Let’s start out with a simpler question. What is lead generation? Lead generation is simply the process by which a business creates a list of prospects, or potential customers, that are interested in what the business has to offer. Lead generation is the lifeblood of any profitable business. Without leads, eventually the business goes under.
In terms of online lead generation, the basic process is pretty simple and straight forward. You create a web page that “sells” the benefits of something you will give away for free, like a piece of software, an e-book, an audio report or even video.
In order to get that information, the prospect must give you their email address. Obviously you also must create the free giveaway. When they give you their email address, they get the information.
That information is designed to provide value to the lead, as well as lead them to the solution to their problem, which is the product or service you are selling.
Once you have that set up, you drive targeted traffic to the sign up, or squeeze, page to generate leads for your business.
Interestingly, as Dan Kennedy says, internet marketing is not a business model. It’s a marketing, or advertising model. You see, the lead generation process described above has been done by direct response marketing companies long before the internet came around.
The details were different but the process was the same. A good example would be an exercise equipment manufacturer putting a classified ad in a fitness magazine. The ad would sell people on a free report, such as a workout program.
People would actually clip the ad out of the magazine, fill out their name and address and mail it in to the company who would snail mail them the report.
It was a lot slower and more expensive but the lead generation process was basically the same. In fact, you see those ads even today, but most direct people to a web site instead of having them snail mail the ad.
Let’s get back to the traffic aspect. After all, you can’t generate leads without traffic! The lead generation process and set up is relatively simple and straight forward. Making it work in terms of generating leads and becoming profitable, well, that’s a lot more difficult.
You need to do extensive market research on your potential customer, age, gender, likes, dislikes, problems, where they are, etc., because that’s who you need to get in front of when marketing your lead generation product.
This information is crucial so that you are able to generate very targeted leads that could likely become customers. It does your business no good to send tons of traffic to your lead generation page if none of them, or very few, are interested in your offer.
Do you want to pay for a thousand visitors and see only two of them request your information?
You’ll also bee testing the ad copy on your lead generation page, always trying to improve your conversion rate (the percentage of visitors that sign up for your free offer), in order to get more leads out of your traffic.
Once you get a source of targeted traffic, you have a much better chance of being profitable if you get 40% of the visitors to get your offer, as opposed to 15%!
Even further into your lead generation funnel is the follow up information you send these leads, as you try and turn the leads into paying customers.
As you can say, setting up a lead generation system to get started is pretty simple. Making it work in terms of becoming profitable will take a lot more testing and tweaking of your lead generation process.
Remember, lead generation goes like this: Traffic => Lead Generation Page => Download Page for Free Offer => Email follow ups to turn leads into customers. Want to know new rules of lead generation? Click here and find out.