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3 Steps for Tracking Inbound Leads

Mandee Thomas
Jun 27, 2019 8:04:00 AM

As a buyer, the process of going from “interested” to “making a purchase” can be an arduous, research-heavy endeavor, or it can be a decision made on impulse. Either way, as  you look for ways to improve your selling process, it’s important to map out the phases of the buyer’s journey, and stay top-of-mind throughout each stage.

In this article, we’ll break down the three main steps for tracking inbound leads, and provide useful tools that you can implement in your business model.

1. Lead Generation

Lead generation is an integral part of most businesses on the planet. It entails capturing the interest of a potential customer for the purpose of generating a sale. But going from peaking someone’s interest to actually having them sign up for your service, or buy your product, involves a few different steps along the way. Luckily, there are a myriad of online marking tools available to help you develop your sales pipeline and grow your business.

Here are some useful tools that will aid you in the lead generation process:

Forms

By embedding forms on your website, you can capture useful information about someone who might be interested in your product. If you offer something of value to the reader – for instance, a free quote, a useful eGuide, or access to exclusive content – then you can often implement a more robust form, asking for a decent amount of information.

Even simple, email sign-up forms can play a pivotal role in lead generation. Though the initial information you gather may be more limited, if nurtured in the right way, there is a lot of potential to be had for development along your sales pipeline.

Advertising

Although it can be one of the most costly solutions initially, it’s no secret that well-designed advertising campaigns can bring in more leads than almost anything else. The important thing to note with advertising is to get the most bang for your buck by putting your business in front of the right people: whether that’s through print ads, having a presence at trade shows, or running a PPC campaign. Often it’s some kind of combination of all three.

Call Tracking

Even in this age of online communication, calls are an important part of the lead generation and sales process. In fact, calls have been reported to convert to revenue 10 times more often than website leads.

There are quite a few different call tracking solutions to choose from that allow your business to capture inbound calls and view call analytics; so that you can see what’s working and where improvements can be made.

If you can identify the mediums that generate the most leads, then you can make smarter marketing decisions in the future. For example, if you only get two leads out of a magazine ad that costs thousands of dollars, then you might reconsider that particular medium.

Google Analytics URL Builder

Keeping track of all your campaign assets can be tricky, but it's important to do. Otherwise, you won't be able to effectively measure the success of a campaign.

Google Analytics URL Builder lets you tag site URLs with unique campaign variables that integrate with automated reporting tools. This way, you can track a campaign's progress and even share it with your team. 

2. Lead Nurturing

Capturing lead information is a great first step, but if those leads aren’t nurtured properly, then the data itself doesn't do your company a lot of good. By implementing automated, or at least partially automated, lead nurturing campaigns, you can streamline your sales process to ensure that all the leads you worked so hard to gather don’t find themselves backlogged down the road.

Here are some useful tools that will aid you in the lead nurturing process:

CRM Tools

CRM (or Customer Relationship Management) tools are a great online resource for nurturing leads. These include platforms like Hubspot, Pardot, Marketo, and more.

Through these channels, you can organize the information you gather from various lead sources, connect with prospective customers, and build relationships.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is one of the most useful tools available to a company. One study reports that the average employee spends 30 hours per week in their inbox, and 68% of companies rank email marking as their best channel for ROI.

Email platforms like Mailchimp and Constant Contact make it easy to manage and segment your email lists. And now, they even have workflow capabilities; so you can drop new prospects directly into a lead nurturing campaign you’ve previously set up.

3. Closing Sales

You’ve made it! After getting your brand out there, generating leads, and building relationships, you’re ready for that glorious, next step—the sale.

Turning your hard-earned leads into sales is arguably the most fulfilling part of the lead generation process, and how any company ultimately stays in business. Software like Salesforce and Hubspot Sales provide tools that can help you reach your company’s sales goals, track essential data, and make final nudge for your customers.

Nurturing Existing Customers

Any business worth their salt knows that the sale is not actually the final step in this whole process. Once you’ve turned a lead into a customer, it’s important to nurture that relationship: not only because good customer service should be a priority for your business, but because existing customers are one of the greatest resources for generating new clients, and your best sources of repeat business.

Take the time to figure out which marketing channels and tools work best for your company. There are a lot of options out there, but with some research, investment in setting up a well thought-out sales pipeline, and some trial and error, you’ll be on your way to building a customer base and forming the best customer relationships possible.

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