Understanding the Online Lead Generation Funnel

To run effective online lead generation campaigns, you should think in terms of a lead generation funnel. You start with a group of opt-in email contacts, and send them useful information prompting them to take actions that turn them into qualified sales leads who eventually buy your product or service. When you send out the email to your contact list, all of the contacts enter into a lead generation funnel.

Most sales organizations already think in terms of a sales funnel, where through the sales process, prospects become opportunities that turn into sales. The lead generation funnel is similar, converting contacts to qualified sales leads. The analogy of a funnel comes from the fact that a large number of unqualified contacts enter the top of the funnel, and a smaller number of qualified leads exit the bottom of the funnel.

The Online Lead Generation Funnel

The Online Lead Generation Funnel

In the picture above, you can see that everyone you send the email to enters the funnel. We are showing 100% of the emails successfully received, although usually there is a small drop out because email addresses change and bounce. Typically, somewhere between 5 and 30% open the email in their email client. Why such a big range? Well, it varies mostly due to the subject line and the relevance to the group of contacts the email went to.

The email should include a call to action. Examples include an offer for valuable information, an invitation to view a video or multimedia, an invitation to a webinar or other offer that a prospective customer would want. The call to action will get the contact to “click-through” to a landing page.

A good landing page should include additional calls to action that push your contacts through the last stage of the funnel. This is where most landing pages fall short. Usually, the landing page has some information, along with a form to request more information. Many visitors are actively looking for products, but don’t submit a request.

The visitors that click through to the landing page are the most valuable leads, representing between 2 and 10% of the emails. The problem is out of that 2 to 10%, only 1 in 20 will request more information, meaning that .01% to .5% of the total will make a request. Most times, campaigns identify only those requests as qualified. Wouldn’t it be better to see a range of qualification levels, based the level of interest and action from the landing page?

Qualifying the landing page visitors is an important part of Swyzzle’s analytics and reporting. If your landing page has a Swyzzle show on it, you will know how much of the show your visitors watched and when they watched it. You can offer other documents or even a click-to-buy link, and see what interested them. This increases the number of leads by 20-50 times, while dividing the leads into levels. You can give the hot leads to your sales team, and also use your information to improve all your other lead generation campaigns.

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