Generating leads is a big challenge for online businesses.
According to research, “61% of B2B marketers think generating qualified leads is one of their major challenges.”
Cold calling is one of the quickest ways to start reaching out to potential clients. But it may not be as effective as Google Ads, Facebook ads, and guest blogging. A lot of businesses dread cold calling, and it’s fine.
The truth is that you don’t have to cold call strangers for business.
So what if you have one salesperson on your team and you have a limited budget, how do you generate leads to grow your business?
Well, that’s exactly what this article is about. You hate cold calling and cold emailing, you wish there were better ways.
So, here are 8 proven ways you can generate leads at velocity without spending a lot of money on marketing:
1. Use Social Media to Find Prospects
Social media is a powerful channel for generating traffic and leads to your business. There are several opportunities on Facebook — you can join relevant groups and industry level interest sources to get into the conversation.
When it comes to leveraging social media to reach prospects, there are 3 simple steps as illustrated:
Look for groups, trending hashtags, and discussions that your competitors are involved in, get to know what they’re talking about, gather relevant information and intelligence around what’s working in your industry.
2. Leverage LinkedIn for Lead Generation Opportunities
Linkedin is a free and easy marketing tool. It works well if you’re looking for B2B prospects and customers.
Studies show that LinkedIn yields 277% more leads than Facebook and Twitter.
You can take advantage of LinkedIn’s power by posting useful posts on the platform. Make sure you upgrade your account to LinkedIn Premium — so you can access the advanced tools.
When you publish a post on LinkedIn, include a call-to-action link or button so that prospects and readers can make contact with your business.
Create engaging stories and posts that connect with people emotionally. Incorporate a relevant and relatable story — then add a call-to-action to takes people to your website or landing page.
To get more traction on LinkedIn with your story, endeavor to weave your story around some of the key benefits and features of your products.
Or make your story irresistible by creating a video. And you can do that without sounding too promotional.
For example, here’s a LinkedIn video campaign from General Motors (GE). It contains call-to-action (CTA) at the end of the video, but it’s valuable and not pushy.
3. Engage Dormant Leads in Your CRM Tool
This is a cost-effective means of generating leads that most B2B companies neglect. If you’ve been using CRM software for a while, there’s a chance that some of your contacts/leads are dormant.
Don’t neglect these people — but look at your CRM and check your pipeline. Find out what deals have been stagnated? Do you have any hot deals that have been lost for a while?
Once you’ve determined the dormant deals in your CRM, it’s time to send highly personalized and strategic email sequences to re-engage them. Hopefully, you’ll be able to turn a percentage of them into active leads and customers.
4. Start With Your Network
Your network could be your goldmine. So don’t ignore your friends and followers on social media, as well as email subscribers.
You can also reach out to people you know on LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and so on. Start by asking them a question that might pique their interest.
You could ask a question related to your product; it could be specific to a feature of your product. If your network is already familiar with your product, service, or brand, it’s quite easy to get their feedback.
Don’t forget to run Facebook ads targeting a Custom Audience — since most of the people in this list are familiar with your brand.
5. Incorporate Live Chat on Your Website
Live chat is another powerful way of generating leads without spending a lot of money. Once set up, it can be instrumental for engaging with your site visitors and answering their questions.
In this age of Artificial Intelligence (A.I.), it’s easy to think that humans are no longer needed as customer service agents. That couldn’t be further from the truth.
A study by 99firms indicates that 70% of online users and customers prefer human agents to AI technologies.
When a live agent is involved on your website, it’s easier for customers and site users to get answers to their questions instantly.
A live chat agent can also ask a series of questions to the prospects — then based on their feedback funnel them straight into your CRM software and tag them for follow up.
6. Attend Networking Events
Networking events provide opportunities for meeting with new prospects and promoting your brand.
If you want to land more qualified leads, attend industry networking events or sign up to serve on an independent not-for-profit board.
This is one of the greatest PR sources, and you can leverage this rare privilege to get publicity for your brand story. As you’re already aware, earned media (or free media) can result in leads, customers, and increased revenue.
Pro tip: Use public relations tools and platforms such as HARO, Buzzstream, and/or BuzzSumo to connect with reporters, influencers, and bloggers.
If your story is unique and newsworthy, reporters may decide to share it for free on media outlets such as The Huffington Post, TIME, Mashable, etc.
7. Launch a Google Ads campaign
When it comes to Google Ads, a lot of companies think they have to spend at least $1,000 to see results. But it doesn’t work that way. With the right approach, you can start getting leads with a $200 budget.
A few Google ads tip you should follow:
- Write relevant but catchy headlines
- Make your ad copy persuasive
- Don’t use stock photos
- Use simple landing pages
- Focus on one call-to-action
- Make sure your offer is unique and valuable
If you’re on a tight budget and only want to land 50 – 200 new leads, Google ads can do wonders for your business.
Simply launch a simple Google Ads campaign and set your bid to $10 – $30 per day. You can pause your ads at some point and resume them whenever you want.
Be in charge of your ads campaigns and you’ll never lose money.
Use competitor and PPC tools like SpyFu, Moz, Ahrefs, and SEMrush to determine how much your competitors are spending on Google Ads, what keywords they’re bidding, their ad copy, and more.
With these insights, you can create better ad copy while targeting more targeted but cheaper keywords that will resonate with your prospects.
8. Start Blogging Consistently
Regardless of your lead generation strategies and tactics, blogging consistently can produce significant results.
Did you know that B2B companies that blog consistently always see 67% more leads every month than companies that neglect to blog, according to HubSpot’s research?
Make blogging an integral aspect of your lead generation.
Find questions that your audience are asking on social media platforms, then create useful posts and articles to answer them.
You can also look through Quora to find questions in your industry or specific to topics you’re passionate about.
Once you have questions on your ‘hit list,’ it’s easy to produce and publish great content weekly.
This helps to build authority, increase your site traffic, and help you to understand the types of content that your audience want.
This is a great way to create more relevant and irresistible products that will help your audience.
We all have preferences, whether they’re about the social media networks we use, the type of content we create, or the ways we communicate with our audience.
Some companies still prefer cold calling while others see better results with cold emailing.
But if your preference falls into Google ads, blogging, or the totality of inbound marketing strategies, go for it.
The beauty of online marketing is how much flexibility it offers — you’re able to focus on what’s working for your brand while learning how to scale in that same channel.
Although lead generation is tough, you can simplify it to get consistent results without having to gather a large marketing team or invest a lot of money.
Go ahead and start implementing the strategies above, and don’t forget to share your challenges, lessons, questions, and results.