How To Create a Killer Lead-Gen Marketing Strategy

How To Create a Killer Lead-Gen Marketing Strategy

Leads are critical for the growth of any business — they are like a well from which you can reliably and predictably pull new customers.

And there are many different ways to generate leads for your business.

Quizzes, giveaways, free gifts, webinars, applications, and tripwire funnels are just a few tried-and-true methods that businesses use to systematically generate leads.

Of course, a lot of options also make it difficult to choose. 

So we’re going to boil it down for you — in this guide, we’ll show you how to create a killer lead-gen marketing strategy, all the way from defining your dream customer to creating a compelling sales funnel and infiltrating your target market’s hangouts.

Keep reading or click the link below to join our free 5-day lead-gen challenge…

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1. Know Your Dream Customer

Who is your dream customer — the person whom you most want to work with? What are their dreams and desires? Their fears and worries? Their wishes and wants?

At the beginning of his bestselling book, Traffic Secrets, Russell Brunson tells the following story…

“I don’t know if Alexis will like this,” said an executive at Sally Beauty Supply.

Confused, my friend Perry Belcher asked, “What?” He set down his new scented hand sanitizer that he had brought in to pitch at the meeting.

He picked up his new UV nail polish and handed it to the group. “Okay, well, how about this product?” he asked.

They looked at it, opened it up, and smelled it. “Yeah, I’m pretty sure that Alexis won’t like this either,” they replied.

More confused than ever, and now a little frustrated, Perry brought out his third and final product to pitch to them.

In a similar fashion, they looked at the product, gave it a quick once-over, and then said, “Sorry, Alexis definitely wouldn’t be interested in this one either.”

More frustrated, Perry looked at the two execs he was talking to and finally blurted “Who is Alexis?! Is she the decision maker? Why isn’t she in this meeting instead of you two? Is she here? Can I just talk directly to her? I know that I can convince her that your company need to sell these products!”

There was a moment of silence, and then both execs burst out in laughter.

“Alexis isn’t a person. She’s our customer avatar!” one replied.

The better that you understand who your dream customer is, the easier it becomes to identify your target market out in the real world; the easier it becomes to generate high-quality leads.

Find a picture to represent them, give them a name, a job, an income bracket, a family, and so on — the more real they seem to you, the better.

You can use the graphic below as a starting place.

Know Your Dream Customer, Customer Avatar worksheet.

You might be tempted to skip this first step… but don’t. Building a successful lead-gen strategy depends on identifying and understanding your dream customers.

2. Find Their Online Hangouts

Find Their Online Hangouts, diagram.

Once you’ve identified who your dream customer is, the next step is to determine where they hang out online.

This will take a bit of research but it’ll be a thousand times worth it once you’re trying to drive traffic to your sales funnel.

Try to identify…

  • 10 websites and forums they spend time on
  • 15 active Facebook groups they participate in
  • 50 influencers they follow on Facebook and Instagram
  • 30 podcasts they listen to
  • 40 email newsletters they subscribe to

Make a list!

After you’ve built your sales funnel, you’ll infiltrate these online congregations to drive high-quality traffic. We’ll show you how in step 7.

We call this process the Dream 100 — and it’s exactly how Russell Brunson made a name for himself and ClickFunnels in the online marketing world.

Check out the video below to learn more.

3. Create a Compelling Lead-Gen Sales Funnel

You’ve identified your dream customers and made a list of many different places where those people congregate online.

But before we infiltrate those places, we need somewhere to drive all of that traffic.

More specifically, we need a sales funnel — one that’s built to systematically turn visitors into leads.

How do we build that?

Well, as we alluded to in the introduction, there are a lot of different options. But to make things simpler, we’re going to give you a quick overview of 5 of the best lead-gen sales funnels you could use.

You just have to choose the one that is the best fit for your business.

Click the link below when you’re ready to start building your sales funnel…

Ready To Build Your Sales Funnel? Get a 14-Day FREE ClickFunnels Trial Now!

