Aside from traditional lead generation methods, have you found any out of the box techniques worth sharing?
My software company has found average success in lead generation including, SEO, Webinars, Hubspot managed landing pages and drip campaigns but we need more quality leads. Any insight would help if you have found success in using other methods.
Have you tried Facebook Lead Ads? Not only does FB offer a lot of great targeting, but Lead Ads allow the prospect to "one click" your lead form without filling in their information (FB uses the email on file). Offer a whitepaper or webinar, etc as the lead magnet and test it out. I've been having a lot of success with it.
Even though you are a software company, don't dismiss the good old fashioned lead generation tools that you can use. You have already got good comments on online activity and looking at your website, many of them you do already. My approach would be more the offline way and even though many might not agree, it is the best and most personal way to grow leads. Here is a quick run down of activity that you could be doing which could bring you plenty of leads. Some of them take time to build while others might bring you leads instantly:
(This is based on the assumption that you already know who your target market is. If you don't know it might be worth your while to drill down on this before you start any of the activity that I mention below):
1. Networking - Join your local or regional chamber of commerce. They have a big database that you can easily tap into and most members are happy to sit down with new members (or current members if you already are a member). They also host regular networking events. If you want to grow further than local, they can easily connect you with other chambers be it in the same country or outside of your own country.
2. Networking groups - BNI or the likes can provide you with a constant flow of leads. They need to be worked and the motto is: The more you put in, the more you get out. Some groups might be expensive while others don't charge an arm and a leg. It's up to you and your own finances to decide which would be good for you. Look for networking groups that focus on similar target markets. In most cases you can go as a guest once or twice without paying to see if you have a connection with the members and if they would be able to help you. Make sure you have a proper sales pitch ready to go.
3. Hold talks in Universities, colleges or toastmaster. Even though toastmaster is not a networking group, they can help you establish yourself as an expert in your field by letting you talk in front of a group. While presenting your business, products or services you will get feedback from people on your talk, how to improve yourself and you might also spark an interest with some.
4. Letter marketing campaigns - A physical letter is always personal and much more inviting if you do it right. Make sure you know who you're addressing in the company that you are targeting. Make it personal for them. You can use wit and charm or be bold. Anything that could make you stand out basically is a good thing. Provide value in your letter and don't make it all about selling to them.
5. Use offline advertisement - There is plenty of ways to promote your business offline. Be it through a newspaper or flyers/ brochures. There is ways to make it more effective and I'm happy to talk to you about that if you wish. I know a lot of people will not get much out of a flyer campaign, but again if it's done well and targeted to the right audience, you may be able to get the response rate up from 1% to 3 - 4% (not fantastic and only recommended if you have a big database)
6. Do you have products that you can cross-sell or up-sell? Use that and go back to any old clients. Former customers who already experienced your service are much more keen to buy from you again. Try to upgrade packages or sell additional services. Invite them for a coffee and use maybe a customer service approach rather than a sales approach. Meaning you could learn from mistakes by simply doing some market research and asking your current or former clients what you could do better.
7. Change your business card. Make sure your business cards reflect who you are. If you don't have it, put a picture of yourself on your business card. This will make you memorable and stand out more. People do business with people and as human beings we remember faces rather than names. One way that might work is to put your picture on the front of the card with your contact details and have the back with your company logo. Don't leave the back blank and don't use a calendar or notes/ next appointment on the back of your card. This will make the card obsolete once it's used and thrown away. People tend to throw away business cards all the time but the ones with a photograph on it are more likely to be kept. It also helps if you didn't have a connection with a potential buyer. If they remember you, they will not agree to a meeting simply because they didn't like you. You get rid of the time wasters in this case much more easily than before.
8. Use the same approach on flyers, brochures and physical letters. Put a nice photo of yourself on any of them. It doesn't have to be a big picture, just small in one of the corners or below your signature. Simple yet effective.
9. Follow up and follow through. It's important that if you do any of the above, you need to follow up. Most sales people and business owners give up after 2 or 3 attempts. Don't. Stick with it and call and email. Use both tools in this case but don't just send an email after you've sent a letter (Just wondering if you received my letter...). This will not work. You need to pick up the phone and give them a call, arrange a meeting if you can and be out there.
10. Use the gatekeeper to your advantage. If you go after the bigger companies, you will come across a lot of gate keepers. Make sure you follow the hierarchy. Even if you know who the CEO is, it's important to keep the gate keepers happy. See it as a computer game, every level within an organisation is like a game. Once you are passed on to the next level, make sure you thank the previous one for the introduction. Ask for help. Most gate keepers are happy to help if you don't try to sell them straight away. It takes time to build but will be worth your while in the end.
Bonus: If you don't do business with somebody, send a thank you note or small token of appreciation for meeting you. Simply say that you understand that there is no need at this time but to keep you in mind should the need arise in the future. Wishing them all the best and thanking them again for the opportunity to have met with you. This will do 2 things: First it will help you get a very good reputation and second you will still have a foot in the door and are able to get back to them at any stage to simply follow up.
There you have it, 11 ways of how to generate leads to keep you going. I hope this is helpful. If you need any further clarification, please do not hesitate to contact me or add me on LinkedIn. Would be delighted to have a chat with you to help you make your offline approach stand out from the crowd.
All the best
Gretchen, it sounds like you may have done this already, but do you have a content marketing plan in place? If not, that is what I have found to be by far the best inbound lead generation tactic. There are many underlying details that need to be done to do this right, but this is for sure the direction I would suggest going.
consider some sponsorships - perhaps a local mobile app, an event, or a non-profit. You'll often get a lot of recognition for a small price, especially if they can give you online presence with a linkable add where you can re-direct people to sign up and get leads.
Because you're already doing a lot of the right things, It's hard to answer your question fully without knowing your specific personas and exactly what level of success you are having with each of the above tactics.
I would be curious to know your current visitor stats and CTRs for some of your landing pages. Are you getting any leads from these tactics? How many? What are you best converting offers for TOFU, MOFU & BOFU?
Outbound email campaigns can also work if you spend the time researching and building a high quality list and then craft very personalized emails.
Also, don't discount traditional networking, events and speaking engagements either.
You are questionpro, right? Start answering your prospects' and current clients' top 10-20 frequently asked questions with a video faq series. Take a look at our example. We use our Video FAQ Series as an inbound marketing tool -and it is a proof of concept! http://artiemedia.com/how-do-i-use-a-video-faq-series/
Give me a shout with any questions Gretchen.
For a software company it is always possible to generate leads through blog and online articles posted in IT based websites, you may also want to try linked in where lots of professionals members group participate in matters related to software issues. Alos, you may try goggle internet marketing technique where in your company name can be attached to certain specific applications solutions lead back to your company website.
I love content marketing for inbound lead generation; blogging, podcasting, and daily videos.
For something I have a little more direct control over, putting together a targeted Dream 100 list to whom I would send special offers, lumpy mailings, educational direct response pieces, and personal outreach and relationship building works really well.
If you want more specifics message me.