Let’s talk about getting leads from the worldwide web.
They are complete strangers to your business and have never interacted with your business before.
Now, consider this.
Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram – they’re all businesses.
Google, in particular, is constantly evolving away from the free search model and more towards bringing advertising to the fore.
In today’s search landscape, when you search for anything, typically half the page is ads.
Now, if you’re searching on mobile that’s even worse. The entire screen on the mobile is 100% ads.
So having an SEO organic search strategy has two problems.
- It takes a really long time.
- You’re not going to turn up higher than the ads anyway.
So what does that mean?
It means that advertising to reach a new audience is the best way to get leads other than referrals.
Referrals are probably the best and the simplest because it’s usually free…
BUT advertising is the quickest and most efficient way to get leads into your business and turn leads into customers.
So it’s obviously critically important to be investing in advertising.
Now there are usually six levels of advertising that I typically see.
6 Levels of Lead Generation
Think about this as a pyramid of lead creation.
Level 6: Poor
Down at the base of the pyramid, we have no ad spend and no funnel. The lead generation down here is very poor.
Level 5: Pittance
At this level, a business is just having a crack and just having a go and sporadically advertising.
Now, this poses a couple of problems because the ad platforms like Google and Facebook work off an algorithm.
And the algorithm can only learn what is working over a long period of time – given enough budget and traction.
The lead generation here is a trickle, it’s a pittance.
Level 4: Prioritised
Then there’s the type of business that is committed to lead generation, which means there’s typically an ad budget.
This kind of business is committed to the importance of leads. Therefore, lead generation is prioritised.
Typically, at this level, there is certainly the intention and the appetite to create leads and the budget. But at the moment it probably doesn’t produce the result that matches up to the commitment level.
Level 3: Plentiful
At the next stage, they have time and effort put into learning, planning and budgeting for lead generation.
Now because of the intentional focus, the lead generation here is plentiful.
This is where you start getting plenty of leads. The next level up from that starts looking at the quality of those leads.
Level 2: Picky
Here, you’ve got a pool of leads and you’re starting to create processes for how to pick and score the best leads.
You’re qualifying leads and being picky.
You get to pick which leads you really want to progress to sales conversations.
Level 1: Powered
And the final stage is where your business is driven by new pipeline.
We call this stage the “Powered Stage” because you’ve got so much thrust behind you in your lead generation that you can:
- Launch new products
- Test products
- Test messaging to product-market fit
And a whole number of things that completely are an unfair advantage that you have over your competition.
Where Are You Now?
So the question I have for you, of course, is where are you now?
Which level of that pyramid is your business at currently?
And of course, the next question is where do you want it to be? How do you go to the next level?
This reminds me of a client I have called Ryan.
Ryan is an entrepreneur’s entrepreneur. He’s got his fingers in so many different things.
He’s not spread too thin though, he’s pretty smart.
He’s just got investments and sits on the boards of different companies, but he also owns a successful business providing coffee catering to events.
The problem was in a very crowded marketplace for event catering suppliers, his ads just didn’t really stand out.
The intention was certainly there, but the planning and the thought behind the messages and the stages of the buyer journey were not.
It’s important to make sure that there was no disconnect in messaging between what people saw in the ad and the page they arrived on the website after they click.
But in Ryan’s case, all of that wasn’t done during the planning phase.
So in our coaching sessions, we went through the process of defining:
- What those messages and ads should be.
- What were the best opportunities to put budget behind.
Now Ryan did this and we changed just one sentence on his landing page – just the headline…
We made the ads reflect that one change and conversions went up 25% in one day.
Just changing the wording and the ads to reflect that wording.
Now that’s incredible.
You can do this the right way.
Create leads that come into contact with your business and convert.
You know they’re high-quality leads because they’ve come from high-quality ads.
Or you could do it the wrong way.
You could mishmash together a bunch of things that you’ve seen on the Internet, copied or heard then just cobble it all together…
- You’re wasting ad money.
- Google’s not going to tell you if your ads are terrible. They will just downrank you quietly in a Quality Score.
