Small Business Lead Generation – Why Online Is In!

More and more people are avoiding yellow pages and directory inquiries and going directly on the internet to search for whatever they need. This presents a never-before opportunity for small business lead generation, with an exponentially high number of organizations understanding the need for taking their business to the next level by giving it the right kind of exposure online.

Essentially, there are two kinds of routes that businesses can take for small business lead generation to be successful. The first among these is via Search Engine Optimization (SEO), which is essentially a long term objective to ensure sustainable growth in traffic. Irrespective of the stature and reputation of an organization, if the SEO activity is not done properly, it can take years to be featured among the top searches on popular search engines. And even if it’s done properly and aggressively, it takes at least a couple of months for the efforts to bear fruit. Sure, there are certain tricks that one can use to get better results, but they can only go so far. Businesses also have a great opportunity in the form of submission directories, which also help quite significantly in search engine optimization at virtually no cost.

Another great alternative for sound small business lead generation is pay per click advertising, which is also known as PPC. This is more of an ‘instant result’ kind of proposition, which gives results on the spot! However, the costs incurred for this activity are also significantly high. Many advocates of its long term gains state that once a website is popular, traffic flows in automatically. However, there are many arguments regarding this theory.

In the end, it’s up to the business as to which route it wishes to take to achieve the desired objective. However, going online is definitely the only route to succeed in today’s times.

However, just because qualifying the call is a very important aspect of the process does not mean that one should jump directly into it. It’s essential to understand the stage at which one should attempt the same. Ideally, the first stage of a sales call is about introducing oneself and talking about the product. Once that has been taken care of, the salesperson needs to begin probing the prospect, with regards to checking how much interest has been generated. The introduction stage during small business lead generation is essentially all about telling the other person why the call was made, and it is very important that the prospect is made to feel that he/she was handpicked from a list simply because the product or service being offered caters to his/her needs.

How Can Small Business Lead Generation Help Your Business

Marketing a business is quite a task, and it’s not possible for everyone to be an expert at it. And when it comes to small business lead generation, the proposition gets even more complicated, since the organization is not known, and probably has to take head-on competition from established brands. In this regard, a majority of the organizations choose to take the assistance of specialist agencies that have proficiency in these operations.

These agencies help companies achieve their desired objective, and there are many benefits of this kind of an initiative, the first one being the fact that the organization can stay assured that experts are working on its campaign. This obviates the need for hiring specialized staff, which is more often than not, quite expensive. On the other hand, doing small business lead generation via outsourcing helps in getting an estimate cost for every lead, which is the best possible proposition for a small enterprise, as it gives an accurate figure of how much needs to be spent to achieve the desired business objective. Thus, the business does not have to go on a wild goose chase, and can instead focus on bettering its offering.

Also, the organization can sort its leads in a better manner, since specialist agencies provide accurate and detailed statistics, segregating the leads into hot, warm or cold leads. In this regard, half of the job is already done, and businesses just need to act upon the leads that are most likely to be converted. Also, small business lead generation via a specialist agency helps in finding out which kind of media is delivering better results than the next, so that the business knows where it has to pump in more investment to get better results. All in all, partnering with a reliable firm is an extremely beneficial step for all kinds of small enterprises.

However, just because qualifying the call is a very important aspect of the process does not mean that one should jump directly into it. It’s essential to understand the stage at which one should attempt the same. Ideally, the first stage of a sales call is about introducing oneself and talking about the product. Once that has been taken care of, the salesperson needs to begin probing the prospect, with regards to checking how much interest has been generated. The introduction stage during small business lead generation is essentially all about telling the other person why the call was made, and it is very important that the prospect is made to feel that he/she was handpicked from a list simply because the product or service being offered caters to his/her needs.

Small Business Lead Generation: Think Big

There are many enterprises that constantly strive to maximize their revenues via small business lead generation, but most of the time it does not work, and one of the mail reasons for the same is that the tactics being used are very old school. It’s a new age, and one needs to be in tune with the times. For B2C customers, the best proposition is to give freebies like a coffee mug or duffel bag with each purchase. Special discount vouchers can also be given away via email upon filling a form or making a purchase.

Also, inbound calling is often not given much importance, but the fact is that despite the widespread extent of emails, people still prefer talking on the phone. So, the small business lead generation efforts of an enterprise can really get a big boost if there is an inbound calling line. It’s even better if the line is toll-free. This is because it gives the customer an impression that the company is in the big league. One can also gain a significant edge by creating a referral system for existing customers, i.e., every time a customer refers a lead which is converted (or not, depending on the business model), a special privilege is extended like discounts, gift coupons, etc.

Small business lead generation can also be done through the company’s website. A small pop-up every now and then, telling people about the new products and services of the company goes a long way in getting more business. An interesting way to position it is in the ‘did you know’ format, so as to create curiosity among the target audience. And lastly, one can get a great deal of exposure by participating in industry events, particularly when it’s about the B2B domain, since a lot of potential customers and service providers mingle at such dos.

Another reason why small business lead generation is considerably different than a regular B2C product promotion is because one has to overcome a barrage of contact persons in the organization. Convincing each of these is necessary to reach the next level. More often than one would like, the person one gets in touch with in the initial stages of the deal is not the decision maker, and it’s important that one constantly follows up and highlights the merits of the offering in the right manner to ensure that the enthusiasm is maintained on the part of the client as well.

Small Business Lead Generation

Small business lead generation doesn’t have to be a daunting task. You have an excellent product, your service is unlike any that many people will find in your type of business, and many people have an interest in what you do, but they just aren’t making the buy. This is where small business lead generation can help you out in gaining the interest of the prospects and turning them into customers.

Sometimes small business lead generation involves giving a little in order to receive a lot. A good example of this is doing something like offering a free guide to a particular service your business specializes in order to get the attention of potential customers. Anytime the word ‘free’ is thrown out there, you get the attention of all sorts of people. In turn, you are gaining leads and from those leads you gain customers.

Your small business lead generation strategy may also be something like offering a free download on your website (games, software) if visitors register their name and contact information on your site. If you can’t do downloads, you can give free gifts and do a “while supplies last” type of promotion to deter freebie hunters who have no interest in your business at all and just want the free gift. That is something you must be careful of when using this as a small business lead generation strategy. It works, but don’t be surprised if some of your freebies are gobbled up by those who have made it a career to post your site on the net as being a ‘freebie’ site. It is true that you may generate leads since freebie hunters need certain products and services too, but be aware that this does occur and use your best judgment since giving away free stuff is a very good small business lead generation tactic.

Another great tool in small business lead generation is once you have the leads, create a print newsletter in your store or an e-mail newsletter for those who have registered on your site. Keeping your current and potential customers up-to-date on your products and services is a great way to keep the same customers coming back over and over and that means they will tell their friends. The best small business lead generation strategy is when your current or potential customers see something in your newsletter that prompts them to call their friends and say “You know that such and such you were looking for? Well, XYZ Company has it and they have a great price on it.”

Through small business lead generation you are building relationships, retaining relationships, and opening yourself up to a whole new world of marketing strategies. And don’t forget, you want to do these things so that people will tell their friends and keep the word of mouth domino effect going strong. That is going to be the best small business lead generation you will ever find, but you have to give the dominoes a little push in the right direction first.