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7 Lead Generation Mistakes to Avoid

Lead generationIf you’re not getting the leads you need, or if the leads you have are not converting, you may be making some common lead generation mistakes. Luckily, these issues are pretty easy to fix once you catch them. Take a look at seven of the lead gen mistakes I’ve seen over the years, and get an idea of how to correct them so you can start seeing results.

  1. Buying Lists: There are many reasons why this won’t work for lead generation, but the main one is that you can’t find a “quick fix” when it comes to leads. You either have to work very hard or invest some money, or even both. Just buying a list won’t propel you into greatness. If that were the case, everyone would rely on this tactic to get leads since it’s so simple! As you can probably guess, the leads you get from lead lists are rarely good quality. The people you’re contacting are likely not familiar with or interested in what you’re offering, so you could end up buying several lists before you close a single deal. There’s also the fact that many email marketing vendors, such as MailChimp, only allow you to use opt-in email lists, not lists of leads you’ve purchased. So you’re basically throwing money away and spamming people when you contact leads from lists you’ve bought. You’ll find you’re much more successful when you take the time to nurture the leads you get on your own.
  1. Not having multiple programs going on: All too often, I run across companies that work on one program per month or even per quarter for lead generation. But that’s not enough if you want good results. Ideally, you should have a calendar of programs set up for the first 6 to 12 months of the year, or at least for each quarter. Of course, you should be flexible enough to adjust as needed. When you have multiple programs in place, measure them so you can learn what’s working and what’s not. Some examples of multiple programs include your blog, email marketing, webinars, in-person events, SEO/SEM, social media posts, social media ads, and outside lead programs like CPLs. In a perfect world, some of your programs should be set to run automatically so they can drip in leads. You can then nurture them in parallel to the larger programs you’re planning, such as webinars and in-person events.
  1. You don’t have a blog to use for lead generation: A blog is another great tool to use for lead generation. It can help drive traffic to your site, educate your audience, and position your company and team as thought leaders. A large percentage of visitors to any site often get there via older posts that can live on and continue to work long after the post goes up.  Aside from updating your blog with new posts frequently, you can also attract leads by adding opt-in forms around the content. Allowing readers to download eBooks and guides in exchange for their email address is another way to generate leads through your blog.
  2. No sales development representatives (SDRs) in place: You need to have nurture tracks and a follow-up strategy in place if you want quality leads. Sales development representatives are great because you can let these individuals focus on setting up appointments for sales reps… and in turn, your reps can focus on doing what they do best: Close deals farther along in the pipeline! If you don’t use SDRs in your business, this video can let you know more about why you should start.
  3. Using no tech or bad tech: You have endless tech tools at your disposal. Use them! MarTech is big now and will only continue to rise in popularity. Depending on the tools you use, technology can help you with social media marketing, email marketing, display ads, mobile ads, content marketing, SEO, CRM, and more. Examples of your marketing technology options include Canva for design, Bombora for buying intent, and Unbounce for landing pages. Read B2B Marketing Automation Market Trends to see which ones you should be watching.
  4. Trying to do too much on your own: Maybe you’re not at the expert level for lead generation, and that’s okay, because you can hire someone who is! Instead of floundering around for months, wasting time and neglecting to bring in leads, get some help early on. There are plenty of contractors, vendors, and large media companies that have expertise in certain lead gen tactics and have skills to build relationships with audiences. Use them to your advantage if you really want to generate leads.
  5. Not being tightly linked with the sales team: You need to have some standardized sales and marketing processes and definitions. Work closely with the sales team and make sure your goals align with their revenue goals and needs. Otherwise, you could find that your sales team hates your marketing team for various reasons. To make sure you’re on the same page as the sales team, you should find out what sales tools they need, how many leads they need to help build their pipeline, and if they could use some sales message training.

Have you made any of these lead generation mistakes? Can you think of any others you’ve witnessed over the years? In the meantime, you can learn more about lead generation mistakes by checking out our video on lead gen fails and pet peeves!

 

Eric Vidal
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Eric Vidal

Chief Content Officer at The Marketing Scope
Eric is the Chief Content Officer of The Marketing Scope and Editor at Converge, both BMG properties. He is also the acting SVP of Marketing at BMG and has ran marketing for companies of all sizes. He has extensive experience working to achieve measurable business results for organizations like IBM, Cisco, WebEx, Canon USA, Capgemini, adidas, Subaru, SAP and more. Connect with Eric on LinkedIn
Eric Vidal
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