Finding and utilizing the best lead generation tactics has never been easy.
Even after spending years in the marketing industry, I’m still constantly looking for ways to optimize and enhance my lead generation strategies.
Effectively capturing and converting leads requires constantly learning about your target audience and adapting to the ever-changing buyer journey.
Here are the top 10 lead generation tactics that really work to drive ROI.
10 Top Lead Generation Techniques
- Rank For the Right Keywords Using SEO
- Reach Your Target Audience on Facebook
- Run Targeted Search Ads on Google
- Build Trust and Credibility With Reviews
- Send Personalized Email Campaigns to Nurture Leads
- Create an Affiliate Marketing Program
- Optimize Your Website to Generate Leads
- Collaborate With Influencers in Your Niche
- Offer Freebies in Exchange for Leads
- Create Less But More Engaging Content
1. Rank For the Right Keywords Using SEO
Content is at the heart of any lead generation strategy – but not just any content will do.
Every blog, article, or press release you produce for your company needs to be optimized for not just the search engines but the needs of your target audience.
The challenge I’ve seen many companies struggling with is choosing the right keywords for their SEO efforts.
Simply selecting keywords at random won’t deliver results. Marketers must create a specific strategy for choosing the right terms and phrases.
Identifying your audience: First, you need to understand your target audience to determine what types of words and phrases they will likely use online.
Creating user personas which define the pain points, goals, and even the language used by your ideal customers will help you to select the right words to rank for.
Understanding intent: Once you know the demographics, psychographics, and behaviors of your target audience, you need to think about how their search terms might change based on their “intent”.
For instance, if you’re running a digital marketing agency, you might choose terms like “what is digital marketing” to target customers looking for information at the top of the purchasing funnel.
Or “digital marketing services pricing” to connect with customers at the bottom of the funnel, ready to make a purchase.
Utilizing keywords effectively: Once you define your keywords, don’t simply scatter them throughout your content.
Think about how you can optimize each piece of content to engage readers and help search engines.
Use your keywords strategically in the body of your content, as well as in your URLs and titles, meta tags, descriptions, and even within the alt text on images.
If you need help finding inspiration for your keyword strategy, there are numerous tools you can use to guide your lead generation strategies.
Google’s “People Also Ask” section offers insights into common questions connected to your chosen search terms.
Competitor analysis tools like SEMRush and Ahrefs can offer insights into terms competing brands are already ranking for.
Once you implement keywords into your content, monitor the results they generate.
Pay attention to which pages get the most visits, which posts generate the most attention when shared on social media, and which resources drive leads for your site.
2. Reach Your Target Audience on Facebook
While your own website and blog are excellent tools for lead generation marketing, it’s important not to underestimate the importance of building an effective presence on social networks.
Social media isn’t just a tool for peer-to-peer communication anymore. 68% of marketers say actively posting on social media helps them to generate more leads.
The key to success with effective social media marketing is understanding where to focus your attention.
The best channels for social media advertising will vary depending on your brand and target audience.
- B2B brands can demonstrate authority and build thought leadership on LinkedIn.
- Brands with many visual assets, such as fashion and beauty companies, thrive on channels like Pinterest, Instagram, and TikTok.
- Facebook is one of the most universally beneficial channels for virtually any brand.
I consider Facebook one of the best platforms for creating highly targeted campaigns.
Not only does it have a huge reach (with around 2.9 billion users), but Meta offers numerous ways to target your ads based on customer intent, interest, and demographics.
You can create lookalike audiences utilizing the email addresses you’ve already captured on your website or leverage Meta’s data to find your ideal audience.
When creating Facebook ads, I always recommend the following:
Using targeting tools carefully: Lookalike audiences are ideal for attracting new leads, as they allow you to leverage information on demographics, interests, and specific audience behaviors to find customers most likely to be interested in your products or services.
Drive action with ads: No matter what kind of content you create, whether it’s a paid social media campaign or an organic video post, always tell your audience what you want them to do.
Use a CTA button or statement to drive customers back to your website, ask them to contact your team, or encourage them to make a purchase.
Create dedicated landing pages: Make sure your customers arrive on the right page for the next stage of their purchasing journey after clicking on your ads.
Dedicated landing pages keep your customers focused on a specific task rather than overwhelming them with too many choices or excessive information.
Remember that addressing buyer concerns (such as worries about shipping costs, refund policy, return costs, etc.) can dramatically improve leads and conversions.
3. Run Targeted Search Ads on Google
Organic content and SEO will help to drive attention to your website and products, but sometimes you’ll need to invest in paid advertising to really get results from your lead generation strategy.
Google Ads is one of the most powerful tools for lead generation.
Like most lead generation strategies, your chances of success on Google Ads will depend on your ability to create highly targeted, relevant campaigns.
To make the most of your Google Ads campaign:
Target specific keywords: While broad keyword search terms will help you fill the top of your sales funnel, they won’t always drive the best conversion rates.
