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The five myths of lead generation

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Myths about lead generation can lead to faulty practices and missed opportunities. Below we bust five common myths about lead generation and provide tips to help craft strategies that deliver leads that convert to customers. Myth No. 1: It's all about cost per lead. Marketing departments often work with cost per lead in mind, but should focus on cost per acquisition, cost per upselling the customer and cost per lifetime value of a customer. Instead of a hyperfocus on the cost per lead of a campaign, consider a formula that measures the true return of your efforts. For example, if you work thinking your best close rate is $50 per lead, you might be overlooking $1,000-per-lead opportunities that close at 80% and are worth 50 times per customer.” Myth No. 2: Lead scoring revolves around lead source. Instead, measure leads around explicit and implicit information provided by them at sign-up. Focus less on the source and more on job title, industry, number of sales reps or budgets. You can then follow those attributes all the way through the sales process and build a lead-scoring profile. You may find that CEO leads come in and close, or it may be deals of a certain sales size that have a high close rate.” Myth No. 3: Landing pages produce the most leads. Marketing departments often drive prospects to landing pages to get data from them before giving them information. Sometimes this works, but often prospects abandon efforts because they can't find the information they want. When a prospect finds your site via search, make sure you avoid the organic-vs.-paid link and landing site funnel. Make it easy for all prospects to educate themselves about your solutions regardless of link type; you will have shorter sales cycles, fewer frustrated leads and a better reputation. Myth No. 4: Drip campaigns are a necessity. Never run a drip campaign just to check it off on your campaign list. Each email sent welcomes prospects to unsubscribe or, worse, cancel your services. Instead, adopt a “less is more” or triggers-based approach. This allows you to maintain a healthy flow of communication with prospects without overburdening them. Myth No. 5: The marketing team controls the communications stream. For effective lead generation, a communications plan that includes sales and marketing is needed. For example, if you run a free trial on your website that requires sales to follow up, it's not always a great idea to have marketing run a drip campaign at the same time. Why? Because no matter what, the prospect will be contacted by sales and still receive marketing emails, which risks frustrating or even losing a prospect. Instead, use your automated tools to personalize campaigns based on real-time information. This will ensure targeted, relevant messaging that helps turn a lead into a customer. Knowing the difference between myth and reality will enable you to build a solid, sustainable lead-generation process that delivers results.” Jeffrey Cody is senior marketing manager at Campaigner, an email marketing company.
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