It’s a simple truth. Without a steady flow of new customers, businesses die. One of the most critical functions of a business is the successful generation of new sales leads. This gives the sales team fuel — opportunities to follow up and close deals so the business can generate revenue. To keep this flow steady, companies employ lead-generation teams as part of their customer acquisition strategy.
In today’s digital world, lead generation involves stimulating interest in a product, service, or company. You also need to drive web traffic and capture contact information about your visitors. To do this, customer acquisition teams have employed a variety of tools, strategies, and tactics, but it’s gotten much more difficult as the landscape has evolved.
The new buying process
We live in what some experts are calling the “Age of the Customer.” The way people learn about and decide to purchase products and services has changed completely. Today’s buyers can find a variety of educational resources through search engines, social media, and other online channels. The customer now holds most of the power, and marketing’s role in the buying process has increased.
Potential customers are bombarded with an incredible amount of information and messages, making it increasingly difficult to capture their attention. Because competition is so fierce, customer acquisition teams must constantly experiment with their content, tactics, tools, and strategies to achieve the best ROI.
What is the best lead-generating content?
The biggest key to successful lead generating content is focus. “The best lead-generating content should be targeted to address the key objective — whether that be to influence, persuade, convince, or drive the readers to action. For example, content for new products or technology should be written to address the various phases of the buyer’s journey and lead them to click to call, purchase, or sign-up for a free evaluation.
These are just a few of the many considerations our agency focuses on when creating SEO-enabled content for our clients' geo-targeted, lead-gen programs,” says Pierre Golde at The Stephenz Group, a leading brand and digital agency in Silicon Valley.
In addition to each piece being focused on a single objective, the best lead-generating content doesn’t just bring people to your website — it drives people to take action. “What I think most companies struggle with, is writing content of value for the reader/prospect,” says Brian Lastovich of ActiveCampaign, a SaaS marketing automation platform.
“It's easy to write a ‘top 10’ piece and get clicks, it really is. But it takes hard work and focus to write content of value. How I like to define valuable content is content that is actionable and content that helps solve problems. It's also content that keeps you coming back for more.”
What can improve the effectiveness of landing pages?
One of the key tools in the customer acquisitions team’s arsenal: the landing page. Landing pages are web pages designed to compel the visitor to take action. While it’s tempting to go overboard with animations, videos, images, and other fancy bells and whistles, the most effective landing pages are often the simplest.
“Continuously ask yourself how you can simplify the message: One call to action, a headline that resonates with the visitor and a few bullet points to remove the primary hesitations of the visitor. A great example of this is Salesforce CRM. They have a complicated product, difficult to explain on just one webpage. But they figured it out early on, simplified their messaging, and haven't changed their landing page in six years,” explains Lastovich.
Stephanie Paulson at the Stephenz group also highlights the need for simplicity in the page structure. “Although eye-catchy graphics (e.g., key hero section) can be a part of a killer landing page, the value benefits, key message, and CTAs must be easily called out and designed for the page to achieve its desired goal — engagement and some immediate action.”
4 Customer Acquisition Tips from the Experts
1. Experiment with video
According to Lastovich, video will help simplify the message and can explain complicated services in 15 seconds. "Video is scalable. And video can be used on many acquisition channels from top of the funnel to bottom of the funnel. That's the key. Find something that is scalable, can produce the biggest impact, but scores lower on effort," he says.
2. Automate everything you can
Oleg Monakhov, Senior Lead Generation Manager at Wrike, recommends when there is nothing left to automate, automate even more. As someone who works in digital customer acquisition, you have the opportunity to automate major parts of your work: marketing asset creation, Facebook Ads budgets, media planning, bid management, etc. Some of these tasks are not only tedious but also not efficient enough to be done manually. A.I. knows how to do a lot of things better.
3. Use checklists and templates
During a famous study by Atul Gawande, researchers brought short, well-designed checklists into operating rooms in several hospitals and were able to massively improve the outcomes of operations. The average number of complications and deaths dipped by 35%.
"Checklists could save you from making mistakes when launching marketing campaigns too," says Monakhov of Wrike. A simple, well-designed checklist might save you from all kinds of marketing nightmares, including campaign budget overspend, non-proofread ads being launched, websites with broken mobile versions being exposed to a customer, etc.
Asya Kolesnikova, Lead Generation Manager at Wrike, reiterates that templates help a lot. "Launching thousands of campaigns with ad copy, banner designs, and in dozens of languages can be risky. It’s easy to forget something, especially when you’re a global team. Templates help us ensure our campaigns are complete and prevent miscommunication."
4. Formalize your process for working with other teams
Kolesnikova explains: "As the customer acquisition team, we are not only advertisers but project managers. To help us manage our work, we use Wrike’s dynamic request forms. They manage incoming work and ensure that we have everything we need from other teams."
"We can add ad templates and copy guidelines, banner sizes and image dimensions, project deadlines, and more, so everything is complete," she continues. "Our campaigns often include contributions from the design and content teams, and request forms help us save time and prevent misunderstandings between teams."
The customer acquisition team’s secret weapon
Customer acquisition teams perform one of the most important roles in the organization —driving awareness, interest, and leads to the company. As competition for eyeballs on the web grows, it’s critical the team manages their campaigns well, provides visibility and transparency to other teams, tracks ROI, and stores/transfers knowledge so they can be as efficient as possible.
To do this effectively, many customer acquisition teams are looking beyond their typical toolset towards work collaboration platforms. These more robust solutions have that mix of project management, collaboration, and reporting features that can take their campaigns to the next level. Curious about how Wrike can impact your results? Start your free trial today.