A Guide to Lead Generation for Sales and Marketing

magnet pointing towards potential customer leads
magnet pointing towards potential customer leads

Lead generation isn’t a very fancy process, nor is it the flashiest, but it’s an unsung hero in a company’s sales process. In fact, it’s a process that should be at the forefront of any marketing strategy for your business. After all, customers are the lifeline of any successful business.

Today, with the ever-expanding and ever-evolving internet, marketers can launch highly successful campaigns. However, that’s only possible if they know who is interested and interacting with them. That’s where lead generation comes in.

Lead generation has evolved to keep up with digital marketing in Hong Kong, so the usual cold calls and in your face marketing techniques have been refined to a more subtle, yet effective process. In this article, we guide you through the basics of lead generation for sales and marketing and show you why it’s an essential part of any company’s sales process.

Lead Generation process in different marketing platforms

What is Lead Generation?

In a nutshell, lead generation is the process of identifying and attracting potential customers for future sales. This is particularly important because for businesses, it’s essential to have a solid base of customers. In order to do that, lead generation shows you your leads.

Leads are people who have shown interest in your business. The important thing to note when dealing with leads is to remember that they may be in need of a little more push before conversion. This could be due to a variety of factors, some of which your business might not be in control of. Whatever it is, it’s still important to note and understand these to help your strategies moving forward.

Not everyone who interacts with your brand is a lead! Sure, an individual may have engaged with your brand, but there are still certain qualifications that both marketing and sales teams use in order to qualify as a lead. Take note, however, that for each business, this might change depending on goals, industry, and other factors.

There are generally two types of qualified leads:

sales funnel for Lead Generation
  • Marketing Qualified Leads: Marketing leads are individuals who show a relatively strong connection with the brand, but are not yet ready to buy. This means that they will probably respond well to lead nurturing. These are the leads that will need a little more push further along the sales funnel.
  • Sales Qualified Leads: Sales qualified leads, on the other hand, are those who are technically ready to purchase. However, they still have some reservations or questions that need to be addressed by the sales team. Sales qualified leads can still definitely benefit from lead nurturing as it allows them to move faster along the latter half in the sales cycles.

Lead generation is a pivotal part of any sales or marketing strategy as it allows the business to identify who they can connect with, and more importantly, how they can connect with them. While lead generation may still look like cold calls and traditional marketing to others, it has actually evolved and developed over the years.

Lead Generation connection chart

What is Lead Generation in Digital Marketing?

Gone are the days when lead generation meant random phone calls from a sales representative. Today, lead generation has evolved to keep up with the age of information and technology. That means adapting to how the internet works and utilizing inbound marketing strategies, which usually include SEO and SEM in Hong Kong!

Lead generation in the digital marketing age makes full use of existing strategies to get to know sales qualified leads. Digital marketing strategies such as email marketing, social media ads, and even downloadable content are all great ways to gauge for potential customers. The data from these campaigns are then used to connect and tailor content and strategies to maximise a brand’s online presence!

The process of lead generation also connects marketing and marketing, more so when digital marketing comes into play. Before, the two were two entirely different entities with one not really intersecting with the other. However, with lead generation in play, both marketing and sales make efforts towards conversions.

When it comes to lead generation, here are some of the most common strategies that companies employ:

person typing content using a laptop

Inbound Marketing

Inbound marketing is a common lead generation strategy. When companies use inbound marketing, companies generate interest through content and promotion, as well as technical optimisation for SEO and PPC or SEM. If you are using inbound marketing in your lead generation strategy, then being updated in digital marketing trends for 2022 is sure to give you a boost.

Outbound Marketing

Outbound marketing is probably the more traditional marketing efforts that most people are familiar with. These include email marketing, traditional advertising, and event marketing. On average, these aren’t the most effective during the digital age, but pairing them with inbound marketing strategies is usually very fruitful.

notebook with written text that says sales, marketing, and growth

Sales and Marketing Alignment

Lead generation is the culmination of marketing and sales, meaning both aspects can play a large role in the process. Social selling, outbound emailing, networking are some strategies that are often paired with filtering and qualification. These processes help with generating a list of strong leads and categories of potential customers.

Lead Generation for Marketing and Sales.

Lead generation is an essential part of any company’s sales process. It’s a way to determine which users are potential customers and allows you to adjust your strategies as needed. More importantly, it gives you useful information on how you can nurture, strengthen, and boost your brand in the digital arena.

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