Inbound Marketing Strategy: Pro Tips for Generating a Ridiculous Amount of (Qualified) Leads
January 28, 2016
By Amber Kemmis
An inbound marketing strategy, as you are likely aware, is a great way to improve lead generation on your website. But, many have set out to accomplish this and barely end up generating enough leads to keep the lights on . Even worse, marketers who have successfully conquered lead generation but end up on their sales team's bad side because the leads are far from qualified. If your company’s goal is to generate a ridiculous amount of leads, use these pro tips to ensure you do just that - while making sure they are qualified leads.
Review Inbound Marketing Benchmarks
Before you set out to generate more leads, create benchmarks for key inbound marketing activities like traffic, leads, MQLs, SQLs, customers, and conversion rates. Knowing these benchmarks will help you to determine gaps in your current funnel. For example, it can be hard to generate leads from your website if you aren’t driving any traffic to your website. And, conversely - you may be driving traffic to your site but still need an ridiculous amount of leads, so you may instead need to focus on improving website conversion rates or bringing in more qualified traffic.
Set Specific & Measurable Goals
Simply setting out to generate a ridiculous amount of leads without specific and measurable goals is a great way to end up do anything but generate a mass amount of leads. Failing to set specific and measurable goals, which can be developed using the inbound marketing benchmarks you’ve gathered, means that you nor your marketing team can be accountable for the results generated.
Know Your Buyer Personas & Buyer’s Journey
In developing your inbound marketing strategy, you’ve likely already defined your buyer personas. In addition, you’ve also likely mapped content for your buyer personas according to their buyer’s journey; however, if you haven’t done this yet, it is as equally important to generating leads as the goals you set. In fact, your buyer personas and their journey may also be a part of the goals you set. For example, one of your goals may be to focus on generating leads for a particular persona. To learn more about developing your buyer personas and buyer’s journey, check out the following resources:
- The Ultimate Guide to Inbound Marketing Personas
- The 3 Stages of a Typical Buyer’s Journey
- The 5 W’s of the Buyer’s Journey
Optimize Your Website for Lead Generation
While estimations vary by source, there’s a general consensus among sources like in this Forrester report that shows 90 percent of the buyer’s journey is digital, and it isn’t until the customer is two-thirds to 90 percent of the way through the journey before they speak to a sales person. So, if your website’s only conversion path is to talk to a sales person or request a demo, you're failing to convert the majority of your visitors into leads.
You're also probably failing to provide the content that your website visitor needs to move through the digital funnel. It’s like your asking your website visitors to marry you after all they’ve done is read your eHarmony profile. You’ve skipped the first, second and even tenth date and now look like a stage five clinger. To learn more about improving website conversions, check out these resources:
Outside of general best practices for a lead gen website, one thing that is becoming more and more important in today’s digital landscape - but is also commonly overlooked - is the optimization of website conversions on mobile vs. desktop. While more and more website visitors are using mobile devices, some companies may actually find that the majority of visitors are still on desktop. This is especially true in B2B where online research is often conducted at a desk during business hours.
So, while it is important to optimize your website for mobile conversions, you should first identify the most commonly used device on your website using Google Analytics or any type of analytics platform. If your users are still predominately using desktop, focus on desktop conversions with the expectation that you may need to redesign if this changes.
Content Drives It All
Content is still king, but the playing field isn’t as level as it once was for most industries. The internet has become saturated with content. So, where you may have got away with a sub par piece of content 10 years ago, today you will see poor results if this content doesn’t appeal to your personas and isn’t distributed properly. Here are some of SmartBug’s top reads on building content:
- How to Bring Qualified Prospects to Your Website with Content
- Creating Compelling Content Marketing in 6 Steps
- How to Develop a Content Marketing Plan for Lead Gen
My last piece of advice to you for generating an outrageous amount of leads is to utilize personalization. By personalization, I don’t mean that you should simply use a first name when addressing a lead in emails or on your website. Personalization needs to go beyond that to create a whole experience that caters to the common needs and characteristics of your personas.
As an example, let’s say your primary buyer persona is a parent who is strapped for time and has a very short buying process. In this case, you could cater their entire experience by making website copy short and to the point, make it easy for them to find information that helps to validate their purchase and lead nurture with short intervals between emails and remarketing that is time sensitive. Bottom line - there are a million ways to personalize your marketing campaigns. You just have to choose the ones that make the most sense for your personas.
Would you like to learn more pro tips about generating a ridiculous amount of leads? Let us know by tweeting at us at @smartbugmedia, or let the pros at SmartBug Media become an extension of your team by requesting a consultation to get started.
About the author
Amber Kemmis was formerly the VP of Client Services at SmartBug Media. Having a psychology background in the marketing world has its perks, especially with inbound marketing. My past studies in human behavior and psychology have led me to strongly believe that traditional ad marketing only turns prospects away, and advertising spend never puts the right message in front of the right person at the right time. Thus, resulting in wasted marketing efforts and investment. I'm determined to help each and every one of our clients attract and retain new customers in a delightful and helpful way that leads to sustainable revenue growth. Read more articles by Amber Kemmis.