A New Year Means A New Strategy for Generating Leads

How do you promote products and services in a world where most people don’t like being bothered by advertisements? As it turns out, people are still okay with learning more about products that capture their interest. What they don’t like is a barrage of messages about products or services they have no interest in.

This is why fine-tuning advertisements to reach specific target audiences is better than sending generic messages to everybody. The former is much more effective in generating leads that can often turn into customers. After all, even if companies want their products to work for everybody, the reality is that they often only serve specific markets. At best, sellers will hope that they can attract various market segments. Everybody else falling outside of that demographic will find your products either uninteresting or unworthy of further attention. As a result, even well-written ads or value-laden promotions won’t have much effect.

This is why businesses and startups need to focus on attracting potential customers that find value in what they offer. To get the best results, sellers must make sure they send the right messages to the right market. Doing so increases the chances that a passing interest can turn into full engagement and hopefully, into an eventual sale.

Strategies for Generating Leads

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To improve your conversion rates, you’ll need to start generating leads first. Let’s look at a few proven strategies that can help your team find and attract quality leads.

Show, Don’t Only Tell

Stories are a great way to share experiences, anecdotes or lessons. Rather than telling your audience what your brand can do, why not engage them with a story? Instead of outlining the features and benefits of your products, why not provide real examples of how your solutions help customers with their specific problems?

But what makes stories a compelling way to engage audiences? Many purchase decisions seem to stem from emotional reactions rather than objective evaluations. As much as customers want to believe they based their purchases on objective analysis, they often buy products based on their emotions.

According to Harvard professor Gerald Zaltman, a customer’s emotion can account for up to 95% of purchasing decisions. Zaltman shared a study where people who experienced damage in the area of the brain that produced emotions were unable to make decisions.

That doesn’t mean that product attributes and test results aren’t important factors. However, it’s important that when introducing your brand to an undecided audience you ensure your message appeals to their emotions.

When telling a story, don’t limit your content to how your products perform in the real world. You can also share heartfelt and amusing stories about how the company started or how the products came to be. In addition, sharing stories should always come with easily verifiable data. Nothing can bring down a good reputation faster than the discovery that your company has a habit of making up stories just to sell more products.

Be A Subject Matter Expert

The key to generating quality leads is establishing yourself as an authority in your niche. Let’s say your company deals with steel widgets. Simply stating that you’re a widget manufacturer does not have the impact that audiences expect from a market leader. However, saying that you’ve been an “excellent widget manufacturer trusted by an entire continent for over a hundred years” can sum up your experience level better. Of course, you’ll need to make sure that your description fits actual and verifiable facts. This can help address initial questions if you have the necessary qualifications to offer solutions and talk about the subject.

More than proving your title and experience, establishing authority is about selling your experience in solving your client’s problems. This means knowing your products, knowing your industry, knowing your USPs and most importantly, knowing your clients. This also means that when sharing your stories and case studies, your content should show the hallmarks of expertise. Not only should you have your facts and data straight but you should also have complete mastery of the industry jargon.  

Establish Your Expertise Across the Entire Industry

Outside of marketing materials, your expertise should extend into content that the entire industry can appreciate. This includes publishing detailed case studies and authoritative white papers in trade journals. Additionally, commissioning industry-wide surveys and reports that benefit the entire community can help boost your authority status. When making authority statements, place extra care into going over your content and proofing for errors and commissions.  

Generating leads also means talking less about your products and showing what you know about your customers. Being a subject matter expert means acknowledging that your clients experience different situations. As such, each requires individual solutions. Producing and sharing how-to videos that talk about solving specific issues or breaking down specific processes can convince many users of your expertise. This might even lead to some users leaving competitors and switching to your brands.

Don’t Be Selfish When Generating Leads

Part of the process of generating leads is requesting contact information. Your call-to-action should ask them to leave their contact information so that you can send them additional information or add them to your mailing list. But in order for leads to willingly give up their information, you’ll need to give them something worthwhile in exchange.  

Offering perks for contact information can work wonders for your lead generation strategy. Giving out exclusive discounts or promo coupons during signup can help push users to complete the registration process; similarly, opening your resource center of white papers, case studies and other research materials can entice potential clients.

For prospects already on the brink of converting, providing samples, trial versions or free demos in exchange for their contact information is a reasonable tradeoff.  Trials can either be full versions with a limited number of uses or unlimited-use versions with limited features. Both styles can offer enough functionality for users to nudge them to upgrade to the paid version.  

