In my previous post, I mentioned that one way to hit your revenue goals for your business this year is to add one more marketing tactic to your marketing mix in order to attract more clients.
Though word-of-mouth referral is a great way to acquire more clients, it is not a solid strategy if you want to overcome being stagnant and embrace growth. My experience as the founder of a brick-and-mortar real estate school and an online business has taught me that in order for a business to grow and have a steady stream of revenue it must implement a few different marketing tactics in the same way that investors diversify their portfolio for maximum returns.
Before we get to the tactics that will help you attract more clients, it’s important that you start working backward.
Identify what your target revenue is for each month. This will allow you to have a clear goal to focus on. For example, is it your goal to generate $100,000 per month? You want to make sure that this goal is realistic and within reach, based on the resources you have available to you.
Determine how many customers you need to acquire each month to reach your target revenue goal based on the average sale of each customer. For example, if your target revenue is $100,000 per month and you have an average sale of $10,000, then you would need 10 new customers per month to reach your revenue goal.
Once you have determined your average sale, next you need to figure out how many leads are needed for you to get one sale. In essence, what is your lead-close rate? This will help you set a clear target for the amount of leads that you need to generate each month. For example, does 1 out of every 3 leads convert into a customer? If so, you will need to get 3 leads to make 1 sale.
After you have determined the number of leads you need each month to acquire one customer, multiply that number by the number of customers you need each month to reach your sales goal. This will now be the number of leads that you will need to generate each month: Number of Leads x Target Number of Customers = Leads Needed to Reach Goal.
Focus on Lead Generation
Now that you have these numbers figured out, it will help you to identify how many leads you need on a weekly, monthly, and quarterly basis to stay on track to meet your revenue goals. Take a look at where your customers are coming from. Does this source present an opportunity for you to reach your target number of leads each month? If not, you will need to develop a new lead generation strategy with new marketing tactics that will allow you to continue to generate leads on a consistent basis.
Small businesses fail to reach their revenue goals for several reasons. First, they tend to depend solely on referrals. Referrals are a great way to acquire clients because they have about an 80% close rate, but the fact is they can be unpredictable. So don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
Second, businesses tend to market only when leads dry up, going from feast to famine. You need to have a reliable and effective lead generation strategy in place that brings you new leads on a consistent basis so that your business can continue to hit your revenue goals and grow.
So let’s take a look at five paths to more leads and more sales.
Most leads are not ready to buy right away. According to a survey conducted by IDG Enterprise, “for most marketers, between 5 and 10 percent of qualified leads convert to customers right away.” When a prospect says NO, it usually means not right now. That’s where email marketing comes in; it allows you to nurture your leads, develop a relationship, establish credibility and trust, and move leads closer to sale. A 2013 report by MarketingSherpa revealed that marketers saw a 60 percent return on investment (ROI) with email marketing. Email marketing can help you to stay in front of your leads so you are the first one they think of when they are ready to buy. However, for email marketing to be successful, it must be done on a consistent basis, and it must provide value to the recipients. That means great content, offers, or resources that your recipients will find useful. For example, insurance agents who send the same cookie-cutter email newsletters that their competitors are sending will hardly gain a competitive edge. Create content that is unique to the value that you offer as a business.
Search Engine Optimization
According to Forbes, “97% of consumers search online for the products or services that they need.” In a recent survey by IDG (International Data Group), businesses ranked the most effective lead generation tactic used by marketers to be the company website, followed by email marketing and SEO. Search engine optimization has been consistently ranked as an effective marketing strategy with a positive return on investment. However, it can be challenging for small businesses with limited budgets because it takes time for small businesses to see results on search engine optimization. However, search engine optimization is not rocket scientist. Small businesses can learn to do it themselves; in fact, I have put together an easy-to-follow get found online guide. Furthermore, I often recommend that small businesses with limited budgets invest in pay-per-click to start seeing returns right away and view search engine optimization as a long-term strategy because, although pay-per-click will bring you results, it’s costly, and your ads stop showing when your budget runs out. That’s where search engine optimization becomes a better investment in the long term, because once your website is optimized, it will continue to show up in search results.
Pay-per-click allows you to instantly get in front of your clients at a time when they are searching for your products or services. Pay-per-click marketing can be a bit challenging for small businesses that want to do it themselves. The fact remains that 97% of consumers search online for the products or services that they need. This means that your target clients are searching for you online. One challenge facing businesses that invest in pay-per-click is that the clicks don’t convert into leads. More often than not, it is due to a poorly designed website. The website lacks professionalism; the content isn’t compelling; there are no clear calls to action; or you are sending visitors to your main page instead of a dedicated landing page that follows through on the ad that they clicked on. Working with a professional to continue to tweak your campaign will help you to eventually find the right formula that provides you with a flow of new leads that help you attract more clients.
According to the Content Marketing Institute, “content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and acquire a clearly defined audience with the objective of driving profitable customer action.” Your prospective customers have problems to be solved and questions that need answers. Creating content that both tackles their problems and answers their questions and that is well optimized based on what they are searching for online helps drive traffic back to your website. The more website visitors you get from targeted traffic, the more leads and sales you generate. Thoughtful content also helps you to build a loyal audience, and if your content is worthy of sharing, it is further amplified when others share your content on social media, bringing new prospects to your website. Another reason content marketing is a great marketing tactic is that it helps you to position yourself as an expert in your field. Your content marketing is the gift that keeps on giving; unlike ads that disappear, content last a lifetime. To be successful at content marketing, a solid strategy must be put into place. It starts with understanding the personas of your target customers and the questions that they need answered.
Speak for Leads
Getting in front of your target audience and speaking is a powerful way to generate leads. It is a risk-free way for your audience to evaluate you on your expertise, and instead of marketing to one, you market to many. It increases your exposure and helps you to establish yourself as an expert in your field. Once you are able to demonstrate your expertise on the topic by giving the audience valuable information, you won’t have to sell—they will come to you. Speaking for leads can involve giving a PowerPoint presentation, being a part of a panel, or being a keynote speaker at an event. The key to generating leads at the end of a speaking engagement is to ensure you capture your attendees’ contact information, either by offering a free consultation or by giving away a free resource.
What are some of the tactic you are currently using to generate leads?