EMAIL LEAD GENERATION: FROM A TO Z
Pseudo marketers will tell you that email marketing isn’t effective anymore. But the legit marketing gurus and ninjas out there know that the opposite is true.
Let’s get things straight—email remains the most effective digital marketing channel. Whatever industry you’re in, email marketing is a crucial element to the success of your business. Hence, failure to devote enough resources to this essential channel can tremendously hurt your overall marketing strategy.
Now that we’ve settled the point about the importance of email, let’s talk about how to improve your email lead generation. This is because you can’t expect huge email marketing success without improving your email lead generation. In this mini-guide, we’ll talk about all the basics of email lead generation.
What is Lead?
A lead is any individual showing interest in certain products or services offered by a business. Simply put, a lead is a potential customer that has been precisely targeted and qualified based on a business’ marketing criteria. Businesses can come in contact with a lead through lead generation efforts.
Types of lead
Leads are not all the same and qualified the same. There are several known types of leads according to how its qualified and its lifecycle stage.
To better understand leads, it’s good to learn some helpful vocabulary: qualifiers, profilers, and lead scoring. Qualifiers with the help of profilers (and using key questions) distinguish how the leads are interpreted and related to MQLs and SQLs. While lead scoring qualify leads quantitatively, by assigning a numerical value or score.
Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL)
Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL) are leads that have expressed interest in your products or services but are not ready to receive a sales call or be a paying customer yet. MQLs have engaged with your marketing efforts and were filtered and classified as contacts who are likely to become a customer. With the collaboration of both your marketing and sales team, you can assign point values to determine your lead scoring system for an MQL.
Sales Qualified Lead (SQL)
Sales Qualified Lead (SQL) are leads who have shown interest in your products or services coupled with taking actions that expressly show their intent on becoming a paying customer. SQLs have been assessed both by the marketing and sales team as contacts who are considered ripe for the next step of the sales process.
Product Qualified Lead (PQL)
Product-qualified lead (PQL) are leads who have utilized your products and have expressly indicated to be a paying customer. PQLs are for businesses that offer a free trial, or a limited version with product upgrade options. For instance, a customer used a free version of your product and has also shown interest to know more about its paid features or upgrades.
Service Qualified Lead
On the other hand, service qualified leads are those who expressed interest in becoming a paying customer. Like when a contact communicates his intent to upgrade their subscription. At this point, the customer will be referred to your sales team.
What is lead generation?
Lead generation is the method of attracting and transforming prospects into paying customers or to gain a favorable outcome. It involves inviting or enticing your visitors to fill out a lead capture form in exchange for something valuable like freebies, free trials, discounts, and so forth.
The ultimate goal of lead generation is for your prospects to give their contact information. Lead generation is a more favorable strategy compared to cold calling or emailing prospects because the lead has initiated the intent to get to know more about you. It is less intrusive and lessens your risk of blindly wondering if people are interested in your offered services.
Lead generation process
So basically, lead generation is allowing a stranger to initiate a relationship with you organically, then naturally transitioning these leads into paying customers or doing something favorable to your business. The lead generation process typically involves the following:
The lead generation process starts with your marketing channels. These channels could be your blog, your business’ official website, and your social media pages. Your prospects’ first interaction with you will be on one of your marketing channels so it’s important to consistently create relevant and quality content to generate traffic.
Also, don’t forget to use all in one marketing platform, which will fit the best with your product(s) or service(s).
Now that your visitors discover your business through one of your marketing channels; the lead generation process will proceed to the next step as soon as they click on your call-to-action. CTA refers to a message, an image or line of text that stimulates users to accomplish a particular action.
You must create a well-crafted, enticing or convincing CTA because it can make or break your lead generation process. Moreover, your CTAs should echo your landing page or the page you’d like to promote. Further, CTAs should always be found in all your channels and have contents that are connected to what you are offering.
As mentioned above, your CTAs should echo your landing page. This is because CTAs take your prospects to your landing page—which is designed to capture lead information. Never practice tricking your prospects to click on something completely different from what you initially offered.
A landing page is a web page dedicated to capturing lead information in exchange for something valuable. Thus, in the lead generation process, the landing page’s purpose is to transform strangers by collecting their information to eventually turn them into leads.
