Guest post by Victor Blasco.
Every romantic relationship expert knows that the early stages are like thin ice. Demand too much attention too early, or get too anxious about commitment, and it may break.
The best way to establish long-term connections is by generating organic interest and letting others engage on their own time and terms. If you are wondering what all this has to do with effective digital marketing, the answer is: quite a bit!
Potential leads are constantly being bombarded by pop-ups and ads, fostering resistance and even resentment. Most prospects now ignore these intrusive ads, or even grow to dislike the brands that harass them for attention.
All in all, outbound marketing is not what it once was. Obnoxious, in-your-face ads have lost effectiveness to less-invasive approaches.
So, to establish long-lasting relationships and generate more leads, you need to organically build interest among your target customers. Here are several types of content that can help you do just that.
No other type of content enable you to deliver as much information, as quickly, and with such a high level of engagement. This not only helps your marketing efforts directly by conveying your message but also indirectly by generating positive experiences with prospects.
Explainer videos follow a fairly straightforward structure: start by focusing on the viewers’ pain-point, then provide a step-by-step solution to their problem (and communicate your brand’s value proposition) using storytelling. Ideally, each video takes your prospects on a brief, fun, and entertaining journey.
Explainer videos can be produced in different ways, from unique animated styles like whiteboard and motion graphics to live-action. But the key to converting with them lies in key elements of their composition.
Storytelling is a big one. Audiences today don’t want to sit around long enough to hear your sales pitch (subtle or otherwise.) So, you need to give them a reason to watch—and a clever, engaging story is usually the ticket.
Customization is another important element. Anyone can produce a generic, broad piece trying to cover as many possible prospects as possible. But when it comes to generating conversions, tailoring your explainer to your specific persona or demographic is key. That includes creating characters, choosing narrators, and presenting situations that reflect the experiences of your audience.
Finally, you need to include a compelling call to action to optimize your video’s conversion rate and expand your leads. Adding a contact form at some point in the video can be a great practice with some audiences.
eBooks and Downloadable Written Material
There’s a big difference between an eBook that’s overtly promotional and one that’s more likely to get attention and generate leads. The latter focuses on the pain-points your product or service can solve. The aim is to educate and engage the audience on those issues, creating interest and inspiring action.
The information provided should be relevant and detailed but not easy to find elsewhere. Prospective buyers appreciate original content coming from intensive research, interviews, and surveys conducted or compiled by your company.
The writing style and visual design should resonate with your target audience and reflect the essence of your brand. Keep the data easily digestible, with an attractive layout and creative imagery to support it.
This type of material can be a gated to generate lead conversions for follow-up on ongoing nurturing
Sweepstakes and Contests
For creating quick buzz around something, few incentives can match the appeal of free stuff! This is where contests and sweepstakes come in.
They give you an ideal platform to generate leads in exchange for participation, and with increasing use of social media, they are easier to organize than ever while remaining quite cost-efficient.
Contests are an excellent tactic for encouraging audience engagement. They also a fantastic way to gather leads data and widen your online presence. They help accomplish these marketing goals by requiring people to share a post, comment, tag friends, follow your account, provide an email, and participate in the quiz or contest.
Keep in mind that prompting your audience to share and spread the word about the contest is critical. People are aware that their chances of winning increases when there are fewer participants, so they might try to keep it quiet, defeating the purpose of the strategy.
But merely asking to tag a friend or follow your account may be insufficient for your ends, and less engaging to your audience. Always include an interactive element into your sweepstakes, asking participants why they want the prize, or who they would share it with. Done right, you can even use questions like these to separate qualified leads and give your targeting better focus.
Finally, for strategies like these to work, your prize needs to be on-point; something interesting and valuable enough to your target audience to genuinely capture attention. You can use high-value grand prizes for special occasions like a company anniversary. But you can run regular, smaller-scale sweepstakes as well, turning them into a long-term lead generation strategy.
Social Media Promotions and Offers
If you are a B2C marketer looking for quick turnaround while making a great first impression, social media promotions and offers are the way to go.
These strategies involve offering discounts for a limited amount of time, announced only on social media platforms. For instance, add flash deals or discount codes to your stories periodically.
This works wonders for strengthening your digital presence while raising your brand awareness and expanding your demand. Social networks are a fast and low-cost means of communication.
To get the most out of this approach, first determine which platform works best for engaging your target audience and focus your efforts there. Testing is always helpful.
Your post or story will reach a broader range of people if you use paid promotion. This enables you to direct your content to those users who fit your target persona or profile.
Take a page from some of the most skilled video companies’ playbooks, and combine video content with promotion for a two-punch combo. Capture attention with video, and keep them engaged by promoting compelling offers.
The early stages of the buyer’s journey can be the hardest to address. But powerful inbound marketing tools combined with the right video and social media strategy will make your lead-generation efforts here much more successful.
Be authentic when engaging with potential customers on social media. Even in B2B marketing, people buy from people.
But even if some tactics and content formats seem to work better than others, don’t stick with just one. Different prospects will engage with different content and offers. To maximize your lead generation, use a diverse mix of posts.
The results can be hugely rewarding. Establishing credibility and trust with your prospective buyers helps build fruitful and lasting relationships. Once you have earned that trust, maintaining and nurturing the relationship are simpler challenges.
Victor Blasco is an audiovisual designer, video marketing expert, and founder/CEO of the explainer video company Yum Yum Videos. Besides running the business, he’s a lifelong student of Chinese philosophy and a passionate geek for all things sci-fi.