Your website has been created and your monetization plan is in place, it’s time to start generating leads. The only way for affiliates to pay is to get readers to click links, visit your pages, and form a community. So today we are going to discuss the best ways to do that, and there are plenty! The more of these lead generation tips you implement, the more readers and customers you will have visiting your site.
What is Inbound Marketing?
In the easiest terms possible, Inbound Marketing is drawing people to your website and keeping them there. There are many models to tackle this task, but I am going to present it to you in a way that allows you the flexibility to utilize any or all of the strategies at your convenience. Your passive income is whatever you want it to be – as involved or simple as you choose. My Inbound Marketing strategies will also cost you little to no money, making this an investment of time, more than anything. Here are some more examples of Inbound Marketing for clarification and ideas:
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
- Word of Mouth
- Social Networking
10 Ways to Generate Leads
- SEO and PPC: We discussed SEO before, but it’s a great way to get leads through a Google search. So be sure to tag posts properly and do your keyword research. An effective tip is to utilize long keywords (3 words or so) to draw in very specific searches. If you make the keywords too simple, the reader will get far more hits, and your site will not appear at the top of the search. PPC (Pay Per Click) ads on other, affiliate websites can also draw people to your site. It’s an easy, passive way for readers to get to your site.
- Network and Co-Market: Reach out to non-competitive but complimentary vendors to help you generate leads. You can work together to have links on each other’s sites that will refer customers. For example, if you are selling handmade furniture, you could reach out to a manufacturer of woodworking tools. Customers on both ends will be interested. Everybody wins.
- Update with Useful Content: To keep customers coming back for more, you have to entice them. Hire a freelancer, or take an hour or so every week to write a well-informed, useful blog post. It shows readers that you are still active as well as provide information regarding your niche. Freelancers can be hired with ease at websites like oDesk and Elance. You can even get other, well-known, bloggers to write “guest posts” on your website.
- Convert Visitors into Promoters: Once you have a well-visited site with fans, you can start asking them to refer their friends. This could be through your website as a call to action “Help us get 2,000 likes on Facebook!” or emailing them with weekly newsletters. Of course, you must offer the best possible customer service to your visitors. A positive experience on their end will increase your reputation. Then they will be more likely to refer you, share your social networking posts, and buy your product in the future.
- Become a Face for Your Brand: Visit trade shows, lectures, and expos where your niche’s community meets. Pairing your face with your brand makes you even more marketable. By doing so, you also become an expert in your niche, and will be given an opportunity to meet others in the same business as you. Another way to market yourself with your site is to put a picture of yourself on your site and including an About Me page or blurb. This will add a personal touch to your product.
- Use LinkedIn: LinkedIn is amazing for generating leads. It is known to draw in 3 times as many leads as Twitter or Facebook. This is especially true for B2B (Business to Business) marketers since the companies they are interacting with have a big LinkedIn presence. B2B marketers also need to be aware of selling to other companies. They are inclined to prefer quick tips and infographics over pushy sales. So be sure to cater your content to your audience.
- Use Other Social Media: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest are all popular sites to represent yourself and your website on. They are great for culling names, emails, and gauging interest in your content. Social media also gives you an opportunity to provide outstanding customer service since it is one more way for your customers to get in touch with you.
- Let People Know How to Contact You: Every page on your site needs to have a link to your Contact Page or some method of reaching out to you. They may have a comment, question, or want to alert you to an error of some kind. Be sure your template allows you to do this. Use your social media pages to post your contact information, as well. You never want readers asking you how to get a hold of you.
- If Possible, Offer Live Chat: If your website is a service business or one where you sell a product, consider offering live chat hours to talk one-on-one with your customers. They may have immediate questions, pricing queries, or other needs that can be promptly addressed with a live chat. WordPress has live chat plugins that allow you easily add a live chat option to your site. If what you are selling is advice, then consider a podcast or webinar to interact with your audience.
- Work Offline: Generate leads by talking to people. Friends, family, and acquaintances are wonderful leads since they already have an investment in your success. They want to see you do well, and it’s easy for them to tell their friends. Word of mouth marketing should not be underestimated. It’s the kind of interpersonal marketing that carries a reputation with it. Trust is implied, and customers gained this way will take you seriously.
These are some proven ways to generate leads, but there is always room for innovation. There are also some strategies that are more in line with your niche than others. Take a look at your competitor’s sites for research. Are they using fun ways to draw people in? Can you improve upon it? The general internet user has seen it all, so they love to see new ways to shop and support products they use.