Salespeople are on the front lines interacting with prospects and customers all day long. They should be driving what content marketing creates for lead generation. I recently did just that and generated about 70 sales leads in one month. Here's an example of how I did that:
Content Idea Generated Through Sales
One of my customers recently asked me if I had a blog template or some resources to help him start writing articles. I do have a solid process for that of course, but it wasn't a resource I made available online. I have a ton of articles on my website about blogging as well, but none of them are the actual "process".
Content Development and Promo Through Marketing
My customer asked a great question – one that I think a lot of other people might have. So, from a marketing standpoint, here's how I used that content idea for lead generation:
- Created the content offer. I fixed up my internal blog process spreadsheet – made it more generic and added some branding elements.
- Created a landing page for lead generation. I developed a web page with a form that people have to fill out in order to get the spreadsheet. This content is something I've developed over time and put a lot of thought into, so I think it's fair to ask for contact information so I know who's looking at it.
- Created a thank you page. This is the page that people go to after they hit "submit" on the form. It contains the actual spreadsheet for them to download.
- Created a follow up email. This is the automated email response they get after they submit to download.
- Promoted the content on my blog: No one will know about the blog process spreadsheet unless I tell them, so I created a specific blog post to promote it. I also put a call-to-action on a variety of other related blog post to get it in front of more people.
- Emailed the blog post to my audience. Of course, I want to share this content with my peeps, so I emailed everyone on my list to let them know about it!
A couple of issues arose during the process.
- I didn't know what to use as a graphic for the call-to-action, so I just re-purposed the icon off of my blog services web page as a temporary solution. I was anxious to get it out and didn't want to wait for the graphic designer. I felt comfortable that my temporary solution would be fine in this case.
- It actually took a few weeks to get the graphic (I knew it would) because I wanted a special custom graphic that I could use as a template for all the tools and worksheets I create. But now that we have the template, creating future graphics for that type of content will be much easier. Once I got the new graphic, I swapped it out with the temporary solution.
For Sales: Leveraging the Content for Prospecting
All the content I create is meant to be leveraged during the sales process. I can use this content offer to help prospects understand what I do. I can send it to specific people based on where they are in the buyer journey. I've already used it for prospecting a number of times.
For Marketing: Leveraging the Content for Lead Gen
Here's the best part: within the first month, I had about 70 people download the blog process spreadsheet, and about 50 of them were new people I've never had contact with before. Pretty cool!
Return on Investment
It's a little early to calculate my return on investment on this project so far. However, it won't be hard to monitor that over time. The whole process took me about 10 hours, plus the cost of the graphic designer, so I have a clear picture of what my investment is. Now, I just have to monitor if the leads generated from this campaign turn into sales.
Sales and marketing alignment is the most effective way to grow your business.