#4 Start a blog
Past the foundations then, let us now delve into direct lead generation strategies. The first, and likely most accessible to smaller businesses, is starting a blog.
Doing so has immense benefits, such as:
- Boosting SEO. Starting with SEO, polished and informative blog content will help your website rank higher in search engine results pages. It will primarily do so by producing engagement signals, which your customer acquisition process also benefits from.
- Acquiring backlinks. Next, blog content may earn backlinks by others within your niche or area. This too boosts SEO, but it also produces referral traffic that is already interested in your offer.
- Matching the user search intent. Finally, matching the user search intent is paramount to SEO and lead generation on the whole. The vast majority of searches have informational intent, which information-rich blog content typically matches very well.
#5 Engage in Email Marketing
Next, you may consider email marketing. This practice can certainly be daunting, but both CRM and email marketing platforms offer automation options to make it easier.
The caveat with this practice is that warm emails typically work best for generated leads, in such ways as:
- Offering a newsletter to your subscribers
- Reaching out to nurtured leads with offers and promoting loyalty programs
- Regaining lapsed leads through personalized offers and content
However, you may also employ cold emails to generate leads. This digitized version of cold calls does hold value, as LiveAgent ® finds . You will simply need to avoid spammy behavior, humanize your copy, and make a clear, brief, enticing offer.
#6 Get Active on Social Media
Lead generation strategies can undoubtedly not exclude social media activity. With such massive, engaged user bases, social media offer an excellent way to gain exposure and generate leads.
Indeed, Statista ® finds that social media marketing’s primary benefits are, in order:
- Increased exposure (88%)
- Increased traffic (79%)
- Generated leads (69%)
Examples of ways to reap these benefits include, among others:
- Promoting informational content that funnels traffic to your website
- Engaging with audiences and responding to their questions to foster trust
- Holding competitions, giveaways, and other virtual events
#7 Run Events
On the subject of events, virtual or otherwise, few activities will get as much attention as events. Here, you may consider both types, depending on your scope of operations, budget, and content strategies.
- Host webinars. While arguably not complete substitutes for in-person events, webinars still hold massive potential. Research finds that they’re not just effective lead generation tools, but also generate high-quality leads.
- Create livestreams, Q&As, AMAs, etc. Similarly, creating such content does depend on your own strategies and resources. However, if you can produce such content, it will both help garner attention and deepen bonds with existing leads.
- Participate or organize local events. Finally, especially if your business is locally-focused, you can consider local events. Those remain among the best ways to raise brand awareness, and help foster trust with your local communities.
#8 Remember Paid Advertising
Returning to digital pursuits, paid marketing should also remain among your lead generation strategies. How heavily you lean into it will depend on your budget, but careful audience analysis and keyword research should still make it lucrative.
The two primary forms of paid advertising to note are:
- Paid search ads. First, Pay per Click (PPC) ads can complement your SEO efforts. That is, you may analyze which keywords you cannot organically rank for, and bid on the most affordable among them.
- Paid social media ds. Similarly, paid social media ads can complement your social media marketing. You may use audience analytics tools, both built-in like Facebook’s ® Audience Insights or third-party ones, to deliver personalized ads to valuable audience segments.
#9 Boost Your Inbound Marketing
Having touched on both inbound and outbound marketing, let us conclude by revisiting both. First, let’s start with inbound marketing, which concerns the majority of the above suggestions.
Inbound marketing refers to marketing that attracts leads through quality content instead of approaching them directly. A great example of it is SEO and content marketing, while cold calls and emails are ones of outbound marketing.
To boost your inbound marketing, then, you may consider the following:
- Refine your keywords. First, consult your audience insights and keyword research to refine your keywords of choice. All inbound marketing strategies hinge on proper keyword choices, so this step is essential.
- Bolster your content marketing. With those insights, you may begin to inform and enhance your content marketing. Consider the user search intent, and deliver your content around the customer journey. As you do, place links to your forms where appropriate to acquire leads from new visitors.
- Engage in link-building. Finally, consider offering guest content to other websites within your niche or area. This is a very affordable way to earn backlinks, which both produce engaged traffic and improve your SEO score.
#10 Don’t Neglect Outbound Marketing
Finally, while outbound marketing is indeed infamous for being intrusive, it too generates leads effectively. So, while you may prioritize inbound marketing, you should still not fully discard it.
Examples of outbound marketing include:
- Traditional marketing; billboards, TV, print, and radio ads, etc.
- Cold calls
- Cold emails and messages
These practices may seem ineffective, but they’re anything but. Neil Patel reports that cold emails still see great open rates and click-through rates. What’s more, citing LinkedIn ® , he notes that cold messages on LinkedIn are 3x as effective as cold emails are.
To conclude, lead generation strategies for small businesses come in digital and physical forms, inbound and outbound, local and broad. They all begin with solid SEO foundations and effective, functional websites but may then expand to events, social media marketing, and more, depending on your resources and budget. With the above strategies in mind, your small business is bound to generate valuable leads in no time.