How To Generate Leads to Your Pages and Offers
If you have an online business, you’re selling something. It might be a product of your own, a service you provide, an affiliate product (or most likely multiple affiliate products), etc. Whatever it is you’re selling, you need leads.
In fact, in most major industries the average cost of a single lead is $20 or more! They’re THAT valuable. But you won’t have to pay that kind of money, because you’re about to learn exactly how to position yourself so you can easily connect with an unlimited amount of high-quality leads without breaking the bank!
So, what exactly is a lead?
A lead is a potential buyer. And more importantly, a qualified prospect that has been proven to be interested in your products or services. potential customer or client. A lead isn’t guaranteed to buy, but they are far more likely to because they’ve shown interest in your niche market.
How does one go about generating qualified leads?
You need to entice them to offer their contact information in exchange for something of value. It might be a free report, a training video, a discount or coupon, or something else—but it should be something they would be interested in only if they would also likely be interested in whatever you’re selling.
In other words, offering a discount coupon for a coffee shop is NOT going to get you qualified leads if you’re selling model cars. A guide on how to lose weight is NOT going to get you qualified leads if you’re offering a graphics design service. Sure, a few of those people might be interested in what you’re selling, but you want people who have clearly demonstrated some level of interest in the types of products or services you are offering.
Here is a simple example:
If you’re offering dog walking services, you might offer a free report on training your dog, or how to get bargains on pet supplies or even a coupon for 50% off the customer’s first walking session.
To begin, there are four main elements to generating leads:
- The system
- The lead magnet (offer)
- The squeeze page/entry funnel
Step One: The System
The first thing you absolutely must do if you want to generate leads is to sign up for a service that will allow you to build a database of leads through a web form.
Most people simply use an autoresponder service such as MailChimp, MailerLite, Aweber, or GetResponse, but there are also services that will let you collect, store, manage, and search many different types of information if you need more details from your leads.
If all you need to collect is name and email, which is fine for most online marketing purposes, you can just use a simple autoresponder system.
Here is a list of some of the most popular autoresponder services. Each of these services is widely respected and most have similar features and pricing.
- Sendlane– Slightly newer than the other two here but they have a growing reputation amongst marketers since Sendlane is run by experienced marketers. This is my personal current choice and you can read my review on this site – My Experience with Sendlane.
- Aweber – I took a free trial with Aweber but didn’t like the feel of the interface. Of course, that was a few years ago and it may have changed since then. Aweber is certainly popular amongst the marketing community.
- GetResponse – I was with Get Response for a year or so and I was enjoying the experience. However, sending some junk traffic to an opt-in page (which immediately opted out again) harmed my reputation with them and I got kicked off.
There are other autoresponders, including some free services – which do have some restrictions and some that are far more expensive and complex than the three mentioned above. As I have no expertise in them, I cannot recommend them although you should feel free to research them should they become your ‘weapon of choice’ as far as collecting emails is concerned.
Step Two: The Offer
Once you have chosen your system and set up your initial campaign, it’s time to think about creating your offer, which many people refer to as your “lead magnet”. It’s kind of like fishing, where your leads are the fish, and your lead magnet is the bait that lures them in.
Remember, this offer should appeal directly to your chosen demographic. You can’t expect to catch a catfish with a flashy lure meant for bass. While it’s possible, it’s not likely, and you’d stand a much better chance of catching a catfish with something that is known to appeal to them—such as chicken livers, or earthworms, or stink bait.
Try to think about what might appeal to your target audience. What would they be interested in learning that they don’t already know? What would they be interested in getting a discount on?
Most people create a special report as their lead magnet. It’s usually 10-20 pages, but may be up to 50 or so, depending on how much you want to say. Longer reports are more appropriate when you have a complex subject and aren’t selling information on the topic.
For example, if you’re in real estate and selling houses, you can give away a 50-page guide on how to find the perfect house, including information about stuff like zoning regulations, homeowners’ associations, utilities, road frontage, home inspections, etc.
But if you’re selling a course on SEO, a shorter report, say 20 pages, on a small segment of the topic would be much more appropriate, because you don’t want to give away all your information for free.
You can always outsource the creation of your lead magnet, or purchase a high-quality PLR product that you can use. This will save you a lot of time.
I use a lot of PLR from this source – PLR Database.
There are two ways of using PLR – as it stands – which means you make no alterations to the supplied product(s). This is quick but has the disadvantage that people will have possibly have seen it before and devalue the content in their minds, putting you off to a bad start in the know, like and trust stakes.
Alternatively, you can use PLR material as a starting point to create your own version or expand it well beyond the basic package. If you have a mind to do things this way (and many products on sale have their roots in a PLR package or two), may I suggest this course – PLR Masterclass, which will take you from raw PLR content to your own product ready to be released on an unsuspecting world.
You can read my review here on PLRMasterclass Review.
Once you have your lead magnet ready, be sure to add a link to it to your autoresponder service as a follow-up after people opt-in. You don’t want to have to send all those freebies out manually!
