*this is a study guide that was created from lecture videos and is used to help you gain an understanding of how to generate leads online.
Write (SMART) business goals as first step
KPI are specific for your lead generation program
Web KPI: Unique v returning, page views, downloads, contact information
Social Media KPI: followers, shared info, click through-rate
Search KPI: Page rank, viewers
Email KPI: Click through rates, unsubscribers, shared content
Tools: Vertical response, mail chimp, constant contact
Benchmarking: Understanding where you stand
Entice your prospects
Know your customer: demographics, think from your customers perspective
Buying steps: Consideration -> Evaluation -> Purchase -> Experience
From KPI’s determine what types and how you should create content
Content Audit: What do you have? How can you reuse it? How can you curate it?
Character Count: Twitter-100, Facebook/Email Subject Line-40
Channel Selections: Focus on your customer and publish and be present where they are
How often should you publish? Write in depth content, repurpose content, ask customers how often they want content
Search Results: relevant, credible, quality links
Descriptive,concise and accurate keywords
Choose primary keyword for each landing page
Clear concise and understandable content
Homepage: What you do, what makes you different/better purpose, how you help customers
Easily be able to navigate through site
Unify your brand, use visuals
Convert prospects to qualified leads
After developing leads, create a compelling offer. Get there attention, solve their problem, engage customers, establish credibility and create trust
Call to Action-easy to find, bold colors, place above the fold, brief action oriented words, “use first person language” my instead of yours
Create effective landing page, create an effective form to get information from customers
Create a database
Define your criteria for leads so you can increase or decrease your lead response rate
To narrow your leads-charge fee for offer, request more info on contact form, strict terms and conditions
To broaden your leads-offer free service.gift/tool kit, use loose terms/conditions
Set up Google Alerts to track and monitor keywords
Transform Leads to Customers
Lead scoring is when a lead is ready to buy
Dynamic content. Ex. personalized email
Clear, concise and consistent email subject line. Grab readers attention, subject line should be accurate, useful, clear, specific, sense of urgency and 30-40 words.
Create a positive online shopping experience to reduce shopping cart abandonment
provide a guest checkout, ask for shipping before billing, offer full range of payment options, make checkout link easy to find, provide consistent branding, offer multiple shipping options, provide delivery estimate, be transparent about return policy, send confirmation email and say thank you
Improve customer experience
Live chat feedback form, email address or phone number for customers to contact you about problems
Monitor your social media channels as it can detract your business in reputation.
Become a customer of your competition to get inside and know how to adjust your company.
Rewards club, exclusivity, “surprise and delight” such as providing a free appetizer to a customer who provided a good review
Engaging with customers
Twitter to promote local cause that relates to business
Join professional network on linkedin
Ask facebook followers for ideas for new products or way to improve your service
Join conversations of instagram activity
Create loyal advocates
Tailor content for sharing, use visuals that are interesting and easy to share, build relationships with social media influencers
Referrals, consumer online opinions and editorial content are most trusted forms of marketing
Send coupon codes, give reward points for writing reviews, leverage employees on how to obtain referrals by year end bonus, recognition, gift cards..
If you need more information on the basics of lead generation then visit HubSpot.
Sales funnel- how your company defines each stage in your revenue cycle
Drive leads into your sales funnel
Lead is individual that is a good fit for your product
Not everyone that comes to your site is a good lead
A good lead is a qualified prospect that exhibit buying behavior
Elements of a lead is demographic (company, title, location, industry, company size, products sold) engagment (website activity, download history, event attendance, discussions with sales, program activity) intent (online activity, engagement with competitors)
BANT is how you determine if a good lead- budget, authority, need, time
Leads buying journey should map to your sales funnel
What marketing program you run depends on where a lead is in your sales funnel
Your sales funnel also determines when you hand a lead off to sales
TOFU Top of Funnel (knows about company, not ready to buy
Communication that is educational)
Enters funnel as Name -> Engaged -> Prospect
MOFU sales intent (have engaged and person is potentially good sales lead, communication is product education) Lead- viable lead sent to inside sales to ensure they are a good lead, this is when they are a Marketing Qualified Lead -> Sales Lead- stage in which lead is sent to account executive to schedule meeting and convert to…
*Recycling in MOFU if a lead is not ready to buy, send back to marketing for more lead nurturing and programs (automated drip campaigns)
BOFU lead is close to being a customer and actively talking to sale, communication is showing product value) Opportunity- viable sales opportunity and being worked on by sales -> Opportunity stages- ex. Demo, negotiations, contract.. -> Customer- closed-won customers and the endgame!
