This article is the first of a series of «Best Practices in Lead Generation».

Through this series of blogs, my goal is to show you how much marketing has evolved recently, and especially how much it can contribute to the growth of any business.

There are now many marketing approaches and concepts as well as a long series of Buzzwords describing these new trends: Lead Generation, Funnel Management, Inbound Marketing, Lead Nurturing, Growth Hacking…

In trying to shed light on all these terms all sexier than another, I especially want to share with you my techniques, anecdotes and best practices to generate more leads that will bring you more sales revenue.

Before even putting yourself into the launch of campaigns, you must first take a deep breath, sit down and set up a road map:

  • Know your audience in every detail
  • Assess your priorities in terms of objectives to be achieved
  • Define precisely with numbers your objectives
  • Build a convincing business plan
  • Set up a winning team
clarity

AUDIENCE

Identify your Audience

As we said in the introduction to this series of articles, marketing remains the ‘voice of customer’ in the business. It is up to us marketers to understand the expectations, problems and motivations of our customers and prospects. And we need to know these traits in their finer details, if we want our marketing content to resonate.

To do this, a proven technique remains the creation of personas. Personas are fictional characters that are supposed to represent the broad categories of your audience. For each persona to whom you give imaginary names (to really personify them) you will try to answer as many questions as possible about your prospects and customers. What are their business goals? How do they think?

To gather the information that will be useful for the creation of these personas, several options are available to you. You can conduct interviews with your prospects and clients, conduct or acquire studies and surveys, or you can also gather information from your sales team. It’s all about condensing qualitative and quantitative information.

Generally, four or five personas can be established in order to humanize your customer understanding. Personas will also help you better target your audience, which means that you will be able to know which content should be sent to which prospect.

identify your audience

In order to establish your priorities in terms of marketing campaign, companies have for most of them a lot of information at their disposal: Google Analytics, CRM, marketing automation tool … What we are looking for here is to establish the performance of past marketing campaigns. In more detail, we will focus on the number of leads created per campaign, conversion rates from leads to opportunities, the closing rate of these opportunities. The objective is to know where we are hurt and to detect the improvement paths for future campaigns.

Warning: do not focus only on lead acquisition, but think about lead nurturing, as well as campaigns with existing customers.

set your priorities lead generation

GOALS

Set your goals

After setting your priorities, you now know what your most important goals are, and where you need to improve: acquire more leads or convert more leads into opportunities. Now, the next step is to set targets with sales figures:

  • Percentage of marketing contribution to sales funnel and revenue
  • Number of opportunities per target market
  • Average amount of opportunities per target market
  • Number of leads to generate to meet these objectives

When doing this exercise, take into account the average closing time of an opportunity. Here, we want to maximize the impact of marketing to the objectives of the current year.

 Setting quantitative goals helps to keep track of your progress throughout the campaigns and also gives you more credibility to get the resources that you need to reach your objectives. 

BUSINESS PLAN

Build your business plan

An important step is to build a business plan and present it to your company’s management team so they understand the impact of your future marketing campaigns. At this meeting, you will need to bring together all the people responsible for management who can help with funding, human resources, IT.

Then you need to include the following points in your presentation:


Your lead generation plan
– Strategies and tactics
– Medias that you are going to use
– Choose well who your targets are

Budget and resources
– Budget by priorities
– Your technological resources
– Human resources

Calendar and Action Plans
– Per month, per quarter
– Annual events
– Forecasting leads, opportunities

Key Performance indicators
– Quantified goals
– Measure plan

WINNING TEAM

Train your winning team

To go to war, you need an army of winners. As we have already seen, marketing has changed; which means that the profiles that we find in a team are also very different.

In order to have a strong Lead Generation team, you need different skills among which: A person with good knowledge of digital marketing. This person will orchestrate your digital campaigns; she is an expert in online advertising and social networks. This person is very Cartesian and will have a strong impact on lead acquisition.

A person in charge of segmentation and automation rules. This person will be your champion of marketing automation. Also very structured, this person will be very useful to maintain the communication with your prospects.

A person who creates content, and who will collaborate with a graphic designer. It is this person who will provide the raw material of the department. She knows the personas at your fingertips and knows how to influence your audience with powerful content. It is often also a person who knows very well the art of communicating through social networks.

A graphic manager is always a good addition to a marketing team because style and design always play an important role in making a good first impression. Moreover, the most visual and coherent contents are often the most effective.

lead generation team