Marketing is an art form.
It’s critical for the success of any business in any industry. The whole point of marketing efforts is to generate new customers or clients for a business.
The skill is especially critical for a small business that doesn’t have a well-known brand on a national level.
Before a new customer or client becomes a converted sales they’re first a lead so your business needs to have a specific strategy for generating new leads to give you or your sales team a chance to close a sale.
In this post we’re going to go over a handful of these strategies including the strategy I employ in my local lead gen biz by using free web traffic. We won’t be able to cover them all because there are too many out there.
Traditional vs Online Lead Generation
There are so many different marketing strategies out there for generating new leads. There are two different paths in today’s marketing world and those are traditional marketing or digital/online/internet marketing.
Many small businesses are still stuck on this path of marketing and lead gen.
For the longest time the only way to get your business out there was to pay a ridiculous amount of money for print advertisements such as putting your services in the local newspaper or even displaying your business on the menu of a local restaurant.
Or if you had money to spend you’d get a spot on a billboard on a busy highway so you could get a lot of eyes on what you offer.
This was a great way to spend money 20 years ago but it’s just not efficient anymore.
Spending tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars on advertising that can’t be targeted effectively doesn’t make any sense. Yeah a lot of people are seeing your business but what if they don’t care about what you offer?
Wouldn’t you want to get in front of those that are looking for what you bring to the table?
Makes so much more sense.
Another problem with traditional lead generation is it’s incredibly difficult to track.
If you have a billboard ad how do you know how many new leads you’ve generated from it? You don’t because there’s no way to track it.
This is obviously the new age of marketing and generating leads. Every year more and more business owners are accepting the new way of doing business and establishing themselves online.
It’s really a no brainer.
There are several advantages of using the internet to bring in fresh customers or clients to your business.
Yes you can pay to generate new leads online but there are also many ways to create customers or clients organically such as social media (more on that later).
We talked about the disadvantages of using traditional marketing so it’s important to note that those are avoided with digital lead gen.
It’s extremely easy to track results of lead gen campaigns online and the ability to target an interested audience is incredible.
It makes lead gen and marketing campaigns so much more effective and efficient.
For the sake of time, we’re going to cover several forms of online lead generation throughout this article. It makes the most sense because the goal is to get new customers for your business as efficiently as possible.
Online Lead Generation Strategies
Once you make the decision to ramp up online lead gen efforts there’s two separate directions you can go: paid or free.
I know what you’re thinking. Who wouldn’t choose free?
Listen, I’m with ya there. Hell, I leverage free traffic in my own local lead gen business and it’s incredible.
But there are advantages and disadvantages to both. Maybe you decide to employ both of them as many small businesses do.
Paid Lead Generation
The biggest thing to remember about lead gen is that you’re doing exactly that. Paying to generate new leads for an opportunity to convert those into sales. They’re not organic.
The most well-known method of paying for leads these days is Google Ads.
Many use it because potential customers are taking the time to head over to Google and actively search for what they need. That means if you own a lawn care company and someone’s looking for monthly lawn care, they head over to Google to find a company.
You’re paying for Google’s lead generation so your business appears at the top of the search results. This customer clicks on your advertisement and gives you a call.
Bam. You just paid Google for that customer to call you whether you close the sale or not.
Another popular method these days is Facebook advertising. The advantage of utilizing FB is the detailed targeting system you can use.
When you or a marketing agency you decide to work with sets up your FB ad you can specify who sees your ad. You can narrow it down by age, gender, geographic area, etc.
You can even go as far as targeting people based on their interests, employers, job title, groups they’re a part of, etc.
You can quickly see how detailed you can get about who sees your advertisements.
Both of these methods can be extremely valuable if you know what you’re doing but they can also cost you a ton of money if you don’t.
Always remember that when you’re paying these platforms to advertise your products or services you get charged when people are exposed to them whether you close the sale or not.
