Maximizing Lead Generation Efforts This Year
Most leads, whether you purchase them from a provider or generate them organically, do not come without a price. Every lead you get costs something to convert, especially when you consider that most leads don’t convert quickly. So, getting the most from your lead generation efforts is essential for maximizing your ROI.
From generating leads to converting them, it is important to recognize that you are playing a long game. But it’s a vital one that can greatly impact your business’s long-term success. So, you want to get it right, and that’s why we’ve prepared this ultimate guide to help you get the most from your lead generation efforts in 2022.
Not All Leads Are Created Equal
Organic lead generation efforts take time to hone, so it’s not uncommon for businesses to attract a wide range of leads, many of which that won’t provide any value whatsoever. To maximize ROI, you need more leads that possess more of the traits characteristic of your target audience and fewer that don’t. As a result, leads need to be categorized differently, so your sales team knows which ones should be given priority.
Let’s take a closer look at the three categories of leads.
- Marketing-Qualified Lead (MQL): A marketing lead is someone who fills out a lead capture form expressing interest in what you are offering. This type of lead has good potential to become your customer with successful nurturing.
- Sales-Qualified Lead (SQL): Unlike a marketing-qualified lead, a sales-qualified lead is ready to buy your product based on their actions and research. This type of lead can be passed to your sales team right away and converted to a sale quicker than marketing-qualified leads.
- Product-Qualified Lead (PQL): This type of lead is typically someone who has already experienced your product. They may be a returning customer or someone who tried a free trial or a freemium plan. PQLs have a very good chance of being converted into paying customers because they’re not just interested in your product or service but have already tried it and experienced its benefits, so they know what to expect.
Your Lead Funnel – Why It’s So Important
When you get a lead, your sales team strategically nurtures them through your lead funnel. Your lead funnel is essentially a pathway through which a lead goes before becoming your customer. Most lead funnels consist of three stages, in which the deeper into the funnel a lead gets, the closer they are to purchasing. Knowing where your lead currently is in your funnel is vital because it tells you how to go about helping them further down the funnel.
The three stages used in the general lead funnel model are: Top of the Funnel (TOFU), Middle of the Funnel (MOFU), and Bottom of the Funnel (BOFU).
- Top of the Funnel (TOFU): This is where your lead is first introduced to your product and your business. This is where you can use things like social media posts, product videos, blog articles, and other content to build brand awareness, generate interest, and create a positive first impression.
- Middle of the Funnel (MOFU): The middle of the funnel is where your marketing and sales teams get to work nurturing your leads by educating them about your product’s features and benefits. Offering value-rich resources like eBooks, white papers, webinars, case studies, toolkits, and newsletters can help build trust and position your business as a leader in its market.
- Bottom of the Funnel (BOFU): When your lead makes it to the bottom of your lead funnel, your next task is to provide them with the appropriate content that will help them make their purchase decision. Content types commonly used in this stage include product demos, consultations, trial extensions, special discounts, and limited time offers.
Building and Optimizing Your Lead Funnel
The rate of your lead conversion is heavily tied to how well your lead funnel is built and managed, so you don’t want to sacrifice your commitment to the process. Here are the five main steps to building an effective lead funnel.
- Determine Your Target Customer: Who is most likely to purchase your product or use your service? Whoever that is, that is the person you need to be targeting with your marketing. Running customer surveys and looking over your past sales will help you identify who your most common customer is.
- Map Your Target Customer’s Journey: Research your target customer to learn their usual purchasing behaviors. Google Analytics is a great place to start because it allows you easily analyze data on such things as traffic, conversion rates, bounce rates, and more.
- Create Relevant Content for Each Funnel Stage: After gaining a better understanding of your target audience’s journey, you will be better able to create the type of content you need to attract higher quality leads. It is important to remember that every stage of your lead funnel should feature its own unique content designed to address the lead’s needs at that stage and help nurture them to the next stage. When creating content, it is also important to keep SEO fundamentals in mind to make sure your audience finds it organically.
- Drive Traffic to Your Website: With your content created, now is when your attention should turn to driving traffic to your website or landing page. You can do this in a variety of ways but the most proven include using social media, organic search (SEO), paid ads, and email marketing.
- Collect Contact Information: The goal of driving traffic to your website or landing page is to get the potential leads to share their contact information. You can gather lead information through “gated” content, like using online forms, webinars, checklists, toolkits, eBooks, and more. Whatever gated content you offer, just make sure it provides practical value to your target audience.
Lead Funnel Cost Implications
B2B marketing teams use a wide variety of channels and an even wider combination of targeting criteria, marketing methods, and content assets to generate leads. As a result, top of the funnel programs typically require the most time, money, and effort.
But when the top of the funnel programs are poorly designed, they can quickly contaminate the funnel and diminish its overall value by blocking quality leads from getting into the funnel in the first place. Worse yet, B2B marketing teams lack the time and resources to fix these critical problems and as a result the quality of the leads being pumped into the funnel drops exponentially.
The issue goes beyond just wasting money; attracting low-quality leads will also damage the marketing team’s credibility and alignment with the sales team and thus make the business appear in disarray to leads.
Organic vs. Paid Leads
When working with leads, almost every company weighs the pros and cons of generating organic leads versus purchasing leads from a lead provider. While both can provide your company with quality leads, purchasing leads from a reputable provider can be preferable in many situations.
For instance, while organic lead generation is important for the long-term success of a business, the process of generating your own quality leads this way takes a lot of time and effort. Organic lead generation is a long game, and it can take months or even years before a lead gen strategy starts paying off.
By comparison, when you purchase leads from a provider like RGR Marketing, you get access to leads who have not only shown recent increased interest in your product or service, but who also fit your target audience demographics. While no sale is guaranteed, being qualified in this manner means that these leads will be more likely to progress down your sales funnel at a quicker pace.
At RGR Marketing, we can provide your business with exclusive, high-quality leads that are scrubbed and verified for accuracy. They can also be seamlessly inserted into any contact management software. Contact RGR Marketing today and get the targeted leads you need to keep your lead funnel filled with prospects and get ahead of the competition.
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