In this article, we are going to talk about lead generation tools, particularly I’m going to show you three must-have tools that you need in order to kickstart your list building campaigns.
But, before we start, have you read the first two articles in the Lead Generation Simplified series? If not, read them now:
Article 1: Why Building an Email List is More Important for Your Business Than Having a Product
Article 2: Major List Building Mistakes: 3 Reasons Business Fail To Build Responsive Email Lists
Lead generation tools and software is a topic that people get extremely excited about, but it also is a topic that leads to the most failure online. That’s why before I actually share with you the three essential tools that you need to build your email list faster, I want to share some insights that I’ve gained from my own experience in generating leads, and also from working with thousands of home-based business owners and entrepreneurs in the last decade.
If you think about tools, and that can be any tool not just tools and software for lead generation, they are developed to help you to accomplish particular tasks or help you to accomplish a particular goal right. This is why before you actually look at any of the tools it’s crucial that you have a specific goal set out about what why you need the tool and what you need to accomplish.
If you miss this vital step, you’ll end up with shiny object syndrome where you’ll be dazzled with the the latest, greatest feature or you’ll become distracted by looking at the entire feature set without actually realizing or knowing how that feature can help them to accomplish your true goal, how that feature can help you to, let’s say generate more leads, build your email list or make more money for your online business.
When you think about these features, you have to understand that no matter which tool you select today, there will be another, better tool out there tomorrow. Even if you look at all the tools together, there is definitely a tool that you don’t recognize or don’t know about right now that’s far ‘better’ than the one that you just selected. It’s basically a race that you can’t win!
So, you need to cut out the feature comparison side of your search for the perfect tool and keep in mind that you ONLY need to worry about whether the particular tool accomplishes the goals you set out in the first place.
The 3 Essential Tools For Lead Generation
So, now you’ve got your goals in mind, it’s time to get the three must-have tools that you need before you begin. These are the tools that you absolutely need if you want to kickstart your lead generation and email building campaign and really maximize your results from day one now.
Want to watch the video? Check it out here:
Tool #1: Autoresponder
The very first tool that you need to look at – and it’s super essential for you to start your lead generation campaigns and email list building campaigns with this tool already in place and set up properly – is an autoresponder or email service provider.
If you think about an autoresponder or email service provider today, generally they need to have two core features:
- They need to be able to collect and store the data of your subscribers. So basically when they come to your website, you need to be able to collect the data from the subscriber and then store it somewhere.
- They also need to have the ability to send out broadcast marketing messages
That said, if you go out and look for an autoresponder service that has these two features, you’ll find a very long list. Almost every single autoresponder today has these features as these are two basic requirements that marketers require from this tool.
So, this is where you must realize that autoresponders or email service providers are much more than just an autoresponder; they’re basically contact management systems where you store all the data about your subscriber – not just the name and the email but all the possible data about the subscriber – and you leverage the data to make more money with your business.
Now when it comes to the autoresponder itself, which tool should you select? It’s a question I get asked all the time but rather than provide names of specific tools, because I don’t always know the exact goals of that business so I can’t always make the perfect recommendation, I simply give business owners the key features that they should be looking out for
Autoresponder Feature #1: Opt In Forms
The first feature that your autoresponder should have is the ability to provide you with HTML to build and embed Opt-In forms. You want to be able to collect leads on your website from an Opt-In form and it is important that your email service provider has the ability to allow you to easily do this.
Autoresponder Feature #2: Tag Subscribers
The second feature that you need to look for in your autoresponder service is the ability to tag subscribers. A couple of years ago tagging was a feature that some autoresponders provided but most didn’t, and that was okay – people were segmenting everybody by lists right. But today, tagging is super essential because it tells the story or tells the journey of your subscriber over time.
You can look at any of the subscribers in your autoresponder and see their record; you know when and the way they joined your email list; you know what they visited before; did they opt in to something else that you provided etc?
There’s a lot of insights that you can get from tags. They provide an easy way to segment your list so you can send them a specific marketing message at a specific time.
Autoresponder Feature #3: Survey
Feature number three that’s super essential in the case of giving away an eBook or giving away a video is the ability to create a survey so you can send out a survey and learn more about your audience. If you remember in our last article (which you can read here), I discussed the importance of knowing your audience; if you don’t know your audience, you can’t really build a successful campaign.
That’s why the ability to survey is absolutely essential and is something that you should be sending out in the first or second follow-up email (we will talk about all of that later in the series).
So, essentially the key features that you need to look for if you are giving away an eBook or you are giving away a video (and, to be honest, most methods of list building will need these things too). There might be other things too which you need to consider later on but for that purpose, until you get to the point where you have you know you build 50-100 subscribers or more per day and it’s consistent over a couple of weeks, you don’t need any other feature what so ever.
How To Use Your Autoresponder Properly
As I mentioned, broadcast messages are extremely important but more important than the ability to broadcast messages is what I call an automatic follow-up system. An automatic follow-up system is basically an automation where, based on how someone performs, how they do certain things and how they interact with you, you send them different messages.
