By Paul Parcellin, Staff Writer
December 12, 2014

As someone who seeks success as a lead generator, you're probably always asking yourself how you can get more leads than you are generating now. Perhaps you are focused on finding new ways to persuade prospects to convert. That's not a bad idea, per se, but you may do better if you first think about the prospects who you want to attract, and what they truly need.

Let's assume that you have identified who your best prospects are and what they are looking for - their interest in your products or services is your chief concern, of course. You may have written a basic profile that defines who your prospects are, their income bracket, education level and even the number of family members they have at home. This helps pinpoint those who are more likely to be interested enough in your products and services to convert.

That's all well and good, but how do you locate these people and direct them toward your landing page so that they can convert and you can get more leads?

Must-See Content

First, you need to think about what those prospects want and need and what you can provide to them that will not only be useful, it will be essential. That's your first step in getting more of those prospects to notice you and eventually convert. If you can offer them something valuable that is related to your product or service, then you're on the right track to stepping up the pace of your lead generation efforts.

In a recent post, blogger Jason Leister says that the most direct route to prospects' hearts is creating link bait, which is evergreen content that they can use and will value.

He makes a distinction between link bate that capitalizes on sensational content or personal attacks, and the stuff that your prospects will truly value for some time to come. Value is the gold standard, not controversy, Leister says. If you want to get more leads it's best to think about what kind of always-relevant material you can publish that will interest and help your prospects. In addition, the content should inspire prospects to pass on your material to other prospects because it's in their interest to share it.

That can mean your content is so useful and valuable that the first prospect will take pride in helping others by sending them your stuff. They will pass it along because it helps them build good will among their peers, it makes them feel good to help others or just to receive some good old-fashioned positive karma.

Posts Each Day

Leister says that creating a "value machine" can involve writing a daily blog post, creating a daily video and posting a daily infographic. The important factor is that whatever you present must be something your prospects will need, use and value. It can be a summary of interesting industry news, money-saving tips or case studies that analyze the pros and cons of various industry related offerings. The first step is finding the right approach and working out how you will deliver your content to the parties you want to reach.

You will have an advantage over your competition, says Leister, because most don't have the discipline to carry on with this demanding regimen day after day. To the uninitiated, producing daily content may sound like easy work, but once you try it you'll find that it is extremely demanding. However, if you write or create content that is consistently valuable to your prospects you may see some stunning results because of it.

Choosing the Vehicle

After you settle on the kind of content you want to provide you have to decide how you will deliver it to your prospects. For most, a website is the vehicle of choice because it can deliver content and capture leads.

But, what if your website is not performing the way you'd like?

Why Sites Fail

Marketing consultant Rick Whittington writes in his blog post, "10 Reasons Your Website Struggles To Generate Leads For Your Business," a website's shortcomings, he says, will invariably tamp down its power to draw traffic. A good way to enliven your flagging online pages is to avoid making some of the mistakes that marketer are apt to do:

Knowing your target audience. Too many sites are created by those who have not defined their target audience, says Whittington. It's pointless to spend good money on a site if you don't know who your prospects are. Your site must speak clearly and directly to the prospects you want to reach.

Websites that are out of date. If you have not updated the look of your website in the past two to three years chances are it looks outdated. Buying an inexpensive WordPress theme probably won't solve the problem, either. It will simply make your site look like all the others. It's important to build a site that will give you a distinct identity.

Lack of informative, helpful information on the site. Search engines will rate your importance in part by the number of people who find the information you present useful. You need to establish yourself as a trusted source of information in your industry. You can publish short articles on a blog or offer long-form white papers for download. Both have the potential to increase the number of visitors to your site.

No blog on your site. If you believe that your site does not need a blog, them you are mistaken, says Whittington. A blog can help establish you as an authoritative voice in your industry and will likely help increase traffic to your site. You can address issues that interest your prospects, and when they are searching the Web to find industry related information search engines will bring them to your site.

A call to action is missing from your site. It may seem like a no-brainer, but visitors need to be told to take the action that you want them to take - to convert. It can be a link or a graphic that will bring the visitor into the conversion process. You may want them to download, buy or leave their contact information, or a combination of the three. In any case, clearly express what you want them to do.

No landing pages. Landing pages are a critical element in the conversion process. They may offer links to white papers, guides, product information, special offers and other features that allow your visitors to convert. Just about all leads come from landing pages. It's not enough to put a "Contact Us" link on your site. You must offer more in-depth information that will explain the benefits of converting.

Your site talks only about you. Many sites merely offer product descriptions and talk about their services. To be persuasive you must explain the benefits of your offerings. It's not enough to merely tell them what you do. You have to tell them what your products can do for them and why they should buy those products from you.

Too few visitors come to your site. If you aren't getting a lot of traffic to your site you probably don't have enough visitors converting. If you want to get more visitors you must publish information that prospects can find on the Web and will value. Start by writing a blog on your site and posting to social media to promote your site. Be sure to write social media blurbs to promote each blog post that you write. If you are writing good, clear information about the industry your prospects will be eager to read your material, and that may increase traffic to your site.

You have no social media presence. Social media may not be your best means of getting leads, but it ought to play a role in your marketing strategy. Every lead generator should consider creating a social media profile to help drive traffic to your site. If, like your blog posts, your social media posts contain useful information, prospects will likely gravitate toward your posts and perhaps to your website, too.

Your website shows signs of neglect. Perhaps you have not updated your site in recent times because it's a low priority. In addition, you may not have a strategic plan for making your site a success. If you aren't working on your strategy, chances are you have set no clear goals for your site. Goals you may pursue could include developing a specific traffic increase or a targeted increase in your conversion rate.

Your website plays a crucial part in your online advertising and marketing campaigns. It's a good idea to devote the time and energy that it takes to develop a strategy that will make your site a better online lead generator.

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