high-quality website links to your site, it shows that it’s trusted and reliable. That can also go a long way in building brand awareness and overall authority in your industry.

    5. Don’t Neglect Cold Emails and Direct Mail Marketing

    While today’s marketers emphasize digital marketing strategies, it’s essential to pay attention to traditional marketing strategies, such as cold emails and direct mail marketing.

    Research shows that 80% of buyers prefer emails, and 59% would rather receive cold emails than LinkedIn InMails. In addition, direct mailing has an average ROI of $4.09 for every $1.27 spent.

    Cold emailing and direct mail marketing are still great lead generation practices due to:

    • Their ability to target a specific audience
    • Their ability to offer a more personal touch/message than other marketing strategies
    • The fact that two-thirds of Gen X consumers have a positive impression of companies that sent out relevant material via mail
    • Nearly 57% of millennials act on direct mail offers
    • The average open rate of cold emails is 44%, almost double that of email marketing campaigns (22.71%)

    The Right Lead Generation Strategy Requires Time and Planning

    No matter what lead generation strategy you use, keep in mind that a successful lead generation process requires time and planning. Researching your target audience and understanding their needs and interests can help you create a marketing message that resonates with them.

    Additionally, consider tracking the performance of your lead generation campaigns and adjusting your strategy as needed. With the right strategy and techniques, your lead generation efforts will help increase your bottom line and help your business grow.

    Michael Brenner is the founder of Marketing Insider Group. He believes that profits are driven by strong leaders who champion their teams through change. He is a globally-recognized keynote speaker on leadership, culture, and marketing, and the author of two bestselling books: The Content Formula and Mean People Suck.

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