What Is Organic Lead Generation And How To Generate Leads Effectively?
Organic. It’s one of those adjectives that can adhere to almost any noun. Organic tomatoes. Organic cereal. Organic shoelaces. The list goes on. However, we commonly associate organic with pesticide, additive, and hormone-free products, so how does it translate into B2B lead generation? Despite its name, you won’t be forced to walk the aisles of your neighborhood Whole Foods market to hunt down leads.
If you’re new to lead generation or are exploring more options for expanding your company’s lead gen efforts, organic lead generation is right up your alley. This article will take you through what organic lead generation is and how to use it effectively, along with some of the benefits to expect and common mistakes to avoid.
What is Organic Lead Generation?
Organic lead generation is the process of attracting potential customers to your business without spending money on advertising, marketing, or other paid promotional activities. Instead, you spend time and effort developing strategies that result in new customers finding and trusting your business without artificial enticements.
What Are the Benefits of Organic Customer Lead Generation?
The main benefit of organic lead generation is that it is free — in the more conventional sense of the word. You will need to invest loads of time in research, content creation, and networking. However, if done correctly, organic customer lead generation can be one of the best ways to get your products and services found in search engines while forgoing the hard sell.
Paid leads are admittedly more effective if you are looking for immediate growth and are fantastic for those with the necessary budget. But the long-term benefits of established credibility and trust through organic marketing are very much worth what you put in.
Establish Awareness and Visibility of Your Brand
If you’re just getting started or entering a new market, it can be challenging to know which regions to focus on or where your target audience may be hanging out in the digital landscape. By increasing your visibility through broad outreach marketing tactics, commonly known as brand awareness campaigns, your company can establish credibility, assess the value of various sales channels, and get your name out in front of potential customers. Many companies awareness campaigns, in the beginning, to obtain valuable market research and refine their marketing and sales enablement materials before attempting more advanced lead generation strategies like account-based marketing.
Helps You to Know Which Markets to Target
With many of these lead generation techniques, you can target specific demographics and people who are already interested in your products. For example, if you are marketing through display ads, social media ads, or search engine ads, you can easily target specific markets. You can select the demographics, behaviors, or interests of people you would like to see your ads, and you can also select the particular websites or search terms on which you would like to appear. While there are significant benefits to targeting people interested in your products and services, there are also drawbacks. One of these is that you may be costing yourself sales if you target people already interested in your products. Because of this, organic lead generation can help you better understand which markets you should be targeting before spending advertising dollars.
Drive New Customer Acquisition
Lead generation diversification works in much the same ways as portfolio diversification: it helps reduce risk. Your sales and marketing team may be knocking it out of the park by reaching out to referrals, tapping into their network, or running paid advertisements. But what happens if the referrals stop rolling in, the networks dry up, or the algorithms throw off your rhythm?
Organic lead generation is just another type of investment you can add to your portfolio. You might even liken organic lead gen to a bond. You are borrowing time now for a payout later with interest.
Help You to Understand Your Audience’s Needs
Another significant benefit of organic lead generation is that it can help you to understand your customers’ needs better. People don’t buy products; they buy outcomes. Your company undoubtedly solves a problem, but how does it meet your customers’ needs? You can discover the transformation your audience is hoping to achieve through organic lead generation strategies, especially lead magnets like landing pages and webinars.
Improved Quality of Traffic
In lead generation, most companies rightfully recycle the mantra of quality over quantity. When it comes to generating organic traffic on your website, you want a good mixture of both. Topic and keyword research allows you to tap into what your target audience has been searching for in recent months and over the past few years. Finding evergreen topics that obtain high search volumes and trending topics that are grabbing a lot of attention can help you bring in a good balance of quantity and quality traffic. You just have to ensure that your blog posts deliver value upfront, paired with compelling landing pages and social media posts.
Be aware of sudden increases in organic traffic, as it can cause higher bounce rates and lead to poor conversions. Bounce rates are not that big of an issue in the short term, but high bounce rates can hurt your SEO over time.
Helps Your Business Increase Sales and Grow Your Bottom Line
One of the biggest benefits of lead generation strategies is that they can help you to increase sales and grow your bottom line. By generating leads organically for your company, you can ensure that you are investing in attracting and engaging the right people for your business. This means that you will have less wasted time when it comes to dealing with unqualified leads and more time spent focusing on driving sales from customers who have already shown interest in your products.
