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Top 10 Tips for Lead Generation

Lead generation? Who worries about that anymore…I mean…there is an app for that right?

While lead generation has had some technological advances and changes in the past few years, such as using social media or a nice database management system, some of the best techniques are still the tried and true classics.

When it gets down to it, lead generation is really based on your consistency, motivation and discipline. While technology is nice, it is just a tool that helps make some of the aspects more efficient. So let’s go back to school and look at the classic tips from Lead Generation 101.

Top 10 Lead Generation Tips

  1. Follow a Set Schedule -No matter what your business, retail sales, real estate or ad sales, the biggest key is looking for leads regularly. That means blocking out an hour each day in the morning or two hours every Tuesday and Thursday that is devoted completely to lead generation calls and activities. This is a hard part of the job because it is tedious and often seems to net low results. However the only way to build up a strong customer base and then maintain it is by actively looking.
  2. Follow Up – Think you will nail it in one shot? While that might be nice, most people don’t close the deal at first contact. That means you need to keep track of the “possibles” and work on them. Ideally you set a second time each day or week just for follow-ups.
  3. Diversify – Why use just one lead generation method? There are a lot of options out there so spend some time trying various methods to determine what works best for your business AND your demographic.
  4. Keep in Touch – Customers never like to feel like a one-night-stand. You need to check in regularly, touch base and basically let them know that you still think they are pretty. It doesn’t matter if you have already made a sale or not, customers and potential customers need to be nurtured.
  5. Be Valuable – Along with generally keeping touch, you really need to connect with leads and customers which helps build trust. That can be done by adding value to your relationship whether that means offering free advice, tips, or even articles you feel might help them. It doesn’t matter if that turns into a sale now because creating that bond leads to sales later along with recommendations.
  6. type:decimal”>Be Memorable – What do you do that makes you stand out from the rest? One salesman who visited local offices in his area would always show up on the same day, at the same time and bring bagels and muffins. Then he would just chat for a few minutes, wish people well and leave. He was labeled as the Muffin Man, but everyone knew exactly when he would be at their office if they had questions or needed something and it paid off.
  7. Crunch the Numbers – After 4 hours of calls each week how many leads did that generate? From those leads how many follow-up calls does it take to close a deal? Understanding how effective or ineffective you are is important. That way you can estimate potential sales based on time spent looking for leads and more importantly find out if your sales pitch and lead gathering techniques need fine-tuning.
  8. Track It – Track everything! Organization is critical to smooth lead generation. Keep track of when you called a person, what they said, things they like, and how big of a potential sale they are. That way you not only have solid information about a customer, but you can also decide based on profit who is more important to follow up with.
  9. Be Consistent – Just because business is great this week, that doesn’t mean it will be next week and the week after. Far too many people rest on a big sale or two and coast but then end up scrambling for leads. Instead just keep following the system week after week and then enjoy the steady stream of customers. Slow and steady wins the race.
  10. Work on Personal Skills – Ultimately lead generation is an extension of sales. It involves introducing your company and product or services to clients over and over. Unless you can sell ice water to an Eskimo then you can probably always improve on your personal and communication skills.

How much of your time should be spent in lead generation? A lot of that depends on your current client base and goals. Most professionals feel that about 20% is right for maintaining and slight growth. If you have a small or non-existent base then you obviously want to do more.

Another thing to keep in mind is that even when you have a large base, you can always target higher quality clients. If you utilize a ranking and tracking method (tip #8) then you can cut back focus and energy on clients on the lower end (or pass them to a junior member) and then devote more energy to bigger players in the game.

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