Leads are like the lifeblood of any business. Without them, there would be no customers, conversions, and, ultimately, no revenue.
A steady stream of well-qualified leads = more sales and a healthier bottom line.
That explains why every marketer worth their salt will always be on the lookout for new and improved lead generation strategies.
And with good reason.
According to a report by BrightTalk, as much as 53% of marketers spend nearly half their entire budget on lead generation.
Only 34% of marketers spend less than half their marketing budget on lead generation.
What’s more? Another study by Forrester Research found that companies that excel at lead generation generate 50% more sales-ready leads at a 33% lower cost per lead.
With that in mind, here are the top 8 lead generation methods for the year 2023:
#1. Offer Free Trials
One of the best ways to generate leads is by offering free trials of your product or service. It allows potential customers to experience your offering first-hand and see how it can benefit them before they make a purchase.
What’s more? Free trials are also an excellent strategy to upsell customers on your paid plans once they’ve reached the end of their trial period.
According to a study by HubSpot, conversion rates for the top 10% of landing pages are 3 to 5 times higher than average.
And you want to know the secret to their success?
You guessed it – free trials.
Every top-performing software company, from Adobe to Zoom, offers free trials of their products. And it’s not just a coincidence.
By offering a free trial, you can:
- Instantly increase your conversion rates
- Generate leads and sales on autopilot
- Get insights into how well your product or service is received
- Upsell customers to your paid plans
- Build brand awareness and credibility
- Grow your email list
Free trials are an incredibly effective lead generation strategy and one that you should definitely be using in your business.
What can you give away for free? How can you create a free trial irresistible to your target market?
Here are some pointers:
- Make sure your free trial is actually free – no credit card is required
- Make it as easy to sign up as possible – no lengthy forms to fill out
- Make it risk-free with a money-back guarantee
- Limit the trial period to 14 days or less
- Give them access to all the features and benefits of your paid plans
- Provide customer support during the trial period
LinkedIn Sales Navigator is an excellent example of a free trial done right.
They offer a 14-day free trial with full access to all the features and benefits of their paid plans.
All you need to do is enter your credit card details to get started. And if you’re not happy with the service, you can cancel at any time within the 14 days, and you won’t be charged a cent.
#2. Go Ham on Retargeting
Retargeting, also known as remarketing, is a powerful lead generation strategy that allows you to “follow” your leads around the web and show them targeted ads.
The goal is to bring back visitors who have shown an interest in your product or service but haven’t taken the next step yet.
It allows you to track your site visitors from wherever they are — checking their email, watching YouTube videos, browsing other websites, etc. — and show them your ads.
It’s an excellent strategy for converting your site abandoners into paying customers, considering 97% of your visitors won’t convert on their first visit to your website.
Here’s how it Works:
When users visit your website, they are “cookied” with a piece of code that allows you to track their online activity.
Then, as they continue to browse the web, they will be shown targeted ads based on the products or services they viewed on your site.
That’s a highly effective way to keep your brand top of mind and generate leads that are more likely to convert.
There are a few things you need to keep in mind when setting up your retargeting campaigns:
- First, you need to make sure you’re targeting the right people. The last thing you want is to show your ads to people who have already converted or with zero interest in your products or services.
- Second, you must create targeted ads relevant to the products or services they viewed on your site.
The more relevant your ads are, the more likely they will convert.
- Finally, ensure you’re not bombarding your leads with too many ads. You don’t want to come across as pushy or salesy. A few targeted ads will do the trick.
#3. Get Customer Reviews on Review Sites
Remember your latest purchase online. You probably didn’t buy it from the first store you found. You probably didn’t even buy it from the first ten stores you found.
You probably went to a review site like CNET, PCMag, or G2 Crowd to read reviews from other customers before making your final decision, right?
That’s because 92% of consumers will read online reviews before making a purchase.
And it’s not just tech products that people are reading reviews for. Everything from restaurants to hotels to clothing stores has online reviews these days.
Allow your users to leave reviews on sites like CrunchBase, Clutch, and Best Company.
Not only will this help you generate leads, but it will also help you close deals faster.
When your prospects are looking for reviews, you want to ensure they find yours first.
A strong online presence will also help you rank higher in search engine results, leading to even more organic traffic and leads.
Be sure to actively encourage your customers and clients to leave reviews on these sites. The more reviews you have, the better.
Here are a few tips for getting more reviews:
- Make it easy for your customers to leave reviews. Include links to your profiles on your website, email signature, and social media profiles.
- Respond to all reviews, both positive and negative. That shows that you’re active on the site and care about your customer’s feedback.
- Offer an incentive. You can offer a discount or a freebie in exchange for a review. Just be sure to check the site’s guidelines first to make sure this is allowed.
Most people won’t leave a review unless you ask them to. So don’t be afraid to reach out and ask for one.