What Are Some Effective Organic Marketing Lead Generation Strategies?
The internet and social media have opened up a whole new world of opportunities for businesses to reach customers directly. You no longer need to spend thousands on advertising to get your message out there, which is why so many companies are taking advantage of organic lead generation.
However, as many businesses have discovered, marketing yourself directly through social media and the internet isn’t quite as simple as you might expect. In essence, you can’t just make social media posts about your latest blog every now and again in the hope that people will take notice. Instead, you need to think of these different platforms as places where potential customers are actively looking for information about products and services like yours.
That might sound obvious, but understanding exactly how customers use different online platforms to find solutions to their problems is crucial to developing effective lead generation strategies for your business. Let’s explore some of the ways you can start generating organic leads.
Conduct Audience Research
Before you even think about publishing blog content or posting on platforms like Facebook, you need to research your target audience. This isn’t a one-off exercise — you need to keep researching your audience as your business grows. Why? Because every online channel where you decide to promote your company has its own purpose and ideal target audience. You need to identify which channels your customer base is most active on and focus your efforts there. For example, Instagram was designed to be a more visual social platform for sharing high-quality photos and videos, and over 66% of its users are 34 or younger. So if you’re targeting VPs and CEOs 45 years and older, you’ll have better luck posting reaching your audience by posting on LinkedIn and Facebook.
Create Informative Website Content Around Keywords
If you’re serious about bringing in targeted leads, you need to start thinking of your blog as an asset that you can use to generate new opportunities rather than a place just to dump content. That doesn’t mean that every blog post you publish needs to be a sales pitch — quite the opposite. Instead, you should build your blog around topics relevant to your industry, but that aren’t too specific to your business. People searching for content related to these more general topics are more likely to be open to purchasing from your company if you’re adding untethered value — regardless of whether or not they’re ready to buy right now.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the tried and tested method of organic lead generation. Some of the best marketing leads come from random Google searches that point to your website. As mentioned before, to create the content that brings in leads, you’ll need to do some keyword research to decide which terms will attract the traffic you want. Platforms like Semrush and Spyfu can help gain insight into the search volume of keywords and assess where your competitors are getting their traffic.
You should use certain tools like Google Keyword Planner and Google Analytics to monitor the success of your website content. Promoting your business and driving organic traffic is something your digital marketers can learn to do on their own, but it requires time, effort, knowledge of SEO techniques, and tools to track progress.
The best way to insert keywords in the content of your website is to do it naturally. Conducting research and surveys helps understand what form of content works best for your customers.
Start a Subscriber List for Email Marketing
Email marketing is one of the most effective lead generation strategies out there and one of the most cost-effective. With an ROI of 4,200%, you really can’t afford to be sleeping on this opportunity. However, if you’re simply taking the time to create promotions and blast them out to everyone on your subscriber list, you’re missing a huge opportunity to convert those leads into customers.
Instead, you should be sending out highly targeted emails to members of your subscriber list regularly. That way, you can take advantage of the fact that your leads are actively looking for information about problems that your products and services can solve. Like your blog post, emails don’t need to be sales pitches. Instead, you can use them to provide helpful information and resources to your leads. That way, you can show them that you’re a reliable source of information — and that you’re more than just a company that’s out to make a quick buck.
Use Video Content to Generate Leads
Unless you’re in a completely new industry, there’s a good chance that you are floating around in a red ocean — plenty of sharks in the water, if you catch my drift. That means if you want to differentiate yourself from your competitors, you need to find a way to stand out. Why not try using video content to generate leads and get your name out there? Not only will video help you to stand out from the competition, but it can also be extremely effective at bringing in targeted leads. That’s because, as with blogging, you can create video content around keywords that aren’t business-specific — which means that people actively looking for information about those topics are likely to find and watch your videos.
Host Live Online Events
Another way to generate leads through social media or further nurture leads in your pipeline is to host live online events. An online event can be anything from a webinar to a live-streamed Q&A session. The important thing is that it brings potential customers together in one place so that you can provide them with information and answer any questions they might have.
Why is this effective at bringing in leads? Well, when you host an event, you’re giving people a reason to spend time on your social page or at least with your sales and marketing team. That means that they’re far more likely to engage with your posts and content in the future, which is what you want if you’re trying to bring in leads. Why not start brainstorming ways that you could host an event to bring in leads? You could host a webinar, create a summit event with complementary companies, or even organize a live Twitter chat.