Check your autoresponder’s help files to find out how to set up a follow-up email that contains a link to your lead magnet. The process will be slightly different for each service, but it’s not difficult. It’s about as easy as sending an email.
Step Three: The Squeeze Page
Your squeeze page is your lead generation page. This is a web page created specifically to collect information from people and once they do, your autoresponder will direct them to the page where they can download their freebie.
This page should be relatively short. It’s not like a long sales letter. People don’t need that much convincing when something is free, but they do need some. After all, they don’t want to give up their personal contact details unless they really think your lead magnet will benefit them.
For this reason, squeeze pages should have just enough information to entice the reader into taking action. If it’s too long, people will get bored and leave before they opt in!
Generally speaking, a squeeze page should consist of:
- Headline – This needs to immediately capture their attention and persuade them to continue reading.Su
- Sub-headline – This provides a little more information and works as your headline’s supporting agent.
- Bullet points – Quick, digestible highlights about how your prospect benefits by subscribing to your newsletter, or entering your funnel.
- A call-to-action – A direct prompt that instructs your prospect how to complete the process of signing up for your free offer.
Your lead generation form – usually generated by your autoresponder service or lead generation service with various form fields and a button to submit the information.
Sendlane offers a built-in page builder so it’s all integrated and hosted for you. All you do is design the page and send traffic to it.
Information to Collect
Most people collect only the name and email address of their leads, but you might need more information than that, depending on your niche market, and whether you wish to further segment your lists and identify potential customers through demographic based data.
The name and address of potential customers is probably enough information for general marketing purposes, but what if you’re selling a higher-end product or services like real estate or legal services, or something that requires one-on-one contact like coaching, you’ll want to begin collecting as much information as possible to help you better connect with potential customers.
Do remember to inform your customers that you are collecting their data for marketing purposes and that they will receive information and marketing emails. This is to help you comply with European regulations and probably forthcoming USA ones too.
Step Four: Traffic
The three previous steps were pretty easy. Even if you create your own lead magnet from scratch, and you need time to learn how to use your autoresponder or CRM, you can complete the other three steps in a few days at most.
You might think traffic is the hardest part, but it’s actually a lot simpler than you think to get traffic! We’re going to take a look at a few of the best strategies for getting traffic, both free and paid.
As far as free traffic goes, there’s only one method that’s quick enough to generate traffic starting today, doesn’t have a hefty learning curve, and provides quality traffic that can convert: social media.
Keep in mind that certain markets are more inclined to use certain social networks than others, so it’s important to locate your market and be certain you’re focusing most of your time and energy on those locations. While you can still use other social networks, most of your effort should be focused on those sites that have a higher concentration of your target demographic.
We’re going to look at a few of the most popular social networks, and how you can locate your target demographic on each one in order to find out which one(s) you should concentrate on.
Locating your target demographic on Facebook is relatively simple. Begin by searching for a topic related to your niche and find pages and groups that fit your niche.
For example, if you are offering a dog walking service, you’d want to search for things like groups for pet owners in your city or state. Find out how many people are in those groups, and how many groups there are. This will give you a rough idea of how many people you can reach on Facebook.
Join these groups and participate in them, making sure you follow their rules. If they don’t allow promotions, you’ll need to contact the group administrators and ask for permission to advertise your service. Otherwise, you should be able to pipe in if people happen to ask about dog walking services.
You can also start your own group, which is your best option. This will give you a source of traffic you can turn into leads anytime.
You should also start a Facebook page for your business, and you can even include a link to your squeeze page on your Facebook page.
Pinterest is like an online corkboard. You can have multiple “boards”, and then pin images with links, sort of like bookmarking a page.
You can find out how popular your niche is on Pinterest by performing a search, and then clicking “Boards” to find out how many people have boards related to your niche AND how many followers those boards have.
You can also search pins for the niche and see how many repins each one has. This will let you know how interested people are.
Pinterest has a huge amount of traffic, and it’s relatively easy to access just by following accounts that have some connection to your niche and pinning content related to your niche and using keywords in your board names and descriptions.
You’ll need to have some interesting content to pin, so it’s a good idea to have a blog or website that you use to post content related to your field. For example, you could have a dog care blog for your dog walking service and post useful information for pet owners.
One important thing to note is that Pinterest is heavily image-based, so you’ll need good images to pin that relates to your article.
For example, if you’ve posted an article called “5 Tips for Housebreaking Your Puppy”, you’d want to include a photo of a dog being trained, or something related to housebreaking a puppy, and have the title of your article on the image.
If you take a look at Pinterest, you’ll see that most images are taller than they are wide. That’s because they take up the most screen real estate since images are constrained by width, but have much more space to expand lengthwise. Thus, try to make sure your images follow the same format.
Instagram is a great platform for visual content, and you can get a lot of traffic from it, especially if your business is related to fashion, beauty, art, lifestyle, food and cooking, crafts, or other topics that are popular.
