Business lead generation is the process of identifying new prospects, then using a range of tactics to turn them into new sales opportunities. In this article, 25 experts share their best business lead generation ideas with you. Some you may know, others will be new and they’ll help you improve the quality and quantity of leads entering your sales pipeline.


Automation is the hot topic of 2018. Most ESPs enable some level of email automation such as autoresponders. Autoresponders can be set to send a customized, tailored email to individual contacts when they carry out a specific action. For example, you can set autoresponders to send an email when your contact celebrates a birthday, or when someone subscribes for the first time, or even when someone buys an item from your website. Autoresponders save you time while delivering a personalized email service at scale.
For over a decade, B2B marketers have used gated content (anything behind a lead capture form that requires the user to trade information for access) to generate leads from their websites. Gated content such as ebooks, videos, webinars, etc. are common assets that can be used as a value-exchange to anonymous visitors on your site who have yet to hand over their contact details.

Most SaaS companies only mention their product very subtly (if at all) in their content, but using this method, you will mention your free trial natively in your body content within your site’s blog posts. The idea is to subtly point out the fact that you have a free trial, your product does X, and it ties in with your blog post because X reason. This should naturally flow in your post content.


The best email marketing services provide valuable features that help you make the most of your email marketing campaigns and improve your business in a number of ways. Using a top-rated email marketing service such as aWeber or GetResponse lets you take advantage of better email design, contact organization, analytics, and segmentation while avoiding the risks of being blacklisted as a spam account. Learn more insights and compare email marketing platforms on Website Planet.
One of my best business lead generation ideas is to go to chamber of commerce seminars and workshops and network small business owners there. I collect their business cards, send them an email asking if they want to get together for a one-to-one, where we can learn more about each other’s businesses. Many times this leads me to get a new client without spending much money at all.
Email marketing doesn’t necessarily require a huge team or reams of technical nous in order to be successful. It’s certainly possible to jazz up an email campaign with fancy templates, videos, images and logos. Yet, some of the most successful campaigns utilise simple plain text emails, suggesting that it’s the content of an email that is the most important thing.
Don’t make the mistake of assuming mass mailing has to carry a hefty price tag. Mailgun offers both comprehensive deliverability features and powerful marketing automation tools, so your bulk emails actually reach every intended person on your mailing list. And with our free plan, the first 10,000 emails you send each month are free of charge. That’s a far cry from some email services that offer free email marketing in the form of a free trial, meaning your first month is gratis, but the price rises sharply after that.
As popular as newsletters are, they have a drawback. When you send multiple links or blurbs in an email, you weaken your main call-to-action. Your subscriber may click on the first link or two in your email but may not come back to the others, or they may skim your email and move on. So, if your main goal is to drive a specific action – sign up for this webinar, buy this product, read my latest blog post – you may be better off with a standalone email. These emails are dedicated to just one topic and put the call to action front and center. Your readers’ attention won't be diverted, so they’re more likely to take the action you want them to.
Diluted Call-To-Action: Due to their format--a compilation of information--newsletters can be overwhelming and ignorant of a specific call-to-action. If you include a series of blurbs or article summaries, the attention of your recipients will most likely be spread across these tidbits of information as opposed to staying focused on a certain element. Of course, you can address this by prioritizing the most important information at the top of the newsletter and include a clear call-to-action after/alongside each block of text.

One of the benefits native content has over guest blogging is that more overtly promotional content is often tolerated, which may be beneficial for generating leads in the short-term. With native advertising, your ads are front and center. They catch readers' attention by showing up in places that they're already checking out, instead of in a place that they've grown accustomed to ignoring.