1. Challenge Funnel

This sales funnel is awesome because it gets an upfront commitment from the new lead and allows them to get to know your brand more intimately.

The idea is that you host a challenge — this can be completely automated or live — that teaches the visitor some stuff, encourages them to take action, and emphasizes the value of your products or services.

It can be 100% free or it can cost a little bit of money.

We have multiple challenges at ClickFunnels.

Our 5-day lead-gen challenge…

Challenge Funnel example.

Our One Funnel Away Challenge…

Challenge Funnel,One funnel Away example.

Our Affiliate Bootcamp…

Challenge Funnel, affiliate boo camp example..

And many more.

That’s because challenges work.

They catch the right people’s interest (people who want to take action), generate leads, and remain relevant to the products and services that you offer.

2. Free Gift Funnel

This is perhaps the most common method for generating leads — giving away something for free that your target market wants in return for their contact information (name, email, phone number, etc.).

The “something” that you give away for free could be an ebook, a checklist, an email course, a product sample, a trial, or something else.

Let’s look at some examples.

From SmartBlogger…

Free Gift Funnel example.

From DigitalMarketer…

Free Gift Funnel, Digital Marketer example.

From Search Engine Journal…

Free Gift Funnel, Search Engine Journal example.

Ask yourself this question: what’s something irresistible that I could offer my dream customers, something that they desperately want?

Offer that to them for free and you’ll generate leads like clockwork.

3. Webinar Funnel

Now I know we’ve said good things about every type of funnel so far — because we’re only mentioning some of the best! — but I’m serious when I say that, for us at ClickFunnels, webinar funnels have generated more leads than any other type of funnel.

Crazy, right?

The other thing that’s awesome about webinar funnels is that they allow you to generate leads during registration and then sell products after the webinar and when sending out the replay.

It’s a two-birds-with-one-stone type of deal.

Heck — we love webinars so much that we have a webinar about how to host webinars!

It’s called Perfect Webinar Secrets…

Webinar Funnel, Perfect Webinar Secrets example.

You could create a webinar about anything you want — just make sure it’s on a topic that your target market desperately wants to learn about.

Ask yourself a variation of the same question we asked in the “Free Gift Funnel” section: what’s something that my target market desperately wants to learn? How could I teach them that in a free webinar?

4. Giveaway Funnel

Running a giveaway can be another great way to generate leads — so long as the thing you’re giving away is only going to attract your dream customers.

Otherwise, you’ll end up with a lot of low-quality leads.

The guitar maker, Zager, uses giveaways to generate leads for their business. And it works because they’re giving away one of their products, which means the people who sign up for the giveaway will be interested in their products.

Giveaway Funnel, Zager guitar giveaway.

People love free stuff.

And as long as the thing you’re giving away is attracting the right people and you have a strong follow-up funnel (see step 4), then this can be a lucrative lead-gen method.

5. Tripwire Funnel

Next to webinars, the tripwire funnel is one of our favorites here at ClickFunnels.

We love it because it turns new website visitors — we’re talking about cold traffic — into paying customers in one fell swoop.

It works by offering one of your front-end products at a massive discount, and then an upsell to increase the average order value.

Here’s an example…

Two Step Tripwire Funnel graphic.

Ecommerce products work great for this.

But you can also offer a free book — like we do with Traffic Secrets, or some other product or service at a heavy discount.

With this funnel, even breaking even on your advertising budget is a win, because that means you’re generating leads and getting new customers for free!  

Ready To Build Your Sales Funnel? Get a 14-Day FREE ClickFunnels Trial Now!

4. Build a Follow-Up Funnel

Obviously, the end-goal of your business isn’t to generate leads… it’s to sell your products or services to customers!

And it’s very important to take advantage of the first few weeks and months that a new lead enters your ecosystem.

That’s why we recommend building a follow-up funnel.

This is just a series of emails that trigger when someone becomes a lead — your follow-up funnel could also include text messages or phone calls if needed.

SmartBlogger, for example, sends five high-value emails to new subscribers (to build trust and rapport) and then ends by trying to turn that subscriber into a paying customer…

Build a Follow-Up Funnel, Smart Blogger example.

