Multiple lead channels are necessary for the scale and stability of a business. The ability to generate and nurture leads through the sales funnel plays a significant role in a company’s success and you need a steady supply of high-quality leads to spur continuous growth.
Companies must leverage many channels for lead generation — and do it consistently over an extended period of time — in order to see scalable results. This is why most organizations today have a multichannel lead generation strategy that streamlines their efforts into a focused plan.
A lead source is how a lead discovers your business and is encouraged to engage with your company. This could be via social media channels, content marketing, direct mail or any of the multitude of options available to businesses in the digital age. For example, a sales lead might have found your business through a LinkedIn post, decided to research you, visited your website, and is now highly likely to make a purchase.
In sales and marketing, the more you know about the channels and campaigns that bring in leads, the better. Especially if you want to hone in on the most common or cost effective source of your lead generation.
Importance of Multi-Channel Lead Sources
Before you read about the different types of lead sources, and why they matter, it’s crucial to understand the importance of not relying on a single source. On average, businesses use up to eight marketing channels, and their sources of leads can vary significantly depending on their niche.
For a business to thrive and scale, it is essential to have multiple viable lead channels that provide stability. A single lead source can easily dry up or underperform at any given time. If that happens, you have to scramble to find a new lead source, which takes time and money. And because optimization has not been done, you’re essentially starting from scratch.
Multi-channel lead source management is what gives you clarity on which channels and options you need to pursue. You can utilize the channels that work for you and not waste time and money investing in ones that don’t produce results for your company.
Measuring and streamlining your lead conversion success per source benefits your business but also improves the customer experience and buyer journey with targeted content. It helps you understand how and why your audience finds you.
Lead Source Examples
Sources of lead generation can be any channel through which a lead discovers your company or brand. As we’ve read, using multiple lead sources is the best way to maintain the stability of your lead generation.
- Email marketing - Email is the best lead source for marketing. Every cadence, newsletter, campaign, or shared bit of content helps generate more business.
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO) - Optimizing your website for organic search can be a very valuable lead generation source. Investing in optimization strategies, such as increasing click-through rates, SERP positioning, authority building, and backlink generation can be key to creating an effective website visibility plan with tremendous potential.
- Social Media - Social platforms are an exceptional source of leads. From LinkedIn and Facebook to YouTube, businesses can reap the rewards of increased brand awareness through organic posts and videos that elevate their content above competitors.
- Paid Ads – Pay Per Click (PPC), display ads, and social media targeting are all major players in lead generation. You're creating more targeted leads by paying for ads because you're getting in front of prospects who fit your ideal customer profile.
- Content –Blogs contribute to creating organic traffic for SEO, and premium content that’s either gated or ungated helps build buyer relationships.
- Events - Whether virtual or in person, hosting or being invited to an event, podcast or webinar can be a plus for any organization. It gives you the opportunity to showcase knowledge and expertise of your brand and also create new connections that draw leads to your business.
- Referrals - A form of demand generation, referrals are the easiest leads to land. If recommended by a trusted associate or friend, they are warmer than other leads and stand a better chance of converting.
Lead Source Best Practices
You’ll want to start creating and managing lead sources for your business right away. Understanding and implementing best practices for each channel will help you identify, analyze, and improve the quality of the leads you receive.
- Use multiple channels for lead sourcing - The golden rule, and running theme of this article, is using multi-channel lead sources. As explained, it’s the key to not letting your hard work go to waste if one of your lead generation sources stops producing the results you’re used to.
- Keep it simple - If you’re using a CRM to track leads, such as Salesforce, avoid getting too specific with your lead source categories. You might use many channels but including all of them in your CRM will only add clutter. You’ll want to segment them into separate categories such as email, social media, events, etc.
- Define your top performers - Create a report to discover where your leads are coming from. Once you’re aware of where all your leads were generated, you can pinpoint your top-performing channels and put more effort into them over others.
- Audit your channels - Always go back to a channel to see that it’s set up correctly and that you’re doing all you can to bring in leads. For instance, fixing a broken link or shortening a form that’s too long.
Summarizing the Multi-Channel Approach
Leveraging all the available channels, and the data that comes with it, is a must for success. Multi-channel sourcing is an effective and clever way of generating leads for your business. The key is that you need to set clear targets of what success looks like and choose channels that are easily compared and optimized based on your results. Testing is always the key to success. You should spend a large amount of time testing your campaigns on different channels to find the perfect mixture and the right allocation of budget.