For example, If you’re a retailer specializing in hip, modern home decor, you probably wouldn’t waste your time sending mailers. Instead, you’d target your core audience of hip, modern millennials by posting breathtaking staged rooms on Instagram, or ads when individuals search for such decor. Or you might create an exciting contest on social media (check out our guide here).
Newsletter emails inform customers of current promotions, sales, and the newest offering. Newsletter emails are more than merely sales tools, they also help develop a long-term impact on readers. Mark Brownlow, in EmailMarketingReports.com, says that a newsletter email "should provide the readers with value, which means more than just sales messages. It should contain information which informs, entertains or otherwise benefits the readers."
Lead generation email campaigns are a series of emails based on varying first points of contact. Whether a new user has visited a company’s site or requested more information, a well-crafted automated drip campaign can turn those leads into sales. Use of an email marketing platform can help lead a prospect through a company’s sales process and drive them back to the products or services they viewed while using the company’s website initially.
Press releases are a marketing tool underutilized by most small businesses. A press release is typically associated with print publication, such as newspapers and trade magazines, but can be used by small businesses to communicate with customers, informing them of a particular new inventory item or promotion. Unlike a newsletter or catalog, press releases focus on one message and are designed to inform readers and entice them to visit the business online or in person.
Since I work in the politics and advocacy, I have a lot of customers reaching out to me looking for business lead generation ideas and ways to connect with elected officials, mostly when Facebook, Twitter, and email, all prove ineffective for them. And it’s always the same reason; because all these channels are easily glanced over or ignored. But, writing a letter or calling them up and having a real conversation; that’s difficult to ignore and that’s what always works best.
As advertisers have shifted more and more of their efforts online, they have tried to find ways to use the strategies developed in print advertising in new online environments. Most of the traffic once handled by the postal service now happens over email, creating a new method of direct marketing. Today, the average marketer sends 64 emails to their customers every year.
Look for a point of diminishing returns. Where are your campaign investments providing value? At Marketo, inbound strategies like content marketing are the strongest channels, and should be maximized to a point; but beyond that, inbound tactics need to be supplemented with outbound, paid channels in order to create sustainable demand and generate new leads from your website.
Since the Internet knows no borders, it is clear that your email campaign can reach anyone in the world, if targeted correctly. If your business has tendencies to operate around the world, this is the perfect tool. Besides, who in the world would not like to expand their business worldwide, if they have the chance to do it? If you are using platform like WordPress, there are many Email marketing plugins out there, which  will help you to capture Emails from your readers quickly and smart ways.
Look for a point of diminishing returns. Where are your campaign investments providing value? At Marketo, inbound strategies like content marketing are the strongest channels, and should be maximized to a point; but beyond that, inbound tactics need to be supplemented with outbound, paid channels in order to create sustainable demand and generate new leads from your website.

Using this technique we’ve been able to increase our private launch conversion by 200%. The code is readily available and can be implemented by a web programmer in hours. Be careful about being overly aggressive, meaning don’t show the CTA each time the visitor visits your website. This can become annoying. Most available exit detection plugins are smart enough to track whether it’s the same user within the same session and adjust accordingly.
Lead-nurturing emails are typically a series of related emails that are sent over a period of several days or weeks. The idea is to move leads through your funnel and convert them into customers, all through an automated series of helpful content. Not only can these emails help to convert, they also drive engagement. According to HubSpot, lead-nurturing emails generate an 8 percent click-through rate compared to a 3 percent click-through rate for general emails. These email sequences are also great time savers for your team. You set up your series once, and if it’s successful, deliver qualified leads to your sales team without much hands-on work.
An eBook acts as a great incentive to get people to sign-up and provide you with their contact details and other useful information that you previously would not have access to. For instance, you could ask them to describe their biggest pain point and provide their mobile phone number in addition to their name and email address. Remember, website visitors are only willing to give up so much information, so the better the value offer, the more information they will give.
Like with all groups on your social channels, work hard to avoid being overly self-promotional about your offering by sharing tons of links or talking about your product. Allow genuine interest & appreciation to be the driving factor in starting one-on-one conversations with group members, and those will more naturally lead to authentic relationships that could blossom into new-found customers.
Focus on customer service. Emails that offer product tips should also showcase your commitment to customer service. Emails like this tell customers, “We’re here for you.” Follow through with that message by adding contact information to the email. The email below, for example, offers tips to wear a certain piece of clothing, but you’ll also notice there is a “contact us” option in the top right corner.
Email marketing now develops large amounts of traffic through smartphones and tablets. Marketers are researching ways to capture the attention of users, in both span and volume. This is because the rate of delivery still relatively low due to strengthened filters and also because certain users have multiple email accounts that serve unique purposes. Because emails are generated according to the tracked behavior of consumers, it is possible to tailor promotional material to their needs and to present relevant details to potential buyers. Because of this, modern email marketing is perceived more often as a pull strategy rather than a push strategy.
Human spam filters are even more complex. No one can tell you exactly what makes someone click the spam or abuse button, but there are some general rules. You’ll want to avoid buying lists or sending emails without explicit permission, being vague about when you’ll email, hiding the unsubscribe option or making the process of unsubscribing unnecessarily difficult, or leaving unengaged, inactive leads or customers on your list (though, you can and should eventually mount a reactivation campaign for those inactive leads).

Don’t make the mistake of assuming mass mailing has to carry a hefty price tag. Mailgun offers both comprehensive deliverability features and powerful marketing automation tools, so your bulk emails actually reach every intended person on your mailing list. And with our free plan, the first 10,000 emails you send each month are free of charge. That’s a far cry from some email services that offer free email marketing in the form of a free trial, meaning your first month is gratis, but the price rises sharply after that.


