Five Ways to Turn Strangers into Buyers
A company without leads is like a car without gas: stalled, stuck and powerless to move forward. Hence the need for lead generation. Lead-gen is the process of attracting, qualifying and converting strangers into buyers. All small businesses struggle with it. Thankfully, many strategies are well within reach for today’s SMB—especially those that have a website (one-third still don’t) and already do some marketing.
1. Inbound Lead Generation: Use a “Contact” or “Subscribe” form to capture web visitor names and email addresses; obtain the all-important “opt-in” to gain permission to follow up.
2. Content Marketing: Exchange helpful or educational material (content) for prospects’ contact information. Short of content for marketing? Tap in-house subject matter experts (SMEs) to develop cheat sheets, checklists, guides and SlideShare presentations. They are the easiest and cheapest resources to produce.
3. Direct Mail/Print Marketing: InfoTrends affirms direct mail’s lead-generating power: 66% of direct mail is opened and 56% of mailer respondents went online or visited a physical store. Bonus: direct mail outperforms all digital channels combined by nearly 600% (source: Direct Marketing Association).
4. Email Automation: Many SMBs automate email marketing to their opt-in lists because the cost-per-lead is relatively low. The keys to success: list quality, relevant content and not being spammy.
5. Micro-Events: Underutilized and misunderstood, micro-events are small, exclusive networking opportunities within or connected to larger events: instead of forking out two grand for a hoity-toity conference, why not spend a few hundred and invite a group of choice prospects to a post-show soirée in a nearby hotel suite?