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    04/02/2024 |

    March Madness for Marketing – The Elite 8 Marketing Tactics That Generate Leads

    Everyone is caught up in March Madness this year, and I would like to work down my field of 64 best lead generation tactics for the annual event. The elite eight of lead generation is based on our experience, research and years of practical execution with clients.

    The criteria used to select these eight tactics include effectiveness based on client results, lift required to get the campaigns up and running, and the ability to analyze and optimize, since we want to improve these tactics over time.

    To make it easier for you, I sorted these tactics in order of lift, meaning the ideas at the top should be relatively easy to spin up and launch, while the tactics toward the end are going to take longer and be more complex.

    1. Landing Page Optimization

    If you’re not already doing this, you are missing out on a major opportunity. This tactic really shines because it’s such an easy way to improve lead generation and it drives improvement almost immediately.

    You likely have a landing page. In fact, most companies have a collection of landing pages, and each page is already getting visitors. These pages are converting visitors into leads at some percentage for the sake of this example, let’s say 20%.

    If you have four landing pages, each getting 100 visitors a month and each converting at 20%, that’s 20 leads a month from each page.

    By improving the conversion performance of just those four pages from 20% to 30%, you can go from 80 leads a month to 120 leads a month for a 50% improvement.

    Small improvements over a set of highly visited pages can turn into a major windfall in additional leads. This is the kind of low-lift, high-return marketing tactic that can get you promoted. That is why it’s at the top of our list.

    2. Blog Optimization

    While the first idea might not be new, this idea is almost never used when we start helping our clients improve lead generation. You likely have a blog. It might not be an active blog where you’re writing an article a few times a week, but you have blog articles on the site.

    Some of these are indexed and ranked on Google and get a significant number of views every day. This is an opportunity to turn these views into leads with little effort.

    Run a quick report and get a list of the top 20 most-viewed blog articles on your website. Add up all the views these blog articles are getting each month. If you have 20 articles and each gets 100 views a month, that’s 2,000 views.

    Blog articles should convert at between 4% and 5%, which means improving the conversion rates on these 20 articles could drive an additional 40 to 50 leads a month.

    The way you upgrade these articles is to add a relevant call-to-action (CTA) or two. Blog articles are typically 1,000 to 1,200 words (short in the world of content), so connecting each article to a more detailed and related piece of content allows people to continue their learning process.

    While you’re at it, updating the blog with current information and republishing it is a great way to drive new and additional views to content that is already ranking highly.

    3. Engaging Offers on Your Website

    This is another great way to leverage the existing traffic and visitors coming to your home page. I actually see this frequently and make this recommendation for almost every client.

    Many companies have educational content but tuck it away in their resources section. Most visitors aren’t going to sift through your resources section to find anything of interest. Instead, they’ll pop in and pop out again without ever converting.

    As an alternative, pull out your best content from your resources section. Find something that works for early, middle and late buyer journey prospects.

    Then move those items to your home page. Put them prominently on the page and consider gating them with a form.

    To gate or not to gate is a big question these days, but since we’re looking for leads, I’d suggest gating. You can also test the gating strategy. Start with gating, and after a month measure the leads. Then ungate the assets and measure the views. You’ll probably have a lot more views, but those views should convert into leads later on. This is a bit tricky from a tracking perspective.

    Another play we run is retargeting people who view the ungated content with paid ads to get them back on your site and into a gated conversion form. Then you can see who they are and follow up via sales outreach.

    Regardless of how you tackle this, you’ll see an immediate lift in leads. While this might be more work than the first two tactics, it’s still a relatively easy tactic to get going.

    4. Video With Lead Capture

    Many people prefer to watch than read, so video is king when it comes to lead generation. This idea might be the perfect answer to your gated or ungated question too.

    With video content, you can incorporate elements of the video that offer additional information using a slide-in form. This form can come and go as you see fit.

    If you’re using video on your website pages, on your landing pages, in your emails and in your blogs, adding these forms at the end of the video is an excellent way to drive additional leads while you create compelling content to enhance the prospect experience.

    As far as complexity goes, videos are at least a medium-sized project, but today it’s easier than ever to create videos for marketing and sales. The tool kits are extensive, and even Zoom allows you to create videos on the fly with little effort.

    The extra effort comes in the conversion execution. This might take some coding or light video editing, and you’ll need the forms, pages and follow-up to be tight.

    5. Paid Social Campaigns

    Now things are about to get a little more complicated. Paid social campaigns require strategy, resources to write and build out the campaigns, and investment to support the campaigns on your desired social platform.

    But before we get into those details, recognize the shift in how your prospects find information. Five or six years ago, people started all their searches on Google. Today, many people are presented information they are interested in on social without asking.

    This means the targeting algorithms in the social platforms have become so good that we can put messages in front of prospects who likely need what we have to offer.

