You put thousands of dollars and countless hours into your lead generation efforts, but are you sure they’re even working? Are your efforts being directed to the right outlets, or are you wasting time and resources? What if you’re doing it wrong – isn’t that a terrifying thought?
According to Hubspot, 80% of B2B marketers report their lead generation efforts are only slightly or somewhat effective. It can be a challenge to identify what’s going on in your strategy, if you’re even aware that something is wrong at all. It can also be difficult to figure out where to start, but by reading this article, you’ve already taken the first step!
Instead of just hoping for the best, ask yourself these three simple questions.
Do people know your company’s name?
You know those brands that EVERYONE knows, the ones we all love to hate? Well, they’ve got one major thing going for them – people know who they are. There’s nothing worse than trying to sell to potential customers who have no idea who your company is. So first things first, become relevant. Get recognized in your market and become a brand that your target customers know, and your sales process will become easier overnight.
“Today it’s important to be present, be relevant and add value.” – Nick Besbeas
To do so, it’s important to have an online presence. To establish yours, first define your target audience. Conduct some research and look into demographics such as age, gender and occupation.
Then, look a little deeper into customer pain points and their needs. Once you’re aware of the specific needs your company should be filling, you’ll have a better idea of how to market with value to your target audience.
With your target audience in mind, you can delve into SEO tactics to help your brand be found online more easily. Using the keywords that your audience searches to find businesses like yours will help your company pop up higher in Google’s search results.
For example, an accounting firm in St. Louis might try to be found for the following keywords:
- Accounting firm
- Accounting firms St. Louis, MO
- Accounting firms services
- Accounting firms in stl
These keywords should be used in your content marketing strategy to build your SEO score. After defining keywords, you should also utilize your Google My Business listing. By using it, you’ll be able to be found on local searches, with contact information and customer reviews. If someone in St. Louis searches, “accounting firms near me,” your business will pop up based upon the address you provide.
Another effective tactic to incorporate into your inbound marketing strategy and build brand recognition is social media. Social networks provide ample opportunity for you to interact with and engage potential leads. You can also use it to promote your now keyword-filled blog posts.
Are you seeing results?
This should be the most obvious warning sign that your lead generation efforts aren’t up to par, but too many times people ignore the obvious. If your campaigns aren’t yielding the results you want, then it’s time to rethink your strategy.
An easy way to evaluate whether your lead gen plan is working or not is to look at your goals. Are you making progress or staying stagnant? Do you even have goals in place for your lead generation strategy? Here’s how to set good ones!
- Determine if you want to measure quantity, quality, or both. Of course, you only want qualified leads in your pipeline. Yet, some companies would prefer a larger quantity of leads over high-quality leads. Getting your desired results should never be something you feel forced to choose between. Just know that it is possible to have both! Read more about quantity versus quality in lead generation here.
- Set smaller goals to reach larger ones. Goal-setting can be an overwhelming task. To prevent this, use months and quarters to your advantage as you set goals. Each of these smaller milestones should contribute to a larger, more significant company goal.
- Communicate goals with team members. At Abstrakt, we have monthly meetings in which the entire company gathers and we discuss our progression towards our goals. This level of transparency and recognition of each individual’s contributions to company goals increases team morale.
- Track and measure progress. It’s tough to know how far you have left if you don’t know how far you’ve come!
Hubspot offers a free calculator to actually calculate your lead generation goals; you can find it here. Results can look a variety of ways, depending upon which analytics you’re looking at for different marketing tactics. For example, an LED provider with an email marketing campaign might be looking at click-through rate. A commercial roofing company might have a digital marketing campaign involving a video PPC ad from which they’re trying to send viewers to a landing page. Perhaps a mechanical contractor business is analyzing quality scores on its prospecting calls through a CRM software like Salesforce.
It’s important to understand which analytics measurements matter most for each tactic and channel. Looking at statistics such as views over engagement will dilute the true impact your campaign is making.
Are you having enough conversations about conversions?
This has to be one of the most frustrating marketing obstacles to overcome: converting web traffic to real, tangible business. There are few things worse (from a marketer’s standpoint) than reviewing your web analytics to find out your web visitors have skyrocketed, yet your business conversion rates have not.
If you’re running into this issue, don’t sweep it under the rug. Spend significant time exploring why this is happening, and implement changes that can turn those visitors into long-lasting customers.
Some common reasons that your traffic is increasing while your conversions are not:
- Lack of CTA: A call-to-action directs visitors to forms where you can gather their information and follow up. This CTA could come in the form of a free demo of your products and services or a free download offer, such as an infographic.
- Pushing Visitors to Buy vs. Helping Them: If you’re constantly pushing your visitors to buy your products or service, yet you don’t give off an image of a helpful consultant – those visitors are likely to leave your site. There’s a good chance that upon the initial visit the user may not feel like they’re ready to buy, but by proving your credibility and expertise, you have the opportunity to change that. Be patient, and they’ll eventually become a sale lead.
- Using the Wrong Keywords: Have you ever conducted a search on Google, clicked the third result down and ended up on a site that had nothing to do with your original query? It’s frustrating for both users, as the searcher hasn’t found the answer they were searching for and the website owner experiences an increased bounce rate. Ensure that the keywords you’re using for your website are actually being searched for by your target audience.
If you asked yourself these questions and found that your strategy is working – congratulations! Simultaneously running a business and overseeing all aspects of an in-house lead generation strategy is a nearly impossible feat. An effective plan requires several key components such as prospecting, social media, email marketing and a fully optimized website. Beyond that, it requires people who are knowledgeable in all these areas, which can be expensive. Just remember, there are other alternatives!
If your lead generation efforts aren’t producing the results you’re looking for and you would like some help from our experts, contact our sales team! Sometimes an outside perspective is just the thing you need to get back on track.