You can get a good indication of what’s popular on Instagram by opening the app and clicking the search icon, searching for a term related to your niche, and then click “Tags”. This will show you how many posts are currently on the site using that phrase, as well as lots of related phrases.
For example, when I search for “dogs”, I see millions of posts with such hashtags as #dogsofinstagram, #dogs, #dogstagram, and #dogsitting.
You can also click the “People” tab and click some of the top profiles to see how many followers they have. This is another good indicator of interest in your topic.
There are three important steps to getting traffic from Instagram:
- Fill out your profile and include a link to your website or squeeze page there. Make sure to choose an interesting photo of either yourself or something related to your niche for your profile picture. And include that link because you can’t include links in the descriptions of your individual posts! (Just tell people to check your profile for a link.)
- Post often. Instagram posts scroll by and are gone quickly if someone is following a lot of profiles, so the best way to get seen is to post as often as possible. Don’t spam! Just a few posts a day is fine but spread them out every few hours. And don’t forget to add at least 5 relevant hashtags to every post!
- Follow people who are related to your niche. Many will follow you back, and others will find and follow you from those people’s profiles. It’s a good idea to follow at least 20 new accounts each day, which you can find easily through the search function and referrals from other people. Stick mostly to following accounts related to your niche, because you want qualified leads, not just a high follower count!
Other Social Networks
There are other social networks that can be effective, too, depending on your market. I suggest giving each of these a try to see how they do for your particular market, but you might want to concentrate your efforts on the other sites we’ve talked about earlier in this chapter.
I don’t recommend using paid ads until you’ve thrown a good amount of free traffic at your squeeze page for a while and tested conversion rates. If you aren’t getting many leads, you may want to make some tweaks to your squeeze page and/or lead magnet to increase those conversions.
Once you’re happy with how your page is converting, you can start sending some paid traffic to it.
Let’s look at some of the most effective paid ad platforms. These are generally the most profitable, but they may not work for all niches equally, so be sure to track your conversions carefully, tweak ads as needed, and kill any ads that aren’t performing.
Facebook is generally considered one of the best advertising platforms because ads are typically affordable and convert well. This is mainly because of how well they are able to target ads to the appropriate parties.
Remember when we talked about how important it is to get qualified leads? Facebook is brilliant for that because they have incredibly advanced targeting options. You can target people based on age, gender, location, marital status… just about anything you can think of… PLUS, you can target by interests, shopping habits, and so much more.
Sticking with our example of using a local dog walking business, you can target people in your city or surrounding cities, AND who are dog owners. You can seriously get THAT specific!
When you create your ad, pay attention to the type of ad you’re creating. The regular newsfeed and mobile newsfeed formats are considered the most profitable.
Keep in mind that the price you pay for your ads on Facebook is heavily based on your CTR (click-thru rate), so it’s important to design the most effective as possible. If you notice an ad has a low CTR, pause the ad and make changes. Keep tweaking until you find the right combination to bring in qualified leads at a low cost.
Facebook has a great guide to help you get started:
Bing’s ad platform isn’t nearly as competitive as many others, because they have much less traffic than Google, Facebook, and some other platforms. However, you can still get a lot of traffic at a very low price, because the lower competition means you can actually get more traffic than you could at the more competitive sites because in many instances you could be the only advertiser in a genre.
Bing is a PPC platform just like Google AdWords, so if you’re already familiar with AdWords, you shouldn’t have too much trouble.
Bing has a lot of training if you’re not familiar with the platform:
Other Ad Platforms
There are platforms you can explore as well, such as YouTube, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, Google AdWords, and many others. But these can be a little trickier to master than the other three platforms we discussed, as they are either more expensive, more competitive, or harder to master.
For this reason, I suggest exploring other platforms once you’ve mastered the other three we discussed and are getting consistent results.
In this guide, you’ve learned how to set up your own powerful lead generation system from start to finish. Whether you’re just looking to collect email addresses to build your list so you can market affiliate offers or your own products, or you need more detailed information for big-ticket items, you are now armed with exactly what you need to start collecting those leads.
Remember, it’s vital to collect qualified leads. You can have a list of a million leads, but it won’t do you any good unless those people are interested in what you have to offer. It’s much better to have a thousand qualified leads than it is to have a million unqualified leads unless of course, you’re selling something that has an extremely wide area of interest.
Start by choosing the right lead generation service for you. Most of them have trials, so you can test them out to see which one works best for your needs, and which one you find easiest to you.
Next, create your lead magnet. This offer should be something related to your niche, and something that your target market would likely be interested in.
Once your lead magnet is ready, create your squeeze page. Remember to keep this page simple, and focus on letting people know exactly what they will get, and why it will benefit them when they sign up.
Finally, send some traffic to your squeeze page. Start with free traffic, refine your page to get a good conversion rate, and send paid traffic once you know your squeeze page is converting well.
It’s that simple! Now get out there and start generating all the leads you need for your business!
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