Whether you’re a business owner, a marketer (like Zing Marketing), or a salesman, leads and sales are often times the difference between sleeping in the dog house or bringing home the bacon. The salesman goes broke if he doesn’t have enough leads to close. The marketer gets fired if he doesn’t produce those leads. The business owner closes shop when the marketer and salesman fail, or when he can’t produce those leads and sales himself.
So is there some magical way to increase your incoming calls by the hundreds, or even thousands? I wouldn’t say it’s magical, but you can definitely earn it. Here are my 5 lead generation tricks that could earn thousands for your company.
Blog to Social
I’ve seen too many people fail at blogging. I’ve been there myself! Companies all over the place will create a blog because they’ve heard “content is king” or “Google likes websites with lots of pages”. A great example of this is Yelp and their local listings. So they post a blog that gets seen by their husband or wife and they get a pat on the back and a compliment. But that’s where it ends! The concept of “If you build it, they will come” doesn’t work. So here’s something we did through our sister website, plumbers seo, and what I suggest you do too:
Find out what’s trending in your industry
I recommend checking out buzzsumo.com to find out what’s working. It’s a service where you can type something in like “plumber” to see what sort of articles are being shared on social media.
In the above image you can see an article at conservativetribune.com that has 214,000 shares! It would be amazing for any local business to get that many shares for an article they’ve written (and sometimes it happens).
Write a better version of it
So what do you do after you find out what’s trending? You write a better version of it! You already know that it’s being shared, which is an indication that people like it. So now the question becomes, “What can I do to make it better?” Here’s a few tips:
- Create a better headline.
- Create some cool pictures.
- Offer more information.
NOTE: Do not copy and paste content from other websites. This could get you penalized, and it’s just lazy and unprofessional.
In some cases these will be difficult. The headline that was used helped get the 214,000 shares. But that doesn’t mean you can’t do better, it just means that it really really worked. Megan Marrs wrote an article to help give people ideas for creating shareable blog headlines. You should also check out this blog headline template by Pauline Cabrera for a quick reference. So pick out a headline that you think will grab attention and get more shares!
In the example that we’ve been using so far, the article that was written has no images. Images can help guide the visitors on your website, keep their attention, and make the content more appealing. Neil Patel gives an awesome study on the value of images on his website. Here’s an infographic from Demand Gen Report that provides even more information about the power of visual content.
When it comes to offering more information, you can turn a “10 facts about ______” into a “20 facts about ______”. You can also create an “Ultimate guide to _______”.
As an example, say you’re a dentist and you see that there’s an article going around for natural teeth whitening called “10 tips to naturally whiten your teeth”. Do some research and find all the articles you can that give natural teeth whitening tips. Compile a full list, give all the info in detail, add images and give it a killer headline! You could call it “The ultimate guide to natural teeth whitening” or “100 teeth whitening tips your dentist won’t tell you” etc.
Pre-Launch & Pitch to Launch
When the article is done, publish it. Chances are nobody is going to see it yet. Your next step is to present it to some friends or people who you want to share it. DON’T TELL THEM OR ASK THEM TO SHARE! Instead, tell them that you want their opinion and feedback. Send them the link in an email or in a Facebook message. If you’re with them in person, you can ask them to take a quick look.
Most of the time they’ll tell you that it’s a great article. In some cases they may recommend edits. You should thank them for their feedback, and now that they’ve become involved in your work you can ask them to share it. This really works great if you have someone who has a lot of influence, or a following on Facebook or Twitter. It probably won’t mean much if you give it to your grandmother who has 6 friends…
When I help businesses with their local SEO I try to get at least 10 people within their group of friends to share the content. On a Facebook feed it makes the content look very popular in their area and within their group of friends and will create a sort of buzz about their article. This alone can help get natural shares and clicks generated. If you’re a roofer in Dallas and you’ve written an article that gets shared by 20 people in your area, those people have friends who will see it, click it and may also share it.
While this is happening, I also recommend investing a little money in boosting your post. If you’re in Dallas and you primarily serve people in that area, boost the post on Facebook and make sure it targets people in Dallas. You want your content in front of as many people in your market as possible. Imagine if you were a plumber in Memphis and your article shows up in 15,000 Facebook feeds of your potential customers. Then out of those 15,000 people who see it, maybe 200 click on the article and read it. Out of the 200 people who click it, maybe 20 or so share it. In some cases you may see a better response than that, and in some cases you may see worse (it’ll depend largely on your headline and the quality of your content).
Blog to Social Summary
There’s a possibility that your content will go viral from doing this. In some cases it won’t, but you’ll get a good traffic boost, and it will be of the best quality (people in your market). A great example is work we did for a local business not too long ago:
As you can see in the above image, the website traffic increased as we started asking people to share the content. Then it increased significantly more as we boosted the post. It continued to increase after the boost and resulted in more than double the website traffic for our client. The best part is, most of the traffic was within their service area.
