Small Business Lead Generation – How to Attract the Right Online Leads and Convert Them Into Customers and Advocates

lead generation-001Companies and people buy different today! An average decision maker does most of their buying research online long before making contact. For companies to be contacted, they had better have a good online strategy to produce and deliver the content that decision makers want during the research phase. The following four strategies are the building blocks where small businesses must focus their efforts to attract the right online leads and convert them into customers and advocates. 

Attracting the Right Website Visitors

First you will need people to be able to search and find your website’s posts and pages before you have a chance to create any real interest in your products and services.

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – A solid search engine optimization strategy using targeted keywords to attract the right types of customers to your website is needed. You must pick the right keywords and use them in the right way to rank well in the search engine results.  Link from influential websites to your website will also increase your SEO results.
  • Content Through Blogging – Frequent educational and featured work blog posts show that your site is active, current, and fresh, which will help your SEO results.These blog posts will be the fuel that you use for all your other marketing channels, including social media, enewsletters, and lead generation campaigns. Without good content, nothing works!
  • Social Media Sharing – Sharing your blog posts on well connected Facebook, Google +, LinkedIn, and Twitter accounts gets your message in front of prospects and customers who are interested in your company and its products and services. Social media also allows your connections to share your posts with others, giving it instant credibility and the potential to go viral.

Tactics For Attracting the Right Website Visitors…

  1. Search Engine Optimization
  2. SEO Blog Creation
  3. Social Media Optimization and Integration
  4. Video
  5. Podcasting

Converting Website Visitors into Leads

Attracting the right website visitors to your website is only the first step! Once they visit your site, you need to convert interested visitors into real qualified leads.

  • Call To Action (CTA) Buttons / Landing Pages – Call to actions buttons placed in the right spots on posts and pages of your website will be key to separating those who are really interested in your products and services from the “tire kickers.”
  • Lead Bait – Offering premium content like whitepapers, ebooks, guides, or webinars in exchange for their name and email address is a great to qualify who is a true lead and who is not. The premium content is created to solve problems for potential customers. You will need to know the different types of customer personas that buy your products or services and create premium content for each one.
  • Following-up is KEY – The type of premium content selected will decide if the follow-up will be via email, text, or phone call. Different types of niche content will require different type of niche responses.

Tactics For Converting Website Visitors into Leads…

  1. Lead Generation / Lead Nurturing

Turning Leads into Customers

Depending on the buying process for your products and services, there may be many steps a lead must pass through to become a customer. Where industry trends and “how-to” blogs are great for the top of the sales funnel, different content will be required in the middle and bottom of the funnel to convert a lead into a customer. As your leads gets further down the sales funnel, they will require specific information that is tied to your specific products and services before they will progress any further down the sales funnel.

  • Automated Follow-up and Live Follow-ups – If used in moderation, automated follow-ups are good to further figure out the interest of your lead. Of course, a live follow-up will always trump an automated follow-up when it’ comes time to start closing the deal. Live follow-ups are also useful in finding out quickly what a lead’s interests and needs are. After a short live interaction with a lead, a salesperson can usually figure what step to take next.  At this point, the salesman may manually send some other form of pre-made content or start the close right there and then.
  • Lead Nurturing and Segmentation – The actions of your lead and the interactions you have with the lead will determine what lead nurturing email campaigns are sent and what interaction with a live sales person should come next. Knowing how your content feeds and nurtures leads throughout the stages of your sales cycles is essential to connecting your sales goals to your online and offline sales efforts.

Tactics For Turning Leads into Customers…

  1. Lead Generation / Lead Nurturing

Turning Customers into Advocates

After you turn a lead into a customer and you are providing the products and services you said you would, the next step is to get that customer to want to stand on the rooftops and shout to the masses about how great your products and services are for them.

  • Great Customer Service – To turn a customer into an advocate you’ll have to focus on creating positive, unexpected, and valued moments for your customers that are out of the ordinary. It could be as little as thanking them for their business or helping them get more value out of your products and services. It could be something you do for your customer is outside the call of duty! Have you ever taken you car to a body shop and when you got it back you could tell that they cleaned the car inside and out before you picked it up? That’s something you’re going to remember! Have you every met and Apple Advocate? or a Harley Davidson Advocate? That’s what we’re talking about.  When your customers get to that level of advocacy, they give you good reviews, share your content, pay a premium prices, and on and on. Advocates buy more then normal customers and try to bring their friends and family to you so they can also enjoy your products and services.
  • Continuing Content –  Just because you’ve landed a customer, that doesn’t mean they don’t still want to consume your content.  Make sure some of the content that you produce is also for customer. Content that helps customers get more value out of your products and services. News updates that give them some insight into where you are heading and how your products and services will even be more valuable to them in the future. Advocates want to interact with your company.
  • Ask for Interaction – Give customers who want to be advocates the easiest way possible to tell others about you. Give them the easiest way possible to interact with you. Maybe you survey them for their takes on your products and services? Make them a part of your decision making process. Involve them! When you know you have an advocate on your hands, strike quick.  Send them a request for an online review.  Maybe setup a special group for them on social media where they can interact with other like minded individuals and your company. Your creativity is really your only limit for leveraging your advocates.

Tactics For Turning Customers into Advocates…

  1. Online Review Requests

Using this strategy, our experience, and specific tools of the trade, Main Street Marketing can create an internet presence for your company that makes your phone ring and inbox fill. 

Contact Us (859-904-8035) today to get started!

MSM GreenABOUT MAIN STREET MARKETING

Since 2006, Main Street Marketing has been creatingInternet Presence Solutions for small businesses mainly in the Cincinnati – Northern Kentucky area. Main Street Marketing uses internet marketingsearch engine optimization, social media, lead generation, and video to create a true Internet Presence for its clients. When integrated correctly, this core group of services provide results together that none of the services could provide on their own or in phases.
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