In today’s world, lead generation is an important strategy for modern marketers. Leads are very important for any business, without potential leads you can’t be successful. You must acquire leads & convert them into potential customers. Marketers use lead generation to build brand awareness, nurture customers & generate revenues. Some outbound strategies such as cold calling, direct mail, TV ads & expensive advertising are not generating qualified leads quickly.

Inbound marketing costs 62% less than outbound marketing”

In this article, we will discuss about how inbound marketing can generate qualified leads for your business.

What Is Lead?

Before knowing about inbound lead generation, we must know about what is a lead. A lead is a person who has indicated an interest in your company’s product or service. Some examples of lead are- You get a random call from a person for information about your service or product. Some people respond to a survey, people visit your store and submit their information on your lead capture form.

What is Inbound Methodology?

With inbound lead generation, you attract a steady stream of potential customers to your website with interesting content and build their interest in your products and services over time. You need to focus on inbound methodology, it is a best way to convert strangers into customers & promoters of your business.

First step, You have to work on unique ways which attract people to your business like unique & informative content, social media. Second step, convert visitors into leads through forms, call-to-action(CTA) & landing pages. Third step, turn these leads into customers through emails, work-flows. Forth step, delight your customers through smart content, events & turn them into promoters of your business. See This Visual.

Ways in Which Leads are Generated

A lead is generated through information collection. We know that a lead is a person who has indicated an interest in your services or products. Now let’s talk about the ways in which leads are generated.

Job Application: When an individual fills out a job application, they are willing to share a lot of personal information. Filling out the job application shows their interest in job. This person can be considered as a lead for company’s recruiting team.

Coupons: If you place out an online coupon on the Internet and people find it valuable, they will share their name & email address to get it. This information is enough for you to know that person has interest in your service & it allows you to continue the conversation through email.

Content: In order to understand the interest of a person in your service or product, you will need to collect more information. Enough information is very essential for a sales representative to understand the interest of person in your service.

Here is an example, how to collect enough information: Like if someone provide an online ebook for inbound marketing, but to download it, you need to fill a form & provide some information like- first name, last name, company name, job title, email id, phone number, website url & other.

Components of Lead Generations

Now lets understand the mechanics of lead generation. Here are some components:

1. Create Content

In order to convert leads faster, you should provide visitors with relevant content that they are more willing to exchange their contact information for on your website.

Here are 3 things to consider when creating content :

         a. Value:

Content should be valuable to your visitors & prospects. Content must solve the queries of your target audience.

          b. Relevant:

Create unique content & offer that are relevant to your target audiences.

          c. Unique:

Don’t offer content similar to your competitor. Be creative & offer unique.

2. Landing Page

It is a web page where your visitors land after they click on your call-to-action. You need to make sure that you offering a relevant landing page to visitors. You can also provide video content on your landing page. Elements of landing pages:

         a. Headers:

-Keep headers simple.

-Include company name or logo

-Put contact information in header

        b. Headline

-Clear & strong headline

-Use words which grab visitors attention

        c. Copy

-Strong & clear copy about what you offer

-Keep copy to few short paragraphs or use some bullet points.

         d. Visual

-Always include an image

-Image must be relevant enough to understand what you offer

Businesses with 31 to 40 landing pages got 7 times more leads than those with only 1 to 5 landing pages.” (Hubspot)

3. Lead Capture Form

It is the most important element of landing page to collect contact information. Now collect information of visitors via lead capturing form which contains name, company name, email address, region, phone number & some additional information.

Use a call to action button like “Download Now” for ebooks or guides or “Book My Seat” for webinar. Once visitors fill their information, they should be redirected to a thank you page.

4. Offer

If you are providing an offer on landing page which must have enough value, so visitors encourage to fill it out & provide personal information. Offers can include free trial or demo of your product. Offer should be designed to start a conversation.

5. Call-to-Action (CTA)

Next step is creating the call-to-action to place on your website. CTA grabs visitors attention and takes visitors to the landing page. A Call-to-Action(CTA) can be an image, button, or message that calls visitors to take some action.

You need to make sure that your CTA must be action oriented & clear. You must place CTA everywhere: on website pages, in emails, in blog posts, content offers etc.

