Remember when you learned about conjugating verbs in English class?
It was a process we had to go through to learn the next thing. It led to diagramming sentences and all the other ways teachers devised to break down our language mastery into meaningful bite-sized pieces.
It reminds me of another break-down I see all the time in lead generation efforts.
Here is the first example and we’ll call it the Bad Example:
1. The business generates leads.
2. The business blows through those leads, converts a few into sales, then wonders how to keep generating more leads.
3. The generated leads (from step 1) that don’t buy, well, they fall through the cracks. They might get pitched to again, but not now, and probably not later.
Generate, Capture, Nurture into Sales
Here is the responsible, educated way to handle leads. We’ll call it the Good Example:
1. The business generates leads. (accomplished through a plan – maybe SEO or advertising or both)
2. The business captures those leads. (accomplished with a simple email opt-in form with a highly desirable carrot-like download dangled for the lead)
3. The business nurtures the leads. (accomplished by emailing out valuable information, timely tips, and plenty of carrots)
The bad example is an easy model to accept apparently. It allows companies to remain in constant lead generation turmoil and chaos, which is, after all, where a lot of folks are comfortable. Oh, and it does require the least amount of change, with hardly any budget needed. Except for more flyers, new business cards, and coupons, lots of coupons.
The good example is more hands-on. It requires the addition of three items:
- email opt-in form added to one’s website (and optionally – to social platforms)
- desirable downloadable report or special whitepaper offered in exchange for email address
- ongoing email marketing service
Three Steps to “Good” Example of Lead Generation
Let’s dissect what’s needed to implement a leads capture and nurture program a little more closely. These are the three items needed for good lead generation management as reported above. Since we’re going to rely on our email marketing service provider to help us get the opt-in form working, we’ve listed “sign up for an ongoing email service provider” as step 1:
Step 1. Sign Up for an Ongoing Email Marketing Service Provider
There are many email marketing services out there and all are competent, all have their own quirky challenges, as with any kind of online software service offering.
Without going into a full-blown sales pitch for the service I use, I can tell you that it is a great one for visual/spatial intuitive learners, like myself. There are only three modules, so at a glance you can see whether you need to go to “Audience, Campaigns, or Response,” and it’s intuitive from there.
Additional help is available through specially made videos and an online helpdesk.
The service, EmailWerks, offers unlimited image, document, and email archive storage included at no extra charge, along with onscreen image editing, including the ability to add text to your images. Can you anticipate viral quote images?
Step 2. Set Up Your Email Opt-in Form
Your typical email opt-in form is provided at no additional cost by the email marketing company you choose to deliver your monthly email service.
Your opt-in form can be easily incorporated into any website, regardless of the web platform used – WordPress, HTML5, etc.
Even if your company were not yet ready to begin a regular email campaign, there are ways to add a sign-up form to any website, storing the information in a spreadsheet until it is needed.
Step 3. Find a Desirable Downloadable Report or Whitepaper
The hallmark of any opt-in form is the “what’s-in-it-for-me” report, whitepaper, or free training “give-a-way” delivered to the lead when they hand over their email address.
There is an art to selecting a desirable give-a-way for your ideal lead and it is something that you will probably want to test, implement, and then be ready to test again at the first sign of a change in opt-in percentages.
Putting a give-a-way in place is simple when you know your target audience.
But you needn’t expect yourself to prepare it. You can hire someone to write a white paper for you on a particular subject, you can find a give-away that is already offered at no-cost online, or you can use a private label rights report as an incentive.
Now go out there and start capturing and nurturing!
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Reprinted from the blog of Barbara O”Toole, http://barbaraotoole.com/, featuring opinion, speculation, strategy, and creativity in the realm of marketing.
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