Monthly Archives: October 2012

Using Lead Generation For Or Against Middle-Men

People with any experience in lead generation can understand why the need for middle-men has been questioned and will always be questioned. Because more than half the time, people who are in the business of providing leads also find themselves on the end of such doubts. On the other hand, this also means they are not strangers to seeing other middle-man industries getting cut out by disruptors and game-changers.

This begs the question: Do you employ them only for or against the middle man?

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Test Your Lead Generation Proficiency

When outsourcing the lead generation process, one thing you should always keep in mind is proficiency. After all, business software should be all about streamlined proficiency right? From your users’ perspective, the only thing that matters is the bottom-line. You should not view your marketing campaigns any differently. Always ask how much it will cost you and if that price is really worth paying.

Luckily, this Entrepreneur article has listed four things that can test that proficiency.

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IT Leads For Cloud Vendors Must Embody Clarity

Clarity between buyer and vendor should occur already at the marketing level. Your pursuit of IT leads should already lay out what should be expected between yourself and your customer. Do not just always depend on your salespeople to clarify and elaborate.

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Gaining Sales Leads Should Be All About Helping People!

Sales Leads, Software Sales Leads, Lead GenerationWant sales leads? Be a helping hand.

If there is one thing that gives the business world a bad reputation, it is the eagerness to sell rather than simply serve. This type of behavior has already been called out by many gurus, professionals, and experienced leaders. And yet, many outside this world still insist (sometimes unfairly) that anyone marketing a product is only out to make a buck.

Your Business Leads Should HELP Another Business

When you are getting in touch with a prospect for the first time, what do you do? Does the medium you use enable you to be of any help to this person or this person’s business? For example, when you are an accounting software vendor, do you see your accounting leads as an opportunity to help businesses keep track of things?

At the very least, is your marketing easy on the prospect’s mind? How readable is it? How accessible is it? How often do you even have an actual conversation with a prospect?

Related Content: Get Sales Leads For Mobile With Mobile Friendly Marketing

Instead of focusing on just getting leads, why not start seeing those leads as an opportunity to be of help even when there is still a long way to go before they are qualified? At Search Engine Land, Erin Everhart suggests the same thing when it comes to link building:

If I learned one thing from being a born and bred Southern belle, it’s that we should do things for people without expecting anything in return. Give away some free knowledge on your blog, grant an interview to a starving journalist through HARO, help someone just getting started in the industry, or offer to do a free chat to college students through our local university.

How do you think SEOmoz has garnered all the links they have? Because they’ve focused more on giving away good, free advice than how their anchor text looks.”

The best part is that this is obviously applicable to more than just SEO. You can take any strategy or tool for generating software sales leads and have it center around viewing those leads as a chance to help instead of just a chance to keep money flowing into your business.

Of course, that does not mean money is unimportant. Having it at the bottom-line is still quite understandable given that you need it to keep your business afloat. What you are forgetting though is that these go hand-in-hand. You want money in order to serve so your marketing should also strive to be of service (not just focus on looking pretty).

Related Content: How Much Does Lead Generation Thrive On Publicity?

Why else do you think companies give freebies or takeaways? Granted, these do not always work but that is when those things fail to express anything of your business’ real value. On the other hand, giving away tips and holding informative software conferences are more likely to improve the experience of both your prospects and your customers. So whether you are generating leads in-house or with the assistance of a lead generation company, any lead that you get should always be a chance to help people!

Lock-Ins And Lead Generation – A Wise Decision?

On the basic level, lead generation starts with interest. And once you get that interest, you need to maintain it. In some cases however, this need to retain a customer’s interest can cause some vendors to resort to lock-in. For a rough definition, lock-ins are when a company creates products that exclusively work well together but not so much with everything else.

Can Software Leads Come Out Of Lock-Ins?

Lock-ins are not exclusive to any industry be they B2C or B2B. The phenomenon ranges from simple toys having their own exclusive, interchangeable parts to entire ERP systems that come with exorbitant switching costs. Either case, using lock-ins to maintain customer interest is not only risky but also questionable. People can accuse you of attracting ERP leads only to lure companies into an elaborate trap.Lead Generation, B2B Lead Generation, Sales Leads

On the other hand, there are strategies that, despite potentially leading to lock-ins, come with both marketing and sales benefits:

  • It gives you a unique brand identity.
  • It is a hard-hitting answer against competition.
  • It can turn you into an industry leader.

You still need to be careful though. Remember, these marketing strategies can come at the cost of your customers. Make sure to mitigate these costs or you will definitely give them the feeling of being trapped:

  • Customer freedom – More specifically, how much can they accomplish with your software? Are you willing to give advice for every unique process or function that they might request? Can you surely guarantee that they will have everything they need from you?

Related Content: One Tip For Lead Generation – Give Tips To Your Prospects

  • Manipulating costs – Do you rely purely on giving discounts and promos to maintain this loyalty? Do your marketers focus more on what how you are playing with the price tag or what your researchers and experts actually develop? Better yet, do any of these lower costs have ties to that development?
  • Maintaining quality – Speaking of which, no amount of marketing and B2B lead generation can substitute for the actual quality of your products. Can your products continue to deliver so much even as your competitors will be racing close behind? The slightest trip or loss of speed can send you crashing down and lose you your place (and to an extent, could take your customers down with you).

The importance of knowing these risks is not to really to discourage you from employing strategies that could really establish your brand identity. Rather, these should simply tell you the kind of you standards you are setting your company up for. Done right, it can springboard your business. Done wrong, your business will be selling things that come with many strings attached.

Related Content: Do Your Sales Leads Come With Strings Attached?

Your decision could also play its own role in establishing your brand identity. What if compatibility with other systems and hardware becomes your selling point? On the flip side, if you truly believe that you offer a very unique, revolutionary product, then that could be your calling. Either way, it all depends on how much you know your market. Always remember that when targeting ERP sales leads, any strategy should ultimately benefit your customer.

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