Conclusion

This is an overview of inbound lead generation. Inbound lead generation is one of the most effective ways to take leads and convert them into customers. Results of inbound marketing are measurable.

Sources:

http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/beginner-inbound-lead-generation-guide-ht

http://bitly.com/

SMS Marketing or text messaging is an ideal way to communicate with your customers when you’re on the move because it’s rapid, direct, and a two-way media. When used together, SMS and your surviving superhero email marketing campaigns can prove to be a prevailing combination.

You can use SMS to promote your emails, and can use email to aware about your new Text Messaging channel. SMS Marketing can complement your email marketing by creating brand awareness, leads generation, and presenting as a new and ideal communication channel.

Like you, your customers don’t have the time. If you own a business, a majority of the people walking  through your door each day will do so with a Mobile phone in their pocket.

Mobile Marketing Timeline

Let’s have a look in Mobile Timeline by Mobile & Digital Strategies to understand the contribution of SMS in previous years to enhance their marketing techniques

1876 – Town criers are used to spread messages

1973 – First Telephone Introduced by Alexander Graham Bell

1992 – First mobile portable handset invented

1993 – First text message sent from computer to mobile phone

1998 – First mobile phone that both sends and receives texts introduced

2003 – Term “spam” officially added to dictionary to mean unwanted, junk emails

2005 – First commercial mobile SMS launches. Short codes introduced for use with text message marketing

2007 – Nike and Pontiac launch SMS campaigns

2010 – 2.4 billion SMS users worldwide

Apple iPhone is released in U.S.

 – Texting is embraced: Average monthly texts (218) outnumber calls (213)

2011 – Quick response (QR) codes start being used in mobile marketing

   – Cambridge dictionary adds “text” as a verb

2013 – Mobile marketing becomes a $14 billion+ industry, including $9.3 billion worth of music

 

Why SMS Should Be Added Into Marketing Trend??

One of the techniques that businesses both experienced and novice are tasting advantage of the recent growth in mobile activity is because of adding SMS into their marketing techniques.

I know what must be thinking, “SMS … really?”

But SMS isn’t merely something being used  amongst teenagers or college kids. Today, a majority of people are actively using SMS Marketing to remain in contact with their friends,relatives, and colleagues.

These are the people who are mostly engaged in the content which they receive. Today, 90% of SMS are read within three minutes of delivery. 

Still have some confusions or doubts? Well what if I told you that SMS also fit thoroughly into the stuff you may be already using to do marketing in your small business?

How To Grow Email Marketing Through SMS Marketing??

While SMS Marketing has many differences from email marketing, at the same time it also have some important similarities that make it the best complement to your email marketing techniques and even both the channels offers a two-way communication.

You can use SMS for short, rapid and sensitive communications which means everything from saying thanks for being subscriber, appointment reminders to last minute sale message. And at the same time you can use can use email to send broad content and information to the place where your customers are going everyday : their inbox.

With 43% of consumers now accessing emails via a mobile device, the mixture of SMS marketing and email marketing could be exactly what you need to adjust the needs of your growing mobile audience.

How to Gamble SMS Marketing To Complement Email Marketing

1. In- Person Events

Till Now : “Thanks for coming to our event today. If you would like to receive our free News and signup for our ongoing email newsletters, please take the time to provide your contact information. ”

Issue : It requires someone to write in all those email addresses by hand. How many email addresses would be lost due to bad handwriting?

Solution : Thanks for coming to our event today. If you’d like to receive our free News and signup for our ongoing email newsletters, just take out your phone and text SUBSCRIBE to 12345.”

This method is not only faster and easier for the customer , it nearly avoids all risk of capturing an incorrect email address.

2. Earlier Medium (Television, Radio, OutDoor )

Till Now : The radio guy says, “If you’re interested in this product, you can visit our website where you can signup for our email list and receive upto 80% off on your purchases.”

Issue : The guy expects from listener to remember a complete website address and visit it in the near future.  I mean seriously? This approach not only makes the audience to forget easily, even it doesn’t help the company to gain new sign-ups.

