Lead Generation Starts With Lead Engagement

Where do you start with a new lead generation campaign? Do you start with “who” or “how”?
When we as marketers embark on a new lead generation campaign it’s natural to begin with the tactics we’ll use get in front of the target audience:
Are we going to start an Adwords campaign or hire an SEO company? Should we send a sponsored email campaign to a targeted list? Will we advertise on these industry websites? In all of these cases, we’re starting with who we’re trying to engage; people searching for these terms, people subscribing to this list, people visiting those sites. There’s sense in that. After all, direct marketing wisdom suggests “the list” determines at least 60% of the outcome (30% is the offer, 10% the creative). The same is true with online marketing. It’s of no use to try and engage with the wrong audience.
But there’s something different about your website. It’s doing it’s job attracting targeted visitors every day. Some are coming from search engines. Others followed a link from another site or a web directory. Some are from word of mouth. Some are prospects you engaged with months ago but abandoned due to “lack of interest”.
Effort you’ve put into “how” you’re engaging with visitors pays off whether or not you’re running a new marketing campaign.
How do you engage with your visitors?
Imagine if at the end of a sales presentation your salesperson handed over a business card, shook hands with their prospect — and then walked out the door. He doesn’t get a lot of business. Asking for the order is an important factor in getting it. It’s one of the first rules you learn is sales training.
Why wouldn’t you ask for the order? The most common reason is it feels uncomfortable. No one wants to be perceived as “pushy”. Yet when you ask for the order with some sensitivity, it isn’t pushy at all. It can be a gentle nudge to get the flow going in the right direction.
Is it any different on your website? Just because you aren’t selling anything on your site directly doesn’t mean you shouldn’t ask for the next step in the sales cycle. Does it seem too pushy to ask for the lead? Should you really let that interested visitor walk out the door without even asking?
So the question is not if, but how do you engage with your visitors? How can you ask and not be that “pushy” salesperson? The best way is to offer something of real value in exchange for contact information.
What can you offer your web visitors? Is it a technical brief, a white paper, the results of a study you did? Can you write a free report? A how-to guide? Free downloads are excellent offers because they cost you nothing once you’ve created them, they provide instant satisfaction, and they work for nearly every website. Depending on your industry there are many offer variants as well: A webinar, a free demo, a free trial, a coupon, a sample.
Even “contact us” can be an offer you ask:
Do you want to generate more sales-ready leads?
Please contact us today to learn how to engage more of your website visitors. We’ll get back to you within one business day (often on the same day) to discuss how you can start engaging on your site.

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