The main goal of your website is LEAD GENERATION
Unfortunately most people believe the main goal is online sales, but that would be considered the ultimate goal. In order to get sales you have to generate leads first. Once you follow up with those individuals, if you do everything right it can produce a sale.
One thing to understand is that if you think about your website as a lead generation portal, then that’s what you’re going to have in front of you. However, if you think of it like a company brochure, then the dullness and approach will be the same. As Earl Nightingale said ‘we become what we think about’ and so it is with our websites.
The Concept of Lead Generation
In order to create a lead one side (your website) has to make an offer, and the other (your potential prospect) has to be interested in it. If you have this scenario then you have yourself a “hot lead” as some people call them. These are definitely the ones you want to follow up with whenever they come across your path.
The Exact Nature of an Online Lead
Let’s be perfectly clear. You absolutely must get visitors to your website to give you their email address. This has to be obtained ethically with the visitor’s permission. Think about it. If you don’t at least get their email address how will you follow up? You can and sometimes must also get a street address, phone number etc. But for now, let’s assume you’re trying to get an email address.
Providing an Offer
In order to get someone to actually provide an email address, you usually need to offer them something. It has to be something they need that will entice them to join your subscriber’s list. It has to be of VALUE to the reader, which in turn their email address will be valuable to you.
So you see; there isn’t much point in just asking people to subscribe to your newsletter. I’m not saying they won’t. I have customers that do just that and get subscribers. But most people are already overloaded with information and their inboxes are bulging, so they probably won’t sign-up unless the information is valuable or specific.
Get the Offer In Front of the Visitor
There is little point in hoping that a visitor will stumble across your website, search for and find your newsletter sign-up link and then subscribe happily to your newsletter. It just isn’t going to happen! Here’s the kicker. The MAJORITY of websites DO EXACTLY THAT! Have you heard the term landing pages? Well, YOU GENERATE YOUR LEADS ON YOUR LANDING PAGES! That’s right. Give your visitor the option to subscribe to a list that is relevant to the content of your landing page, with an offer that is also relevant and valuable.
Lead Generation IS List Building
This article is about lead generation marketing. There are a lot of online marketers that call this effort List Building. It is that, but I prefer lead generation as it makes me think more specifically about whom I’m trying to interest with my offer and how I’m going to follow up with them. You may have heard the saying ‘The Money Is in the List’? Well, the list is the end result of your lead generation efforts. And yes, the money is in the list, but you have to know what to do with the list and how to do it.