This particular person actually ceased other forms of marketing because of the amount of work generated from this campaign.
So in short, here’s what you do:
- Find out the latest buzz about your industry.
- Create similar content that is better (using great headlines, images, and adding more value).
- Get feedback from people, then ask them to share the content.
- Boost your article on social media.
- Get ready for a heavy traffic increase.
As a quick bonus on this, if the content does go viral then you may also get people linking to your website through this content! That of course means that you’ll appear higher in the search engine results (which in turn also means more traffic).
“Near Me” Pages
A quick and easy trick is to create a “near me” page on your website. What does that mean exactly?
As it turns out there are lots of people who search for phrases like “plumber near me” or “nearby photographer” or even “closest dentist” etc. However, most businesses don’t create a page that is optimized for this search traffic.
If you use Google keyword planner, you’ll see that often times there are about 10 – 20 searches a month for phrases like “animal hospital near me” in your city. Well instead of making a whole page that is stuffed with this keyword, here’s what we suggest you do:
- Create a page for people to contact you (usually this is your “contact page”).
- Make the title of the page “_______ near me” (or whatever you see fit based on keyword research).
- Place that phrase within the content of your website, or at least similar phrases like “we’re the best dentist near you“.
- Make sure you put the city you’re in throughout the content of the page (otherwise you may find that you get calls from all over the country…).
- Add a Google Map to the page.
- Add a contact form.
Your contact page can now show up in the search results when people are looking for your product or services.
If you do some research in Google Keyword Planner, you’ll see that people are looking for businesses near them in all sorts of industries. Makeup artists, roofers, vets, plumbers, etc. etc.
Google AdWords is great for getting a return on your marketing investment, because you only pay when people click on your ad! But AdWords is pretty complicated, and you can also lose money if you’ve done it wrong. So here’s a few tips to save money on your AdWords campaign.
Noteworthy Negative Keywords
If you’re a plumber in Franklin, TN, you’re probably interested in targeting people in Franklin, TN (and a few cities surrounding the area). Well as it turns out, there are over 30 places named Franklin! So do a Google search for something like “places named Franklin” and find out which states have that city (Wikipedia usually has lists of cities that share the same name).
After you’ve determined which states have a city called Franklin, you put those states in your negative keywords.
Some other negative keywords for you to use are:
- how to
- do it yourself
The above small list of words/phrases indicate that the searcher’s intent are:
- Looking for images.
- Looking for a job.
- Trying to do something on their own.
- Looking for information.
Broad Match Modifier
If you’re fairly new to AdWords, you probably haven’t heard about the Broad Match Modifier. BMM is great, because it’s more general than Phrase Match, but less general than Broad Match.
When you set up your AdWords account, it gives you an option to use “Broad Match”, “Phrase Match” and “Exact Match”.
- Exact Match – Your ad will only show up when people type in the phrase you choose. If your phrase is “Dallas Plumber”, the ad only shows up when people type in that exact phrase.
- Phrase Match – Your ad will only show up if the phrase you choose is typed in, or when it exists within a search query. In this case, your ad will show up when people search “Dallas Plumber TX” or “Best Dallas Plumber” because the phrase you’ve chosen exists within the search query. Your ad will not display when people search “Dallas TX Plumber” because the letters “TX” have now split apart your phrase.
- Broad Match – Your ad will show up for all sorts of search queries! With broad match you might end up with people clicking for your ad when they search for “plumbing supply in Dallas”. Google gives a great example of Broad Match here:
- Broad Match Modifier – This (as mentioned earlier) is somewhere between broad match and phrase match. By simply adding a “+” before each word you’ll manage to get your ad to show up only when those exact words are used, but in any order. In other words, if we take Google’s above example your ad would show up for things like “low-carb vegan diet plan”, “low-carb raw food diet plan”, “best plan for low-carb diet” etc.
Using the Broad Match Modifier in your AdWords account could save you money by preventing clicks that you don’t want, while also showing your ad in front of people who search really oddball queries like “I need a plan for my diet that is low-carb and quick” (a lot of people are searching for things that aren’t listed in the Keyword Planner, by the way).
BMM and Negative Keywords
Using the combination of the two could result in saving you lots of money and time. There’s A LOT to know about Google AdWords, how it works, how to save money, how to get conversions etc., but this piece of information should help you in getting started. If you’re using AdWords right now and everything is set to Broad Match, try using the BMM for a change and see if it improves the quality of your ads
Give some of these strategies and tips a try! You might just find that your business starts booming Let us know how they work out for you!