Here are the top sites to get reviews on for each industry:
- Technology: CNET, G2 Crowd, PCMag
- Restaurants: Yelp, TripAdvisor
- Hotels: TripAdvisor, Expedia
- Clothing stores: Nordstrom, Macy’s
- Insurance companies: Progressive, Geico
- Marketing agencies: Clutch, The Manifest
- Web design agencies: 10 Best Design, Awwwards
#4. Minimize Concerns with Trust Elements
When people visit your website, they want to know that they can trust you.
After all, you’re asking for their personal information.
You have to give them a reason to trust you with their data. That’s where trust elements come in.
Trust elements are anything that helps build trust and credibility with your leads.
It includes customer testimonials, security badges, and privacy policies.
They help minimize concerns and objections that your leads may have.
If you can address their concerns upfront, you’re more likely to generate a lead.
Here are a few trust elements to use on your website:
- Customer testimonials: Customer testimonials are one of the most effective trust elements. They show that others have used your product or service and had a positive experience.
- Security badges: If you’re asking for sensitive information like credit card numbers, you must have a security badge. That will help ease your leads’ concerns about entering their information on your site.
- Money-back guarantee: A money-back guarantee shows that you’re confident in your product or service. It helps ease any concerns your lead may have about making a purchase.
- Customer service: Make sure your website has a toll-free number or live chat widget. The idea is to help them feel like they can reach out to you if they have any questions or concerns.
- Social proof: Social proof is when you show your leads that other people are using and enjoying your product or service. That can be in the form of customer testimonials, social media comments, or reviews.
- Awards and accolades: If you’ve won any awards or been featured in reputable publications, showcase them on your website. That will help build trust and credibility with your leads.
- Press mentions: If you’ve ever been mentioned in the media, you want to ensure you’ve showcased the article on your website. Place it in a prominent location, like your homepage or About Us page.
- Testimonials from experts: You also want to include testimonials from the experts in your industry. That could be a well-known blogger, speaker, or consultant.
- Trust seals: Trust seals are another way to build trust and credibility with your leads. They’re basically like a stamp of approval from a third-party organization.
Examples of trust seals include the Better Business Bureau, VeriSign, McAfee, and Trusted Site.
#5. Use Lead Magnets and Content Upgrades
A lead magnet is an incentive you offer your visitors in exchange for their contact information.
It’s a great way to generate leads because it helps you get your foot in the door with potential customers.
And once you have their contact information, you can start building a relationship with them.
Content upgrades are similar to lead magnets but specific to a piece of content.
For example, let’s say you have a blog post about the top 10 ways to generate leads.
You could offer a content upgrade that gives your readers access to a PDF version of the blog post with 100 or more lead generation ideas.
That’s a great way to get your readers to opt-in to your email list because you’re offering them something of value they can use.
You can provide a free checklist, worksheet, eBook, video, or any other type of content that your target audience would find helpful — all in exchange for their email address.
After that, you can continue to nurture your leads with email marketing until they eventually convert into customers.
Offer a Coupon Code or Discount?
Who doesn’t love a good deal? If you offer products or services that require upfront payments, consider giving your visitors a coupon code or discount for their purchase.
That’s a great lead generation tactic because it helps you stand out from your competitors and show your potential customers that you’re generous and want to help them save money.
Coupon codes can be generated and tracked easily with a tool like WPForms. Just create a simple form and add a field for the coupon code. Then, give your visitors the coupon code when they opt into your email list.
Alternatively, consider running a Spin the Wheel game on your website. That can be done with a tool like OptinMonster.
With a Spin the Wheel game, visitors must enter their email addresses to play. Then, they spin the wheel to see what prize they’ve won. The prizes can range from a discount on your product to a free shipping code.
Use Exit-intent Pop-ups
Exit-intent pop-ups are a type of lead generation tool triggered when someone is about to leave your website.
When someone tries to leave your site, the exit-intent pop-up will appear and offer them the lead magnet. They can enter their email address to get the lead magnet if they are interested.
It’s the perfect opportunity to offer them something in exchange for their contact information.
For example, you could offer a discount code or a free ebook.
You can create exit-intent pop-ups with a tool like OptinMonster. Just create a campaign, choose a template, and add your lead magnet. Then, activate the campaign on your website.
Optimize Your Call to Actions (CTAs)
Your call to action is one of the most important elements on your website. It’s what tells your visitors what you want them to do next.
If your CTA is ineffective, it won’t matter how great your website is — people will just leave without taking action.
Make sure your CTAs are clear, concise, and visible. And don’t try to cram too much into one CTA.
Ideally, you should have one primary CTA and a few secondary CTAs. For example, your primary CTA could be to sign up for your email list.
Your secondary CTAs could be to buy a product, download a free PDF, or read more blog posts.
Focus on the Benefits
Forget about your product features and focus on the benefits instead.
Your potential customers don’t care about your product features. They only care about how your product can benefit them.
For example, if you’re selling a weight loss program, your potential customers don’t care that it includes a meal plan, workout videos, and access to a private Facebook group.