A couple of years ago this was all done through subscriber lists. A subscriber would enter your list, and despite where they joined your list from or how they got there, you had the same autoresponder follow-up sequence going out every day or every other day to everyone who joined. Now today, you can still do that but the more effective way to engage with your subscribers (and also a more effective way to get deliver your emails to your subscribers) is to have an automation system in place where you send a different set of emails to subscribers, based on how they interacted with your service.
Finding the Right Autoresponder For Your Business
You can spend hours looking for the right autoresponder service, looking through features etc, but there is a way that you can find the right service for your business much faster. You ready? Here it is…
Instead of going to their website and looking through the list of features that they have which can a) be really difficult to understand and b) distract you from what you’re really looking for, just email them! Ask them how they are solving the problems that you need them to solve and ask them if they have the specific features you’re looking for. From their response, you can make an educated decision about whether that provider is good for you or not (and if they don’t respond, then that tells you a lot about the support you’ll be getting if you do become a customer!).
Tool #2: Web Hosting
The next tool that you absolutely need to have is a webpage hosting. Now, there are a lot of things that I can say about the webpage hosting, there are gazillion tools out there that provide this service but essentially, if you are building an email list using a giveaway eBook or video or etc, then you need to remember that at the start, you will only have two, maximum three pages. You don’t need a fancy web hosting package to help you do this!
Side note: if you’re wondering what those pages are…
- The first page is called the generation page or squeeze page. This is where you send people to in order to get their email addresses in exchange for your eBook or video that you are giving away.
- The second page that you will need is a thank you page. This is where either you say thank you and you deliver the eBook or you say thank you and you tell them that you just sent them an email where they can find the eBook or the video that you promised them.
Now, if you look at the webpage hosting, people provide all kinds of different solutions and the list is even longer than it is when it comes to autoresponders. There are just so many different features and builders and templates and drag and drop tools that, if you’re not careful of, you can get overexcited about. The excitement at the possibility of maybe using this tool and possibly being able to use that tool one day can distract you from what you’re actually looking for. The reality is that, in order to kickstart your lead generation campaign and collect your ten thousand subscribers on your email list, you just need to post those two or three pages and to do that, you need to really simplify everything! You need to cut out the time that you spent on set up, configurations, maintenance and design to almost zero, so you can focus all your time on marketing.
The most important thing to remember here is that tools don’t make money if the rest of the business isn’t working properly. That’s why you need to spend the least amount of time on configuration setups and things like that, and the most amount of time on marketing.
Tool #3: Conversion Tracking Software
At this point, you have the autoresponder and you have a web page hosting in place but what else do you need in order to really kickstart your list building campaign and get?
The third lead generation tool that you must absolutely have is conversion tracking software. As soon as you start your email list building campaign, the very first thing that you will want to understand is the conversion rate.
The conversion rate is essentially how many visitors that visited your webpage opted-in and subscribed to your email list. The higher the number, the better your page performs. You obviously want to find out that number as soon as possible so you can make adjustments to your page based on the data you receive.
Just like with any other tool out there, there are a bunch of tools that offer this kind of solution and, again, they have this long list of different features and, again, you’re in danger of going to their feature list and getting excited about them. But remember your goals before you think a particular feature will change the entire game for you
The truth is until you start to get a good number of visitors, let’s say 500-1000 every single day, on your lead generation page all you need is a free Google Analytics account. Google Analytics has a goal conversion system in place that you can easily enable so you can learn about your conversion rate.
It’s very simple. You just need to set up the two-step process so you can see how many people visited that particular page and how many subscribe to your email list. That’s it!
After you start to get some serious traffic and you start to get 100 hundred leads on your email list every single day, and it’s consistent over 2-3 weeks, you can start to think about something more advanced. That’s the point where you will want to summarize everything so you can start to learn more about your audience and their behavior so you can achieve a better conversions rate. But if you start to focus on those more advanced software options from day one then nobody in your business will work on marketing and your lead generation campaign will fail!
Whatever you do, make sure that you focus on Google Analytics at the beginning. Set it up from day one so you can see the conversions from day one and then once you get a certain point with your campaign then you can explore other tools.
Hot Jar, for example, is a really awesome tool that we recommend and we also use in our business, and there are many, many other tools that you can use to do more advanced things like getting heat map data which can obviously help you to improve conversions. But, at the beginning start with Google Analytics.
The Key Takeaway
So, in this article, I have shared with you three essential tools that you need to have in order to kickstart your lead generation campaign and now, I want to give you some really critical advice that may just change the game for you if you focus on it.
Remember this: Lead generation tools don’t generate leads, you do that! Let me repeat: Lead generation tools don’t generate leads, you do that!
That’s why it’s super important that you focus on your marketing and focus on selling instead of setups, maintenance, design, configuration and anything else that consumes your time when you pick an all-singing, all-dancing tool. Doing these things make you money, only you can do it through your marketing.
The “Lead Generation Simplified” Series
Check out the previous and next videos in the series below. Want to start from the start? Click here.
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