A vast majority of online programs push the idea that lead generation is the best way to make a living. However, not only is that idea not true, but most of these programs fail in giving you a thorough blueprint.
Although I have done it a lot, lead generation was never really a major strategy for me. In fact, there were many times (most) where I did not have much success in generating traffic to a squeeze page. And that made the whole fail.
If there is one thing I learned about lead generation, it’s that unless you get a good amount of targeted traffic:
- Your funnel doesn’t matter.
- Whatever offer you have to give leads doesn’t matter either.
- No “high converting squeeze page” matters.
- No call to action words matter.
None of that is worth working on unless you have traffic so this article focuses on the traffic part and explains the few ideas I have had success with, but it also does talk about improving the number of signups your site gets once people get there.
Now even though I don’t do lead generation projects often, that does not mean I am inexperienced at it, I just have other methods which work better for me. In this business, you just need 1 or 2 methods that are proven to work and then whatever you come up with should just implement those methods and you’ll be able to truly test it. And that’s exactly what I do when I try new ideas: Just take the plan I have and use one or more of these 4 methods to test it.
4 Lead generation ideas that work:
Remember, once you get traffic, the hardest part is done. Making a squeeze page is extremely simple to do. I’ve actually been using the Site Rubix approach, making free sites in minutes and then using them to funnel traffic through some of the methods I’ll show you.
Once your site is done (or if you already have a page), all that you really have to worry about is converting the traffic that goes there and maximizing on opt in conversions. But again, it’s all about the traffic in the beginning.
So here are the 4 things I use very often, starting from the most frequent one:
1. What I use most of the time is PPC.
There is no other method that can funnel traffic to your site more quickly than PPC (unless you have an authority SEO site which I also cover as one of my methods).
Usually within 10 minutes, I can set up a campaign, target any keyword I want and in GOOD cases, start getting clicks within a few hours. The only 2 networks I’ve ever used are Google Adwords and Bing.
The goal I usually have in regards to lead generation is to find a niche. Usually the niche has to have a problem. Then I first create a very simple website, and I also write up a short ebook that goes over that problem and offers solutions which can be something I’m promoting. I also set up a web form from Aweber to collect the list.
Then I do the actual campaign set up which is very simple. The things that take the longest for me to do in these tests are the ebook and the site I’m making. That can take a few hours. The campaign set up usually takes 15 minutes or less. Then I have to wait a few days and see if I get clicks.
My approach to setting up campaigns is to focus on extreme relevancy. I very often do not use a lot of keywords and only stick to the ones which most apply to my niche. I always look for the most targeted traffic. This always results in me paying very little.
However because of this approach, I have seen less clicks and at times no clicks from my efforts. In these situations, I have broaden my keyword lists and target more of them in order to reach more people. Also I often have to raise my bids. This has happened many times before, but in my opinion, it’s better to start of the way I do to see if I have to pay more than pay more in the beginning and find ways to spend less.
So if you have a PPC campaign that is getting clicks, test that funnel out on your squeeze page. Try to aim for a 25% conversion sign up. Here is an example where I managed to make this happen strictly from using PPC.
2. SEO: The safest one in my opinion.
What makes this method very safe is that you don’t really spend money on it and there is a lot of flexibility with an SEO site and how you wish to test it. This is really good to have if you have 1 niche site and wish to test several different conversion funnels.
For example on this site, I don’t have an opt-in page, but if I wanted to test it, I can do it anytime. As I’ve already said many times, traffic is the most important thing and I have that on this website so testing where that traffic goes is as easy as changing a few links and putting up some new banners. Then the current traffic coming in just goes to a new site where I can also put up a simple squeeze page and see how it works.
But to reach that point is where it’s most difficult. I think SEO takes the longest to achieve in online marketing and because of that, it also makes it VERY difficult.
Very few people are willing to sit and write content daily to reach the point where their site becomes an authority, but it can be done and despite the difficulty reaching that point, the end benefits are way bigger than ANY of the other methods I’ve listed here, combined (as well as any others you’ll hear about) so it is worth it.
