Unless you're so busy you're turning work away, a business needs leads. Those leads help you make more revenue, which leads to more profit. More profit means more investment and, eventually, a thriving business.
One of the best ways to get leads worth pursuing is to get them to come to you. This inbound marketing has two benefits.
When someone seeks you out on purpose, they're already more invested in you. Inbound marketing often costs less than outbound techniques, like advertising.
So we're going to look at some of the best ways to generate leads online. Read on to learn more.
Write an Ebook
Ebooks act like business cards, and workshop sessions rolled into one. You get to teach your audience something they need to know. And you get to slap your branding all over it.
You've sold anyone who makes it to the end on your expertise and authority. They'll seek you out and they pre-qualify themselves. They know they want to work with you after reading the book.
Make sure it's not a thinly veiled advert for your company. Keep the content valuable and actionable.
Try to avoid directly selling your products and services. Save that for the invitation to work together more closely at the end.
Use Video Marketing
Every article about digital marketing trends you must follow includes video. And they have done for the past few years.
But it's still the case that video offers opportunities you can't pass up. In a recent study, nearly half of those questioned looked up more information on a brand after watching a video ad.
And you don't need to do a typical corporate talking head video. Dollar Shave Club put its founder in an ad that focused on humour. The brand gained a ‘likeable' reputation as a result.
So be entertaining. Provoke a positive emotion in the viewer. They're more likely to remember you and want to give you their money.
Appear on a Podcast
Yes, this still counts as finding leads online. People might listen on their mobile phone. Or they might subscribe through Spotify on their computer.
Podcast hosts are always looking for guests that fit their audience. You don't have to pay to appear, except with your time.
You're more relatable when potential leads can hear your voice. It's easier to build a connection over audio than it is through text alone.
And you might get 45 minutes with the podcast host. Where else can you get 45 minutes of exposure to your target audience?
As with an ebook, anyone who heads to your website after the interview knows they want to work with you.
Invest in Guest Blogging
Your company probably has its own blog. Which is great in terms of search engine optimisation (SEO). But how much traffic do your posts get?
Using guest blogging is a great way to get your expertise in front of a bigger audience. Choose blogs or platforms popular in your niche.
Then pitch them your content. Make sure it's content that fits in with what they publish. And only include content that's valuable and useful.
Before you pitch, check they'll give you a web link back to your website. Then these new leads can come to you after reading your content on their favourite site.
Appearing on other websites also gives you social proof. You can ‘borrow' the bigger audience and its reputation.
Optimise Existing Content
Your existing blog content could be almost perfect for your audience as is. But if search engines can't work out what it's about, then they can't serve it up in search results.
We said ‘search engines' and not just Google because Bing is still a contender. There are 12 billion searches worldwide every month on Microsoft's search engine.
Work through old blog posts and optimise their headlines. Make it obvious what the value of the post is for a reader.
Add your keywords to the alt-tags on your images. Add links to your other blog posts to drive visitors to other parts of your website.
Investing in keyword research can help you work out which posts to target first. Or put a new, more relevant spin on older posts to bring them up to date.
Encourage Online Reviews
If you've got a listing on Google My Business, then good reviews are your friend. They appear alongside your listing within Google Maps.
The more good reviews you have, the more likely you'll get more enquiries.
Think about it – people use search engines to find businesses to solve problems. If you have great reviews, they'll see you can help them to do that.
So they'll come to you, saving you time on outbound marketing.
Ask existing customers or clients to leave positive reviews. They can post them on Google, Yelp, or even your Facebook page.
Here are four strategies to help you get good reviews.
Swap Your FAQ Page for Live Chat
An FAQ page might seem like a good idea. You can answer a visitor's question without spending time or effort on it.
But what if a visitor can't find an answer to their question? You can't guarantee they'll take time to contact you directly.
The solution? Be present.
Swap your FAQ page for live chat. Answer their questions straight away.
This has two benefits. They get the answers they need, which removes a barrier to them hiring you. But it also keeps them on your website.
If they have to email a question and wait for a reply, they might cool off before you get back to them. But if you respond while they're still on your products page?
You're more likely to convert the lead into a customer.
You Can Still Find Good Leads Online
The internet is indeed a lot busier than it used to be. Adverts choke social media platforms.
But it's still possible to find good leads online. By ramping up your inbound marketing efforts, you're more likely to bring quality leads to you.
That saves you spending time and money chasing colder leads that may never buy.
And if you're keen to pursue the reviews strategy, we can help. Click here to find out how it works.