Businesses need qualified leads to achieve their revenue objectives. Since all customers churn eventually, a solid lead generation strategy is necessary. 

What is Lead Generation? 

Lead generation is the process of finding potential consumers for a product or service to convert them into paying customers. There are many types of lead generation strategies

When choosing which one better suits your business, it’s important to pay attention to your target audience. This is because different audiences respond with varying success to different strategies. 

Lead generation is often confused with demand generation, but the two are distinct practices. Although demand generation and lead generation objectives are different, these two practices are deeply connected. 

Demand generation focuses on marketing campaigns that increase broad interest and awareness in a product. Lead generation is part of the demand generation process, but the focus of a lead generation is about collecting contract information for prospects so they can be further pursued to purchase.

Point of ComparisonDemand GenerationLead Generation
FunctionIncrease awarenessAttract leads
Measured ObjectiveRevenue growthConverted leads

Reasons Why Lead Generation is Important to Business

Lead generation efforts can be labor-intensive, time-consuming, and costly; but all successful businesses run lead generation campaigns. Here’s what a lead generation campaign can do for your business: 

Fill Your Sales Pipeline 

Sales are the lifeblood of any business and lead generation allows them to uncover new opportunities and attract potential customers.

There should be a reasonable balance between the quality and quantity of leads you generate in the sales pipeline. You have a bigger chance of converting high-quality leads into paying customers. Quantity is also important because sales is a numbers game; the more people you reach out to, the more likely you will close deals

Position Your Company as a Credible and Trustworthy Source

Part of many lead generation strategies is producing valuable content for the company’s target audience. This content can help position your brand as a credible and trustworthy source in your niche. Given that consumers do extensive research before making a purchase, positioning your brand as an authority on a topic drives sales.  

Gaining the trust of your target audience fosters better customer relationships. This increases the chances of repeat buyers and referrals later on. 

Make Your Business Competitive

Most companies use lead generation in one way or another. This is why it’s not surprising that lead generation is a $295.1 billion industry. Companies that deploy lead generation strategies drive more opportunities and revenue.

Boost Brand Awareness

Brand awareness refers to how recognizable and memorable your brand is to your target audience. Businesses need to have high brand awareness because it plays a crucial role in buying decisions. 71% of consumers prefer buying products and services from brands that they are familiar with. 

Who Needs Lead Generation? 

Since all businesses need customers to survive, they all need a lead generation strategy. What’s different is the type of strategy they need. These companies can be divided into: 

B2B Companies

B2B stands for Business-to-Business. Lead generation is essential for B2B companies because it helps develop a sales pipeline that fuels revenue through longer sales cycles. Lead generation also allows B2B companies to connect with customers more frequently, increasing the chances of repeat business. 

B2C Companies

B2C stands for Business-to-Consumer. Most B2C companies focus on lead generation with the same goal as a B2B company: drive interest in their products and services. 

Established Companies

Some companies might think they do not need to invest in lead generation because they are already established. Without a lead generation strategy it’s easy to fall behind other businesses that are actively trying to attract customers.

How to Generate Leads for a Business? 

The first step to generating leads for a business is understanding the market and your target consumers. You can do this by conducting extensive market research, defining your ideal customer profile (ICP), and creating a buyer persona. 

  • Market Research: Market research allows you to collect insights into the demand and the viability of your products or services. It will also give you a glimpse of how it would perform in real-world scenarios. 
  • Ideal Customer Profile: Also known as the ideal buyer profile, it’s a hypothetical description of the type of company you should sell to. It also describes the customers that would benefit from your offerings. 
  • Buyer Persona: A buyer persona is a fictional representation of your ideal client. It gives you a clear picture of the person you are marketing to, making it easier to develop a targeted approach to attract their attention.

Once you have the market insights, ICP, and buyer persona, the next step is to build a lead generation strategy aligned with your sales objectives. Here are some examples of effective lead generation strategies:

Lead Generation StrategiesDefenition
Content marketingCreating and publishing relevant content
Search engine optimizationImproving site content for search engine visibility
Lead MagnetsFree content, item, or service in exchange of consumer contact information
Sales outsourcingDelegating sales tasks to third-party firms

Companies can use different types of lead generation strategies, depending on who their target audience is. Here are some proven and tested lead generation strategies that you might want to consider integrating into your business: 

Content Marketing 

Lead generation content marketing is one of the most common yet effective lead generation strategies. Content marketing is the process of creating and publishing content that preemptively solves problems for your target audience

When done right, content marketing is an effective lead generation strategy because it can position your company as a reliable source of information about particular topics. An autoshop might publish content about how to complete a DIY repair, thus making it more likely their audience buys car parts.

Gaining the trust and confidence of potential customers makes it more likely they purchase from you and not a competitor.

Lead Magnets

Lead magnets are marketing tools used to convince visitors to share their contact information. Some examples of lead magnets include: 

  • Webinars: Webinars are excellent lead magnets because they give your audience a chance to engage with real people, ask questions, and receive high-input content. 
  • White papers: A white paper breaks down complex issues by providing high-quality data and analysis,It is also used for sharing unique insights, advice, and perspective. 
  • eBooks: eBooks are similar to white papers, but they are less data-heavy and easier to read, making them less intimidating. They usually have a more conversational and entertaining tone with plenty of visuals.
  • Trials or Product Samples: This is one of the most effective lead magnets because it allows consumers to try solutions before fully committing to buying. This strategy is sometimes called a “freemium” offering.

A hard-hitting lead magnet must be relevant and have a perceived value.

  • Relevance: The lead magnet must resonate with the needs of the intended consumers. 
  • Perceived Value: What you offer as a lead magnet should not be readily available elsewhere. Instead, it must offer insider knowledge, expert insight, or solutions that address the top pain points of the customer.

Sales Outsourcing

Lead generation for sales is a complex process. Unfortunately, not all companies have enough resources to handle the workload. That’s what sales outsourcing is here for.

Sales outsourcing is the practice of delegating lead generation tasks to third-party firms. Some examples of sales tasks that can benefit from outsourcing include: 

  • Prospect database collection: A prospect database is a compilation of non-customers, or a list of people that can be a good fit for your ideal customer profile. This task is very time-consuming because it requires extensive research and data collection, so it’s among the most commonly outsourced sales tasks. 
  • Lead qualification: Lead generation efforts can yield tons of leads, but not all of these are of good quality. Lead qualification is the process of filtering leads by comparing them with the company’s buyer persona. If they fit, sales development representatives (SDRs) will push them to account executives (AEs) who will work on closing deals. 
  • Market research: Information collected from market research helps decision-makers make informed decisions. Since the market and its trends can change quickly, doing periodic market research is highly recommended.

When done right, sales outsourcing can increase lead quantity and quality without the expensive of hiring full-time employees. It also unburdens AEs so that they can focus on converting leads into paying customers. 

Are you interested in integrating outsourced sales as a lead generation strategy? Salesroads is here to help you. We’ll build custom appointment setting solutions to fill your sales pipeline with high-quality leads. Get in touch with us today and watch new opportunities roll in.