Practical Lead Generation with Limited Marketing Resources
In the previous post, we talked about the starting points for your lead generation program. As we said before, you must assess your current situation and make sure your sales team is ready to pick up the game from marketing before lead generation occurs. Now let’s talk about specific marketing techniques.
In this post, we share some strategies we recommend you try and others we recommend you don’t. Both lists are not limited and will evolve over time with your marketing maturity and business growth. If some things you try don’t work for you, then cancel them, make a note for yourself and try something else.
Before you decide what works and what doesn’t, make sure you are clear on your goals, expectations and measurement methodology. Some strategies take longer to ramp up, like SEO, while others, like paid banner, will be obviously useless or useful after only two or three months.
Effective for MSP:
- How-to videos
- Consistent blogging (educational content)
- Social media presence
- Case studies
- Online reviews
- Pop-up lead capture
Not Effective for MSP:
- Promo emails
- CTA buttons in the blog posts
- Keyword focused content
- Purchased backlinks
- Social media ads
- Outdoor ads
While some methods you might be able to cover with internal resources, like social media, content creation and simple website maintenance, others will require investments. You may find that appointment setting services are worth it as a short-term lead generation solution while your SEO and content marketing are rolling out. For many businesses of your size, it is also common to outsource SEO entirely. However, this is often a huge pitfall, which we will talk about further in this post.
Here are some general recommendations for being vigilant and not overspending or wasting your marketing budget:
- Pay for what works for you. If it stops working – stop paying.
- Make sure your sales team follows through.
- With any paid services, be detailed and critical with filter criteria.
- When choosing a provider/contractor, ask for references and look for ROI and conversion rate information as opposed to comments like “they are easy to work with”.
- Choose quality over quantity (i.e. smaller traffic with higher conversion).
- Choose alternative routes (professional groups and associations your targets belong to).
- Target different IT decision makers.
In our post Quick do-it-yourself SEO guide, we covered some best practices you can implement in your company to improve your SEO results. Many of those recommendations don’t require any specific knowledge and expertise, but SEO is complicated, so many MSP owners decide to outsource it altogether. With lots of details and constantly changing search algorithms, it is easy to lose a track of how your SEO agency/contractor is performing.
To make sure your money is well spent, here are some recommendations on how to keep your contractor accountable:
- Use free tools, like SEM Rush, on a monthly basis to check your daily organic traffic, number of backlinks and any keywords you rank for.
- Perform an independent SEO audit with another agency or contractor once or twice a year.
- Keep your agency’s KPIs around conversion rather than traffic and conduct a performance review at least every other month.
These recommendations will help you identify weak spots in your SEO strategies and ask the right questions of your agency or contractor to keep them on track.
Social Media is the Best Free Tool
It doesn’t cost you a dime to be present and active on social media. If you do it right and keep consistent, then it will pay off with better SEO, brand awareness and a good reputation. Factors like brand awareness and reputation, while not directly bringing you leads, are strongly correlated with a high conversion rate. They have a cumulative effect. Just as with MRR, the more you work on them, the easier and faster it will be to get conversions. Check our blog posts about social media best practices here, here, here and here.
Social Media Tips:
- Develop a company profile and personal profiles for the managers and sales reps.
- Invest in LinkedIn Premium for your sales reps (~$40 per person per month).
- Don’t waste your time on social media platforms that don’t bring traffic to your website.
- Have your team members share content on social media instead of spending money on paid ads.
Follow these recommendations to create consistent and effective lead generation activities customized to your business.