There were a lot of places you could have CDs manufactured and drop shipped for less than a couple of dollars. The theory behind this was that it was good that you were getting their physical mailing address and it was a ‘warm’ lead when someone took the time to listen to you.
I don’t think you could ship a CD with as much success today (people want instant access to lead magnets, regardless of whether or not they go through them. We all have e-books and PDFs collecting virtual dust on our hard drives, right?).
Are there other things you could physically ship a lead? Absolutely, but there are a few things you should know before you decide to jump into spending money on shipping something for lead generation:
- Who your target audience is
- Where they spend time (if they spend a lot of time on Facebook, paying for Facebook ads would make more sense)
- What you’re willing to pay for a lead and what your budget is
- What you’re going to offer your new lead (in a funnel) to offset the cost of acquiring the lead
- What is the lifetime value of your customer (eventually, most people don’t know this when they’re starting out)
These are just a few things you need to keep in mind when you’re spending money acquiring a lead.
Personally, I would start with an organic approach to lead generation before investing in any type of paid traffic.
I would start with an organic approach to lead generation before investing in paid traffic.
There are too many variables that come into play when it comes to lead generation:
- Traffic to website
- Your offer
- SEO, content
- Problem you’re solving
You get the point. So why spend money on paid traffic when you don’t have these factors dialed in? Do as much organically as you can first.
Where is your lead magnet on your site?
Too many people make the mistake of only placing their opt-in form in only a few places on their website.
There’s a fear of being too smarmy, or pushy by putting the opt-in form in multiple places on the site (and within content). Instead, people assume that by placing the opt-in in a couple places on their site people will opt-in right when they see the form. Unfortunately, this isn’t “Field of Dreams” (If you build it, they will come).
Let’s look at someone who has lead generation pretty dialed in and knows how to convert his visitors, Neil Patel.
First, when I go to his site, I don’t get the content first.
The homepage is a video and opt-in for an evergreen webinar. There is very little content on the homepage, but there are THREE buttons, and a pop-up, asking me to register for the webinar (which has a countdown attached to it since the webinar plays at different times). The screenshot below shows what you see when you scroll a little bit below the fold.
Look how close the two buttons are to register for the next webinar:
When you scroll below this area (Who is Neil Patel), then you get a single box with four more buttons, one of which is a webinar registration… again.
This is just on his homepage.
Moving on to a blog post and we see TEN (yes, you read that correctly), TEN calls to action on one post (I’m including the button in the navigation that is a call to action).
The crazy thing is that it doesn’t feel too obnoxious (it’s a little obnoxious, but as a marketer, I value Neil’s content so much and his site is very clean and easy to read so I don’t mind).
You don’t have to do as much as Neil has done (he’s been at this a long time), but what if you started with a third of what Neil does?
Ideally, I have at least 3 or 4 calls to action on my posts:
- Top of my site which is a HUGE call to action. On every single post or page that isn’t a landing page.
- Content upgrade: Ideally every single post would have a content upgrade. I haven’t gotten there yet, but it’s quickly becoming a regular practice.
- Post footer: I have an opt-in at the bottom of every post
This might seem extreme, but remember that you’re not just collecting names and/or email addresses.
You’re collecting data.
When you start adding more places to opt-in on your site, not only will your subscribers go up but you’ll start getting more data and feedback from people (data based on actions taken and feedback when people start responding and or buying from you).
What Happens After Someone Opts in For Your Lead Magnet?
I will be the first person to tell you I failed miserably at follow-up when I was getting started (and quite a few years after that).
You have to communicate with your subscribers in order to grow your business. Period.
Where do you start with communication? The easiest place of course, with automation.
Even if you don’t have something to sell (yet), at the minimum, create a follow-up sequence that focuses on the relationship with your subscriber:
- Welcome email & download
- Send them to a great piece of content on your website (this could be educational, entertaining, personal… whatever best represents you and your brand)
- What to expect from you (ex: I let people know that I email often… and what they can expect from me in my emails)
- Where else to connect with you (do you have a Facebook group? Business page? podcast?)
- Make an offer (if you have one), if not, recommend something you use and are an affiliate for (if you do affiliate marketing)
After your follow-up sequence is complete, when will they hear from you next?
Don’t disappear in the wind (yes, I did this too) once your follow-up sequence is complete.
And if possible, stay away from the generic, regurgitated newsletters that people used to send that don’t have anything of interest for your subscriber.
One of the things I wish I had done sooner was emailed my list frequently. It took me a long time to get to the point where it was daily (or almost daily), but next to my podcast, it’s the best thing I ever did.
Will you get more unsubscribes?
Probably, but you’ll be growing your list faster than they’re unsubscribing if you make lead generation a priority.
At the end of the day, you don’t know how much is ‘too much’ in terms of putting your opt-in form and lead magnet in front of people until you do it.
Test, try and tweak until you find the right combination for you. I’d be willing to put my money where my mouth is though that you’re probably not doing it enough.