For any business to sell a product or service, there needs to be a steady stream of customers. But customers you know, they don’t start off as, well, customers. They start off as prospects and eventually, leads. Realizing the online customer life cycle is essential for understanding how to generate leads for a business.
We live in an exciting time where we have an unlimited supply of tools and resources available to us for expanding our reach, sales and revenue.
And as customers, we have an unprecedented amount of options, resources and reviews to guide us.
Although there are many positive highlights, there are also some negative side effects to all these choices: I’m talking about analysis paralysis.
Being constantly inundated with multiple offers, all of which claim to solve the same problem(s) or offer the same solution(s) can cause customers to make no decision at all.
So as business owners, marketers and website owners, how do we clear through the noise, reach our prospects and turn them into excited, qualified leads?
In this article, I’ll be talking about my top 3 strategies for quickly generating leads who will actually be interested and excited in what you have to offer.
- 1. The Irresistible Lead Magnet Strategy
- 2. The Interactive Strategy
- 3. The Video View Retargeting Strategy
- How to Create A Lead Generation Ad
So let’s kick things off with a marketing standard: Lead magnets.
*This post contains affiliate links, which I may receive compensation from. This is at no cost to you and lets me keep the lights on. Read more here…
1. The Irresistible Lead Magnet Strategy
Lead magnets are an incredibly powerful and effective way to generate new leads and capture a prospect’s contact information/email.
As you may already know, a lead magnet is essentially something of high perceived value that we offer to potential customers in exchange for their contact information.
Since they’re such a common (but still effective) way for businesses to drive leads, it’s extremely helpful to create an offer that’s irresistible and has a high perceived value.
In general though, lead magnets can take on many forms, but some of the more common types include:
- Free PDF Downloads
- Free eBooks
- Free Checklists
- Free Webinars or Training
- Special Coupons or Discounts
- BOGO Offers
- Free Trials
- A Free Sample (or portion of a larger package/course/etc.)
- Access to Results (from some free test or assessment)
Choosing a lead magnet that is best suited for your business will depend on your industry, brand, objective and level of time/money investment.
Regardless of whichever lead magnet you go with, it’s important to remember that effective lead magnets will provide your prospects with a quick and actionable solution to one of their problems.
So to find a truly irresistible lead magnet offer, first identify a real problem that your target audience has and offer a solution to that problem (or part of the problem) for free.
By providing your prospects with this “quick win”, you’ll not only be gaining their trust and their contact information, but you’ll be starting establishing the more important customer relationship.
No longer will these individuals be cold traffic who are unfamiliar with and skeptical of your brand.
When a prospect takes you up on a lead magnet offer, they are essentially making a micro-commitment.
This means that, on a consumer psychological level, they’ve taken an economic action with you and are way more likely to “buy” from you again in the future.
This is the point of generating leads. We’re establishing the customer relationship by providing free value, furthering prospects down our sales funnel closer to a customer with a high lifetime value.
Keep in mind that this micro-commitment will lead to further transactions if you follow up strategically.
As business owners, we understand that our greatest asset is our customer. Simply put, these people know us, trust us and are therefore much easier to sell to and convert at a much higher success rate.
So quickly establishing this relationship via micro-commitments and lead magnet offers is one of the most effective strategies to start using today.
Now that we’ve established the value of a good lead magnet for your lead generation efforts, let’s expand on to one of my personal favorite ways to engage with new prospects and to generate leads: Interactively.
2. The Interactive Strategy
Have you ever taken an online quiz or used an interactive calculator before? My guess is probably yes ~ or at the very least, you’ve seen them advertised.
If you have taken part in one of these tools, then perhaps you can relate to that innate feeling of excitement and curiosity to receive your results.
Personally, I love taking short quizzes and plugging in some random information about me into some calculator-type of tool to get some random result about myself or my situation (yes I’m talking to you BuzzFeed!).
OK, so we can agree that these tools are extremely engaging, interesting and actually helpful for people.
However, due to their effectiveness and naturally high engagement rate, have you ever thought about implementing one into your business and/or marketing strategy?
Well luckily, it’s actually quite simple and we have some amazing tools available to us that make the whole process quick and painless.
By adopting this method, you’ll be
- Creating naturally engaging content that your prospects will actually be excited to consume
- Differentiating yourself from your competitors in the process
So first off, you’ll want to (obviously) think of an idea that you could turn into a quiz format that provides some sort of value.
If you can create a quiz or poll that offers some sort of solution to a problem your customer is having as part of the result, then all the better!
You could give a “teaser” result at the end of the quiz but then require an email for the prospect to receive the full results.
For example, if you were a real estate agent, you could create a series of questions geared towards potential home buyers who have kids.
You could promise the results will show them the safest areas in their location and the secret to getting the best value for a new home in the top school district.
Of course this offer sounds enticing and there is little friction for the prospect to take action on the quiz.
Based on their individual responses, the quiz questions will provide some customized result that provides some type of value.
Recommended Read: How to Make A Facebook Quiz
You would then have the email for someone obviously interested in buying a home in a nice school district but who also wants to know how to get more value during the home buying process.
Going back to the lead magnet section, it all starts with understanding your customer and what problems they want solved.
If you’re interested in implementing this type of strategy, then follow this link and take a quick tour of the Outgrow platform.
It’s an intuitive online software that lets you build beautiful and engaging quizzes, polls and surveys (among other things) for advertising, websites or any other digital purposes.
