Leads that don’t convert are pure overhead.
They come to your website, rifle through your pages, use up your bandwidth, and pump tons of data into your analytics suite for nothing ... or, at least, very little.
But don’t be too annoyed at them: Leads who aren’t qualified will never convert.
It’s up to digital marketers – especially inbound marketing experts – to figure out ways for leads to qualify quickly and clearly. The faster we understand their needs and how (or even whether) we can meet those needs, the better off everyone will be.
In practice, that can mean a lot of tweaking and fine-tuning.
In short: Optimizing.
Maximizing qualified leads and minimizing everything else takes time and effort. Luckily, if you’re using analytics and making continuous improvement to your site, it’s a natural outcome.
Plus, there are plenty of steps you can take right away to improve qualified leads.
Let’s think about some of them right now:
1. Develop More Web Content
The #1 thing most brands can do to attract more leads is publish helpful, informative content.
Leads don’t become leads or customers overnight – they’re much more likely to visit your site weeks or even months before they are ready to make a purchase. When your content is part of their early buying research, you have a chance to cultivate a relationship that will last until they’re ready.
2. Upcycle Your Existing Content
If you’ve already got a strong base of content that covers the needs of your buyer personas, it’s not the end of the story. You can get more mileage out of your work, and thus take in more leads, if you shift content into different formats.
For example, a set of five blog posts can easily become an e-book. An existing e-book can be turned into a slide deck, and a slide deck could become a video. Style makes a lot of difference in how content is received, and a small tweak could make your message much more effective.
3. Use Progressive Profiling
Early on the relationship, first name and email may be all you can barter for, but you should always aspire for more.
4. Embrace AI Chat Bots
Web visitors love AI chat bots! Even though they contain all the same information as a static FAQ page, they are much more interactive and fun to use.
They also provide a huge benefit to marketers, since your handy bots can retain a user’s history of questions. What questions are asked and in what order can tell you a lot about what anyone is thinking.
5. Revisit and Refine Your Ad Targeting
Over the last few years, a lot of social media networks have revamped their ad targeting. In most cases, that means a huge upgrade that gives you a lot more options. Since your knowledge of your target audience is always evolving, it’s worth checking out ad settings every quarter.
This is especially true on LinkedIn, which is notorious for being the best social media site for B2B leads. Layering ads using a combination of job title, industry, and size category is great for modern inbound campaigns as well as account-based digital marketing.
Just as importantly, aligning your ad targeting now and then will reduce Cost Per Acquisition.
6. Integrate Retargeting
Retargeting is ideal for those situations where would-be leads arrive on your site a little bit too soon: They aren’t ready to start delving seriously into the details of a purchase, but it’s on their to-do list for the near future. By popping up “everywhere,” retargeting helps to remind them.
Retargeting is at its sharpest when each ad is customized based on the content the user consumed on your site. Even large B2B enterprises can take inspiration from the way retail e-commerce has reclaimed millions in revenue with ads that remind customers about their cart contents.
The other aspect of retargeting is ensuring the ads show up on the right platforms.
Display ads are typically for brand-building, not driving conversions. But, when you choose the most trusted platforms for your messaging to appear on, some of that prestige is bound to reflect on you. That can get prospects motivated to get done what they need to do anyway.
7. Standardize Your Approach to Identifying Qualified Leads
If you aren’t quite sure how to magnetize your site to pull in more leads, it could be the case that you’re not getting the right information you need to qualify leads as quickly as possible.
BANT is a qualification scheme that’s powerful and easy to implement.
It stands for:
- Budget: Does the lead have the funds needed to commit to this purchase?
- Authority: Does the lead have the final say in signing off on the purchase?
- Timeline: Does the lead’s timeline align with what your firm can provide?
- Need: Is there a pressing, well-articulated need that your solution can meet?
Budget and Timeline are strongly influenced by internal conditions at your own company, while Authority and Need come from your lead. Still, you have to keep an ear to the ground and learn what job titles are associated with sufficient Authority and how leads express their Need.
More Clarity = More Qualified Leads = More Revenue
The lesson is clear: The more you know about yourself and your prospects, the more leads you get. The challenge is in how you integrate that understanding and make it central to your campaigns.
Digital marketing and digital sales enablement technologies all have one thing in common: They are relatively easy to learn, but difficult to master. The methods you use when you first start out usually aren’t the ones that get the best results at the lowest cost.
Always take the time to connect your growing knowledge to your campaign strategy and tools.
That’ll help you consistently meet or exceed your lead generation goals.
Published on May 28, 2018