The modern customer relationship
Not too long ago the purchase of new flat screen when like this; you’d go a retailer like Best Buy and ask a salesperson what flat screen TVs they had. You’d select one, pay for it, and take it home watch your favorite shows.
Today things are different. Now when a customer starts the buying journey they have a wealth of information at their fingertips: TV product blogs and review sites, recommendations from friends on social media, and many more. By the time a customer even thinks about going to a store — a brick and mortar or online store — they’re less likely to ask a salesperson “What flat screen TVs do you have?” than “Here’s brand and model TV I want, can you beat or match this price?”
Whether you’re selling flat-screen TVs to consumers or business services to other businesses, customers today know what they want, who they want it from, and what they want to pay before they are asked: “May I help you?” Growing your business means reaching potential customers at the consideration phase of the buyer’s journey – well before they’ve made up their minds. Lead generation is key.
Leads are people who are potentially interested in buying your products or services. Lead generation lets you reach potential customers early in their buyer’s journey, so you can earn their trust, build a relationship, and stay engaged with them until they’re ready to make a purchase.
Time to take a look at how lead generation works, and why it’s important to growing your business.
Lead Generation Defined
How do you grow your business with lead generation? What is lead generation? What are sales leads? Fundamental topics for any business, questions around leads and lead gen speak to how the relationship between businesses and customers has evolved in the digital age.
Lead generation once meant buying lists of names and having the sales teams cold call people. Today, technology allows you to generate leads based on specific criteria and information. Companies collect information about potential buyers and then personalize marketing methods and sales pitches to those prospects’ needs.
The sales pitch typically occurs on digital channels, using inbound marketing techniques and, to a lesser degree, outbound marketing like TV and print advertisements, google display ads, email lists, and cold calling. Buyers today gather so much online information before the purchase, that a traditional sales pitch does not have the same influence. Instead, companies have to engage prospective buyers during the search or consideration process: online on the internet.
Developing a strong online presence is a key part of lead generation. This can be achieved by using inbound marketing techniques like content marketing, website forms, and search engine optimization. The main goal with those techniques is to create content that drives prospective customers to your website. Once the prospective customer visits your website and provides some information like an email address, it’s important to develop and nurture your relationship with them. The next blog will focus on how to build those relationships.