That’s the biggest disadvantage and it’s why you can lose a lot of money if you don’t know what you’re doing.
Most business owners pay marketing agency to run these campaigns for them because they don’t know what they’re doing with online marketing.
Also, when you pay for advertising it ultimately eats into your profit margins. Even if you know how to do paid lead gen effectively it will still decrease your profits.
The trade off is immediate results. There’s no waiting period when paying for leads. Your ads go up immediately and you have the ability to generate new customers once they do.
That’s what makes free or organic lead generation so enticing to many.
Free/Organic Lead Generation
Organic lead generation should be an integral plan of any small business in today’s world.
The ability to attract new customers and clients to your business is easier done now than at any other time in human history.
You just have to know how to do it.
The first thing you should be doing is establishing a social media presence. Everyone and their mother are on social media these days so why not give them a chance to come across your business and what people think about you.
It’s completely free to set up a Facebook or Instagram account and post frequently.
Create business pages on every social platform you can and get in front of as many eyes as possible for FREE. These things usually take time to build up but why wouldn’t you take advantage of free outreach.
Next, get yourself a website.
If you don’t have a website for your business in 2019 then you aren’t even relevant.
Yeah I said it.
It’s not as scary as it seems either. There are many site builders out there today that require zero coding knowledge. Drag n’ drop processes.
If you don’t have the desire or patience to do it yourself then pay someone a grand or so to design one for you.
It’s worth every single penny believe me.
Almost everyone uses the internet in some capacity these days and you need to take advantage of that exposure.
Whether it’s them finding you through a search engine or directing them to your site from your social profiles. They need to go somewhere to see what you can do.
Great so you have a website. Ready to put that shit on steroids?
Enter, search engine optimization (SEO).
SEO is the single most effective way of generating new customers for your small business in 2019.
The idea behind it is having your business show up above your competition when a potential customer is searching for what you do through a search engine such as Google.
It’s simple, if your business dominates Google in your local area you’ll have the chance to dominate your market over time.
There are a lot of technicalities that go into SEO and we won’t get into them here but if done correctly it can completely change the potential of your business.
More people go to Google today to find companies to do business with than any other way.
You can literally double your sales by dominating Google’s search traffic. Trust me, I’ve done it.
You’re reading this post right now because of my ability to dominate a Google search.
Once your business is ranked high in Google search results you’ll be generating leads while you eat, sleep, shower, etc.
And it’s all organic/free.
You’re not paying Google to advertise on their platform, you’re leveraging Google’s search traffic to generate free leads and potential customers for your company.
There’s no doubt in my mind that organic lead generation is the way to go. I’ve done both forms of lead generation for my own business and for other businesses.
You should be taking advantage of ways to grow your business organically. It may take a little more time than paid lead gen but in the end it just makes more sense.
You’ll be able to keep more of your profits and in turn will help you scale your business much quicker.
How I Dominate Google & Make 6 Figures In 2019
I’ve used paid lead generation in several ways but IMO it just isn’t the way to go. That’s why I continue to leverage free search traffic in my local lead gen business.
I’m able to dominate Google’s search results with websites that I’ve built myself while collecting leads and sending them to business owners in the local area.
Many small business owners don’t understand the concept of organic lead generation or they just don’t have the desire to put the effort into creating a web presence and I’m able to bridge that gap.
Basically it looks something like this.
I build a simple website in whatever niche/industry I want to attack.
I rank that website in search results using effective SEO techniques.
The website generates leads for me on auto-pilot.
Then I send those leads to a business owner I’m working with and they pay me for them.
Like I said before, this is a long-term play so once I’ve ranked that website I don’t have to touch it anymore.
Which means… PASSIVE INCOME.
Take a peek at this pool site.
I built this a couple years back and it’s still paying me $650 every month even though I haven’t really touched it since.
If you want to learn how to dominate Google the same way I do and develop passive income streams online then check out the same coaching program I went through here.