Using the Internet
for Lead Generation
and Lead Tracking
Wouldn’t it be
great if every morning you turned on your computer and there were
several targeted leads waiting for you in your email inbox? Why not
position your Website to be your 24/7 salesperson, gathering leads
for you? No more cold calling – let your Website do the dirty work
for you, offering you warm leads on a daily basis.
The Internet is the
cheapest method of gathering leads, and you should be taking full
advantage of it. In addition, Internet leads can be tracked with
precision, so you know exactly what you are spending for a lead. So
how do you go about using the Internet and your Website to generate
targeted leads? Here is a short list of effective lead sources:
Keep in mind that
the Internet is a limitless resource for leads, and you are only
hindered by your own creativity in finding the best lead sources for
is instantly available to anyone who has a credit card and an
Internet connection. Google displays ads on search pages as
individuals search for relevant information. This is called search
targeting. The searcher is looking for a widget, and the ad for
widgets appears on the sponsored listing areas of Google. The ad
campaign is charged when a visitor clicks through the ad and onto
the subsequent Web page. The position of the ad is determined by the
bid amount the advertiser is willing to pay, and daily or monthly
maximums can be set so advertisers stay within their budgets.
Google Adwords is
an excellent lead generation tool if you understand what your online
audience is looking for when they search for your products or
services. In addition, you need to optimize your ad campaigns by
monitoring the results to improve click through rates (CRT). The
best way to do this is to create a unique ad, and then test
different versions to determine which combination of headline and
description gets the highest CTR.
Next, you will want
to increase conversions on these ad campaigns by creating specific
landing pages for your ads. When someone clicks on your Web page,
you have about six seconds to convince them that they have landed in
the right spot. Make sure the landing page contains the searched
phrase in the top left-hand corner, where the searcher’s eyes first
view your page.
and sites like it connect millions of active buyers to a network of
suppliers in more than 125 product and service categories. BuyerZone
matches buyers with the most appropriate suppliers for their needs.
Buyers receive competitive price quotes and can access expert
purchasing advice. The service is fast and free. Suppliers receive
the buyer's quote request, which turns out to be extremely targeted
leads with high close rates and impressive return on investment
(ROI). The supplier network consists of over 2,000 top national and
local vendors who represent more than 100 categories of business
products and services.
Industry Specific Lead Generation Sites:
Use Google search
to find specific lead generation sites for your products and
services. For instance, search “lead generation automotive,” and
you will find sites like dealer.automotive.com. There are similar
sites for the mortgage, education, insurance, manufacturing, and
communication industries. There are even companies like
salesgenie.com with databases of leads that you can purchase. The
only caution in trying these services is to do your homework to make
sure the leads will be targeted for your business.
You can improve your lead generation by placing ads on social
networks. The more specific the network, the more targeted the ad.
Many of these social networks have site search capabilities. When a
site search brings visitors to a page with targeted ads, the CTRs
dramatically increase, because not only can you tailor the ad to the
content the person is reading, you can target the ad to the type of
person searching. All types of ads can be used on social sites:
banner ads, text ads, and video ads. What’s different with social
targeting is the ability to reach visitors more precisely and not
worry about offending someone with your ad – they will be shown to
people with similar interests. It’s been proven that people
actually welcome and click through ads about their interests.
enables you to reach people who potentially would be interested in
your content but might never discover your site. Look at some of
the most popular social sites, such as facebook.com, technorati.com,
and youtube.com, to review their targeted ad placement.
Almost all your
prospective customers will visit your Website before contacting
you. Does your Website move them along the buying process, or does
it turn them away? In many cases, you will need to change your site
from an online brochure into a lead-generation funnel. Your Website
should contain items like success stories, case studies, white
papers, FAQs, and other items that instill confidence to convert
prospects into warm leads.
When you have leads
coming to your site, you will need to be able to measure the quality
of those leads. You’ll need some kind of Web analytic lead-tracking
software, a tool to monitor site visitors, referring Websites, and
what these visitors are doing on your site. For instance, do you
know what percentage of visitors fill out a contact form, download
something, or at least visit your contact page? This will help you
see the percentage of visitors who have started down the sales
funnel, and you can begin to track them.
A free Web
analytics tool is Google Analytics. Analytics software requires you
to place “hidden” code on your Website pages, and it is best to
place this code at the top of each page so you don’t miss any
There are even more
robust tools, although they are not free, which track Web analytics,
such as WebTrends and ClickTracks Professional.
With more than 8
billion people searching the Internet daily, the potential to use it
as a lead generation source for your business is limitless. Search
the Web yourself, as though you were a potential prospect for your
services or products, and see what you find. You may surprise
yourself with the potential lead generation sources you find in just
a few minutes.
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