As you’ve grown your company, you’ve likely made some investment into marketing tools and processes to bring in leads along the way. At the very least, your team might use a customer relationship management (CRM) tool, send marketing emails and capture leads through your website.
While these are great starting points to kick off your lead generation efforts, you won’t get a large return on investment from just using one or two functions – you need to use their features to their full potential. To get the most value from these tools in 2020, follow these marketing resolutions to increase your sales leads.
Fully Utilize Your CRM
Whether HubSpot, Salesforce or another platform altogether, you’re likely using a CRM to manage contact data and send some emails. If you’re new to CRMs, you can learn about what they are and why they’re important here.
If you do have one in place, you’re in a good starting place. But in order to transform your CRM from a contact storage tool to a lead generation platform there are some tools and features you need to take advantage of.
Lead scoring allows your sales team to focus on leads with a high probability of converting, while giving them line-of-sight to ones that might not be ready for your product or services.
By setting up a lead scoring system, you automatically attach point values to different triggers ranging from company data to email engagement to website traffic. As your lead completes certain triggers, their lead score increases and, if you set up negative triggers, they may also go down in their score.
As a result, your sales team can see exactly which leads are close to making a purchasing decision, who might need some more information and what leads don’t warrant more time investment.
This allows your CRM to function as a true sales platform as opposed to just a contact information storage site.
While not a standard function that’s included in every CRM, the big CRM players have additional automation capabilities that can be integrated into their software.
Automation allows you to work smarter without having to necessarily make your sales team work harder. By investing a little bit of time upfront to set up your automations, you can create marketing and sales workflows that automatically send your leads through the buyer’s journey. That way, your sales team can focus on closing deals as opposed to nurturing new leads.
Let’s look at an example.
Imagine your salesperson, we’ll call him Ryan, individually replies and follows up with every lead that fills out your contact form. If you frequently receive contact form submissions, this likely takes up a large amount of Ryan’s time that may be better used on other sales efforts.
With an automation in place, the process might look more like this:
Lead comes in – your form may have a field that asks what product line they’re interested in
Ryan emails the lead to follow-up, but the lead never replies
Two weeks later an email “from Ryan” is sent with a link to a blog post related to the product
Two weeks later “Ryan” follows-up about a content download they might find beneficial
And so on until they are closer to making a purchase and Ryan can step back in
Ryan only has to send one email and then, when the lead signals they are not ready to move forward in the sales process yet, the automation takes over. This nurtures the lead until they’re ready to reengage, while Ryan has more time for product demos, sales calls, trade shows and contact with engaged leads.
While this is one example of an automation, there are many ways they can be used, all with different benefits which can be found here. If you’re not sure how to create an automation that converts, I know a team that would be happy to help.
Audit and Optimize Your Website
To ensure your website is helping attract leads that are high-quality, there are a few marketing resolutions to emphasize in the new year.
To begin, you’ll want to conduct a thorough search engine optimization (SEO) audit of your website. You may have heard of this before and likely associate it with the following tasks:
Look for broken links
Keyword research against what your website currently targets
Check your page speeds
Remove duplicate content
But what you really need to focus on in 2020 are the following:
Checking for Google Indexing issues. If your site isn’t being indexed properly, you’re not going to rank for any of the keywords your focusing on.
Ensuring your site is claimed in Google Search Console and Bing’s Webmaster tools. Here you can monitor your website’s health.
Ensuring your site has an SSL certificate. When you visit a site and there’s a little green lock next to the domain, this means you have an SSL certificate. Not only is this an expectation from site visitor’s, but it’s necessary to ensure proper data collection. If you don’t have this set up and a user comes from a website with an SSL certificate, the traffic’s referral information is not shared to your website.
Updating page titles, page descriptions, image alt-text and on-page copy. Once your keyword research is done (see my things you’re likely familiar with list above), it’s important to ensure your site is ranking for these keywords. To do this, you’ll want to update page titles, descriptions, image alt-text and on-page copy to include the relevant keyword that each page is intended to target.
This falls hand-in-hand with the on-page copy updates recommended above. Once you have a clear idea on what keywords your website should rank for, you’ll want to update your content to reflect them.
This applies to old materials too. It’s imperative to go through old blog content and content download offers for three things:
By updating your older content, you can help ensure search relevancy and increase conversions for content downloads, ultimately driving more inbound leads.
Rethink Your Forms
There are two primary things to consider when rethinking your forms: data collected and analytics captured.
Let’s start with data collection. It’s important to strike a balance between necessary information and getting data that helps supports efforts such as lead scoring and reporting.
For example, on a contact form to sign up for your email newsletter, you don’t want to create a barrier to entry, so you’ll likely just ask for an email and potentially first name. But, for a quote request, you may want to collect more information such as company name, industry and services needed. That way, you can attach information such as lead scores to your new contact.
Next, you’ll want to focus on how you’re analyzing the data from your forms. All forms on your website should tie back to your analytics software, such as Google Analytics. If you’re not tying data back to your analytics platform, you’ll miss key informative data that supplements your general data.
Questions this data can help you answer include: What happened with those users who came to your site? Did they fill out a form? Enter your sales funnel? Download a content offer?
Use Data and Personalization Tools to Inform Your Marketing
To ensure your marketing efforts are working to their full potential, it’s critical to incorporate data into your planning and decision-making. While there are many reports to look at and data to collect, these are our top data points to help you get started.
A/B testing, or split testing, is a way for you to test a variety of materials to see how your audience reacts to differences in messaging, imagery, the time they receive an email, email subject lines, the color of a button and more, though you should never try and test all of those things at once.
By performing A/B testing at the beginning of a campaign, you can optimize your creative to help ensure that you’re producing the most impactful content for your target audience. You can perform these tests on a wide variety of materials, including:
If you’re using your email platform in conjunction with a CRM, you have valuable customer data at your fingertips – make sure to use it!
While you may already be doing some email personalization in the form of including a customer’s first name in the email copy, that’s just one way to utilize your customer data for emails.
What you’ll want to focus on next is using customer data to segment email lists.
For example, if you have a product that you’re promoting that only pertains to one of your audience groups, it doesn’t make sense to email it to everyone in your database. Instead, you can use your customer data to send the email only to a list of leads that might benefit from the product. This, in turn, can help your email performance and increase sales.
Retargeting campaigns allow you to stay top-of-mind for these website visitors by serving them your ads after they’ve visited your site. Imagine someone visits your website and spends some time reading about your company. After looking a one or two pages, they leave.
With a retargeting campaign in place, for the next few weeks they’ll see ads for your company as they’re searching on Google and scrolling through Facebook. This ultimately results in more clicks and more sales.
Marketing that drives leads requires investing time, talent and resources. Whether you don’t have a marketing person, have a small team that’s already got a full-plate or have a single marketer that could use a helping hand, investing in a marketing partner is a great way to ensure your efforts are impactful.
If you’re looking to drive leads for your business, contact us to learn about how we can help you stick to your marketing resolutions.