Due to the immediacy of email, a business can start seeing results within minutes of its emails being sent. A 24-hour sale is a brilliant marketing ploy that can be utilised by email, as it creates a sense of urgency and convinces subscribers to take immediate action. Businesses typically have to wait weeks until they see sales come in as a result of print or broadcast campaigns and, even then, how can they be sure what was responsible for the purchase?

For example, one email might give me tips on how to clean and care for the gadget. The next email could be a recipe using the gadget…and so on. From an emotional perspective, it builds trust and delight with customers because you’re delivering value after you’ve already made the sale. Yet each one of these emails is still a chance to up-sell and cross-sell.
Another one of the major benefits of email marketing is list segmentation. This allows you to segment or separate your email list into different groups with relevant characteristics or interests. Once you have done this, you can start to deliver more targeted content to your readers. This increases relevancy and value, which can encourage more conversions.

Within 24 hours you’ll then receive a personal email from yours truly, with your very own click tracking link. (We use ClickMagick and MCBP as they are the industry's leading click tracking platforms). You can then watch as your clicks come in with highly detailed statistics such as geographic location, I.P. address, device type, browser type plus lots more detailed information.


These are the next level of transactional emails. Email marketing software like Vero allows marketers to automatically trigger emails when customers click buttons, scroll down a page, read an article or watch a video. And that’s just the beginning. As you collect more data about a user, the emails can get more and more personalized, greatly increasing the chances that customers will engage with your website and buy products or services. For SaaS businesses, behavioral email marketing opens never-before-seen opportunities for upselling and converting clients and prospects.
Therefore, if companies want to get more leads from their websites they need to look at ways to personalize which piece of gated content is served to individual users as they browse the website. This personalization could be user-driven—asking them to explicitly choose what sort of gated content they are interested in—or it could be powered by content marketing software which tracks their browsing patterns and behavioral data to show the right piece of gated content.
Another disadvantage when it comes to Outlook is that you are somewhat limited in terms of creativity and design. Unlike a professional newsletter software, Outlook doesn’t come with any ready-made templates. What’s more, you can only use the fonts that are available in the system. You are also restricted when using specifications such as float, margin or padding.

The platform allows you to create a profile with backlinks to your website or landing page, which makes answering questions a useful means for getting you direct exposure to leads who are asking about your solution. In addition to this, Quora's full-text search function gives you the power to search any term relevant to your business making tapping into the right conversations quick and easy.
A click-through rate is a percentage that tells you how many successfully delivered emails in a campaigns registered at least one click. A standard click-through rate is generally two to three times the conversion rate of your online store, maybe 5% or so. Why? Because you have a highly targeted group of people on your list who have opted in to your content. Your calls to action and images in your email play a big role in your click-through rate.
The 10DollarSoloAds Service is a sophisticated targeted ad system that shows your ad to thousands of fresh opt-in leads. Just enter your ad (Don’t have an ad? We will write one for you) and click the send button and your ad will be shown to thousands of fresh prospects. Each ad is a “solo ad” and contains only your advertisement. If you have ever tried to sell something online then you have probably experienced the frustration of getting people to your website. Look no further, 10DollarSoloAds.com specializes in the best type of highly responsive targeted solo ad campaignsthat will get people to your website. We sell solo ads that work. Each ad campaign we send contains only your ad.
In order to maximize your opt-in rates, we recommend that you offer visitors a relevant free gift such as a report or an e-book as a way to say thank you for their sign ups. For example, if your product is in the weight loss niche and would like to target the weight loss crowd, give them a free weight loss report or an e-book in exchange for their opt-in. After they had opt-in into your own list, you can always do a follow up with them again and sell them your product line or introduce your service. You will find getting a sale easily with a great products or services which will benefit them.
Studies have shown that certain days of the week and particular hours of the day are the optimum time to send different marketing emails. But what if you’re in Paris on business and the best time to send an email to your US clients would be 3am? Email marketing services let you schedule emails to be sent at whatever time you like so that you don’t need to set timers to make sure you catch that important email window.
While there are many tools on the market to support this, our favorite here at Nutshell is MailChimp. Not only does Nutshell offer a powerful integration with this tool, MailChimp is easy to sign up for, and offers free subscriptions up to 2,000 contacts. Click here to learn more about how Nutshell integrates seamlessly with this tool! Sending mass emails to thousands of clients from Nutshell can be done within minutes.
Software Developers will need to have a degree in some field of computer science. Most software developers working for email marketing services will be experts in HTML, Java, and other programming languages that are used widely on the Internet. A degree in marketing is not necessary, but could be helpful. Their clients will mostly be marketers, so understanding their needs can lead to more useful and responsive email programs.
Mark Sallows is a writer for Fit Small Business specializing in sales and marketing topics. Before helping other small business owners, Mark was co-founder and CEO of a successful digital publishing start-up called Turtl. Mark has also served as a non-executive director in several early stage media, marketing, and tech businesses. Before this he was an early stage venture capital investor for a global investment business. Mark lives in New Forest, a scenic area in Southern England.
“I’m in” as button text tackles the opt-in action directly. Visitors that have read your content and have agreed to continue developing their relationship with you are ‘in’. If you’re making any sort of presentation or offer, “I’m in!” allows your visitors to opt-in with passion and zeal. Like agreeing to an outing with a friend, “I’m in” states that you’re subscribing to what is offered.
Blogging can be done in three different ways, the first one being of course on your own website. Blog consistently and try to publish new posts on the same days. This way your audience gets to know your schedule and know when to return for fresh content. Traffic to your blog, however, is not the only thing, you need to convert those readers. Your readers are interested in the thing you write about, but they are most likely not on your email list yet. Try adding relevant call-to-actions to your blog posts!