Lead Hand Off Rules
Create who communicates to a lead when and when do you hand off to the next group, marketing and sales must be best buddies, handoff must be seamless, happens between an MQL (good lead by marketing, good fit and engagement, BANT qualified) and an
SQL (had had direct contact with sales, sales determined is good lead and ready to make an opp)
MQL threshold- a lead passed to sales should have a combination of fit and behavior called a lead score
Lead scores can be comprised of demographic, attributes, engagement, and predictive indicators (numerical score from 1 to 100)
A scored lead is a warm lead
Sales notification needs to happen that lead is ready to be contacted, notified once hits the MQL threshold, need a service level agreement between sales and marketing, which is an agreement that define these specific timeframes in which a sales rep must follow up with an MQL, Implementing an SLA ensures smooth handoff and follow-up, notifications should be sent via email to the sales rep, then his boss, then the VP, and so on until the lead is followed up with You need a strong sales and marketing handoff so you don’t have a leaky funnel
Define your key metrics and goals, a lead gen plan does not stop after lead acquisition.
Benchmarks- Determine where you are today to be able to set your goals properly, ex. Current leads, MQLs and opportunities generated per month
Lead Generation Goals
More high quality leads
Moving leads faster through the pipeline
Improving branding to supercharge inbound
Improving sales and marketing alignment and communication
Increasing close rate and deal amount
Common Lead Generation Metrics
Number of leads generated, number of MQLs generated, and number of opps generated, conversion rates per program, conversion rates per funnel stage, cost per lead, cost per MQL, cost per opp, lead conversion velocity, marketing attribution and bookings
Set Yourself Up For Measurement Success
Track your important metrics(above) in a spreadsheet per program, per month, and per quarter
Use an attribution platform that helps track marketing success
Set up a biweekly or monthly metrics meeting with your team and sales
Create reports for your teams and executive reports to bubble up status of your programs,
Lead Based Marketing
strategy that places the focus on driving demand with an individual
PRO: Most marketing and sales systems are lead based, easier to scale, can focus on 1:1 personalization and selling, inbound is lead based, works well if you focus on small and mid-market
CON: focus on lead quantity over quality, can cause sales and marketing misalignment, doesn’t account for decision groups/account influencers, can cause overspending by casting wide net to get leads into sales funnel
Lead Gen- Offer -> Channels -> Segments
Stages for Lead Gen
- Full funnel content
- Multiple inbound and outbound programs
- Full funnel, multichannel nurture to move inbound leads
- Lead handoff rules
- Sales enablement- sales understands and well aware where leads are coming from
a strategy that focuses on driving demand by marketing to a targeted account
PRO: b2b companies sell to accounts not individuals, sales focuses on selling into accounts, sell to only the accounts that are a good fit for your company
CON: difficult to scale, challenging if you sell to smaller companies or mid market, need to agree on a solid list of target accounts, requires budget for targeted field marketing
ABM- Accounts ->Content -> Channels
Stages for ABM
- Account Selection
- Contact appending
- Account Based Content
- Personalized outbound programs- personalized direct mail, field events, email programs
- Strong sales and marketing alignment
Lead Generation Plan/Roadmap
- Prioritize your objectives
What are my marketing objectives for the next year?
Where do I thinkI have gaps in my current marketing mix?
What are the new channels I have been dying to try?
What is my budget?
Top Lead Generation Objectives
Qualifying sales readiness
Pinpoint focus area for lead generation efforts
Do we struggle driving inbound awareness for the company?
Do we struggle getting prospects to enter our sales funnel?
Do we struggle moving prospects through our sales funnel?
Do we struggle delivering high quality leads to sales?
