On the Lookout for Leads? Try These 5 Ideas!

how to get leads

Wish this busy store was yours? It can be! Check out 5 ways to get more leads today.

Recently, local business owner Dan Starr wrote to me asking for some advice on how to get more leads for his business.

Dan teaches piano and keyboard lessons in Tucson, Arizona and has over 26 years of experience as a music teacher as well as a career in music that spans over 45 years.

Clearly, experience isn’t an issue, yet lately he’s been having a hard time finding new students.

There are many ways to get new customers; the key is trying a variety of marketing tactics to find out what works best for you and your target audience.

If you want to know how to get more leads, check out the five tips below!

1. Get Started with Social Media

Social media plays a big role in lead generation. If you want to know how to get more leads while enhancing your business’ credibility, social media is a great way to do it.

Keep in mind that posting relevant content on your social media sites on a regular basis is vital to your social media success. For example, Dan could post articles on Twitter and Facebook that he finds online about music news, as well as his own blog posts (see the blogging section below), and information about his latest music specials and packages.

I checked and it looks like Dan is already using YouTube to post music tutorials, which is really great, but perhaps aiming to post a new video every month should be his goal. This way, his YouTube followers will know they can count on getting his videos on a regular basis, which will keep them coming back for more. Plus, Dan could use all of his other social media accounts to promote new videos once created.

Haven’t set up your social media accounts yet or need a little help getting them going? We have great how-to guides below that you can download for free today:

2. Support Other Local Business Owners

I love local businesses

Wish more people were supporting your local business? Think, for a second, about the type of businesses you’ve been supporting lately.

Chances are, you’re guilty of choosing a chain over a local business from everything from your morning latte to office supplies.

Now, imagine if you made a real effort to switch from big-box retailers to local businesses in your town. By supporting other local business owners, you’ll start making connections. Connections that could lead to… wait for it… yes, leads!

In addition, joining local organizations in your area is a fantastic way to get your name out there and make new connections that can turn into leads.

For Dan, Local First Arizona would be a great organization to join since he is in Tucson. They are big supporters of the local business community and often host their own events where members can make valuable connections.

Other great organizations to join are BALLE (Business Alliance for Local Living Economies), and Independent We Stand. You can also find networking groups in your area for small business owners on Meetup.com.

3. Become a Business Blogger

If you want more leads, it’s time you thought about starting a blog. Why? Check out what Forbes had to say about the importance of creating a blog for your small business: “If you are running a business website without a blog, you are missing out on some big opportunities to engage your prospects and increase website traffic. A static website that doesn’t change or feature new content is essentially an online brochure. In today’s social media-driven world where engagement with your customers is expected online, blogs are essential to marketing your business.”

Not sure what you’d blog about? Forbes suggests: “[Your blog content] should be of interest to your target audience and make them want to come back for more. Consider providing helpful tips, industry research, before-and-after photos, video demonstrations, client success stories, and how-to guides. Your blog should also reflect the culture of your company and should be infused with personality.”

Here’s a great article that explains how to get more leads from your blog posts (it says it’s for WordPress but it’s applicable for all blogging platforms): Beginner WordPress SEO: How to Optimize Your Blog Posts.

Still need a little a little more help? Here’s a free how-to guide on what blogging platform to choose, how to create must-read posts, and SEO optimization: Blogging Tips: A Beginner’s Guide for Local Businesses.

4. Update Your Web Content

How-to-Get-More-Leads-Man-FB

You may not realize how important it is, but the content you put on your website can be the very thing that converts – or doesn’t convert – a web visitor into a customer. If the first thing a prospective customer runs into when they visit your site is a wall of content, it may overwhelm them and dissuade them from reading.

The way to avoid this is by putting the most important details you want a person to know about your business into bullet points closer to the top or middle of each page.

For example, Dan could do something like this on his home page:

  • Over 26 years of experience as a music teacher
  • Over 45 years of career experience in various aspects of music
  • Author of 30+ music books available on Amazon.com
  • One-on-one instruction of piano and keyboard available
  • Available for musical performances and gigs
  • Ability to teach and perform a variety of musical styles

Thanks to the above bullets, people who prefer to get right to the facts can immediately do so, while others who have more time or want more details can finish reading the rest of the page.

Bryan Laurienti, co-owner of local web development business BX3 Interactive had this advice for anyone looking to update their web content: “When you write content for your website, always think about the end result. Who are you writing for? What are you trying to communicate? What action do you want the reader to take? Even if you’re not a great writer, answering those simple questions will make your web content more relevant to your visitors and, in turn, improve your conversion rate.”

5. Get Referrals with Incentives

Do you have email addresses for your past and current customers? If so, send them an email letting them know you’re offering an incentive for any referrals they send your way. In Dan’s case, he could offer a free lesson to anyone who refers a new student to him. Or, perhaps, he could offer a certain percentage off an initial package of music lessons for both the referrer and the referee, hopefully bringing back a past customer and gaining a new one at the same time.

Sending emails and newsletters to your customers is actually pretty easy, so if you’ve never done it before, don’t worry! You can use a free program like Mail Chimp to not only design and send your emails, but also keep track of your results (like how many people opened your email and clicked through to your website).

John Jantsch for Entrepreneur.com also has a great referral offer idea you can try out on your customers. He suggests giving out gift certificates to your customers regularly: “Send a quarterly mailing to your customers and referral sources, offering a gift certificate of real value for your products or services. Tell the recipients that they’re free to forward this to anyone they choose. Many customers want to refer you; this gives them something tangible to use in the process.”

Tell us: Which tips will you try to get more leads for your local business?

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About Shannon Willoby

Shannon is the content marketing manager for Scott's Marketplace and has been writing since she was old enough to hold a pencil. (Or crayon.) When she's not blogging, you can find her daydreaming that she's Khaleesi from Game of Thrones.

Comments

  1. Hey Shannon,

    Guest Blogger..

    I came across Scott’s market place blog… while searching for some Guest blog posts and thought it would not hurt to reach out and send you a quick message.

    The reason I am reaching out, would you allow me to write a few guest posts, (topic of your choice) and post them to your blog??

    Let me know either way,

    Best wishes
    Michael mendrin

  2. I agree with you,Social Media plays a big role in lead generation.I think it’s about time for the marketers to take advantage of using social media in their campaign.With the right strategies, there is no doubt that social media can lead you to success.

    • Shannon Willoby says:

      Agreed! It also takes discipline, however. You have to commit to a real social media plan for it to work rather than posting here and there and hoping it brings you leads.

  3. I agree that these tips are great ways to get things going, but it has to be ongoing and interesting without sounding salesy. That’s a challenge for someone without a social media staff member…I’m starting to experiment with re-posting other interesting blogs and posts I find online. That’s a great way to 1) get people interested in your posts, 2) help bring more attention to whomever you’re reposting from (and maybe they’ll reciprocate when you have an interesting post) and 3) keep your ideas flowing.
    This is a new thing for me and I’m hopping it has a positive impact with Natural Paws.

    • Shannon Willoby says:

      That’s a great idea, Elyse! Are you also mentioning the person who wrote the blog post and/or the company in your tweets and Facebook posts? This is a good way to connect with them on a more personal level, which will make it more likely for them to share as well when you have an interesting post of your own! Thanks for your comment.

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