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Lead generation may seem counterintuitive to beginners. After all, the goal of marketing should be to make sales, and not gather leads – right?

Although that may sound true, in reality, marketing is much more involved. Lead generation has a crucial role to play.

What is Lead Generation?

Lead generation is a way to attract potential customers (i.e. leads) and gather information about them. That data can include information such as their email and other contact details, as well as demographic information.

It should be noted that a lead can be anyone interested in the products or services that you’re providing. The strength of that interest can vary, and some leads may be vaguely interested while others are on the verge of becoming paying customers.

How Does Lead Generation Work?

The way that lead generation works is normally quite straightforward. It typically starts when potential leads discover your business via one of your marketing channels – such as a website, social media page, advertisement, or something else of that nature.

Once that marketing channel has pulled potential leads to your website, you can then try to convince them to share their contact details and other information. The most common way that is done is via a landing page with a small form that visitors can fill out.

Normally an offer is used to encourage potential leads to divulge their contact details. For example, a free report, eBook, template, or course may be provided. For this to work your offer needs to have enough perceived value to entice leads.

Why is Lead Generation Important?

Lead generation is a very critical component in modern marketing. It lets businesses define and know their audience, and learn more about them.

That in turn will let you personalize your marketing to your customers’ needs, and improve your conversion rate. It will even let you build relationships with your customers, and help you acquire additional sales from them.

Overall lead generation is more cost-effective than most other marketing methods too.

What Comes After Lead Generation?

Keep in mind that after you generate leads, or even use those leads to successfully make sales – your marketing efforts don’t end. Instead, you should focus on nurturing the leads to build trust and fortify your relationship with them.

That can be done in several ways such as through emails, social media, or other channels. However, the one method that is becoming more and more popular in recent years is to use live chat to contact and keep customers engaged – either directly, or with chatbots.

Nowadays people expect fast responses and quick resolutions to their questions – which makes live chat the perfect medium.

Now that you understand lead generation, it should be easy to see that if you aren’t already generating leads – your business is missing out. Lead generation is essential if you want to acquire more customers, improve your conversion rate, and ultimately increase profits.

Of course, while lead generation is relatively easy to understand, pulling it off effectively can be a bit tricky. Ideally, you should come up with a strategy that encompasses generating traffic, collecting leads, and nurturing them.