Here at Palmer, we know the one thing our clients and prospects are looking for is more leads.
Almost any marketing technique will generate some leads, but in this day and age one of the most effective ways to produce fruitful leads is through leveraging your company’s thought leadership and reputation. If you can establish your company as an innovator and reliable partner to other businesses, lead generation becomes practically spontaneous.
So how do you do it?
We’ve created a list of 7 basic inbound and outbound marketing techniques to help you leverage your reputation and establish your business as a thought leader in your industry. Utilize as many of these lead generation tips whenever possible:
1. Social media: Use social media strategically - pick the channels where your potential leads are most likely to be present. Be sure your profile is complete, readily displaying your contact information in case one of your followers decides to contact you. But remember, social media is not for selling! Use your preferred social platforms to share informative content your potential leads will find valuable.
2. SEO: It is no secret that many of the most successful companies are the ones listed at the top of page 1 on Google. With almost 90 percent of consumers utilizing the Internet to research products and companies, according to Brafton, investing a portion of your marketing budget into your SEO initiatives is money well spent. Obtaining a position in the top five or ten rankings can greatly increase visitors to your website and create a surge in potential customers.
3. Trade shows: Effective trade shows can generate hundreds of new leads. Although there is a financial investment, the return can be well worth it. Trade shows are more than just a way to meet people in your industry. It’s a great way you can connect with other leaders in the business community, develop leads with highly motivated consumers, and tap unidentified new markets.
4. Sales partnerships: Finding businesses that aren’t direct competitors and developing cross-marketing strategies is one of the most effective ways of finding unrecognized new market segments. Typically these partnerships require some time to mature, so you should start by examining businesses you already have long-standing relationships with.
5. Offers: Unique and creative ways of discounting goods or services can produce positive buzz and drive more visitors to your website. Online raffles, gift cards, and coded emails that may yield surprise gifts can encourage the curious or those seeking free goodies to at least give your site a peek. What’s better than a discount? Something FREE! Creating ebooks and white papers explaining your ideal lead’s biggest challenges are a great way to position your company as a thought leader and start a lasting and impressive relationship with clients.
6. Blogging: Blogs build your reputation in a way that promotions can’t; months or years of input from your company will allow consumers to gain insight into how your business works. Handled well, this should establish your company as a thought leader in your industry. According to HubSpot, “57% of businesses have acquired a customer through their company blog.”
7. Build lasting relationships: Many businesses put enormous effort into acquiring new business contacts merely so they can rush a sales team over and go through their proposals. Once this is completed, however, businesses move on to the next potential customer with little thought for these past prospects. In most cases, convincing these prospects that you have a product they can use requires more investment than a 20 minute sales pitch and a couple follow up emails. Investing in these relationships requires more effort, but it also produces a network of clients who can vouch for the quality of your company’s goods and personnel.