How to Increase Your Small Business Lead Generation

Lead generation is a critical component of many different businesses. Take an insurance agency for example, whether you're providing car, life, home, life, health or business insurance, you need to understand how to consistently get more customers and utilize your sales funnel.

A lead is a person who has shown interest in your company's product or service in some way.

You want them to buy something from you, but you need to spend some time building up the benefits and wooing them to entice them to choose you over your competitors.

A lead generation funnel centers around a large number of names being poured into the funnel. Over time, you identify which are viable targets, then hopefully turn those targets into prospects and finally convert to buyers as they move down the funnel to purchase.

Direct marketing goes way back in the world of insurance sales, but the internet has made it much easier for insurance companies to get new targets and automatically follow up with potential clients.

If you're using online marketing strategies, it doesn't matter if it's the middle of the night and your business is closed – your insurance agency can get new clients anytime, anywhere.

There are 3 steps to this process:

1. Generation

This is the first part of the journey, where you generate the initial spark of consumer interest or enquiry into your products or services.

Ideas to start trying to convert targets to paying customers include:

• Asking people to sign up for your email newsletter

• Encouraging people to fill out an online form for a free consultation

• Using an exit intent popup on select webpages

If you're doing SEO, SEM, social media marketing and content marketing well, you should have a large number of visitors to your website and social media accounts, where you can initially engage new clients.

Note that Canada's Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) requires you to receive consent from recipients before sending messages. Make sure you ask people if they'd like to sign up for your newsletter before you start sending your finely-crafted marketing materials to their inbox!

2. Qualification

Not every prospect you capture is going to become a sale. You need to have an effective process of filtering through all your leads to find the best ones. Otherwise, you'll waste time on audiences that will never convert.

For example, a prospect who lands on your site, visits your “Pricing” page and enters their information into a form to download your free report is more valuable than a person who lands on your site, reads a blog article, then leaves.

Here's an example of lead generation through digital marketing from everyone's favorite gecko.

3. Nurturing

This is the step where you're focusing your efforts on providing relevant information at each stage of the buyer's journey. Some examples are providing targeted marketing content and email personalization.

Studies show that compared to traditional marketing, content marketing and email marketing generate 50 percent more leads. It's important to create original, quality content if you want to attract customers – especially because a lot of insurance information is confusing to the average person.

Content marketing helps you get discovered on social media and in search engines.

Then, you can help drive new referrals organically. Appeal to potential clients' needs and pain points with solution-based content and you'll get their attention.

Through continuous nurturing with valuable content, people will start to think of you as a trusted source and authority.

The Importance of A / B Testing

You'll never know quite how successful any campaign is without testing it! A / B testing is a popular way of determining what works and what doesn't.

You should be testing the effectiveness of one element at a time to determine what is actually responsible for an increase (or decrease) in traffic or conversions. The more time you spend testing, the better results you'll see.

Some things you can A / B test include:

• Adding or decreasing text or white space on your website

• Changing a call to action in your email or on your site

• Changing a headline or block of text on your sales landing page

Finding new clients is hard work. So is working hard to stay ahead of your competitors. Will it be easy? No. But if you put in the time and energy you'll see your insurance marketing strategies pay off!

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