The software does come with a totally free trial and starting memberships are only $14/month after the trial ends (that’s less than 50 cents a day!).
Considering the social media driven world that we live in, having content that is genuinely engaging is definitely one strategy that you do not want to skip out on.
But, any good marketing plan will have a variety of strategies.
So let’s talk about my last recommendation for this article: The video + followup strategy.
3. The Video View Retargeting Strategy
Did you know that you can re-target anyone who viewed a certain percentage of your video content?
For example, let’s say you have a Facebook post that received 1,000 views. You could then take that video and create a Facebook ad campaign targeting anyone that viewed 50% or more of the content.
You could also increase the viewing percentage all the way up to people who viewed 95% of your video but never took any action or purchased from you.
I don’t need to tell you how valuable this can be as a business owner.
Just remember: New prospects and customers require a journey, meaning they will rarely make a purchase after the first point of contact.
This means it is absolutely necessary to run re-targeting campaigns to capture these leads and opportunities.
This re-targeting strategy is especially vital as your price point and/or your competition increases.
Ultimately, this video view retargeting strategy is a way for you to flex your marketing muscles and for you to show your customers not only that you’re a savvy, credible and valid brand but also that you care and want to develop and strengthen a meaningful relationship with them.
Customers today have innumerable choices and thus require a journey.
They want a story and an emotional reason to commit to and buy from you.
And adding video in general is simply a fantastic method that humanizes your products and is statistically more engaging.
It’s something that needs to be a part of any modern marketing strategy.
Also, the best part is you do not need in-house content or fancy equipment and expensive outsourcing for a high quality video.
Check out this post on Renderforest if you want to get started putting together high-quality, professional videos for free that will immediately boost your perceived value as a business online.
And don’t worry if you’ve never created any video content before, the platform is beginner-friendly, completely free and let’s you build websites, logos and animated videos as well.
Plus, if you’re really serious about creating more fine-tuned, quality videos, there are upgrade options which offer you more flexibility and branding potential!
How To Create A Lead Generation Ad
If you’ve spent any time on my site, then you’ll probably know where this section is heading: Facebook ads.
Facebook ads can absolutely be profitable – if they’re implemented correctly and strategically.
I’ll be reviewing the basic process very briefly below, but please feel free to check out my free series on running Facebook ads within the resources section on this site!
Recommended Read: How to Create A Facebook Ad: 6 Steps to Success
I should note also that Facebook has a lead-gen objective function for ad campaigns that allows you to capture a prospect’s email and contact information directly from Facebook.
That is, the prospect never has to leave the Facebook platform, meaning there’s lower friction for a conversion and less work on your part since you won’t need to make a separate landing page.
However, there can be some drawbacks to this method, such as less control over how prospects move through your sales funnel and a limit on the amount of information you can provide.
Therefore, this can work in some cases, but often a separate landing page will be useful.
Either way, below is a super brief walk-through on how I’d set up a quick lead generation ad inside the Facebook Business Manager.
Click here if you haven’t created a free Facebook Business Manager account yet
- Navigate to your Ads Manager & Hit the Create button to make a new campaign
- Select your Objective and name your campaign, ad set & ad
- The Lead Generation objective will let you build a lead capture form directly inside Facebook
- I usually name the ad set something related to the audience I’m testing (such as a unique interest point)
- I usually name the ad something related to the ad creative I’ll be testing first (i.e., video ad)
- You can ignore the other settings and leave them as the default
- Set up your ad set by creating an audience (based on interests, demographics, etc.)
- You can also create a custom/lookalike audience in the Audiences section of your Business Manager
- If you have existing audiences made, you can choose from these inside the ad set level while editing your campaign
- Otherwise, you can create a new audience directly inside the ad set level of your campaign
- Choose your daily budget ($5/day is fine for starting and testing) and edit any placements you’d like to control for
- If you’re new to Facebook/Instagram ads, you can leave the recommended ad placement toggled on – unless you want to focus exclusively on Instagram or the Facebook newsfeed for example
- Move on to the ad itself
- Choose and upload your creative(s) (i.e., your images and/or videos you’ll be using)
- Write your copy and headlines
- Choose your call to action and destination URL
- Launch your campaign
- This can take up to 24 hours or more for approval, especially if you have a newer account
OK, so the steps above are heavily condensed and simplified. Obviously there are other nuances and steps involved to create a more effective ad.
If you want a more detailed tutorial, check out my full post on creating a Facebook ad campaign here!
Beyond Facebook ads (or other form of paid marketing), it’s also best practice to implement a simple opt-in form onto your website. Here are two simple (and common) ways to add an email form:
- On your homepage and throughout your site, clearly display an email opt-in form with a large, specific offer and call to action
- As a pop-up that shows after a certain amount of time passes or when a visitor attempts to close your tab window and exit your site
Recommended Read: How to Build an Email List and A Loyal Following
Generating leads is step one to building a strong customer relationship. Understanding your customer’s lifetime value, back-end selling and the value of building a qualified email list are motivating elements to keep in mind.
There are many ways to generate leads but combining a strong social media approach within your overall strategy will amplify your results and strengthen your digital identity and credibility for consumers.
More than ever, consumers take to the internet to have their questions answered, their problems solved and their shopping done.
So now it’s our job as business owners to be there, ready to help them out and ready to offer our valuable solutions.
This is how we secure our profitability, cultivate new customers and gain a competitive advantage.
That’s all I’ve got today, thanks for stopping by and reading!
Leave a comment below and let me know some other ways you generate new leads online!