Nothing gives a marketer a run for her money–literally– than the lead conversion process. Although the entire process can be a bit daunting, it is always worth your resources in the end. Join me as I walk you through the entire process and help your organization reach the zenith of its marketing goals.
What is Lead Conversion?
Lead nurturing and conversion is simply converting a lead into a customer. Lead generation, which focuses on converting visitors and prospects into leads, should not be confused with this. It is often a collaborative process between a company’s sales and marketing teams. Before a lead becomes a customer, each must go through the lead/sales funnel, which involves these four stages;
- Take action as a customer.
The funnel, although sequential, prospective customers do not always go through all the stages in the exact order; a lead can be aware of your product offering and immediately take action without necessarily going through the desired stage.
Why Is It Important to Track Lead Conversion?
It is crucial to make the conversion of leads the fulcrum of your marketing strategy, and some of the benefits of tracking this and lead conversion rates include the following;
By tracking how many leads are being converted to customers, you can know what strategies are working and which ones are not. This empowers your team to optimize their most effective methods and avoid wasting time on unproductive ones. So if a method is not the right fit, you do away with it.
Gives insight into the Client’s Journey
Tracking lead conversion provides insights into the entire customer journey. These insights will eventually help you understand the various buyer personas of your leads and determine the best way to sell to them.
An example of this would be uncovering that a lead is more likely to be converted if he’s emailed within a particular time frame.
From your Lead conversion rate, you can ascertain your return on investment on each lead and structure your budgeting to better meet your organization’s revenue needs. Allocation of marketing resources can be improved this way.
6 Strategies to Optimize Your Lead Conversion
There are a lot of approaches that can help you optimally convert leads into customers. However, your adoption would largely depend on the peculiarities of your organization and your sales rep or team’s marketing goals.
Here are a few tested strategies for optimizing your lead conversion process regardless of where you stand on marketing.
Nurture Your Leads through the Lead Funnel.
Like an egg, you must nurture your leads through the conversion funnel until they become paying customers. Nurturing involves providing them with information that could help in their decision-making. Say a lead comes across one of your campaigns and is seriously considering purchasing; you can support their decision to go with you by providing some case studies or testimonials.
Ensure your Sales and Marketing teams are in Sync.
As mentioned earlier, converting leads is a joint effort between your sales and marketing teams. Ensuring they align with your objectives will make your customer’s journey through the sales pipeline seamless. You do not want your potential customers to feel disconnected throughout their journey.
Use Social Proof
Nothing is as persuasive as word of mouth in converting your leads to customers. A great way to achieve this is via testimonials from qualified leads, other customers, or case studies. By leveraging the power of social proof, your leads know they are not alone in making their decisions to become your clients.
Track all Your Lead Conversion Metrics.
Running any lead conversion strategy without monitoring the indexes behind them is like driving blind; you could try to move ahead, but you are most likely going nowhere. There is no way to know if whatever you are doing is yielding results if you are not tracking KPIs.
Implement Lead Scoring
Lead scoring is a technique that involves assigning scores to a lead based on their response to various marketing campaigns they have been exposed to. This helps ascertain which stage a lead is, on the lead funnel, hence giving insights into where the marketing team must channel their focus. By using lead scoring, the synchronization between both teams can be realized.
Optimize PPC for retargeting campaigns.
Retargeting allows you to convert leads who may have come across your brand in the past but were not convinced enough to make a purchase. Think of it as a chance to close leads who may not have gone past the attention phase of the funnel.
Retargeting also presents a unique opportunity to re-introduce some of your product offerings to existing customers. It has proven to be a valuable tool in generating more qualified leads. Pay-per-click(PPC) campaigns are the best ways to drive your retargeting strategy, this should get your leads to rethink their earlier decision not to move down the sales funnel, and there’s a lot of data(link) supporting the effectiveness of the PPC method.
Key lead Conversion Metrics to keep Track of
As your chosen strategy starts producing results for you and your team, you must keep track of the metrics helping you generate more leads now. Here are a few of them you should monitor closely.
Lead conversion rate(LCR)
This is a vital component of the analytics of your leads. To calculate your Lead conversion rate, simply divide your total number of conversions by leads, then multiply this result by 100. This gives you your LCR, which is an excellent indicator of how great you are doing.
You should leave some time between launching your strategy and monitoring your LCR.
This is the period between when your visitor becomes a lead and when they decide to become a paying customer. It is the time it takes a visitor to go through the lead/sales tunnel. It is inversely proportional to your success.
You can get your time-to-conversion ratio by dividing the total time spent by all visitors by the total number of leads.
Cost per conversion
Cost per conversion is derived by dividing your total advertising cost by the total number of converted leads. Your main goal should not be to keep advertising costs low, but tracking your conversion cost would be very helpful if you are running a lean operation.
Conversion Return on Investment (ROI)
Your conversion ROI is the value each converted lead brings to your business. It is the difference between your lead value and cost divided by your cost. It is only calculated for paying customers and provides an avenue to know where to focus your team’s efforts.
Of all the metrics you should track, your LCR remains pivotal to your overall success. According to my boss, you want to keep your LCR at 10% for your lead conversion process to be considered successful. This is not a day’s job, but by committing to your lead conversion strategy, you could see this value or even higher in the long run.
How You Can Improve Your Lead Conversion Rate(LCR)
There are a lot of techniques that sales reps use in boosting their LCRs, but here are the top 5 methods employed in the industry that have proven to produce results over time;
As your leads show interest in whatever you offer, following up with helpful emails is your best bet at strengthening the bond between them and your offering. An astonishing 80%(link) of professionals consider email marketing the best channel for keeping their customers.
