It never fails. Each year we ask our partners to identify their challenges, and each year they tell us how difficult it is to secure new business. That is not unique to you, and it’s not unique to the business technology industry. According to BtoB Magazine, generating more leads was the top challenge of US businesses in 2013 (source: emarketer.com). So what are the things you can do today to kick start your lead generation efforts? Capitalize on these three marketing strategies to capture new customers and gather leads from existing customers in need of the solutions you offer. (Access the full whitepaper at the end of the article.)
Strategy 1: Position Your Business as a Team of Experts
What would it mean to your business if you could walk into prospective businesses that already knew what you did, liked your business and trusted your abilities? Earning trust should be one of the objectives of your marketing efforts. You can do that in two steps:
- Share Helpful Information
When you share useful information, potential clients see your company as more than a sales organization. Download the whitepaper to check out five tactics to accomplish this.
- Get Endorsed by Current Clients
As you grow your business, endorsements are critical to building the trust you need. Put case studies and testimonials on your website, and ask your customers to provide reviews on search engines and sites where prospects might find you.
Strategy 2: Gather Leads
Once you are on your way to building trust in your community, you’ll need to gauge the interest of the people who have expressed a need. Think about your prospects in two categories: prospects and existing clients.
Once you’ve grabbed the attention of the prospect, make sure they can tell you they are interested:
- Put Clear Calls to Action on Your Website: Visitors to your website should have an opportunity on every single page to raise their hand and ask for more information.
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Your clients will do their research; make sure they can find you.
- Landing Pages: Employ “mini websites” focused on one topic geared toward a specific call-to-action.
- Existing Clients
Never underestimate the power of your existing base of clients. According to Bain & Company, it costs anywhere from 6-7 times more to gain new customers, than to retain an existing one. Expose clients to new opportunities by talking about new products and services during support calls, and ask them to fill out surveys to gauge interest.
Strategy 3: Create a Practical Action Plan
To get the most out of the first and second strategies, you’ll need to create a plan to keep you on track and accountable to generate leads. Here are four critical steps to create a marketing action plan:
- Identify and document how your marketing strategy will back up your business goals.
- Find out what kinds of information your customers and prospects want to hear from you.
- Set up an online marketing ecosystem that can include a blog, social media, landing pages, emails, etc.
- Create a calendar to keep track of all of the content and timing of posts.
If you are motivated to kick start your marketing plan and begin gathering leads, download the whitepaper to get more in-depth planning advice.
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