If you have some knowledge in the world of online advertising, even the most basic kind, you’ve probably heard of lead generation by now. The art of advertising with a clear goal of gathering information on potential customers of a certain product or service isn’t new – but it seems to be trending these days for several reasons. Let’s try to understand what it’s all about, why it’s such a big thing and what you have to gain from this phenomenon.
Lead the way
The idea behind lead generation is quite simple – an advertisement online is not meant for people to make a purchase, but rather to show interest in a specific product or service. Once that interest is shown, the potential client leaves some sort of contact details along with relevant information, so the seller of the product or service we’re talking about can get in touch with them and continue the process. Basically, you start off with modern, online advertising but the finishing touches are executed the old-fashioned way – through emails or even by phone.
This method has gained popularity recently due to three key factors. First and foremost, people are showing less trust in online marketing. With less and less clicks on ads – for example on sponsored Google search results – and the ever-growing popularity of ad blockers, it doesn’t take much to see that something’s not working like it used to. The lead generation method, combining old and new, is supposed to be a solution to that. Second, while a purchase is money given now, a lead can be an investment for the long term. Better than the two dollars you make now off a cup of coffee sold is the option of marketing again and again to the person who showed an interest in your coffee shop.
The third factor is the possibility of hiring someone to do the labor for you. Professional marketers now offer their services as the middleman between seller and buyer and, for a certain commission, collect leads for businesses. If you’re a business or a freelancer and you don’t have the time and energy needed to acquire leads, this may be ideal for you. On the other hand, if you’re an online marketer with some free time on your hands, you can certainly put yourself out there for all those in need of leads and are willing to pay for them.
How can you become a lead generator?
Intrigued by the option of becoming a lead generator yourself? there are two main paths you can take on this venture: independent and mediated work.
If you’re a go-getter, this is for you. Find the businesses that are looking for leads and contact them. Then, spark the interest of potential clients you’ve mapped out, perhaps through social media, and collect the data you need. The pros here are obvious – you work at your own pace, and the commission is %100 yours. The cons are obvious as well – this is very demanding work, and no one promises success. If you don’t have the charisma it takes to entice potential buyers to use your service, you’ll probably get nowhere with your efforts.
As part of the growing trend of lead generating, platforms are now available where the job can be done much more simply and with the assistance of professionals, like Crystalead and others. The lead generator signs up, defines the metrics desired for the advertisement (budget, target audience, duration and so on) and the Crystalead platform does the rest – including providing analyzed data after launching the campaign. The pros: You save a lot of time and you have the potential to reach a much larger audience, according to the platform’s partner publishers. The cons: This costs money, of course, and the platform might want a share of the commission you make on leads.
From where we’re looking right now, lead generation seems to be the future of online advertising. It was just a matter of time till a smart, efficient way of combining traditional with cutting-edge advertising methods was to sweep the digital world, and that’s what seems to have happened in this case. While lead generation is an excellent source of spreading the word for businesses and potentially a good income for marketers, it’s not suitable for everyone. We can say, though, that not much experience is needed in the early stages and sometimes the best way to learn if you’ve got what it takes is just to give it a try.