Here are a few tips for leveraging email marketing for lead conversion;
- Avoid generalized emails: Different customers are at different stages of the sales funnel, so pushing identical mail to them sends the feeling that you do not care enough. Send emails that suit their persona. You should also use their first name for all their emails, and this goes without saying.
- Automate Your Mail Response Process. This ensures that your leads are never waiting for a response.
- Use Appealing Emails. Due to the high email bounce rate, you must ensure that whatever mail you send out is visually appealing.
Increasing your LCR is about getting your leads through the lead/sales funnel and attracting visitors to your brand. The best tool for getting visitors remains social media platforms, as stats have shown where the eyeballs are.
Pro tip: Do not use a one-size-fits-all approach to pushing content on social media. Just like email marketing, you got to tailor your content based on the prospect’s demographics, region, and preferences, and pushing the same content across multiple platforms has been shown to have different effects on consumers. Different platforms produce different reactions.
Take advantage of Chatbots and AI.
Improving your LCR is about increasing engagements with leads, and one of the most innovative ways to do this is via Chatbots and AI. Leads are to be nurtured every step of the way, and until they require specific information about your products, a chatbot will do. You should also ensure the responses are updated regularly and that your AI keeps track of your customer journey.
Optimize your Landing Page for lead Appeal.
Homepages are infamous for having a high bounce rate regarding potential leads. For better chances of keeping the lead’s attention, marketers must cater to their place in the lead funnel, promoting ads that resonate with them. Despite their appeal, homepages are just too generic for this task.
To fill this gap, it is very crucial to get your leads to interact with your landing page is crucial. You can design a landing page that produces eventual clients by defining your target audience and understanding their concerns. This will have a long-term positive effect on your LCR.
The key to optimizing your landing pages for LCR growth is a subscription form that serves as a call-to-action for your leads. By providing this form, you are nurturing your visitors and leading them to take a step further to becoming paying customers. Make sure you use a simple and easy-to-fill form because too many fields can be overwhelming, and the next thing you know, you have lost a lead conversion opportunity.
To create an easy-to-fill form that will get your leads signing up for your offering.
After creating a simple and engaging landing page to which you directly send your leads, you should start to see a spike in your LCR rate.
Align your content marketing and lead conversion strategies
Throughout this guide, I have advocated for a lot of harmony between different processes and for a reason. I have seen firsthand what disunity of purpose can do to a brand’s content strategy, and take it from me; you do not want to be on that ship.
Enabling alignments within your lead conversion process can never be overemphasized, and one harmony you must sustain throughout this process is the one between your content marketing and lead conversion strategies. Content marketing involves creating, publishing, and distributing content marketing materials that educate your leads about your products and services.
Whatever strategy you adopt to push out content must ensure it is in sync with your lead conversion goals. This involves churning and distributing content that aligns with your lead’s stage of the lead funnel.
If a lead is just at the awareness phase of the funnel, you do not want to be showing content that would require him to take action just yet. Nurture leads with content marketing until they have reached the stage of taking action as customers. Here are a few tips on how to effectively promote content;
- Search Engine Optimization. You can achieve this by ensuring that you use the keywords and topics that rank in your industry.
- Tailor content for different buyer personas. You should have this at the back of your mind when creating content. Avoid the one-size-fits-all strategy.
- Again, I am admonishing you to avoid the trap of a one-size-fits-all approach. Create and distribute content based on the channels you intend to share them on. It can be tempting and really easy to push the same content for all your leads, but it hurts your LCR in the long run, so avoid it at all costs.
- Emails are also a great way to promote your content as it has a personal touch effectively. Follow the email marketing tips I showed you earlier, and you should be on your way to increasing those LCR numbers.
- Paid ads can be very helpful in promoting content effectively as they are algorithm-driven and help you target the right audience for your offering. To get the best out of paid ads, I recommend using Google Ads.
Frequently Asked Questions
All these tips would mean nothing for your lead conversion goals if you do not have the right people implementing them. Ensure you work with the best, and if your team does not have the skill set to push through, try getting experienced freelancers to implement your strategy. From experience, I can tell you that your strategy is only as good as those working with it.
Here are some of the most asked questions about the lead conversion process.
What happens during Lead Conversion?
During lead conversion, all marketing and sales efforts are geared toward converting leads to customers. However, it differs from lead generation, which simply gets website visitors to become leads.
It is seen as the linchpin of every business’s marketing effort.
What is the lead conversion funnel?
The Lead conversion funnel is the stages every lead goes through before signing on as a customer. There are generally four stages; the awareness stage, interest, decision, and action stages. Some leads may skip the awareness stage and go directly to the interest stage.
You need to nurture your leads and follow up through whatever stage they may be on the funnel.
What is a reasonable lead conversion rate(LCR)?
There is no industry standard for a ‘good’ LCR, as that value is highly subjective and depends on the nature of one’s business and where the lead is generated. However, there is a minimum that many businesses aim for, which is about 2-5%, while some would consider 10% the benchmark for a great lead conversion rate for their business.
What is an example of a lead conversion?
A great example of lead conversion is:
Assume you generated 450 leads within a quarter; out of those 450, 120 got converted to customers. This would be a typical case of lead conversion. The percentage of this value is what is generally known as LCR.
Is lead conversion a KPI?
To track your marketing efforts, a primary KPI you should keep an eye on is lead conversion, which will determine the value you are getting from your marketing money. Using it as a KPI is the hallmark of justifying your marketing strategy.
Is lead conversion a sales or marketing effort?
Lead conversion is a marketing process but is usually a joint effort between the marketing and sales teams. Without the synchronization of the two, not much progress can be made.