Most of what you read, see, and hear in the media got there with the help of PR. The media are insatiably hungry for factual, interesting, and newsworthy or entertaining information they can share with their customers, members, employees, listeners, viewers or readers. PR, approached correctly, will give you free coverage on radio, television, in magazines, newspapers, trade journals, newsletters, e-zines, and via Web sites who serve the marketplace you’re trying to reach.
The digital age has also made it easier for companies to research and understand their perspective leads. By understanding the wants and needs of their target customers, companies can tailor information to better draw them in, as well as qualify any potential leads based on a variety of factors, such as engagement and demographic information. It is increasingly important for companies to not only generate new leads but also develop and nurture relationships with them.
In the old world of information scarcity, the concept of “lead generation” meant marketing found the names of potential buyers and passed them to sales. Buyers expected that they would have to talk to sales and sales expected to speak to uneducated early stage buyers that may not yet be qualified. This has all changed. Today, buyers can do their own research online and can find a variety of educational resources through search engines, social media, and other online channels. Through content resources, today’s buyer can learn a great deal about a product or service before ever having to even speak to a sales person. So businesses must make sure that they build their digital presence.
ToFu: Leads at the top of the funnel need awareness. They know nothing about what you offer and what domain you operate in, so you’ll need to create a conversation around both these focus points—without selling your product up front. If you sell CRMs, you attract ToFu leads by talking about how SDRs (sales development representatives) can do their job better using CRM software. Blogs, ebooks and guides are content types that work well at this stage.
Google Adwords still stand at the forefront for PPC advertising as indicated in the diagram above from the 2013 State of Paid Search Report. While many frown on paid advertising as a digital marketing tool, these experts believe that PPC ads is still a very viable and high quality resource for generating valuable leads and will most likely continue on this thread for years to come. New businesses can quickly generate their much needed leads using PPC ads, and veteran digital marketers will continue to make use of this important tool for generating good results that will push them towards their goals.