Decrypting Lead Generation Recap

Aug 22, 2019

Written by Scott Gerbereux, 2019 SMCLT Secretary

Lead generation is the process of finding people [leads] who are likely to become your customers and start them down the path of the sales funnel. The abundance of information readily available online has led to the emergence of new techniques to develop and qualify potential leads before passing them to sales.

A panel of experts gathered at WeWork to discuss generating leads with digital marketing. Cassie Bernat, Digital Media Manager at Dentsply Sirona, moderated the event. Panelists:

Key takeaways:

  1. Where does social media fit in lead generation?

“Social media is top of the funnel. If a person interacts with your brand first on social, retarget them with something enticing to join the community and bring them down the funnel. With the Facebook Lead Ads tool, you can retarget customers and send them directly to a lead form. This gives you the opportunity to collect higher-quality leads. Paid social should support organic. Organic social should inform paid. Make sure you know your end goal of your campaign and trace the path back through the customer journey. Lead generation strategy should never end.

When creating gated content that will require a potential customer to give their data to access, put yourself in their shoes. Be sure to give them something they want (a solution to a problem) before you ask for something you want (i.e. email address). Your ad should clearly communicate why it’s valuable for people to share their information with your business.” ~ Joshua Roten

  1. Utilize your existing fan base

“One of the most important lead generators are your existing social media followers. Getting them to share your message is valuable. Take the data from the website traffic you are generating and turn it into content that will help customers along their journey.” ~ Lisa Dale

  1. Data is the key

“Having data behind your decisions will completely change how you approach marketing. It’s important to identify your best customer. Define the attributes associated with your target audience through a persona exercise (i.e. mom with two kids, businessman). Leverage marketing automation tools that connect to inbound leads and score those attributes. Analyze and pivot your strategy every 60 to 90 days.

Visually appealing landing pages with gated content (i.e. enter email to obtain) are resonating with Samantha’s clients that are looking to attract visitors to the top of the funnel. Next step: score what actions the visitors are taking (clicking a button, scheduling a call).” ~ Samantha Bell

  1. Have a channel strategy

“Social is just a piece of the lead generation strategy. You cannot and should not do everything there. It’s not only digital. Look at it from an integrated marketing strategy. Put a plan into action then evaluate what worked and what didn’t. A/B test copy, images, videos, etc.

Are you marketing in social to nurture relationships, build a community, be a thought leader? It’s important to have a channel strategy for where customers are in the funnel. You need to service their specific need, making sure there is enough content for each step of the journey. Don’t forget about the last step: loyalty!” ~ Shanna Green

  1. Make sure goals are in place

“Revisit the why behind your goals. Set expectations between website traffic, lead qualification and lead conversion.

Making sure there is a process on the backend to qualify the lead, collecting their data and then pushing them to the sales team. The value exchange needs to be high for gated content. If a customer can find the information for free, they will.

We know everyone is online. But where? Meet them where they are (i.e. cooking website) and make sure it is a seamless experience from ad to website landing page to lead generation form.” ~ Melissa Campbell

Based on the size of the business, budget and team, there are many different ways to begin the process of lead generation. If you’re just starting out, Shanna suggests tools such as MailChimp and WordPress which offer solid metrics for understanding how your content is performing.

Though we’ve only named a handful of lead generation strategies, whichever you choose to experiment with next, be sure you keep testing. This will help you gain an in-depth understanding of how to effectively strategize and implement digital marketing campaigns in order to convert leads to customers.