If you’re on the fence about video content, keep this in mind: video viewers retain 95% of content while only 10% is retained when reading blogs or other written materials.
Generate Leads Through Quora
Quora is a great way to generate organic leads without the need for ads. With over 300 million monthly visitors, Quora is one of the most popular Q&A sites on the internet. It’s also one of the best platforms to find and connect with target audiences. Quora users are highly engaged and active. They’re more likely to provide insightful answers, engage in discussions, and share their ideas with others.
No matter what your business does, you can find the right audience on Quora. There are hundreds of topics and millions of users to choose from. You can easily filter Quora users by industry, job title, location, and other demographics.
You can start by tracking down influencers in your industry. These are people with large followings and a strong online presence. Then, you can begin building relationships with these influencers and share their content on your own channels.
You can also use Quora to find leads in your local area. Use keywords like “Quora” or “Q&A” to find people interested in topics related to your business. You can then reach out to these users directly, help answer their questions, and invite them to connect with you on social media or sign up for your newsletter.
What factors affect the success of organic lead generation?
When it comes to lead generation, there are no one-size-fits-all approaches. Every company will have a different strategy that works best for its target audience. However, that doesn’t mean every lead generation campaign is created equal. There are factors that influence the success of your lead generation efforts. The effectiveness of your lead generation campaign likely hinges on several key aspects. Let’s take a look at what those factors are, how they affect your lead generation efforts, and how you can improve them.
The Quality of Your Site’s Content
Almost all organic leads indeed start with a search engine. So, the quality of your content is a critical factor in organic lead generation. The more relevant and helpful your content is, the more likely a user will click through to your website. This could be the difference between getting one lead and getting 100 leads if your content is good.
The key is optimizing your content for the topics and keywords your target audiences use in their queries through SEO best practices. This means that you not only have a thorough understanding of your audience’s pain point-driven questions they have but also know the most common terms used when searching for answers. Once you know what your users are looking for, you can create helpful content that is comprehensive and easy to understand. The easier it is for your visitors to understand your content, the more likely they will continue using your site. And from there, you can use your lead generation campaigns to build a relationship with your target audience.
The Relevance of Your Keywords
The goal of organic lead generation is to create a relationship with your audience so that they’re more likely to become customers later on. This effort starts with your keyword choices. The more relevant your keyword choices are, the better your chance of ranking on page one of search engines. It’s essential to pick relevant keywords that your target audience searches regularly. Once your campaign is live, you can track the keyword rankings to see how well you’re doing. The more relevant your keyword choices are, the higher your content will rank for those keywords. And that means you’ll have a better chance of building a relationship with your target audience.
Long-tail keywords are better suited for B2B customers who are higher up in the sales funnel or know exactly what they’re looking for. While these long-tail keywords have a lower search volume, they generally yield higher quality results than more common keywords.
Let’s take, for example, the difference between “bomber jacket” and “wholesale bomber jacket.” The phrase “bomber jacket” is more competitive than “wholesale bomber jacket”; however, the search volume for “wholesale bomber jacket” reflects the searcher’s intent, but “bomber jacket” doesn’t. The long-tail keyword of “wholesale bomber jackets” is a more specific term that would be closer to what the customer is searching for.
Improved Site Navigation
The clarity of your navigation directly affects site engagement metrics, which are important in Google’s search rankings. Think of your site navigation as the GPS that guides site crawlers to index the information on your pages.
Headings should encompass topics in the dropdowns below them to organize information in an accessible and intuitive way. When someone hovers over a tab, they will see a list of your different products in that category and be directed towards what they need. Organic customers are more likely to stay on the page longer if your navigation is optimized for the user’s experience. And Google will be more willing to show your site to users if the site structure and keywords match the person’s query.
The Quality of Your Website Traffic
The quality of your website traffic is another important factor in organic lead generation and your site’s overall ranking and health. The more high-quality website visitors you get, the better chance you have of those visitors turning into leads rather than bouncing immediately. You don’t want to avoid visitors from low-quality sources like misleading pop-up ads or malicious traffic.
But it seems insane to try and control the traffic to your website, right? Your site is more like a public park than a gated community. Even so, if you ensure that the content you create, the keywords that you incorporate, and the way you promote your business are all in line with your target audience, then you are more likely to gain quality traffic that will positively impact your position with search engines.
