Alt Title: A Small Business Guide to Lead Generation
As a small business, you face a distinct disadvantage in the resource department. Whereas larger organizations have five-, six-, and seven-figure marketing budgets, you’re forced to scrape by with a very limited budget. And though it can feel constraining, there are plenty of resourceful strategies available at your disposal. The key is to focus your energy on the ones that are likely to produce the highest ROI for your business.
Try These 6 Lead Generation Tactics
Generating leads is the name of the game. And if you’re working within the strict confines of a limited budget, you have to get creative. Keeping this in mind, here are a few tactics you can rely on to jumpstart your efforts.
- Start a Blog
When people visit your website, what do they see? If they’re slapped in the face with commercialized content, calls-to-action, and sales pitches, they’ll eventually grow weary and leave. While it’s certainly fine to have sales content, it must be balanced out by high-value educational content that informs and engages. And the best way to accomplish this is by launching a blog on your website.
Launching a blog might seem like a massive undertaking, but it’s actually quite manageable. You don’t have to publish multiple posts every week. You can get away with publishing just one to three high-quality posts every month – granted they’re useful, in-depth, and specific to your target audience.
You might not generate a ton of leads directly from your blog, but it’s a vital piece in the larger lead gen equation. It helps you build authority with the people who matter most.
- Guest Blog on Other Sites
While your blog reaches people who are already on your site, guest blogging allows you to reach people outside of your website. It gives you an opportunity to tap into someone else’s audience and leverage their platform to build your own credibility.
The key to guest blogging is to partner with websites that have an audience that overlaps with your own. They shouldn’t be a direct competitor, but they should be pursuing the same type of customer. This allows for a mutually beneficial partnership.
- Leverage Social Media
Every small business owner knows they need to do social media, but most are going about it in a totally wrong way. They’re focusing on a more is better approach when they should really be laser-focused on quality over quantity.
Contrary to what other business gurus may tell you, there’s no need to have a presence on all six or seven major social media platforms. All you need is one. Pick one platform where your audience spends the most time and focus all of your social media energy on building up that one platform. Then, if you feel like you have that one running smoothly, you can expand and add another.
- Try PPC Advertising
Up until now, we’ve discussed fairly organic strategies for generating leads. But at some point, you’ll need to supplement these approaches with a paid approach. This is where pay-per-click (PPC) advertising comes into play.
PPC advertising is one of the most cost-effective sources of paid traffic on the web. Whether you go with Google AdWords, Facebook Ads, or one of the dozens of other platforms, there are plenty of opportunities to generate leads. Partner with a good PPC management company and work on a strategy that helps you target the right people with your unique message.
- Drip on an Email List
It doesn’t matter what industry you’re in – you should always be collecting email addresses. By building a targeted email list for your business, you essentially give yourself a captive audience that you can push information to on-demand.
The best way to leverage an email list is by putting subscribers into various drip campaigns that periodically send out automated messages. These messages can include educational information and calls to action. But more than anything else, they serve the purpose of keeping your brand top of mind.
- Launch Local Partnerships
As a local business, you have a distinct advantage of being automatically “accepted” in the community. Unlike a larger brand that has to earn its credibility, you have this innate stamp of approval just by the fact that you’re local. Use this to your advantage by partnering with other local brands.
Local partnerships can be leveraged in a number of ways, but are best utilized as referral channels. Find businesses that you already know and believe in and reach out about setting up a system where you send each other leads. Some months you might get a steady flow of leads. Other months you might not get any. But as you add more local partnerships, this could become a fairly profitable endeavor.
Discover Your Lead Gen Formula
Your lead generation strategy will look different than the next company’s lead generation strategy – and that’s okay! By trying, testing, and optimizing different techniques, you’ll eventually stumble upon the perfect combination of lead gen tactics. Run with this approach for as long as it works, but be mindful of continually evolving to account for changes in the marketplace. Always track the data and let it guide you to the next iteration!