Solution : If you’re interested in this product, signup for our newsletters  and we’ll send you upto 80% off coupon for your first purchase.  Text OFFEr to 12345 now.” The listener texts, provide their email address, and receives the coupon.

3. On – Site Signups

Till Now : The Pamplet  says, “Thanks for coming today. We believe you enjoyed our facility. Be Ready to win a $50  gift  vouche for your further visit when you sign up for our email list.”

Issue : Few people ‘ll go and  ask someone for a sign-up paper, and the issue of “lost emails due to bad handwriting” still persists

Solution : “Thanks for coming today. We believe you enjoyed our facility. Be ready to win a $50 gift voucher, sign up for our email list by texting FREE to 12345.” The visitor texts in, with their email address and is instantly emailed a listing of the further month’s events..

How To Make SMS A Perfect Fit For Email Marketing

If you are not sure that how your SMS Marketing can be a perfect fit  for Email Marketing, then follow these 5 rules to make SMS Marketing the best complement to email marketing.

1. Make Your SMS permission based as your Emails

Take permission before you text someone. Knocking the door before entering a room shows your etiquettes not your incapability. The most common way people will give permission to receive text-messages from your business is by sending a keyword to your personalized short code. (A Short Code is a five or sometimes six digit number that can send and receive SMSs.)

2. Limit It To 160 Characters

You can mix up multiple texts together but it’s never advised. The grace of a 160 character limit is that it compels you to be to the point, saving your and your customers’ time. If you have a short story for your emails, then your marketing texts should carry a killer sentence.

3. Provide A Call To Action Button To Promote Your Keyword

A perfect example for it can be –

“Text Pizza To 313131 To Receive 30% Off In Your Next Order Or Reply STOP Pizza 2 opt-out!!”

You can also provide your email link to let your customers read more regarding the offer, if your customer is curious to read the whole story then by clicking to the link it will take them to open their email and check the story.

4. It’ll take no time to approach your customers through SMS

The easiest way to boost your bottom line and make customers happy through SMS marketing  is to offer a deal like ‘show this text to avail happy hour to 9pm’ send at 6pm on a slow and silent evening.

5. Maintain the Time Period

Short, valuable and concise texts can be sent more easily than emails, but as a decorum, you probably not supposed to be texting your customers more than 1 – 2 times per week.

Hopefully, you can now judge value SMS Marketing could add to your existing email marketing efforts. But how can you quickly start it?

If you’ve grabbed a good no. of phone numbers and have taken the permission from the customers to text them, getting ready to text those customers would takes even  less than five minutes.

Most important concern for every business – Lead Generation. In order to business growth and generate sales, you have to have qualified leads.

The biggest challenge for B2B marketers is “generating high-quality leads (61%).” (Source: B2B Technology Marketing Community).

As we wrote in one of our previous blog post, “Every business need to generate leads consistently because it’s the like blood for business (like blood flow consistently in human body). For this, we use different marketing channels and invest our resources – money and human power, in marketing strategies. It’s very critical to find right lead generation tactics, because one wrong step can waste your resources which is not good for business.” – How to Generate Leads With Minimum Investment?

A next generation voice broadcasting service – Interactive Voice Broadcast, can be very helpful for your business in order to generate potential leads. If you want your message heard to thousands of targeted audience at a time, it is for you.

Study shows, Voice broadcasting campaign is more effective than direct mail campaigns.

Interactive voice broadcast is cost effective, powerful, easy to use and intelligent technology. Simply record your voice message, upload your contact list and system will send your message. Voice broadcast prompts people to press #1 (Call to Action) to show their interest and speak with a live agent. When your prospect press key “1”, call will be disconnected and your sales team got a lead, now a sales representative will call this prospect. Thats why, it is also called “Press Key 1 Service.” This tactic allows you to speak to your prospect when they are most interested.

Interactive Voice Broadcasting gives an opportunity to create a next generation Call Center – Interactive Call Center.

online marketing strategies for your business

Today, the traditional ways of marketing are still effective but there is no doubt that Internet marketing is one of the best way to advertise your company online. Both these marketing methods find more clients & increase brand or service awareness of your company.

