Lead Generation: Customer-Initiated Marketing
By: Kathryn Beach
Here's four solid tips you can use today to boost your marketing
1. Build a database of the right prospects.
The trick is to identify your target market and find out where they hang
out. Find websites, forums, seminars, and ezines whose members appear to
have a need for what you're selling, are receptive to working with your
kind of products, and have the ability to buy when the time's right. Then
aim your marketing at them.
2. Use direct marketing to regularly reach all your marketing database
No matter how long your initial ad campaign lasts, lead generation lets
marketers continue to contact consumers for weeks, months and years to
come. Marketers can tailor their marketing strategies to their database's
You should use your database to drive regular direct marketing campaigns
via e-mail. I recommend you plan to use direct marketing to touch
prospects at least once a month.
Research shows that the short-term buyers -- those who buy within six
months -- represent only a quarter of the sales that will happen. The other
three out of four sales occur between six months and two years later.
3. Include multiple offers or calls-to-action for different sales cycle stages.
I recommend you always make more than one offer; each designed to appeal to
people at different stages of the sales cycle. For example, offer general
information and statistical studies for those early in their
consideration/buying process. Offer checklists, more detailed instructions,
and web seminars for those a bit further along. Offer "if you buy now ..."
offers for those who are ready to move forward with their buying decision.
4. Organize your Web site to help move prospects from awareness to
consideration to inquiry to sales.
Instead of scaring prospective customers away with confusing or out-of-date
information on your Web site, consider re-focusing its content to help your
prospects determine that your company is their best choice.
Consumers are increasingly picky about marketing messages. They are opening
fewer emails, muting or avoiding television ads, click fewer Web ads and,
in general, respond to advertisers less often. The beauty of online lead
generation is that it's the customer who initiates the relationship, and
marketers know that consumers requested and expect to receive
communications from them.
© 2006. Kathryn Beach. All rights reserved. Permission to
publish online or in print granted provided the article and byline are
printed intact with live links.