The objectives you prioritize will help your channel mix
Document objectives and goals
Program tactics and proposed calls to action
Expected vs. actual leads
Expected vs. actual MQLs
Content Marketing Tips
Create high value content to fuel all of your lead gen campaigns, needs to attract leads
Embodies the product or firms core brand elements
Use variety of media formats such as text, video, photos, audio, infographics to tell story
Can be consumed by variety of devices such as desktop, computers, smartphones and tablets
Distributed through brand owned properties, social media and third party vendors
Provides measurable results through use of call to actions
Helps with branding preference and drives purchases
Is the fuel for all your lead gen programs
Builds prospect and customer loyalty
Positions a brand to be a thought leader in their space
Helps with SEO and social validation
Focus on thought leadership over hard selling
Create it to be highly visual
Keep an updated editorial calendar of publishing dates
Provide messaging documents with key messaging, personas and buying stages
Thought leadership– ideas that require attention and offer guidance/clarity on topic, educational, customer first, provides actionable insights, useful beyond the product
Promotional– Sales oriented, company first, provides detail about the product,
Types of Content
Articles, Blogs, Case Studies, Cheat Sheets, Ebook, Infographics, Websites, Podcasts, Reports, Slideshows, Surveys, Templates, Videos, Webinars
Usability and design– reflect brand, visually appealing, mobile responsive, not text heavy (concise sentences, bullet points) easy to navigate, have clear conversion paths,
Website forms– short forms are better, first name-last name-email-work
Website CTA– contact us, demo request, content download, chat, subscription request, benchmark grader, product trial, contest
Website Testing– AB Testing (examples to test: image selection, CTA placement/color, website copy, website navigation) chose one element/variable to test at a time, create hypothesis, split web traffic 50/50, benchmark your original version, wait until test reaches full significance
Attract new buyers at the top of your sales funnel
Helps generate leads search or social media, show your personality!
Make blog visual, have clear conversion goals, have multiple paths to social media, offer pre-populated tweets, provide mobile optimized experience,
Social Media Tips
High value and compelling educational offer, interesting copy with cta and eye catching visual, a form to collect lead info, combination of organic and paid efforts
Need paid ads for social media to expand your network
What motivates people to share
To enhance their own reputation
Provide value to them
Individual feels a sense of exclusivity
Competitions and contests
Facebook Perfect Post
Eye catching imagery
A CTA and link to a compelling offer
What to Promote on Facebook?
Content assets gated to a form
Event registration forms
Blog posts (put paid advertising behind it)
Foster continuous and real time relationships, can post wide variety of content often.
4-1-1 is 4 educational tweets, retweet 1 industry influencer and then 1 promotional
Twitter Perfect Tweet-
Compelling copy, clear CTA, good hashtag usage
Twitter Lead Gen Card, basic tweet with image and link
People can go on LinkedIn to talk business and get industry news
LinkedIn Perfect Post-
Clever copy, a clear CTA with link, professional imagery, educational content
LinkedIn Ad Targeting- use for target account ads or general targeting
LinkedIn Sponsored Updates- post on own feed to increase impressions
LinkedIn Sponsored InMail- send from own linkedin, paying to send directly to inbox, use sparingly with high value offer
Don’t keyword stuff, What does my company do? What are the key search terms? What are my different products/services and what needs do they fill? What keywords do my competitors rank for? What is the traffic opportunity for each keyword? Have your page and keyword answer a question
Influencer Marketing Tips
Increase inbound traffic, great for brand awareness, build inbound links, shows you are thought leader, generates leads and increases referrals
Influencer is a thought leader, high volume of social followers, author/speaker/blogger, award winner, analyst. Needs to be balance of giving and taking for influencer
Create influencer list (research through SM, use influencer software tool, search for authors on industry) -> Tier list on importance and how to contact them -> Create outreach plan (reach out through SM, send email offering something of value, send direct mail, show them love with content) -> ask them to do content share/blog post/podcast/speak at event
To further learn the foundations of inbound marketing visit Marketo.
Paid Ad Tips
Define your goals
Determine your budget
Define your audience
Choose your Keywords
All PPC ads should go to a landing page with an offer
Landing page should speak to your exact ad offer
If landing page doesn’t speak to your ad, your lead will bounce
Landing Page best practices- engaging graphics, bullet points, clear CTA, validation
Ad Copy- use clear easy to use words
Use vivid emotional language
Focus on keywords and intent behind them
Have clear and compelling CTA
80% of people will only read your ad headline, focu on keyword, use strong verbiage and play to emotion
Ad Copy must show value, don’t shy away from all caps bold letters and exclamation points!
Tracking Ad Performance- Impressions (based from keyword, budget Google Quality Score) Clicks, Conversions, CTR, CPC, Funnel Performance.
