Free Business Blog: How to Generate More Leads

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Oct 03
How to generate leads

What EXACTLY is "Lead Generation" and how can we generate more leads for our business?

It is defined as:

"noun:

the action or process of identifying and cultivating potential customers for a business's products or services."

How to improve your lead generation strategies for your business

As a business owner I am sure there has been a point in your career where you have felt that the enquires have slowed down, or worse… they never even started coming in. There are so many different ways to generate leads and the best thing is… it doesn’t have to cost anything! Spending just 30 minutes a day could help bring in hundreds of new enquiries and these are some of our favourite lead generation tools and tricks. 

Whether your business is product or services based, let’s face it, we all need customers to buy from us. And as long as you are providing the goods and your customers are happy it is much easier to bring in repeat business from the same customers then trying to get new customers to buy from you.

Your existing customers will already know how awesome you are, your business is and most importantly what you are offering them. So don’t wait for your existing customers to come back to you, go after them and let them know what else you offer.

Students to pretty witty cakes classes

1. Getting your customers to buy time and time again

Don’t let your customers forget who you are! How many times have you bought from a company once and then just forgotten about them, it might even be something you buy often but you aren’t committed to buying it from a certain place.

If this sounds like your business then you can easily change this. Customers just need gentle reminders that you are still there and you aren’t going anywhere. There are obvious ways to do this; newsletters, targeted facebook or instagram posts, leaflet drops through their door.

But why not pick up the phone and see if they need anything? In a digital age you can learn so much by picking up the phone and actually talking to people. Let’s say for instance you sell stationery. You might pick up the phone to a customer you haven’t heard from for a while and more often than not they will say they have been meaning to get in touch but just haven’t got round to it.

Or they have had an order sitting on their desk for the last month and they keep forgetting to email it over. Or they might tell you they had completely forgotten it was you they bought from and they couldn’t remember the name of the company, but they love your stuff and want to order again!

The worst thing they will say is that they don’t want to order again and you can cross them off your list and move onto the next one. But don’t forget to ask why they don’t want to order again, feedback could be key to you sealing your next deal!

2. The birthday calendar

If you are in a business that has products or services for special occasions such as birthdays then a birthday calendar is essential. Let’s say you own a bakery but you are finding you are making a lot of birthday cakes for one off customers, and I bet a lot of them come to you last minute needing a cake!

Make a note of the birthday boy or girls name and then next year, a month before the birthday, send an email to whoever bought the cake and see if they would like another one. You should have their name and their age to be able to personalise it:

Hi Julie,

We can’t believe that Little Johnny’s birthday is just around the corner. We loved making his 5th birthday cake and would love to make another for his 6th birthday! Is he still a dinosaur fanatic or would you like to explore a different theme this year? We have so many ideas and designs up our sleeves and we can’t wait to come up with one for you.

I look forward to hearing from you

The team at the Pretty Witty Bakery

You can easily store all the details on a spreadsheet for the cake orders you take. Then once a month go through the cakes from the previous year and send out some personalised emails to those customers you would like to work with again. 

Top Tip: Also keep tabs on big birthdays that are coming up such as 18th birthdays and 50th birthdays and suggest something extra special!

3. Telling them about your other services

More often than not customers won’t know half the services you offer. How many people will go to M&S for their socks and underwear but forget that they offer travel money? Let’s say you run a printing company and have an amazing client base for leaflets, posters, business cards etc. But you also design and create websites, however you just aren’t getting the bookings. Perhaps your customers who have been buying business cards from you for 50+ years don’t even know this is a service you offer?

Why not create a newsletter to all your regular printing clients and tell them what else you can do, I bet you will be surprised at how many don’t know you offer this service. You could chuck in a special offer for existing customers. They already know your business and they like buying from you. The loyalty is already in place, they would be perfect for you to upsell your other services too.

3. Linking up with other businesses 

How many times do you get asked about recommendations for other types of businesses? Customers love a recommendation and there comes an element of trust with a recommendation coming from a business they already know does a good job. So why not team up with some of those businesses. You might run a limousine hire company and I bet the schools get asked repeatedly for a good limo companies around prom time. So why not set up a meeting with the school. Maybe offer a special deal for that school. They might even let you put up posters or post in the parents facebook group. 

There are many businesses that go hand in hand such as florists and funeral homes or cleaning companies and estate agents. Have a think about companies you could work alongside and think about what you could do for each other by recommending each others services, and remember it is a two way street. You want to generate as many leads for them as well as them bringing you new leads.

Don't forget...

  • A lead doesn’t mean a new customer every time. A lead is the potential opportunity to sell something to somebody at any given moment, be it a new customer or your best customer. We will talk about lead conversion in a later blog and the process from changing them into a customer from a lead.
  • Lead generation needs to be a constant, consumers buying habits can change almost daily so thinking outside the box with your lead generation will help you capture new people with every new move you make. 
  • Keep in mind the type of customers you want. There is no point trying to generate hundreds of new leads if they aren’t the ideal customer for you as the relationship will be very short lived and you want customers who can buy again and again and again. 
  • Lead generation strategies that are done little and often as well as a mix of bigger scale more lengthy lead generation strategies will help you maintain a steady stream of new leads. Saying this you don’t want to flit between lead generation processes, have a lead generation strategy in place and stick to it. However... 
  • Be flexible. Monitor and track how successful different strategies are. And if something isn’t working then change it up, don’t be afraid to try something else.
  • Remember your strategy can start to capture the interest of potential buyers before they convert into a buying customer.

Fun fact: ​

Buyers could be up to 90% of the way through their buying journey before they even reach the vendor. There is so much information available to consumers that they delay the initial contact with companies until they have educated themselves on certain products or services.

Lead generation doesn’t have to come from big expensive marketing campaigns, thinking outside the box can often be the most lucrative and you might even be able to help out other local businesses at the same time. If you are a member of the Pretty Witty Academy head over to the forum where you can share any other lead generation ideas you might have.

Love the sound of generating more leads and pushing your business to the next level, but still feel like there is something holding you back...? Why not check out this blog on 6 Techniques for Building Business Confidence:

6 tips for improving your confidence in business

And if there is still something holding you back, this blog on being scared of failure in your business if definitely worth a read: 

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