Within the deck itself, it’s important to include some sort of call to action to drive leads. SlideShare allows you to place links between the fourth and last slide, which you can easily do with PowerPoint or Keynote. In addition to the embedded links, use visual calls to action, like arrows and buttons in combination with text, to be loud and clear about the action you want people to take.
“Because original data is worth it, many people will be happy to subscribe to your blog in exchange for the report. In addition, you can share the report with all of the participants in the survey, who will likely share the report with their audience. This quickly magnifies the impact of your marketing efforts, building your email list and helping your brand build a reputation as a source for interesting and original data”, said Cara Hogan, Content Strategist at Zaius.
Instead of letting users access the more comprehensive videos for free, use a service like Wistia Turnstile to created a gated video so people have to submit contact information before they can view the content. This can also be done organically by utilizing YouTube Cards, including a call to action in the video description, or by having the individual in the video or a voice-over asking viewers to contact you to learn more.

put a link to your site in your Quora profile, if people like what you have written and you had something interesting or helpful to say, they’ll naturally be interested enough in you to visit your profile (and find out if you have written more answers around the same subject). By placing a link in your profile it makes it easy again for them to go back to your site.
Here’s an example: Let’s say we are marketing a conference. We have a plan to send five emails leading up to the conference to drive registration. Once a recipient registers for the conference, we need to remove them from the list! We don’t want to keep sending them the “register today!” emails once they have registered, right? They need to go to a different list, a list of registered attendees.
The giveaway generates leads via email subscriptions and social media engagement, and it's a win-win for eWebDesign. Whether a user wins or loses the giveaway, they will continue to engage with the brand in hopes of winning future giveaways. Meanwhile, eWebDesign can grow its email list to continue outreach to subscribers with more targeted content about CRO.
Lead-Nurturing Emails — This type of email helps you move a lead through your sales funnel, while cutting the amount of time required by a sales team to educate prospects about your services and products. Lead-nurturing emails should be short emails with the main purpose of driving prospects to take action on your website. Click here for more information about setting up a successful automated nurturing or drip campaign.

The elements you include in a welcome email will depend on the specifics of what you're offering. But in general, you can use the email to showcase your brand's personality and to highlight the value that recipients can expect to receive. If you're welcoming new users to a product or service, the welcome email is a great place to explain how everything works and what users need to do in order to get started.
With their service, you can choose from a curated list of email newsletters and sponsor those that share your target customer. Sponsoring allows you to advertise your lead generation campaigns in email newsletters that matter to your target audience. LaunchBit screens all lists to make sure they’re legit and handles the transaction from sponsor to advertiser so the experience is smooth for all.
For example, email marketing services like MailChimp and ActiveCampaign allow you to track your open rates, read rates and click-through rates. Since email is the preferred method for business communication, special attention to these rates are required for small business lead generation. In addition, these platforms have some great training for b2b lead generation best practices.

Most email marketing platforms offer a basic automation system composed of triggers and accompanying emails based on customer actions. Businesses utilize these platforms to automatically send detailed thank you or confirmation emails after a product has been purchased, a service has been completed, a user filled out an important form, or new users have subscribed to their blog. Automation can also further personalization by triggering customer-specific emails for birthdays or specific purchase anniversaries.
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