3 Ways to Increase Your Leads in the New Year
It's the end of the year, which means everyone is thinking about their marketing. When I started in this business, I assumed that the holidays would be pretty quiet. Not so! Everyone is ready to talk about what they can do differently when January 1st rolls around.
Those conversations have changed over the years (and will continue to do so as trends are always evolving). These days, the discussion isn't just about brand awareness, it's about making the most of your social media, website, and email marketing.
Here are some of the conversations I'm having with clients right now and some ideas that might help you jumpstart your marketing in the new year.
1. How can I get more viable leads from my website?
I hate to tell you this, but it's a rare visitor who will just sign up for your newsletter. I mean, when was the last time YOU randomly signed up for more emails?
Creating a thoughtful opt-in is key. It's important for you to think about what questions your clients have had in the last year and answer them. Don't just come up with information YOU think they should know - create downloads, courses, live webinars focusing on what they want to know. There's a big difference.
Keep in mind that your first idea might not be THE ONE. Be willing to pivot if necessary. It's always surprised me what people resonate with and what they don't. Go with your audience.
2. How can I leverage the relationships I have with existing clients to get more referrals?
This is the BEST way to get more business. You have a client, you like them, and you want more of that type of client. So, of course you want them to tell all their friends about you!
Consider doing things like client appreciation events (you can even do them virtually) where they can invite a guest. In the last year, I've seen whiskey tastings, quilting, mocktail classes...the list goes on.
Send out this invitation to a select group of clients (and let them know they're on your select list) and encourage them to invite a friend. This is a fun way for them to get to know you personally and we all tend to invest in people we trust.
3. How can I grow my email list in the next year?
Again, it's all about the freebies. ShortStack.com has a great list of ideas HERE. Here are a few thoughts from that article that I like:
When you ask for a customer’s email, make sure you are offering them something valuable in exchange.
Create a newsletter sign up pop-up on your blog. The viewer is there reading it. If they've been there for 10 seconds you know they're interested.
Limited spots available, or a countdown to the end of a deal for signing up will help with impulsive email submits.
Craft a very actionable blog post that’s specific to your audience and worth sharing. A list of tips is always appealing. Then place a line of copy at the beginning and end of the post that offers to send them the list of tips in a printable, pdf form if they enter an email address. It’s great because it allows them to take action on the information easily.
With ALL of these ideas, you can take the opt-in a step further if you're really trying to attract a specific client. I've created forms for clients that ask specific questions - more than just the name and email information - that weed out the leads you're getting. You don't have to get personal, but by adding a few well-chosen questions, the person filling out the form gets a clear idea of who you work with and if they're the right fit. This can save you LOTS of time!
Remember that marketing is an odd combination of research, thoughtfulness...and then throwing things out there to see if they stick. You should know who you're trying to attract and come up with a plan, but also be prepared to pivot based on your audience's interest.