So you have your first few customers and are just starting to get your processes in place, but you might be asking ‘what’s next?’ Those first few customers may have come from your friends and family network, but now you’re being challenged to reach into a cold market full of people who have never heard of your company before.
Let’s talk about seven proven strategies to generate more leads for your business to scale faster.
1. Create content that is well written with your ideal client in mind
One of the best ways to reach your ideal customer is to create engaging content that they want to consume. Your readers have limited time and attention spans are low, so it’s crucial that your content is both informative and concise. Quality over quantity will win every time, so rather than aiming to push out as much content as possible, create less but amp up the value.
In addition, keep SEO best practices in mind as you are creating content. You should focus on writing helpful content for your audience, but adding relevant keywords to the headings and body copy will help both users and search engines better understand what your content is about.
2. Build an active, organic social media presence
Social media expands your reach and positions you as a thought leader within your industry. This is an area that we often see companies neglect as they build their brand and online presence. The most common question we hear, particularly from start ups, is what to post. You can take a look at our social media best practices for B2B tech companies, but we recommend a mix of original and curated content. Curated content consists of industry-related articles that others in your industry would find interesting and engage with. Leaning on curated content is a great place to start as you build up your own original content.
Adding relevant keywords and hashtags to your social posts can also aid your SEO efforts. As with content creation, keywords should be added naturally, but they are a great way to help your audience find your company profile and understand what value you provide.
3. Try LinkedIn ads
LinkedIn ads are an effective way to reach your target audience. LinkedIn allows you to create sophisticated audiences, which means that you get to pick everything from location to job title and more to hone in on your ideal customer persona. The right ad can be very effective in generating new, potential customers.
We typically recommend getting started with a brand awareness campaign that puts you in front of the right audience and warms them up with quality, ungated content. Once you have seen some success and get a better idea of what is working, you can implement lead generation ads leveraging gated content.
4. Actively participate in LinkedIn groups
We have found that LinkedIn groups are an underutilized but effective way to expand your network and reach your ideal customer. Start researching and joining LinkedIn groups where your ideal customer might be hanging out.
If you offer a cloud-based SaaS product, for example, you may want to join a group for cloud networking professionals. Then, rather than constantly promoting your business, actively engage in the group to offer solutions or answer questions. Other group members will take note of your expertise and check out your profile (which is hopefully optimized) with all roads leading back to your company.
5. Elevate your SEO
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is never a quick fix, but if you are diligent in your SEO efforts, you will be surprised at how many leads are organically generated. Decide on a list of keywords for your businesses (be as specific as possible), and create a content plan that will elevate your SEO. It’s important to include keywords not only in the body of your content, but also in H1s, H2, and meta descriptions to be found by search engines.
SEO has amazing potential to bring in a steady stream of leads with strong intent to buy. Take a look at our SEO process for increasing your visibility and driving more traffic to your website so you can turn organic visits into qualified leads.
6. Expand upon existing business
Most companies spend the lion share of their budget on demand generation and customer acquisition, leaving customer expansion as an afterthought. There is so much opportunity for growth in customer expansion. It is definitively easier and less costly to expand on existing customers than to generate new customers.
The question becomes, ‘how do we provide the best quality work and consistently provide value so that customers want to continue working with us?’
7. Perfect your current customer journey to receive more referrals
One of the most effective sources of new business comes from customer referrals. If you have customers singing your praises, ask them to refer you to other companies! Your customer, and their satisfaction, need to be at the heart of every decision you make, and building strong relationships is essential.
Take time to step back and analyze what is and is not working in your customer journey. Identify any breakdowns that occur throughout their journey and take steps towards improving overall customer experience.
Also, a great way to encourage referrals is to incentivize your current customers by building out a rewards program for referrals. Check out this one we made for ourselves to get an idea of what we mean.
Get out there and grow
The strategies outlined in this post are really just the beginning. Talk to the people working within your business day in and day out. Test every step of the lead generation process along the way. Constantly assessing the processes and strategies you deploy will improve your lead quality and increase your revenue.