Continually generating leads can be a major struggle for any business.  Bringing in hundreds of leads is only beneficial when a majority of them are qualified.  Otherwise, you will spend time and resources dealing with “dead” prospects.  It is better to bring in ten “hot” leads than 50 leads that have little or no potential of converting into customers.  Filtering out the fluff is always a challenge.  While it is impossible to guarantee that every lead will turn into a sale, there are strategies you can implement to help increase your percentage of qualified leads.   

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Target, Target Target!!!

This may sound obvious, but an overwhelming number of businesses spend thousands of dollars on advertising with little or no results.  This is usually a repercussion of what I call a “medium-message” mistake, resulting from either using the wrong medium or not targeting the message to the right type of consumer. First, you need to determine the audience you want to reach.  Think about the age, gender, income level, geographic location etc. of your primary customers, then seek opportunities to reach them. Second, make sure you are projecting the right message to connect with customers you are trying to attract.  If you have a high-end product, don’t be afraid to say so in your marketing collateral and advertisements if you want to generate more leads who can afford your product.  Being very clear in your messaging and tailoring it to “fit” the types of consumers most likely to make a purchase will help drive more qualified leads to your doorstep.

Pay-Per-Click Campaign

Ranking high organically can be a double-edged sword for companies trying to target a niche market because it can generate a lot of curiosity seekers.  One way to better target your internet marketing is to consider pay-per-click campaigns.  These tend to generate more qualified leads because how a prospective customers gets to your website is a targeted process in itself.  You can choose what “keywords” are most important to your business and target your ads. Google Adwords is probably the most popular pay-per-click provider out there today.

Consider a Call Center

A qualified, respected call center can deploy a lead generation strategy to help bring qualified leads directly to you. Global Response is an example of a call center experienced in learning a business and developing a customized approach to reach highly qualified prospects, which are then passed directly your sales team.

Referral Programs

Offer your current customers an incentive for referring their family and friends.  Often, your current customers will socialize with people who are also in your target market.  Mom’s tend to have connections with other mom’s.  Executives have their own networks, etc.  Your current customers can be key to directly reaching pre-qualified leads.

Taking time on the front end to really research your customers and develop a marketing strategy to generate not just leads, but qualified leads, will save your company time and money in the long run.  Remember, just because an advertising medium reaches a lot of people does not mean it is reaching the right people.  And, when you find a medium that does reach your target market(s), your messaging must still be positioned appropriately to attract qualified prospects.  Good luck!

Gina Smith writes freelance articles for magazines, online outlets and publications. Smith covers the latest topics in the business, golf, tourism, technology and entertainment industries.