For entrepreneurs, marketing has one main purpose – and that is lead generation.
Good marketing doesn’t manipulate – it motivates! It is the job of your marketing to get people’s attention and to turn them into a lead, and then it is the job of your sales strategies to convert that attention into a sale.
If you are just getting started with online marketing, here are a few tips for what you should focus on first to build your email list of leads, keep your lead’s interest, and turn that interest into a sale.
#1 Build a Network
Social Media Marketing works best when you have a network. A lot of entrepreneurs make the mistake of waiting for others to find them.
Be proactive when it comes to network building. Social media is massive information sharing and communication on the Internet! And social media is NOT about the MEDIA!
It’s about being SOCIAL, building community, and having powerful conversations with that community.
Marketing studies have shown that people need to see things 10 to 12 times before it starts to register – remember their brains are bombarded with info every moment.
This means you must be on multiple sites. Start to meet people and invite them to be friends, etc.
Not just anybody, but people you can learn from, joint venture with, or people who can learn from you. Add a few people every day and your network will expand quickly!
LinkedIn is a great way to begin to connect with people. Click on “Add Connections” on LinkedIn and let LinkedIn connect you to the people who are in your email accounts that already have LinkedIn profiles. Join LinkedIn “Groups” and connect with the members.
Search for groups that would interest your ideal clients and potential joint venture colleagues.
#2 Build Relationships
Why build a list? You are creating a data base of email addresses so that you can continue to have a conversation with leads, so you can build a relationship and market to them.
As you start to connect with people and you are commenting and “liking” their posts, you will start to build a basic relationship.
To take that relationship further, you should “Share” their information with your connections; give them a recommendation, connect with them through their LinkedIn inbox, and invite them to events.
#3 Create an Opt-in Box
A squeeze page is a website that gives the viewer only two options – to take action on
the offer or to click on the “X” to leave the page.
You have probably heard that most prospects have to see something 7 to 8 times before they make a buying decision, but with the advent of social media that number has increased to 10 to 12 times.
Adding an opt-in box to your website gives the viewer an opportunity to continue the conversation, to subscribe to your newsletter or receive a freebie, to ask questions and give feedback, all depending on your opt-in box style.
An autoresponder program like Infusionsoft, Aweber, Constant Contact, iContact, or MailChimp will allow you to create an opt-in box and manage your email data base.
Where should you place your opt-in box: The answer is easy – everywhere you can! On every page of your website/blog, on your blog post, on your Facebook fan page, on a squeeze page, as a separate page to give away as a bonus to other people’s products.
#4 Offer a Great Freebie
What is list building? In the simplest terms, it is when you collect people’s contact information in exchange for a gift of some sort.
That may be a free report, a video, an audio, a template, a checklist, whatever your ideal client would find valuable.
What makes a great freebie? Anything that your ideal client will want: a special report or white paper, an audio, a video, FAQs, templates, checklists.
The key to a successful opt-in freebie is the title. Is it something that your audience desires? Is it current and on topic?
Great blog posts do not necessarily have to have perfect grammar. People want to feel like it is coming from a real person.
Just make sure your blog does not contain factual errors! Blog on your own website and place an opt-in box on your blog page.
WordPress.org is my favorite platform to create websites. You will need to have a hosting company, but there are thousands of applications and themes to make your site unique!
What should you blog about? Well, do you have an event or informational product to promote? Is there a special event or holiday that would be important to your readers?
Answer a FAQ or create a post of quotes. Create a top-10 list or share a client’s success.
Then, it’s your job to let people know about your blog! Connect to social media and link to your blog at sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
Twitter is also a great way to micro-blog. Look at the lists of people you trust and respect and follow them. The Law of Reciprocity is heavily at work on Twitter:
If you follow someone, they will usually follow you back. Write engaging tweets, re-tweet, and comment on other’s tweets!
#6 Use Video and Audio
You can drive traffic to your blog by creating a “How to” video and posting it in your blog or on YouTube.
When I am getting ready to create video I like to begin with the end in mind.
What is my goal? To increase online exposure, build relationship and trust, develop your brand, and sell your product, program or service.
Remember, some people like to read, others like audio, and some like video. You should be using a combination of all three as part of your marketing strategy.
#7 Offer Informational Products
Sell products you haven’t created yet! In fact, NEVER create a product before you sell it.
For a lot of entrepreneurs, this is a scary one. It might be hard to wrap your brain around. As entrepreneurs, we’ve got lots of great ideas! The question is, are they all going to sell?
Do you want to waste your time creating something that doesn’t sell?
Teleseminars are a great tool to start with because in the beginning they can be produced with no to low expense.
There are so many free tools out there now and the majority of your cost comes from the time you spend setting up and promoting your call.
Informational products will help you gain trust and easily attract new prospects at no to low-cost, gain credibility and authority, differentiate yourself from your competitors, and increase referrals.
Informational products can immediately give you credibility and easily build your expert status!
When I learned that people wanted more social media training and were hungry to know how to do it themselves, I decided to create a program to show them how I used social media to build my six-figure business.
This was a 6-module program, so I created and delivered it over a 6 week period. I not only added 100 new people to my email list but, though I didn’t realize at the time, I had just created my first product.
I had the call transcribed, a graphic created, and built a small sales page. Since it debuted, I have sold over 100 copies of that program at $27 each. Not bad – $2700 return for a week’s work.
#8 Follow Up!
We have been discussing strategies that you can use to build your lead list. We have developed strategies to get leads to opt in to your email list, but once they are there what do you do? How are you connecting?
The biggest follow -up mistakes business owners make are forgetting to add a lead to their list, not following up right away, or not following up at all!
They get lazy and don’t email on a regular basis. If a lead is new to my list, I want to add them to my “nurture sequence.”
A nurture sequence is a series of emails, usually running 15 to 21 days, that gets the prospect used to you, helps to create trust, and doesn’t sell to them.
Always have a good reason in subject line to be contacting them, and add a personal touch and keep it fun – tell a few stories. They want to know you better!
We’ve been talking about email list building, but I want to make sure you understand that sending emails to your list is only part of the overall marketing strategy you should be planning.
If you had someone come to your list through a free gift the idea is to get them on the phone to do a strategy session with you so you can share with them what their next step would be in working with you.
My desire for you is that you can now see that there is a way for you to build your lead list so that you make the money you want to make and have the freedom that you want to have.
Is there more to be done, ABSOLUTELY! Building a business is an ongoing process. You will continue to tweak it and perfect it and I would love to be part of that.
***Article by: Michele Scism – visit her at www.decisiveminds.com