Businesses utilise lead generation to increase brand awareness, but also to generate interest in a new product or service. In 2018, 70% of marketers said their demand generation budgets will increase, and 34% said their spending will grow by more than 20% (Demand Generation Benchmark Survey, 2018) (Source: https://www.hubspot.com/marketing-statistics). This highlights the importance of utilising lead generation in your marketing mix.
What constitutes as a lead? When a consumer is looking at a businesses' products or services and in turn engages with the marketing material, the consumer in question can be seen as a lead. For example, you may have recently been looking at health insurance, expat sites will use relevant content on health insurance to pique your interest and then present you with a form to fill out. The consumer will be asked to complete the following information: name, email and phone number. This in turn allows the business to contact you via phone or email, to discuss in more detail the specific health insurance company you were considering. From a business perspective, the information gathered determines which message you will receive, the more information you provide the more personalised the communication you receive will be. This form of marketing is regarded as inbound marketing and customers are grouped by their potential to convert later down the conversion funnel.
Lead generation works best by sending consumers down a predetermined path e.g. a landing page through a call to action (CTA). Sticking with the health insurance example, the CTA could be as simple as “get your quote now”. The landing page the consumer is directed to is designed to entice the visitor to provide their personal information in exchange for a call back from the health insurance company. Whilst this all may seem straightforward, the marketing message behind the content that pushes the consumer to the landing page plays a pivotal role in ensuring the visitor completes the form, allowing your business to connect with them. According to a 2018 report by Wordstream, lead generation, sales and lead nurturing are the top three organisational objectives for content marketers highlighting how important lead generation plays an important role in marketing strategy.
Lead generation marketing means that as soon as a consumer fills out the form with their contact details, they’re able to sit back and wait for the insurance company to contact them. Once a lead is generated, the business will be able to follow up on that lead as it comes through its internal systems with the information provided. The content, marketing message, website and landing page are combined to create the perceived value that drove the customer to initially fill out the form. One of the added benefits to the company is the ability to retarget consumers on a consistent basis via email marketing. 79% of B2B marketers credit email as the most effective distribution channel for demand generation efforts (Content Marketing Institute, 2018) making it first choice for companies to follow up on leads.
Lead generation marketing is a simple but effective marketing strategy for building a customer database and should be a key part of any digital strategy. It is important to remember to keep a keen eye on what your competitors are doing, and the marketing messages that they use to entice consumers. This should always be integrated into the businesses’ own learnings to optimise lead generation campaigns.