Of course, the process of systematically turning leads into customers over 5-10 emails can feel overwhelming.

How do you do it?

Well, we recommend using what’s called a Soap Opera Sequence — this email sequence consists of 5 emails that create drama, build trust, and convert like crazy. 

  • 1st Email: Set The Stage This email thanks to the subscribers for signing up, delivering the bribe, setting expectations for the upcoming emails, and building suspense for tomorrow’s email.
  • 2nd Email: Open with High Drama — This email starts with a lot of drama. You dive into an interesting story that immediately grabs the reader’s attention. You then tell them that you discovered the solution to the problem within your story… but that they’ll have to read tomorrow’s email to find out what it was.
  • 3rd Email: Epiphany — Relating back to your story, you explain the epiphany you had and the way you realized you could solve your problem (this is your product or service). You can then point them toward a free resource to learn more about your product or service.
  • 4th Email: Hidden Benefits — In this next email, the goal is to point out the hidden benefits of your product or service (i.e. your solution); the benefits that they probably haven’t even considered yet. Then you can point them toward your primary CTA.
  • 5th Email: Urgency and CTA — Finally, you create urgency for the reader and push them to take action. Maybe your Webinar starts and ends tomorrow, maybe you have a limited number of products, or maybe you’re pulling the offer down soon. Urgency works. So use it!

Check out the video below to learn more about how this works.

5. Determine Your Budget

Let’s review.

We’ve identified your dream customers, made a list of where they hang out online, and created a compelling sales funnel and follow-up funnel.

We’re getting close to driving traffic.

But before we do that, it’s important to determine our budget for driving traffic.

Answer these questions…

  • How much do you want to spend per month?
  • How much are you hoping to spend per lead?

Then work the math backward from your budget.

If you can afford to spend $5,000 per month on lead-gen, then how many leads should you realistically expect to generate?

At $0.50 per lead, you’d get 10,000 leads in a month.

Is that realistic?

If not, then what is?

You might not know what’s realistic until you start running ads and collecting data — that’s okay. Just make your best guess and then let the data do the talking.

6. Infiltrate Their Hangouts

Now it’s time to infiltrate your dream customer’s hangouts!

Sounds cool, right?

And it is!

This is the part where you take your sales funnel offer and promote it to your target market — either by working your way in or by buying your way in.

Infiltrate Their Hangouts, graphic.

Look at the list you made in step 2 and take one of two approaches with each online hangout…

  • Work your way in — This means you’ll be emailing people, building relationships with key decision-makers, and looking for collaboration opportunities. You might guest blog for a website that your dream customers read, be a guest on a podcast that they listen to, engage in forums where they spend time, or trade mentions with influencers.
  • Buy your way in — This means you’ll pay to get attention in these places. You might pay to display advertisements on a specific blog, sponsor a podcast or newsletter, or run Facebook Ads to people who follow a specific influencer.

With enough money or hard work, your dream customers will convert into leads… and with a little luck down the road, customers.

7. Optimize The Sales Funnel

The rubber is hitting the road.

At this point, all that’s left to do is to watch what happens and optimize based on what you’re seeing.

How’re the sales funnel converting? Do you need new sales copy? Or new images? Maybe a new offer altogether?

Which online hangouts drive the most cost-effective traffic? Which ones drive the least? Can you spend less to get more?

Those are the types of questions you should ask yourself.

And the answers reveal the path you should take — keep optimizing and iterating and, over time, you’ll build a marketing machine that generates leads like clockwork.

Final Thoughts 

Generating leads is critical for growing your business — but there are so many ways you could go about it.

In this guide, we’ve unearthed 7 steps to creating a killer lead-gen marketing strategy — know your dream customer, find their online hangouts, create a compelling sales funnel, build a follow-up funnel, determine your budget, infiltrate their hangouts, and iterate.

Now it’s time for action. 

Click the link below to take the next step… 

Learn Our Step-By-Step Method For Generating New High-Quality Leads (FREE)

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