Google Quality Score is expected keyword CTR, historical CTR, Account history, keyword/search relevance, keyword/ad relevance, ad performance
In Person Events
Physical Events- tradeshows, conferences, field events
Set goals, develop your trade show presence(swag, welcome area, colors, new products)
Webinar- can happen real time or on demand, 30-60 minutes, slide presentation
1-2 a month, choose webinar platform, create webinar calendar, get speakers, decide your topic, know your audience, keep it entertaining, use imagery, don’t make slides wordy, include twitter handle and tweetables, create landing page that hosts your webinar content with form, email link to webinar recording to all registrants, add to email nurturing program, create ebook out of webinars, sponsor a paid or virtual webinar, be a speaker for partner webinar, speaker for customer webinar
Remember email is your number one event, always promote on social, leverage sales to do outreach, direct mail if large tradeshow, paid promotions, leverage partners, create a microsite if large event, be active on social channels while at event, daily live blogs during event, send out daily emails, write and schedule event followups before the event, send follow up email 1-2 days after event, send valuable content from event, include additional offer for people to engage, ad to email nurturing track
Transactional Emails- Emails related to event
Promotional- emails meant to incite action like a demo or a download
Relationship bidding- emails meant to solidify relationships with your database
Communication- Emails that communicate some sort of information
Don’t blindly batch and blast your emails
Email segmentation based on demographic: company size, title, location, age, income
Based on Buying cycle: where a lead is in her buying journey
Behavioral: what a lead has done and how she has interacted with your brand
Write compelling subject line– ask audience question in subject line, use a list, offer a discount, say something controversial or attention grabbing, be personalized, reference pop culture
Create copy that converts- make it concise, use bullet points or number lists, always have a clear CTA, use video and other media, A/B Test different copy to see what works,
Make it visual-make sure emails are on brand, add compelling email banner, add a hero image, add video, photos or other multimedia, make sure it’s mobile friendly
Calls to Action is critical- Have only one CTA per email (two MAX) place CTA above and below the fold, Make CTA stands out through copy and color, make sure CTA is obvious and concise
Leverage someone else’s database to partner and gain trust from their buyers
Email buyout- you purchase full email send to a certain number of contacts. Email is 100% dedicated to your brand and often links out to your own landing page.
Newsletter Spot- Purchase an ad or a content spot on the vendors newsletter. You share this space with a few other companies and your ad
You can select the audience specifications for your email send.
Pricing is though list, CPL, newsletter topic, bundle pricing
Vendor considerations- Always use trusted vendor, list quality and update frequency, duplicate lead policy, data transfer capabilities
Use another vendors audience to promote your content on their website
Builds brand trust and visibility
Builds inbound link profile
Determine your goal to determine content syndication
Target prospects by location, job titles, company size, industry
Choose offer based on vendors audience
Content asset: Does early or mid stage content work better?
Content types: Which type of content performs best?
Vendor: What vendor delivers you the best leads?
Form length: Test different lengths
CTA: What is your CTA? What works best for this audience?
Best Practices Stand out and engage with something a customer can see and feel, think dimensional
Dimensional, Personalized, High-end, Creative, Targeted, Unique, On-brand, Trackable
Use for door openers, deal accelerators, target account engagement, new customer engagement, event invites, executive introductions.
Tips Make sure direct mail is trackable, Do not make it a marketing activity only
Process Send direct mail- send email follow up once delivered- have sales rep call- reach out through social media- send email with high value content
You can test- programs, vendor, email subject line, email copy, CTA, Design, Website navigation, Form lengths, SM messaging/copy, Content, Time of Postings
A/B or Split Testing
50/50 send or traffic split is how you determine success, only looking at 2 elements
Should use software solution to build. Can be complicated
Setting up your Test: Formulate question Define Success -> Construct hypothesis -> Isolate your variable -> Use a large enough sample size -> Eliminate confounding variables -> Look at Results
C suite: high level overall marketing contribution
Marketing leadership: Channel performance and ROI
Program managers: Program performance and ROI
First touch attribution- leads, opportunities, and deals sourced by marketing. “Marketing brought the lead into your system.”
Multitouch Attribution- marketing impact on all leads, opportunities and deals. Shows how marketing influences accounts throughout the entire buying journey.
Marketing Attribution Reporting
Demand waterfall shows: what marketing is generating each quarter, how leads move through your funnel, lead quality, sales and marketing alignment, deal close rate and funnel health
Revenue percentage by Channel
First touch attribution
Leads, MQLs, opps, and deals sourced
Velocity: lead to opp, lead to deal
ROi for the channel
Path to Sale
How many marketing activities are required to win a deal?
And does that differ per channel?
Visit Optimizely for tips on how to optimize lead generation.