The Timing of Your Campaign
Timing is everything. You want any campaign, organic or paid, to be live when your target audience is most likely to be searching for information. You can use a tool like Google Trends to track the most common search terms at any given time of year. This can help you determine the best time to start your lead generation campaigns. If you run a campaign at the wrong time of year, you risk losing out on the most qualified leads.
Let’s take employee benefits, for example. Healthcare insurance providers and employee wellness plan partners have to time their lead generation around the most common open enrollment times, usually October and November. So sales and marketing teams for these companies would start campaigning two to three months before ensuring their prospects have plenty of time to make an informed decision.
Your Calls to Action
A call to action (CTA) is a message that encourages your website traffic to, well, take action. It could be to subscribe to your email list, download an ebook, purchase a product, or use one of your services. The more prominent your CTAs are, the more likely you will get results. Ideally, every page on your website should have at least one CTA, if not multiple. Your landing page, in particular, should have a very obvious CTA that encourages website visitors to click through to your lead magnet.
Consider employing more powerful action verbs by swapping words like “get” for “claim” or “snag.” Be specific as well. Instead of “Learn More,” try something like “Explore How You can 10x Your Results.” Whatever your CTAs are, they should be easy to find and impossible to ignore.
What Are Some Common Mistakes Businesses Make with Organic Lead Generation?
The organic lead generation process can be tough, especially if you’re new to marketing and don’t have a lot of experience under your belt. You might feel like you’re hitting a wall with your lead generation efforts, or maybe you’ve tried some tactics that just aren’t working for you and your business. Do not fret! There are plenty of other businesses that have been in the same situation as you. Here are some common mistakes companies make that you can avoid when developing or enhancing your organic lead generation.
Not Optimizing the Google My Business Listing
If you want to generate leads from organic search, you will need a Google My Business (GMB) listing. This is especially helpful for local businesses, but international and online businesses can benefit too. Once you’ve created and claimed your GMB listing, you’ll want to make sure it is customized for your business. Take advantage of all the features Google has to offer: upload pictures, list your products and services, make a few posts, etc. If you don’t optimize your GMB listing, you will be less likely to show up on the first page of Google for those searching in your location.
If you want to make sure your listing appears at the top of the page, consistency is key. Your business name and address should be the same on all platforms. Even minor differences like using “Ste” and “Suite” interchangeably impact the validity of your GMB in Google’s algorithm. Keep in mind the keywords you want to rank for when listing your offers to ensure they match your website and high-volume search terms.
GMB is also a great way to build credibility. Implement a continuous campaign that encourages your happy customers to leave honest reviews about your business on your listing. The more active your GMB profile is, the more likely your site will be shown to organic traffic.
Not Utilizing SEO Research in Content Creation
As we mentioned in the previous sections, you’re going to want to make sure the content you are creating for your business is optimized for the keywords you’re targeting. You may think that you know what your target audience is looking for, but if you don’t look at the data, you could be way off from your intended goal. If you want to maximize your organic lead generation efforts, you need to utilize SEO research in content creation. You can do this by heading over to the Google Keyword Planner research tool. Once you’re there, you can plug in a few of your main keywords and see which ones are the most popular. You can also plug in a few of your competitors’ keywords to see what they are targeting. If you know what your target audience is searching for, you can create content that will get you more leads. You can also make sure that your content is in line with your company goals and vision.
Not Ensuring the Website is Responsive
The last common mistake businesses make with their organic lead generation efforts is not ensuring the website is responsive. People these days have no sympathy for businesses behind times, with 94% of online users losing trust in a website because of design alone. If your website isn’t responsive, customers will not be able to navigate freely. Furthermore, Google prioritizes mobile-friendly websites, making it hard to rank if your site is not responsive.
If you want to maximize your organic lead generation efforts and keep in Google’s good graces, you want to ensure that the website is responsive for customers so that they can easily find the information they need, sign up for your mailing list, make a purchase, or contact your team directly.
In general, lead generation comes down to content distribution based on data. By building up your organic leads alongside your paid and outbound efforts, you can simultaneously optimize all three. A lead magnet created for a social media ad could be recycled and reformatted for your subscribers and even mixed into the messaging of your outbound campaign. Once you have the data you need to get started, pour creativity into your content. The more fun you have building your marketing materials, the more engaging they will be for your prospects.