“How do I get more leads?”
This is the most common question I get asked. In all the Marketing Therapy sessions, speaking engagements, and strategy sessions I’ve done over the years - it comes up as a consistent problem for businesses.
Needing more leads and wanting to fill your funnel to boost your sales is often the main focus of businesses wanting to grow and increase their profitability.
Honestly, no big surprise there! Growing and keeping your business alive is a constant source of anxiety for business owners. It makes sense that it dominates our thought patterns and strategies.
Leads are the lifeblood of any business.
I can’t survive without them. You can’t survive without them.
Everyone is always stressing about leads.
When I get asked this question I will always dig a little deeper to give the right answer. The scary problem of “I need more leads” is often an umbrella issue. The closer you look the more you realise that it’s made up of lots of little problems…
The fascinating part is that the “leads” bit is rarely the part that needs fixing.
This challenge often splits into one of 3 core issues:
1. You are getting enough leads, but your conversion rate is poor
2. Your conversion rate is reasonable, but you aren’t getting enough traffic to convert
3. You have traffic coming in, you’re converting it to leads and then to customers! But… you need MORE.
Number 3 is the most dangerous one. It’s the one that looks so very inconspicuous. Pick at it and you’ll probably see that in fact you’re not optimising your existing clients: your customer lifetime value is poor.
The difficulty is that each of these problems can then split off into lots of problems, there are so many little things that can get in the way of being able to appropriately answer “How do I get more leads”.
To help you get more leads, we need to find out what your problem actually is. To do that we need to:
Challenge what a lead really is to you
Pick apart where your lead problem fits
Choose the strategy to fit that gap
Leads are prospects who have performed a small conversion - an action in which they have given you a little bit of personal information that tells you a bit about them and identifies them as someone that would be a good fit for your product or service.
If you can’t tell any of that… They aren’t a lead.
If they are just a number visiting your landing page - then they’re simply traffic. If you can’t tell who they are other than a cookie on their computer, they certainly aren’t a lead.
If they have opted into your marketing, but you don’t know anything about them, then they are a prospect - a stranger who could maybe grow into being a lead, but they aren’t a lead right now.
Which one do you need?
Do you need more traffic, more prospects or more leads? Once you’re clear on what you’re looking for, we can move onto the next step: qualifying the type you want so you can choose your strategy.
Not all leads are born equal. Some leads need a lot of work before they will convert. Other leads just want to give you their money right now. The type of lead you’re looking for should dictate your entire strategy and angle of approach..
Now why wouldn’t you just want to get the leads that are super ready for conversion? Well… These guys are the ideal leads.
Anyone who just wants to know where the dotted line to sign on is the best case scenario… unless they come with a bunch of crazy ideas that you have to unpack to make sure they’re not going to be a nightmare client. These ideal guys are also pretty rare, which makes getting a lot of them extremely difficult.
In reality leads fit along a scale of awareness, and a scale of easy availability.
Imagine you’re a mechanic. You fix cars and make them fit for purpose all day long. People break their cars, and they come find you. But you need more people with broken cars.
Now imagine your ideal customer. They start their day with a car devoid of problems. They know at this point that mechanics exist, but they aren’t interested in you or your skills right now. So any of your ads fall on deaf ears. You don’t matter, you’re white-noise, they don’t care about you.
That is until they finish up work and their car won’t start.
Now they have a problem. And what do we do when we have a problem? We do a little bit of research… Whip out the phone, google it, call a friend - whatever needs doing to satisfy their informational needs.
Research done they realise this is more than they can handle, they need a solution: a mechanic. Queue more research - where are they going to find a trusted mechanic? They’re starting to care a little bit.
Finally they narrow down their product options: a list of mechanics, and stumble across you: the mechanic they need. Now they care big time. And they bring you their problem: a broken car. You take a look, it’s clear to you that they have something draining the battery and it’s going to cost £ to fix. They decide to go ahead with your suggestions.
Boom - you have a customer.
Each and every step this person went through is an awareness stage:
And leads at each stage will behave differently because they need different bits of information. They won’t be able to get to the next stage of awareness without the right information.
Your lead wouldn’t be interested in your mechanic services if they hadn’t developed a problem with their car. They wouldn’t have realised they needed a mechanic if they hadn’t researched why their car didn’t start. And they wouldn’t have found you if they hadn’t researched mechanics. Awareness is a cascade of events leading up to purchase.
By waiting for leads at the very end of their awareness journey to just fall into your lap, you lose control of the whole process. Ideally you’d have shortened their journey by having some good solutions content on why cars don’t start, followed with why they need a mechanic, and how to choose the best one (you of course).
Structuring a journey in this way allows you to get more leads, at their point of discovering a problem, that you build trust and rapport with before the point of sale.
These guys are far less rare, and helping them through their journey builds engagement and turns them into leads that want to work with you. This is the money maker right here.
So where are your leads? What level of awareness would you be able to focus on to get the best leads at?
Once you know what kind of lead you’re looking for, and what level of awareness they are at - you can start thinking about what you need to do to get them.
At each awareness level, leads need specific help and are looking for specific pieces of information; that right there is your way in.
You know that when a lead discovers the unique problem that you solve, they have questions. Answer those questions. Give them the right information to help them move to the next step, and then be right there at that step ready with the next piece of the puzzle.
Find out what they need, and provide it in the moment that they need it, in the way that they need it. That’s how you get more people taking action and giving you that personal info.
Spend time working on your lead’s journey and mapping out the steps that they go through. This will tell you what you need to create, and how you need to provide it to them.
The great news is, when you suss out what your leads need at each stage of their journey you can solve each and everyone of the 3 problems we mentioned earlier:
No problem! Give those leads you have the information to educate them into better quality leads, this increases their conversion rates
No problem! By being really clear on what leads want to know, you can focus on creating great information that they will want to consume. Put it up in the right places, distribute where they will be looking for it and you’ll get the traffic you’re looking for
No problem! You can do both of the above, and focus on giving your customers more so that they spend more time and money with you
This also works awesome for the leads you already have:
Leads that didn’t convert
Your customers that want more
Get really clear on what they are looking for, help them clarify their problems and show them the solutions and you’ll have plenty of leads.
But when you have the leads… your real real work begins: the follow up for conversion. But that’s a topic for another blog.
Your mission is to be really clear with yourself on why you need more leads? What are the little problems that are hiding under that umbrella problem?
Qualify what constitutes a good lead to you. Where will you get them from? What do they need in that moment, and where are they going next?
Give your audience what they want, for where they are in their journey and you’ll have made yourself a better lead that will convert at a higher rate.
Want a little bit more of a helping hand with your lead process? We have a nifty little playbook that talks through some lead generation strategies and campaigns, with in depth questions to ask yourself about your leads. You can grab yourself a copy here:
If you're looking for a step by step guide to help you build an attract strategy for new lead generation, this is the playbook for you!
If you want to hash this out with a human, you can get yourself a free marketing therapy session here. In that session we can chat through your lead options, suss out what you need to do and how and I’ll give you a bespoke action plan to get through your lead woes!
Book a free session with an expert. We promise you will leave with actionable solutions to get more leads and there are no strings attached!