Referrals are a great lead generation tactic for small businesses. But a referral program on its own isn't enough to keep your business’s sales pipeline continually filled with potential new customers. Maybe you've already reached out to all your referrals, and they're just not ready to buy right now. Or perhaps, although you have lots of satisfied customers, those customers simply don't know anyone who needs your product or service at this time. Here are three ideas other than referrals that you can use to attract new customers.
1. Improve your website SEO. If your lead generation has stalled, your first order of business should be taking a look at your website’s SEO. Is it time to update your keywords? Optimizing your business website for search engines is an ongoing job. For example, more consumers are now using voice search on their smartphones or personal assistants like Amazon’s Alexa. As a result, more search queries are based on the way people naturally talk, rather than words they type into a search engine. Your SEO needs to keep pace with this type of change.
If keeping up with ever-changing search engine algorithms isn't something you have time for, maybe it's time to call in the experts. Lead Stream is one option for outsourcing your SEO. It continually optimizes your website and boosts your organic search engine results position.
2. Add online advertising to the mix. Many budget-conscious small business owners are reluctant to invest in paid search advertising. That can be a big mistake when it comes to lead generation. The right type of pay-per-click (PPC) advertising campaign can really boost the results of your organic SEO efforts. Plus, PPC advertising is very affordable, making it a great option for small businesses. If you use Lead Stream, it’s easy to keep track of how much money you're spending, as well as which leads come from each PPC campaign.
The secret to successful paid search advertising is using the right keywords and creating a persuasive call to action (CTA). Fortunately, PPC advertising makes it easy to test different CTAs to see which works best. You'll get immediate feedback and can update your ads to use the best-performing CTAs. Once prospects click through to your website, it's important to make sure they reach a landing page that also has a persuasive CTA, not just a general page on your website.
3. Think local. If your business relies on local customers, you need to make sure those prospects know where you are. That means optimizing your business website and online advertising for local search. Include location-related keywords, such as the name of your city or neighborhood, in your website copy and online ads.
You’ll also want to be sure your business is listed on local search directories like Google Maps, with complete, current contact information such as your business hours, phone number and address. As a Premier Google Partner, Lead Stream gives your listings top placement on Google and always includes a local map listing, too. That way, potential customers know just where they can find you.
Every small business suffers lead generation slumps from time to time. However, by making these three changes to your lead generation tactics, you’ll soon see more leads coming in the door.