Okay, I think you know where that goes as that line has been quoted in various movies, videos and video games. Today we’ll just leave it at “It’s time to take names.”
By taking names I’m talking about an often-overlooked practice of lead generation. In sales and marketing a lead is referred to as a potential customer. Even before online marketing generating sales leads was important.
I feel there are probably more ways to generate leads now than there was before the Internet. Some of the methods that were older, pre-Internet days have been reinvented to generate leads today. If you’ve ever had to do any cold calling (the art of calling someone from a list of phone numbers to sell them the idea of your product), then you can really appreciate that we don’t have to do that today.
5 Ways to Gather Names to Generate Leads
1. The Opt-in Box
The most common lead generation method today is the opt-in box. So that we all stay up to speed—the opt-in box is the area designated on a web page where a visitor can enter their name and email and click a submit button to provide you their con- tact information.
Many times, they are exchanging their name and email for the promise of information from you or your company such as sales information about a product. Other times it could be a checklist or a report. If you’re an author this could be a sample chapter of your book. If you have many products, maybe the prospect is registering to receive your catalog.
If you are implementing an opt-in strategy here you promise to deliver, be sure you actually deliver.
As a webmaster, I’ve seen too many times where a website owner will add a form to their website and forget to actually connect it to a system to deliver the promised information.
Another mistake I’ve seen is they connect it to an autorespond- er system but forget to actually add a message telling them how to receive the goods promised. It is always a good idea when adding an opt-in form to actually test it to make sure it works as planned.
Here is a quick checklist of items to check out when creating an opt-in form.
- Do you have the needed fields? (Don’t overdo it—too many fields and they won’t opt-in.)
- Did you change the button to something other than submit? (Test different words such as “Click To Claim Your Report” or “Get Your Free Chapter” etc.)
- Did you provide instructions? Yes, it’s a form, but you’ll get better conversions if you tell them “to enter their name and email to get. ”
- Did you test the form to make sure it submits and sends the information to your system?
- After submitting the form, did you get the expected result? Such as, a message saying the form was submitted, or better yet, taken to a “Thank You” page that gives confirmation the form was submitted and what to expect next.
- Was the promised information received? If not, why? Did the reply email end up in spam? Was it not added to the system?
- Have you created more than one follow up message? It’s a good idea to have a series of messages over a week to ten days. Use this follow up to explain more about the information they asked about or to tell them more about you or your company.
- Have a call to action. The whole purpose of this should be to convert them from a lead to a customer, right?
- Create a second list—so the first being for leads and the second for customers. Once they’re no longer a lead, you can remove them from one and add to the other and continue to follow up with them. Offer them other products and possibly even a subscription service to your product.
Many website owners just add the static opt-in on their web page and have no idea of other methods of “taking names.” So, let’s continue to take a look at more ways to do this.
2. The Contact Form
The next simplest method to take names is a simple contact form. You don’t always get the sale on the first try, so how can we at least get their name and email if they scroll past the order button?
Add a contact form or a contact button near the bottom of the page. Add a headline or button that says, “Still Have Questions?” and that could take them to a contact page. After they submit on the contact form, it should redirect them to an FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) page. Even the answers to questions can lead them to the sale. Be sure to follow up, of course.
3. The Exit Intent Form
You’ve probably experienced this one yourself. You visit a website, don’t see anything that captures your eye so you intend to leave and an offer with a contact form appears offering you a discount or a trial if you just enter your name and email. This is a last ditch effort to trade something for contact details.
Something I’ve done in the past is ask a question during this exit intent. Something like “Wait, before you go, why did you decide to leave without giving our product a fair try?” They enter their reason and then give them the option of providing their name and email. If they give it to you, great! If not, you at least have the reason which will help you apply a strategy to prevent others from leaving. In this case, it is best to send them to an FAQ page to answer any questions they may not have seen the answer to on your page.
4. A Webinar Registration
This can either be a link on the page or in your menu structure to attend a free webinar. Obviously, they will need to provide their name and email to register. You can, in most cases, add this to your autoresponder list and follow up with them before and after the webinar.
The great thing about this is you only need to do the webinar once. Record it and then post it as a replay for others to opt-in to after the fact and let it be a list building machine for you.
5. SEO Keyword Rich Landing Pages
You’re not stuck to just your main opt-in page. It is a good idea to build additional pages on your site that are found by organic traffic using SEO (Search Engine Optimization). These pages are not a part of your normal menu system but are part of your sitemap or site menu that the search engine will find and will generate natural traffic for you.
These pages focus on one keyword term or keyword phrase that relates to your product or service. There will always be more than one word that describes what you do, and by focusing a single page on that one keyword, you can attract customers based on the terms they know.
It will look like a standard opt-in page with information or a video talking about your service beside an opt-in form. After they submit the form, it could take them right to your sales page where they can find out more about what you have to offer. Of course, you will want to add them to your autoresponder list. It could be the same one or one that was more specific to that term you used to get them to opt-in with.
Hopefully this has generated some ideas of things you need to implement or fix in regards to “taking names and…generating leads.” If so, the “what’s next” is pretty easy. Maybe you need to know how to take the needed steps. Many (if not all) of the strategies mentioned in this article are taught about in the Marketing University Members area.