Lead generation is like the stock market. With a few smart decisions you can make a killing but if you don’t keep an eye on it, you could lose everything. Digital marketing is much the same. You can produce creative and wonderful strategies, but if you don’t keep nurturing them, the leads deplete.
But unlike plummeting stocks, you can quickly recover your leads. So let’s take a look at what you can do to whip things into shape.
Researching your competitors’ strategies will give inspiration for your own campaigns, highlight what doesn’t work and help you differentiate yourself from the competition.
There are many tools available to assist such as SpyFu and SEMrush. These enable you to see every keyword your competitors have bought and all their ad variations on Adwords. You can look at their ad test history to see which keywords were most successful and check their backlinks to discover exactly what enables them to outrank you. This research will help you outrank competitors and generate stronger leads.
Conduct an audit of all paid channels
Once you’ve looked at your competitors’ strategies, you need to compare them with your own. When auditing your paid channels, look for underperforming areas. Reduce budgets in these areas and allocate money to high-performing strategies. This might sound simple but time and again large chunks of money are being spent on keywords which drive irrelevant searches or fail to convert. Objectively reviewing your spend versus what is actually generating leads will help you achieve an almost instantaneous turnaround.
Reviewing your target audience is also essential. Have the needs of your audience changed? Has the economy affected spending? Utilize tools like Google Trends and research competitors to see if there is a decline across the industry or if it’s just you. This will ensure you adjust your efforts effectively.
Develop and execute an inbound marketing strategy
Many companies overlook inbound marketing as it doesn’t yield results overnight. However, according to US-based software company HubSpot’s State of Inbound 2018 report, 51 per cent of marketers find a higher ROI from inbound marketing tactics, compared to only 11 per cent from outbound tactics.
By reviewing the online buyer journey and aligning the right content to various stages of the funnel, inbound marketing helps you engage new audiences, gain loyalty and establish yourself as a trusted advisor in your field. Eventually, rather than you chasing leads, the customers will come to you. No wonder 55 per cent of marketers say blog content creation is their top inbound marketing priority.
Leverage outbound tactics with content designed for inbound
Kill two birds with one stone by applying your inbound content to your outbound strategies. For example, reengage past customers by sending an article you recently posted on social media to your mailing list. This is not only a great way of maximizing your budget, but it also enables you to cast the lead net as wide as possible.
Take stock of existing assets
Why overhaul your strategies to boost lead generation when you can work with what you already have? Look at your assets and play to your strengths. If you have existing customer databases, create lookalike audiences across various channels. If you have a prospect database, create an email nurture stream and have your sales reps get in touch when your targets show some interest.
Monitor and evaluate the process
Making changes and hoping for the best is not enough. Check in regularly to see how your strategies are performing. Look at the data objectively and keep tabs on your competitors for comparison. Be patient but don’t be afraid to make changes if things aren’t working.
Finally, make note of all successes and failures. This will give you an objective view of your progress and help you tailor future campaigns.
The bottom line is, if you’re struggling to generate leads, you are definitely not alone. Over 60 per cent of marketers find generating traffic and leads to be their top challenge. But a decline in leads can often be rectified by making adjustments to existing strategies.
Monitoring the data regularly to evaluate successes and failures is key to maintaining a strong and healthy lead pipeline. But remember to keep one eye on the bigger picture by tracking competitors and target audiences. This will keep you relevant, competitive and visible.