Specific, long-tail keywords are more likely to capture the attention of a niche audience with a higher level of purchasing intent. For instance, opt for “Marketing experts near me” over “Marketing”.
Google Ads is trying to shift customers towards adopting a broad keyword strategy, but you can still get better results by blending exact-match keywords into your search campaigns.
Remember negative keywords: Use negative keywords to filter out irrelevant traffic and reduce your search marketing costs.
For example, if you sell shoes online, you may not want to be associated with terms like “shoe repair” or “sandals”.
Remember to use dedicated landing pages to drive your customers to a purchase or conversion with clear, benefit-driven copy and directions.
4. Build Trust and Credibility With Reviews
Another lead generation strategy I find extremely powerful for most brands involves utilizing “social proof”.
In other words, this means showing your customers clear evidence they can trust you to deliver an excellent product, service, or experience.
In today’s digital world, consumers spend much more time evaluating companies during their purchasing journey.
While they don’t always trust what companies have to say about their products and services, they do believe in the reviews and testimonials shared by other customers.
According to Gartner, 49% of customers refer to user ratings and reviews when evaluating what to buy.
One of the easiest ways to reduce customer effort, and enhance your lead generation strategy, is to make it easier for customers to find reviews.
Encourage your clients to leave reviews on your product pages or rate your product with stars, similar to the items you see listed on Amazon and other marketplaces.
If you’re running a B2B company, you can even consider working with your clients to create case studies and customer stories you can publish on a dedicated part of your website.
Remember, reviews need to be authentic to be impactful. Fake reviews won’t drive sales and could damage your reputation, calling your credibility into question.
Here is a tip.
If you’re struggling to convince customers to leave reviews, consider offering them something in return for their time and effort.
For instance, you could reward each customer that leaves a review with a discount on their next purchase.
It’s also worth providing your audience with guidance to help improve the quality of your reviews. Ask them to share specifically what they like and dislike about a product to help future customers.
If you receive negative reviews, don’t just ignore them. Respond to your customers whenever they mention your brand on your website, Google, or social media, and demonstrate your commitment to addressing the problem.
5. Send Personalized Email Campaigns to Nurture Leads
Email marketing is one of the best ways to capture leads and nurture them into actual customers.
Many companies still make the mistake of thinking their customers will arrive on their website and be instantly convinced to make a purchase.
However, the reality is most consumers need to interact with a company multiple times before they buy something.
With email, you can ensure you keep your brand in the minds of your target customers, improving your chances of conversions and higher customer lifetime value.
The good news is that around 25% of online shoppers open branded emails once per day. However, it’s the content in your email that determines exactly what they’ll do next.
Most customers will simply ignore mass email campaigns that aren’t tailored to their specific interests or submit them to their junk or spam folders.
If you want to convert customers into active brand fans, you need to take a more targeted approach.
Using email marketing tools, you can “segment” your target audience based on their specific interests, location, preferences, and more.
You can allow your customers to choose how frequently they receive emails and choose the kinds of messages they see. Use segmentation to:
Personalize your email campaigns: Send specific messages based on your customer’s interests or previous purchases. Use their name in the content, and be specific.
Provide value: Don’t just focus on selling to customers. Concentrate on delivering real value. Consider sharing blog posts in your emails, providing educational content to potential buyers, and delivering guidance with various forms of content, like video.
Keep your list clean: Avoid sending emails to customers who don’t want to receive them. Allow people to unsubscribe, and clean your list to eliminate addresses that aren’t delivering results.
This will help to reduce your email costs and protect your domain’s reputation.
6. Create an Affiliate Marketing Program
Since customers are more likely to trust other buyers than businesses themselves, one lead generation strategy I always recommend is affiliate marketing.
Creating a referral program is an excellent way to convert your existing customers and contacts into advocates for your brand.
Your existing customers are the best possible ambassadors for your brand. They already understand your product and service and know the benefits you can offer to other clients.
The biggest challenge with affiliate marketing is actually converting your customers into people willing to assist you with your marketing efforts.
Fortunately, motivating your customers with the right incentives is relatively easy. Offering gifts and rewards to your target audience in exchange for their support can instantly turn them into advocates.
For instance, you might offer your customers a discount every time they drive a new client to your business or provide them with opportunities to win points they can convert into prizes. You can even offer monetary incentives to particularly effective affiliates.
Remember, the best affiliate marketing campaigns reward the person recommending your product or service to a new customer and the new buyer.
For instance, Dropbox earned significant attention by offering advocates and new customers free access to extra storage.
7. Optimize Your Website to Generate Leads
Your website is one of the most important tools you can use in your lead generation strategy. It’s where the magic of conversion actually happens.
You must ensure your site is optimized to deliver exceptional customer experiences.
A fantastic website designed to deliver a great user experience through fast-loading pages, simple navigation, and an attractive interface drives several benefits.
Not only will customers be more likely to buy from you if you have a functional website, but you’ll boost your SEO potential this way too.
Google rewards businesses with easy-to-use websites that minimize bounce rates.