    Paid social campaigns are an excellent way to generate leads for B2B companies. A lot of B2B people think LinkedIn is their only option, but this is false. While LinkedIn might be an option, although a pricey one, Meta (Facebook and Instagram) offers excellent platforms for any B2B business.

    One of the secrets to running these ads is making sure you’re offering the right conversion-oriented educational content. If you’re asking for a meeting, first call, demo or consultation, you might be disappointed with the results.

    But if you’re offering a tip sheet, template, workbook, tool kit or other useful resource, you’re going to generate a lot of early buyer journey leads. The trick then shifts to how you nurture those leads into middle and late-stage leads. That’s an article for another day.

    6. Partner Campaigns

    Also in the area of medium complexity, this is a great program, but it will require some thinking and thoughtful execution.

    Partners are a great vehicle to generate leads. These are companies in your orbit that don’t compete directly with you.

    Consider our business we provide marketing services to medium-sized companies, so if we partnered with an accounting firm that targeted similar-sized companies, we could drive leads for both businesses simultaneously.

    I recommend that you and your partner both provide a piece of high-value educational content. You email your client and prospect database with their content, and they email their database with your content.

    Of course, the email campaign needs to be orchestrated and the story constructed in a positive, partner-oriented and helpful way. But this is an excellent and relatively low-risk way to get introduced to an entirely new set of potential prospects.

    7. Account-Based Marketing Campaigns

    Now we’re really getting into complex campaign territory.

    Account-based marketing (ABM) is a business marketing strategy that concentrates resources on a set of target accounts within a market. It uses personalized campaigns designed to engage each account, basing the marketing message on the specific attributes and needs of the account.

    ABM requires strategy around the outreach, the targeting and the content needed to get people who don’t know you or your company to get excited to talk with you.

    These campaigns are not cheap or quick. They require multi-stage outreach and potentially multi-tier targets depending on how many companies you want included in your campaigns.

    Typically, they start with a connect strategy. How do we get your sales team connected to the people at the targeted companies? Since we don’t know them and they don’t know you, social media outreach is one of the channels used. Offering educational content specifically targeted to them, their role, their industry and even their company is a way to move a contact from the connect stage to the engaged stage.

    If the connect tactics work well, the contact provides their email address and now we consider them engaged. The next step includes engagement tactics that continue the conversation around additional educational content.

    Ultimately, those sequences are designed to engage them in a buyer journey that leads to a call or meeting with a sales rep, and then the sales process would progress as usual. Mission accomplished new prospects within a highly targeted group.

    8. Speaking Events

    Finally, the last lead generation tactic is one that works well if you have someone who is amazing at delivering engaging presentations and access to events that your prospects are attending.

    Just think about speaking to 100 people in a room. In a single hour, you can create interest in your company and perhaps 10 to 20 active sales opportunities that are pre-sold based on the story and content from your presentation.

    If you did this once a month, you’d probably double or even triple your sales opportunities not leads, but people who want to talk with you about hiring your firm or buying your products/services.

    It’s a powerful tactic that most companies don’t leverage for a variety of reasons. If you want to consider adding it to your mix, you’ll first need a compelling, highly educational story that you can turn into a presentation.

    At Square 2, we teach people about the concept of a revenue generation system and how it helps stop hit-or-miss marketing. These are two compelling concepts, and many people are challenged with issues around both concepts.

    You’ll also need someone who can do a great job delivering the content. They should be a professional speaker or at least very comfortable speaking, entertaining and engaging a live audience. This is sometimes hard to find in a company.

    Then you’ll need to present, apply and pitch both your session and your speaker to the appropriate events. This takes time and often requires jumping through hoops to get approved as a speaker. If you’re planning to use this tactic, give it a year to get set up. Some of the events you’ll be applying for won’t happen until next year.

    Some events might be pay-to-play, meaning speaking comes with a sponsorship. This is good, but not as good as when you get invited to speak or apply to speak and get selected.

    We did an entire podcast and video on this tactic check it out here.

    These lead generation tactics are going to bust almost every bracket and make their way into the top eight almost every year.

    Narrowing the list and picking a winner comes down to you. For example, if you can’t do a speaking program or can’t identify your top 20 potential prospects, these ideas could fall out and you can lean on a few of the others.

    Regardless, if you add even one or two of these ideas to your lead gen program, you can expect a significant lift in the second quarter.

    Mike Lieberman, CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist headshot
    CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist

    Mike Lieberman, CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist

    Mike is the CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist at Square 2. He is passionate about helping people turn their ordinary businesses into businesses people talk about. For more than 25 years, Mike has been working hand-in-hand with CEOs and marketing and sales executives to help them create strategic revenue growth plans, compelling marketing strategies and remarkable sales processes that shorten the sales cycle and increase close rates.

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