3 Lead Generation Best Practices You Shouldn’t Ignore

By Josh McGrailFebruary 21, 2017

With today’s digital-savvy consumers, lead generation is evolving quickly and with it so are the demands that you be at the top of your game. The buying process has changed and marketers need to find new ways to break through the clutter and reach prospects and buyers. Here are three lead generation best practices you shouldn’t ignore to help maximize your marketing efforts.

Segment Your Database
Your company’s database could be your most valuable asset and the core for successful marketing campaigns. Companies that don’t have the power of their own data supporting them are disadvantaging all their efforts.

One of the main reasons marketers segment their databases is to better address targeting needs and gain a competitive advantage. Winning companies recognize the benefits of the data driven insights that can be captured through database segmentation and management.

Most advertisers don’t benefit much from costly and inefficient mass marketing, the spray and pray tactics that use the same channels and messaging to blast prospects and customers alike. Segmenting your database not only provides specific response groups to target for action, but it also reduces campaign costs. You can be more specific about whom you’re addressing, how you’re addressing them, and ultimately develop prospects or leads into repeat, loyal customers.

Target Your Audiences with Relevant Messaging
Database segmentation is critical to gaining a better understanding of your audiences, and this lays the groundwork for relevant messaging to engage each segment, each opportunity.

For example, age might be one of the factors that should be taken into consideration when crafting marketing strategies and targeting audiences. Understanding the different age groups of your audiences, you can connect with them in the ways they prefer and deliver those communications using the most successful media. To elaborate on this concept, here’s a quick overview of today’s generations. It’s important to note that many profitable campaigns will include a broader scope of demographics, and may not focus on just one channel. (Hint: It’s not enough to talk to Millennials just by social media).

The Silent Generation (1927 – 1944) – This group grew up in the Great Depression and lived through four major wars. Although they are growingly tech savvy, they are less responsive to digital and mobile marketing, preferring traditional forms of marketing most. Give them a call or mail them a letter.

Baby Boomers (1945 – 1964) – This group grew up in economic prosperity and lived through the social revolution. They enjoy individualization and truly feel young at heart. Since this is the only generation to fully embrace both print and digital media, a multi-channel marketing approach should work well.

Generation X (1965 to 1981) – This group may not have experienced the economic safety net, but they are concerned about earning a living and a work-life balance. This generation is very tech savvy, which means digital marketing is mandatory. Don’t rule out direct mail which can support digital touches and break through the clutter!

Generation Y / Millennials (1975 -1995) – This group experienced a whirlwind economic roller coaster and a technology boom. Incredibly tech savvy, self-absorbed and will block unwanted information, digital marketing, including social are essential channels, but consider adding direct mail if it is relevant and can stand out in the mailbox.

Generation Z / Official name TBD (1995 – 2015) – The oldest among this group is barely out of high school though are active in shopping colleges, financial relationships and more areas than you might think. They are destined to be the dominant youth influencers of tomorrow. They have developed relationships with social media well beyond Facebook, and readily share information to enhance their lifestyles.

Understanding generational differences in interests and responsiveness by channel allows you to better drive engagement through email, direct mail, mobile, and telemarketing efforts. Customers take a journey from low or no awareness to conversion – getting and paying attention to your message along the way helps ensure they take that journey with you.

Keep Your Database in Tip Top Shape
A lead generation campaign is only as good as its data. Marketing databases degrade by approximately 22-24% every year, so it’s important to update or replenish those lost contacts.  Data hygiene is just one of the best practices you should be implementing to maintain your database.

Many marketers often work with a single list provider, but over time churning through the same universe of contact may drive decreased deliverability and response rates. The practice of using a single list can also prove restrictive from a volume perspective as one provider usually doesn’t house all worthwhile records.

Today’s data aggregators and compilers are working with an unprecedented volume of information under the newly coined term of “Big Data”. This information is being compiled from a variety of sources that range from public record to highly specialized, including real buying habits and self-identified hand raisers covering dozens of categories. The sources used by a compiler contribute not only to the strength of the data, but the volume of contacts available. As comprehensive as these direct marketing may be, no single vendor carries all available records, and therefore none has all of your ideal audience. Consider partnering with a data vendor that uses multiple list providers to expand profitable reach.

If you’re seeking to enhance engagement by segmenting offers to targeted groups, but you’ve identified gaps in your data then you should consider employing a variety of append solutions to fill those gaps. Whether you’re interested in adding specific demographics or firmographics to create segments, or adding telephone numbers and email addresses to open more channels, multi-pass appends provide the best coverage and accuracy.

Data hygiene, combining multiple list sources and appending missing information are just a few suggestions for enhancing your database and getting the most out of your marketing campaigns. Bottom line, when it comes to marketing and lead generation, a one size fits all approach will not give your business all the opportunities available to be successful.

To learn more, catch Josh McGrail, AccuData Integrated Marketing's VP of Strategic Accounts at LeadsCon Vegas at his 11 a.m. March 22 session, “Advance Customer Loyalty: Take Segmentation to the Next Level.”

Click here to register for LeadsCon Las Vegas 2017.

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