Here are a few ways you can optimize your website for your lead generation strategy:
Make sure pages load quickly: According to Google, reducing loading times on your site by as little as one second can increase conversions by 27%. The faster your pages load on all devices (including mobiles), the more straightforward the purchasing process becomes.
Make the site easy to use: Put user experience first when designing your website. Your pages should be easy to use and navigate. Products should be simple to find, and customers should feel comfortable moving through the checkout process quickly and easily.
Use CTAs effectively: Remember to take advantage of the Call To Action buttons. CTAs shouldn’t just appear on your product and contact pages.
They must be implemented throughout your website on high-traffic pages to help guide customers toward a purchase.
When implementing CTAs, make sure you have links and buttons on your blog posts, pop-ups that appear when someone visits your site, and your most important sales pages.
You can also utilize dedicated tools to create popups that target customers when they’re about to leave your website, to reduce abandonment rates.
8. Collaborate With Influencers in Your Niche
Influencer marketing has long been a beneficial tool for lead generation and conversion optimization.
However, it’s grown increasingly important in recent years, thanks to the rise of the creator economy and the growing impact of social media.
Around 37% of customers now trust social media influencers over brands.
The challenge I see many companies struggling with when implementing influencer marketing campaigns is finding the right partners to work with.
Many companies assume that just because an influencer has a high number of followers on social media, they can help increase sales.
However, you must also ensure the followers connected with your chosen influencer are relevant to your brand. Using social media channels and influencer networks, look for:
Brand alignment: Choosing an influencer that shares your values and vision as a company will help to make your company more credible in the eyes of your customers.
Industry experts: Focus on finding both macro and micro-influencers that demonstrate thought leadership in your industry. This will make the content they share more valuable for your target audience.
Content creation expertise: Ensure your influencers know how to create content that resonates with your audience.
This means working with professionals who understand how to utilize different platforms and their features correctly, from Reels on Instagram to TikTok video trends and Facebook paid campaigns.
Remember, while providing your influencers with direction can be helpful, giving the experts you work with some creative freedom is also a good idea.
Allowing influencers to suggest specific content based on what they know about their target audience will increase your ROI.
9. Offer Freebies in Exchange for Leads
Everyone loves a freebie. While giving something away for free can be a daunting prospect for some businesses, the right “gift” can have a huge impact on your lead generation strategies.
You can break down the barriers to a sale and address customer concerns by offering a free trial or demo of your product if you sell digital products.
Alternatively, you can build credibility and capture leads by offering access to a free, valuable resource. For instance, Shopify offers “Hatchful”, a free logo creation and design tool, which allows it to collect email addresses from customers for nurturing campaigns.
Companies like HubSpot offer free access to webinars and courses to support customers in developing new skills.
We offer free courses, ebooks, and other actionable guides in exchange for a customer’s email.
Promoting free rewards in your Facebook and Google Ads, email campaigns, and even on your website convinces customers to take a chance and learn more about you.
It’s an opportunity to show customers your value without initially asking for anything in return.
Just make sure the free item or solution you offer has genuine value. Read my lead magnet ideas post for inspiration.
10. Create Less But More Engaging Content
Finally, as I noted above, content is the key to effective lead generation. It’s how you show your expertise and authority to customers, earn trust, and differentiate yourself from the competition.
However, it’s easy for businesses to fall into the trap of prioritizing quantity over quality.
Producing large amounts of content, from endless blog posts to videos and podcasts, might help you to strengthen your position on the search engines.
However, if the content isn’t delivering real value, it won’t produce genuine results. The best content is targeted and specific.
Invest time in creating well-researched, valuable, and insightful content that resonates with your audience through each stage of their buyer journey.
During the “Awareness” stage, when customers are just getting to know your brand, develop thought leadership content that answers crucial questions about your industry, product, or services.
As your customers move through the purchasing journey, provide them with more targeted content, from educational pieces that compare your items to other solutions in your industry to valuable insights on utilizing your tools.
To make the most of each piece of content:
Understand your customer’s needs: Get to know your audience, the questions they ask when purchasing, and the decisions they must make throughout the buyer journey. Create content that informs, educates, and entertains (rather than just selling).
Pay attention to presentation: Your content should be rich and easy to consume. Add context to your blog posts with screenshots and visuals. Include graphical elements like videos when they add value and provide useful insights.
Tell a story: Utilize storytelling techniques to captivate and engage your audience. Share your personal experiences, provide useful anecdotes, and speak to your customers in their own language. Make your content emotional and interesting.
Lead generation is a complex process. It takes time and effort to fully understand your audience and determine which lead generation strategies will produce the best results.
However, with the ten strategies above, you can start strengthening your position in your industry, connecting emotionally with your audience, and unlocking new opportunities.
Remember, the best lead generation strategies are dynamic, living things. They evolve and adapt as you learn more about your market, evolving promotional techniques, and your audience.
With that in mind, consistently measure the results of every marketing campaign, and take advantage of data to optimize your future lead generation tactics.
The more information you collect, the more powerful and effective your lead generation efforts will become.