They only care that it will help them lose weight.
So make sure your website copy and CTAs focus on the benefits of your product or service, not the features.
#6. Run an Email Marketing Campaign
If you’re not already doing email marketing, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity to generate leads and convert them into customers.
Numbers don’t lie — email marketing has an ROI of 4300%.
For every $1 you spend on email marketing, expect to make about $43 back.
Email marketing is one of the most effective lead generation strategies because it allows you to build relationships with your potential customers and nurture them until they’re ready to buy.
Here are some pointers on how to effectively use email marketing for lead generation:
Add a CTA to every email
Every email you send should have a call to action (CTA).
The CTA could be to buy a product, confirm a phone call Time, respond to an email, click on a link to a landing page, etc.
You also want to limit yourself to only one CTA per email message. Otherwise, you run the risk of overwhelming your potential customers.
Personalize your emails
Personalized emails have a higher open rate than generic, “one size fits all” emails.
That’s because people are likelier to engage with an email personalized for them.
Fortunately, it’s easy to personalize your emails with most email marketing software. Just add a custom field to your email list and include the person’s name, location, or other relevant information.
Then, use that information to create a personalized email.
Segment your email list
Your email list is probably made up of different types of people.
For example, you may have some people who are interested in your products, but they’re not ready to buy yet.
You may also have people who’ve already bought from you and are interested in your other products.
It wouldn’t make sense to send the same email to both groups of people.
Instead, you want to segment your email list so that you can send more targeted, relevant emails.
Automate your email marketing campaign
Email marketing can be time-consuming. Fortunately, there’s a way to automate it.
With an email automation tool, you can set up a series of emails to be sent automatically over a period.
For example, you could set up an email automation campaign that sends out a welcome email as soon as someone subscribes to your email list.
Then, a few days later, they’ll receive another email with more information about your product.
They’ll receive another email with a special offer a few days in.
By automating your email marketing campaign, you can stay in front of your potential customers without having to lift a finger.
Use an email drip campaign
An email drip campaign is similar to an email automation campaign, but it’s more targeted.
With an email drip campaign, you can send emails to people who’ve taken a specific action.
For example, let’s say someone visits your pricing page but doesn’t buy anything.
You can set up an email drip campaign that sends them emails over the next few days with more information about your product and special offers.
By drip-feeding them this information, you’re more likely to convert them into paying customers.
#7. Optimize Your Website
Let’s paint a scenario:
You’re walking down the street when you spot a store that sells products you’re interested in. You walk in and start browsing around.
But then you notice that the store is a total mess. There are clothes everywhere, and it’s hard to find what you’re looking for.
What do you do?
Most likely, you’ll leave the store and never come back.
The same thing can happen with your website. If it’s not optimized, people will leave and never come back.
And that’s why it’s crucial to optimize your website for lead generation.
There are a few things you can do to optimize your website for lead generation:
Add a CTA to every page
Every page on your website should have a call to action (CTA).
The CTA could be to sign up for your email list, buy a product, download a PDF, etc.
Include a CTA in your navigation menu
Your website’s navigation menu is one of the first things people will see when they visit your site.
That’s why you want to make sure it includes a CTA.
Page Loading Speed
Your website’s page loading speed is important for two reasons:
First, it’ll affect your search engine ranking. Google wants to provide its users with the best possible experience, so it favours websites that load quickly.
Second, people are impatient. If your website takes too long to load, people will leave and never come back.
If your website looks like it was made in the 90s, don’t expect people to stick around.
Your website’s design should be modern, responsive, and user-friendly.
More and more people are using their phones to browse the internet.
You don’t want to lose potential customers because your website looks jumbled on a mobile device.
Make sure your website looks great on all devices (desktop, laptop, tablet, and phone).
Create Targeted Landing Pages
A landing page is a specific page on your website designed to convert visitors into leads.
For example, if you’re running a Facebook ad campaign, you would send people to a landing page specifically designed for that campaign.
Your landing page should have a CTA and some form of lead capture (like an email sign-up form).
You do not want to send people to your homepage because it’s not designed for conversion.
The idea is that for every product or service you offer, you should have a targeted landing page specifically designed for that offer.
#8. Boost Your Content Marketing Effort
Content marketing is the process of creating and sharing valuable content to attract and convert your target audience into customers.
It’s a long-term strategy that requires consistency and patience.
But it’s worth it.
Content marketing can help you:
- Attract new website visitors
- Convert website visitors into leads
- Convert leads into customers
- Turn customers into loyal fans
You can create many different types of content, including blog posts, ebooks, infographics, webinars, and more.
The key is creating valuable and engaging content for your target audience.
For example, if you sell software that helps businesses manage their finances, your target audience is probably business owners.
So you would want to create content that’s relevant to them, like a blog post on “5 Ways to Save Money on Your Business Taxes.”
Content marketing can be a huge lead generation strategy if done correctly.
But it takes time to see results.