Finally, once your prospect is on the landing page, they will need to fill up a form for them to avail of your offer. A lead generation form is generally designed to capture the prospect’s email address and other necessary information that you need for your marketing campaign.
While you can embed forms anywhere on your site, it’s imperative to put a form on your landing page otherwise all your efforts will be wasted. It’s also recommended to follow lead-capture form best practices like writing clear and uncomplicated forms to effectively convert your visitors into leads. Typical form contents should ask for a full name, email address, company or business name, position, and country.
Email lead generation
It’s always important to not just have a massive email list but also to have quality data. Email lead generation allows you to grow your mailing list organically thereby helping you eliminate the risk of sending emails to uninterested or random addresses. Email lead generation removes the hassle in cold email marketing, as it provides you prospects that have shown interest in your products or services.
Now that we’ve discussed the basics of lead generation, let’s proceed to dig deeper into email lead generation.
Email lead generation tools
To start with your email lead generation, it’ll be helpful to learn about the different tools and templates that you can use to create lead generation assets on your site. You can start with the following tools:
- Lead generation software tools and form-scraping tools: these tools normally include lead capture as well as contact insights features. Lead generation software and form-scraping tools scrape your pre-existing forms on your website then automatically consolidate it and add these contacts to your existing database. These tools also allow you to create pop-ups, lead flows, and hello bars which can instantly turn your web visitors into leads.
- Visitor tracking is a virtual tool that creates a color-coded representation of how your visitors navigate your site. Such a tool will help you understand what your visitors want, their interests, and what they usually do on your site. It can also tell you what particular page a visitor spends the most time with. You can use visitor tracking tools to help you gather information on your forms (lead generation forms, surveys, feedback forms, etc).
- CTA templates: as emphasized earlier, you need to design a creative, well-crafted CTA for it to be beneficial in your email lead generation marketing. If you’re not sure how or lack the idea, you can opt to use CTA templates that are customizable in PowerPoint. You can use these to create clickable CTA buttons that you can put on your marketing channels and landing pages.
Email lead generation marketing
Once you have all the elements involved in the lead generation process (content, channel, CTAs, landing page, and forms), you then should start email lead generation marketing. Here, you must utilize all your promotional channels to drive traffic to your landing page, have your visitors fill in the forms—so you can start generating leads.
We mentioned earlier the common channels, namely: your blog, website, and social media pages. These are key players but don’t solely focus on them. There are other ways you can do to get your prospects to become leads. Such as ads and retargeting, product trials, and referral marketing.
Email lead generation strategies
To be effective, your email lead generation strategy should be highly targeted and should involve a precise plan to attract and convert fresh leads.
The following are some of the best strategies you can implement to boost your email lead generation.
1. Don’t copy everything your competition is doing, but monitor them and do better.
2. Nurture your leads for a smoother transition toward your end goal by using email drip campaigns.
3. Automate your email campaigns.
4. Always perform lead scoring to qualify your leads.
5. Only deliver relevant and engaging content.
6. Use interesting and catchy email subject lines.
7. Use a clean email design.
8. Create a sense of urgency or scarcity in your offers.
9. Offer content upgrades or gated content.
10. Incentivize your current email subscribers to refer friends, or forward your emails.
Email lead generation tips
To have a successful lead generation, personalizing your marketing campaigns, keeping your messaging consistent and delivering on your promise are some of the best things you can do. It’s also recommended to get your sales team involved throughout the process.
How email validation and data append can help your lead generation process
As discussed earlier in this article, it’s not enough to have a massive email list. You need to have quality data. And this is the part where email validation and data append plays a crucial role. Email validation and data appending help clean your email listwhile at the same time enhancing, refining, and improving its quality.
Neglecting these crucial process can put your entire marketing campaign at risk, or your efforts wasted.
Email lead generation best practice
Lastly, buying an email list is super easy and fills your sales funnel quickly. But it is terrible and puts your business at risk. Aside from possible personal privacy infringements, it can massively destroy your sender reputation and email deliverability.
Sending emails to people who have never interacted with your business is a surefire way to be tagged as spam and eventually being blacklisted. Consequently, always be on the safe side, grow your email list organically instead of buying leads.
Lead generation is a marketing method used in turning visitors into leads who can be potential paying customers. Email is still deemed as the most effective digital marketing channel. While email lead generation is an organic way to build your email list.