Lead Generation, and the tactics and strategies behind it, can be very confusing. What type or types should be used – direct mail, television, radio, online and so on? What should the messages say? And more important, what’s the one best and cheapest way to bring in all kinds of potential customers?
We at ActionCOACH think that Lead Generation is so important, we have developed almost two dozen “Truths” about it. (Also, we always capitalize it… but that’s another story.)
Before we examine some of these Truths, we need to establish that each and every business is unique—even direct competitors in the same business field or category. This means that the questions we posed in the first paragraph of this post do not have one easy, one-size-fits-all answer. This post won’t answer those questions, either.
The questions we will answer are much more important than those.
We believe that all business flows from, and starts with the number of leads brought into a business. It’s even in the first box of our “5 Steps to Massive Profits” proprietary equation and framework, because everything about a business flows from Lead Generation.
Simply put, if you don’t have leads, whether they come from an online Google search, having potential customers walking through your front door, referrals from trusted networking relationships and so on, you don’t have a business.
With that in mind, here are just a few of our Lead Generation truths:
- Sell the next step harder than you sell your product or service. The whole objective of Lead Generation programs is to begin the sales process, not to complete it. Your initial direct mail or e-mail should push for action on the next step – sending for more information, a free sample, a free analysis. Once you have qualified prospects, you can concentrate on a full presentation of product benefits, features, and applications.
- Separate suspects from prospects. Too many advertising/promotion dollars – and too much time – are spent on people who will never buy. Unless your Lead Generation plans weeds these people out, it’s not working effectively. It’s putting a strain on those who process and follow up on leads. The media you select, the offers you make, your creative strategy, and even your tone all play key roles in drawing out high potential prospects and screening out suspects.
- Understand their “hot buttons.” Executives are much more often concerned about their time than about saving a few dollars. Direct mail/e-mail efforts that don’t demand a lot of time and that demonstrate how the product/service can save the recipient time works very well to management segments. If the savings are enormous, that’s a different story. And the best story is getting the recipient to believe responding is the first step in MAKING BIG MONEY. Middle managers may be more concerned about preservation (of their jobs) and about making a safe, unquestionable choice.
- Plan separate, creative strategies and offers for different levels of decision-makers. Even if you’re prospecting within a specific industry, copy and offer – and sometimes graphics – must change by function and by the objective of your communication. The highly technical approach you make to the head of the IT department will not work in addressing the CEO. And the CEO’s possible interest in your product/service will differ from the CFO’s.
These are just four of the Top 7 we have in a paper that we offer for download at our Website (details below). Additionally, we don’t have just seven Truths. We have 21. That’s how important Lead Generation is to us.
Implementing a successful Lead Generation strategy is hard work. Believe me, I know that. You must have a plan, and stick to the plan. You must do the repetitions and refuse to make excuses. Simply go shake hands with your target audience each and every day by using your Lead Generation Strategy.
So go out there and get those customers lined up outside your proverbial door!
If you’d like to obtain our Top 7 list, it’s in a paper called “Increasing Profits with Lead Generation.” We’re working on download pages for all of our reports, but if you’d like it before they’re finished—in other words, NOW—please use our Contact form. I’ll get it out to you as soon as I’m able.