- You get really low-quality leads. The kind of people who are tricked by marketing trickery and forceful slimy tactics. (And that’s not the kind of people you want to attract anyway.)
So you could do this right or you could do it wrong, especially in Google Ads.
There are two kinds of ways to burn money.
There’s a good way and a bad way.
And I really say burn money.
I know that’s scary for a business owner… But during your first month of advertising, even if you have the best ads, be prepared to burn some cash.
Because you need to give the machine enough time and fuel to be able to self-correct and learn what’s actually going to work because they get smarter over time.
So typically your first month is about training the algorithm of Google Ads to learn what’s working.
The other way to burn cash in Google isn’t so good.
That’s where you’re not really thinking through a process or a system or a strategy for your advertising.
You’re just running ads willy-nilly and that is a really good way to go nowhere fast and spend a lot of money in the process.
Bringing It All Together
So, I’ve talked about three ways that you can think about lead generation.
- Leads that come from customer referrals.
- Leads from contacts who are already in your database that can be nurtured into opportunities.
- Leads who are complete strangers, which is how people typically tend to think about lead generation.
Want to get more leads?
Are the contacts in your database getting a bit stale and stagnant?
Still unsure of what to do?
You probably need new blood in the body, so to speak.
Perhaps it could be that your marketing messages are all muddled up that your assets, landing pages, ads, social media posts, website, and communication are all disjointed.
Or maybe you’ve been thinking about marketing in the wrong way.
Now, you don’t need to be an expert, but at least you have the intention, planning and the budget to make advertising really work for you.
The obvious question is: “How do I do all of this? How do I get all of this done?”
Well, there are two ways.
- There’s trial-and-error.
- And then there’s the way where you follow a system.
I designed the Marketing Bootcamp program for business owners and their teams to learn the marketing systems that are going to produce the best results for their business.
It’s all about unpacking the expertise that you already have in your business with your sales team and operations and even you as a business owner.
Obviously, it’s not going to work for everybody.
Full disclosure: I found that if businesses aren’t spending money on advertising – let’s say $500-800 a month at a minimum – there’s really not much we can do. It would be like trying to stay balanced and upright on a bike without pedalling.
You kind of need some forward momentum and thrust to even have the bike stay upright.
And it’s the same with marketing.
Google, Facebook and LinkedIn are evolving so quickly.
The digital marketplace is becoming so intense and noisy that if you’re not spending money on advertising, there’s not really much that our systems can help you with.
The frameworks are designed for businesses that are at least at that third stage of that lead generation pyramid.
Businesses that are intentional and deliberate about their advertising and prioritize lead generation is prioritized.
They just need the frameworks to go to the next stage of planning and strategy.
Or, if they’re already really good at planning and strategy, the frameworks can help them maintain, improve and increase their market share.
Getting their branding and messaging better so that they resonate stronger to their audience and create more referrals.
The Marketing Bootcamp is designed to make your business better at lead generation…
From your existing customers…
From nurturing in your current database…
And it’s like boot camp when you go to Fitness First, some days you would work on your legs and other days you’d work on the chest… But overall you’re getting a better system and a healthier body.
It’s exactly like that with marketing. You don’t try to achieve too much at once because you’ll end up stumbling over yourself and making a mess.
You also wouldn’t want to rush through it even though you’re probably very capable at making your way through a whole bunch of content really fast.
In reality, what I found is that if you speed through your marketing, it ends up becoming generic.
And then you fall back into the same problem.
You’re not giving yourself enough time to think through the planning.
And then your marketing and your messages become a bit generic.
Don’t let that happen to you
Whenever you’re ready… here are 2 ways I can help you grow your business:
1. Schedule a one-on-one intro session with me by clicking here. Together we’ll look at what’s holding you back in your marketing and create a 3 step action plan to attract, convert and delight. Most importantly, you’re going to get clear, confident and excited about what’s possible in your business within the next 12 months.
2. Join my Marketing Course. If you’d like to work with me on your marketing click here