Internet marketing is also known as online marketing. It is the channel of promoting & advertising services & products on the Internet. Any type of business should use some basic strategies to get more traffic & customers online.

Here are 6 best online marketing strategies which will definitely help you!

#1. Search Engine Marketing

search-engine-marketing

Form of Internet marketing to get visibility of a website in search engine result page (SERP). It has two components to get more traffic, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) & Paid Search Advertising (PSA). With SEO you can get more organic traffic from search engine but with PSA you have to pay for traffic.

What is PSA? This is also known as pay per click (PPC) or cost per click (CPC). PPC is a way of online advertising to gain traffic & potential customers quickly by placing ads. In this model advertisers pay the search engine (Publisher) when the ad is clicked. The basic formula of PPC is:

PPC = Advertising cost / Ads clicked

Paid Search Advertising (PSA) is good if you have budget & you want to get website on the top place quickly. Goal of SEM is get more traffic or visits from organic search or PPC campaigns.

#2. SEO Strategy

seo

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, is a form of search engine marketing & more cost efficient approach to increase website visibility. With SEO you can list your website in organic results of SERP & get organic traffic but it takes more time.

To get more traffic from search engines you need to make sure that some things of your website are well optimized like page titles, keywords, description, page speed, design, quality back-links, original & informative contents, ALT text images & Google authorship etc.

SEO is must for every business from small to big companies. This helps to get more traffic & customers online. To get high ranking in search engine result page you should work on Long Tail Keywords because these keywords have less competition than popular keywords.

#3. Mobile Marketing

mobile-marketing

Mobile marketing is an important & modern method of effective business plan. There are many benefits of mobile marketing because mobile devices are different from other ways of marketing like mobile devices are personal & always carried by customers, always turned on (Average person looks at phone 150 times per day); this device allows for accurate customers measurements etc.

To get benefits from this medium you need to have a mobile friendly version of your website (Mobilegeddon Update). You should make sure that your website looks nice & useful when viewed by a mobile device. Some reports say that around 45% of mobile searches are goal oriented & conducted to make a decision. So, you should provide your users best experience when browsing your website using mobile devices.

#4. Content Marketing

content-marketing

Content is main part of online marketing campaign. Content marketing is for all kinds of businesses & any type of business can take advantage of this marketing medium. It is not like blogging but it is Internet marketing type that is focused on getting the attention of viewers & readers.

You should create high quality, informative & original content (Articles, Video, Infographics, Webinars, Slideshare presentations) which helps your customers or audiences. 86% of B2C marketers and 91% of B2B marketers use content marketing.

Content tells your customers that you are exist & it will help to get more clients & increasing website visibility. After creating content you should share & promote it on social media. Content marketing needs some time to generate results. So you should have patience.!

#5. Social Media Marketing

social-media-marketing

Social media is a good marketing channel for any business. You can spread your content on social media. With the help of social media campaign you can get many followers & your brand & content get attention. From social media channels you can get many potential customers.

You should use different types of social media channels like Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest etc. You have to establish a good presence on these channels. There are many benefits of social media like building the brand identity on social media, getting reputation & creating a network.

Don’t only focus on plain text posts, share diverse content like – Images, Videos, Presentations, Website links etc.. You need to share content regularly & engaging with customers. Be Social, Be Real.!!

#6. Email Marketing

email-marketing

E-mail marketing is the most powerful, attractive & cost effective, user friendly channel to promote any product or service online. It is a direct & simple way to communicate with your customers or users. This is one of the oldest & popular online marketing tool available.

“70% of marketers say that email is the best way to increase marketing ROI.”

Some benefits of email marketing are –

  • Cost effective marketing tool

  • Build close relationship between business and customers

  • Measurable marketing tool

  • Highest ROI than other marketing channels (For every $1 spent, $44.25 is the average return).

  • Easily integrate with other marketing tool like social media.

Final Words!

So if you follow all these strategies then your business will definitely succeed online. Don’t look at these tools as competing channels, but as friends for common objectives like drive sales, business growth and lead generation. Be a smart marketer and recognize the value of these tools.

If you have any suggestions or views, don’t forget to share with us in comment box! We’d love to hear from you.!!