Bringing back lead generation as a viable marketing tool.

by Jana Darling

Advances in digital marketing strategies make it easier to define and find target audiences. But just because we can more readily identify prospects, does that mean we should immediately target them with marketing efforts using specific calls to action to join, attend, or make a purchase?

Maybe… or maybe not! While it’s easier these days to find an audience through profile targeting, even if they appear to be a perfect match, your organization may not be on their radar and they likely aren’t informed, much less ready to commit to a purchase.

Years ago, MGI was running lead generation and nurture email campaigns for most of our clients. These programs faded with the emergence of new digital tactics that took away the need for prospects to show interest by “raising their hands” through a content offer and opt-in. However, sometimes what is old is new again: we’ve seen renewed interest in and use of lead generation as more clients look to build their membership pipeline.

Not sure if returning to lead generation is a wise test for your organization?

Consider an MGI client who is reporting a 10% conversion rate from lead to membership in only three months after launching a lead gen campaign. Using digital targeting to attract prospects and a segmented three-part cultivation email series based on experience and qualifications, we’re successfully moving qualified prospects through to paid membership in a remarkably short time.

Results may vary, but if you’re looking to increase your prospect database, now is the time to retest or launch a lead generation campaign. Here are a few steps to help you get started:

  1. Develop Your Content Offer. Make sure the content is of interest to your audience and valuable enough that they’ll be willing to give their contact information in exchange for the content.
  2. Define Your Target Audience and How You’ll Reach Them. Consider cold email lists, profile targeting through paid social media campaigns, search campaigns, and, of course, retargeting visitors to your website who haven’t converted to membership.
  3. Develop a Multi-Touch Email Cultivation Series. Warm up prospects to your organization by introducing them to the benefits and value of membership throughout the course of the series, with the ultimate goal of converting them to membership.
  4. Establish Campaign Tracking. Because multiple touches are used throughout the campaign, results-tracking is essential to assess campaign success. Make sure you’re tracking each step and touch along the way. That will allow you to follow a person from lead to member.

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