Don’t Abuse The Privilege  

Leads’ reluctance to share their contact information is understandable. For one, they’re concerned that simply agreeing to join the subscriber list will pile on far more company emails than they’d like. In addition, many users are not willing to share additional information to establish their profile. While it helps the requester build up their database, this often does nothing for the subject. Finally, many just don’t want their information to end up with unscrupulous advertisers who will sell them to equally unscrupulous marketing companies.

Companies that ask for additional contact information can increase their chances of getting a yes by simply avoiding being greedy. First, give an assurance that the information requested will not be sold or passed on to other marketers. It also helps if you confirm that your company conforms to data privacy regulations. Additionally, companies should also provide easy opt-out options for leads enrolled in email subscriptions.

By respecting users’ data privacy rights and providing them with easy opt-out options, your company will prove that you’re above questionable marketing tactics. Doing so might lead to a smaller database of leads; however, you’ll pleasantly discover this smaller list will more likely produce quality leads.

Keep Your Emails Engaging

When sending that initial email asking leads to sign up, you don’t necessarily want to cut to the chase right away. Make your email more engaging by appealing to what your leads are looking for first. For example, start by telling your story; introduce the company and establish your authority in the field. Perhaps share a short success story of somebody using your product.

By crafting an email that leads actually want to read, you stand a bigger chance of making them agree to subscribe or sign up. On the other hand, recipients will likely just delete an email with a spammy subject header and body copy without a second thought.

Create an Appealing Landing Page

Just like with your email offers, your landing page needs to entice viewers so that they don’t just bounce immediately. Instead of leaving your landing page as an afterthought, why not make them engaging enough to elicit positive responses? After all, a well-designed lead-generating landing page helps increase signup rates by turning visitors into leads.

How can you spruce up your landing page to attract more signups? Clear, consistent friendly copy that fits your audience in voice, tone and terminology is key. It also helps to add a compelling hook instead of just placing a straightforward CTA. Instead of “Sign up now!”, entice readers by saying “Sign up now to learn how to increase your sales by 50%!” Finally, it helps if your design complements your copy—instead of overpowering it.

When it comes to asking for contact information, make sure to limit the request to the bare essentials.  Contact numbers and office addresses are unnecessary if you only plan to communicate by email. Assuring them that their email will remain safe in your hands and won’t end up somewhere else can also help increase the chances of signups.

Leverage a Referral Program

Companies will often call on influencers to generate leads. These internet celebrities own some of the most desirable social media real estate out there thanks to their growing follower lists. Whether it be wearing a product, consuming a service or even just mentioning one, influencers hold the power to—you guessed it—influence. Their followers value their opinion so much that they can nudge any one of them to a company’s website.    

Referral programs make for a great way to build influencers into your sales strategy. They work as a two-way street: the influencer will earn a commission for every sale that uses their discount code and in return, you get access to their extensive follower base.

Influencers can provide a steady source of leads for companies provided that they have aligned interests with their clients. For example, a regional exterior remodeling company can get some good leads from local well-known home DIY influencers. In contrast, signing up endorsers simply for follower counts might not be a good match if markets misalign. Of course, this won’t stop the bigger multinationals from signing up world-famous celebrities to endorse their products. But smaller businesses don’t necessarily have the disposable money to play with.

Before signing up with your next influencer ask yourself two questions: Is influencer marketing and referral programs the way to go for your brand? Can your incremental sales offset the talent fees and referral rewards?

Generating Leads Is Easier With Ingage

Customers often have busy schedules. Your lead generation content only has a few minutes (at best) to make an impact.

When creating your presentations (and other marketing collateral), it pays to have the tools you need to show the entire picture at once. Rather than depend entirely on text and static pictures, why not add dynamic images or videos to enhance the story you’re sharing? Adding interactive elements can also help your presentation do more showing, instead of just telling. Interactivity also allows the viewer to set their own pace as they enjoy your story can elicit a more positive reaction compared to standard methods.  

That’s where Ingage comes in.

Interactive Presentations that Track Viewer Engagement

Ingage is a cloud-based interactive presentation software that helps you tell your story the way you want to. Its cloud collaboration features help your team converge online to create your presentation no matter where they are. Interactive elements make for a better storyline, as viewers can simply click on elements to get more details.

Ingage also lets you share those document links with clients so they can view presentations on their own time. Analytics will track each recipient’s viewing time and note how long they spend on each slide; this allows creators to find out which areas generate engagement—and which need further improvements.

Are you ready to level up your presentations and boost your team’s lead-generating capabilities? Reach out to Ingage to arrange a free demo as see how interactive presentations can help your team today.

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