There’s no doubt that lead generation is a crucial part of any sales process – after all, your team constantly needs new leads to stay busy. Yet, it’s often listed among the biggest challenges for both marketing and sales professionals.
With so many different channels and data available, it’s hardly surprising that lead generation seems overwhelming. However, if you outline your sales funnel carefully and plan your efforts every step of the way, it doesn’t have to be daunting.
Here are the top lead generation methods you should consider in 2024.
Generating leads through social media
Lead generation might not be the main objective of social media marketing efforts, but the truth is that you can easily find your prospects on social media. In fact, 74% of businesses generate more leads this way. What does it mean for your business? Well, if you don’t take full advantage of social media yet, 2024 might finally be the right time to do so.
Especially since there’s one more powerful trend related to social media you can leverage: chatbots. There are already more than 300,000 active Messenger bots on Facebook. No wonder – since chatbots are perfectly capable of providing the real-time, on-demand support to your customers, as well as collecting contact details and other valuable information, they are a great tool for improving customer service and generating leads.
And the best part? Creating chatbots doesn’t require much involvement from your sales & marketing team.
The power of voice
Rumour has it that voice search will represent about 50% of the searches in 2020. It can have a massive effect on sales & marketing efforts, including lead generation. In fact, optimising your content for voice search might soon become necessary for your business to remain competitive.
The good news is: voice search optimisation is no rocket science. First of all, most people who use voice search ask questions – which is why you might at least want to create a proper FAQ section, powered up with relevant pop-ups and lead gen forms. Then, make sure your content is relevant and well-optimised for long-tail keywords, as your leads will most likely be asking more complex queries with their voice.
Generally speaking, having relevant and sought-after content on your site will help your business seem professional and trustworthy, which should be a good enough reason to take care of it. Not to mention that seeming knowledgeable can get you more inquiries and leads in the long run. That’s precisely why it’s worth investing in SEO in the first place – and voice search is just the newest addition to the whole mix.
AI vs Lead generation
It’s no secret that artificial intelligence is increasingly used in marketing and sales – and lead generation is no different. There are plenty of AI & automation tools at your disposal, and they are already quite popular. 30% of B2B marketers use AI to identify new opportunities, but AI can also support you in defining the target audience, reaching out to your prospects, tailoring your content to them using a social media post generator, and engaging in meaningful conversations.
How come? Apart from using AI-powered chatbots, which we’ve already mentioned, you could also leverage artificial intelligence to find new leads and sort them out. To put it simply: Instead of wasting time and effort on building long lists of leads with potentially low potential to purchase, lead generation tools based on AI & content automation can help you create proper lead lists, and qualify them later. AI systems are able to analyse all the leads carefully, compare them against financial and marketing data, and identify future trends for lead generation or potential spend on them, just to name a few.
AI & automation are also invaluable when it comes to distributing your content and targeting the right people and the right time. Basically, providing potential buyers with relevant content can easily encourage them not only to leave their contact details but even to buy from you. And that’s precisely what AI can help you with, as it helps with scheduling and sending personalised messages at specific times and it can even integrate with a free email verification API to ensure no emails get bounced . This way, you don’t have to monitor your visitors constantly, and choosing the right opportunities yourself – proper lead generation tools will do that for you.
Generate leads in person
Lead generation efforts are not only meant to be digital. With so many “online” methods available, you might easily underestimate the power of networking and essentially generating leads in person – but you definitely shouldn’t! Consider attaching professional headshots to your in-person interactions, making a memorable visual connection that reinforces your brand and aids in building lasting relationships.
Take into account that your sales team can immediately tell a lot about people they meet, including their level of interest in your products or services. Oftentimes, they can also persuade them much more effectively than via phone calls or emails. In fact, there are various meetups, conferences and other events organised almost every day, for many people, in plenty of cities around the world – which is why it might they might be worth attending. A great way to collect lead information at in-person events is buy utilizing kiosk surveys. Attendees can come over and easily input their information instead of you going around and asking for it yourself.
If that’s not convincing enough: 68% of researched sales and marketing teams say events are the best lead generation activity. Therefore, once you pair networking with other techniques, you’re more likely to succeed in your lead generation efforts.
Leverage the top lead generation methods now
Lead generation is bound to become more omnichannel with time. It’s mostly because there’s no single best lead generation method that can help you increase your sales in the long run – but if you give enough of them a try and combine a few at the same time, you can easily take your profits to the next level. It can be a matter of trial and error, especially at the beginning. Nonetheless, the time and effort dedicated to lead generation is entirely worth it. Consider the incorporation of cold email tools when reaching out to your leads through email.
The most important thing is not to get discouraged, though. High-performing marketing & sales teams use multiple channels to generate, qualify and nurture leads, and they constantly optimise their activities across those channels. These include social media, SEO, content marketing, chatbots, and even in-person events, which can be challenging when done solely manually. Luckily, there are plenty of tools and techniques that can help you stay on top of lead generation.
What’s the recipe for success in 2024, then?
- When generating leads, take advantage of multiple channels to reach more potential customers – be it social media, chatbots, or in-person events,
- Invest in comprehensive AI & automation tools to monitor, and take your lead generation efforts to the next level,
- Train your whole team to make good use of the available tools & techniques,
- Keep an eye on new lead generation trends that might emerge, and don’t be afraid to experiment with them.