To have a successful SEO website, you will need to follow a thorough plan which I put up here. It’s the exact plan I always follow and all my successful sites stick to that plan. When the traffic comes, just put up a banner or link all your posts to one squeeze page, then just test your numbers.
I also put up corresponding PPC campaigns with my SEO site, mostly with product reviews. Once I write it, it’s end purpose is to get on the first page of Google, but on the side, I also put up the page on Bing Ads to get it more visitors.
3. Facebook. It’s not easy, but it’s big.
Facebook is one of those things where if you know how to get traffic, you can collect a ton of leads in no time. But there’s so many ways to advertise on Facebook and not all of them are suited. I’ll be honest, I haven’t had success on Facebook, but that’s because I’ve only tested their ad feature which appears on the top right of people’s screens.
What I do know has worked is creating fan pages for your website and paying Facebook to display those ads on people’s feeds. This is a strategy I saw used by a man who created a product called Five Dollar Posts and it’s a strategy I have yet to try because I don’t have the time to test it yet.
Also the types of niches you target and the demographics most related to it are also KEY to making this work. Most of the time, the niches I’ve seen get a lot of views have been related to visual things like nature pages, clothing lines, fitness programs and things like that. Make money online programs generally do not get many views and I think it’s because the ads only target demographics interested in making money online, which from what I’ve seen on Facebook is not many people…
But the end objective with Facebook is to find that one method, be it display ads on people’s feeds or regular ads, have people click on the post (it’s going to be a sponsored post), and take them to a squeeze page. Keep in mind that again, the demographic and niche has to be directly related for this to work.
Example: If you take people who like nature, are employed (and other important demographic points all of which can lower your costs) and send them to a page which sells them tickets to many of the popular places you display on FB or calendars with nature pictures, you are marketing as directly as possible.
4. Custom t-shirts and accessories with your website logo/name.
I have 1 t-shirt which has the name of my website on it. I do have a friend who made multiple t-shirts for his page and he has gotten people to look at it his site as a result of it and this has gotten him leads as well as sales. That is more offline marketing, but you can sell t-shirts to people or give them away on your site and have that be used to drive more visitors. When they land on the site, make sure it’s easy to find your opt-in page which can be done by just putting up banners to it, but make sure you don’t put up too many…
Time to focus on collecting leads:
Again as I’ve said at least 4 times in this post already, traffic is what’s key. That’s why every single method here focuses on that. When you get the traffic, then you can modify or change your squeeze page/s to improve sign ups.
The same programs I talked about in the beginning of this post focus on this whole topic backwards. They give you ideas on how to improve lead conversions, but lack in giving you the proper training on getting traffic. Don’t over emphasize the squeeze page. It can be perfect and potentially have a HUGE sign up rate, but the traffic is what will determine that.
The only thing you really need to worry about with lead generation is relevancy. If you have a website that targets niche A, writes content related to niche A and offers products or free newsletters (the lead generation part) which gives tips and advice to niche A, you will have strong sign up rates. Use the post I wrote on conversions for help in this.
If you’re doing PPC for lead generation, don’t put in too much time making a great squeeze page. Make a very simple site and focus most of your attention on creating a campaign that gets clicks. If it doesn’t get clicks or it costs too much, move into something else, like SEO.
If you’re doing SEO, you’re will have to work a lot. Focus less on the squeeze page, and focus on getting content out through good keywords that target your niche. When your website starts accumulating a consistent number of visitors daily (maybe 30 or more organic visits), then begin to slowly test your conversion page by doing what I said earlier (linking all pages to the squeeze page), but even then do not over focus on it. Even at 30 visitors a day, you should still be spending just as much time creating even more content. When your website hits 100 visitors a day, 1,000 or more then you should put more attention on the squeeze page.
As for Facebook, the only thing I can really recommend is to be very careful with costs. Do not target broad audiences because you’re going to spend a lot more. Target VERY specific demographics and give people very specific things that interest those demographics.
Have a website which does all 3 things even. If you have to test out a new niche and don’t have a SEO focused site on it, but have money, test it out via PPC and Facebook.