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A Scientific Way to Generate Leads with Content Marketing

Are you struggling to meet your lead generation goals? Are you ready to learn how to generate leads with a scientific approach to content marketing? 

An overwhelming 80 percent of the most effective B2B content marketers cite lead generation as a primary goal of content marketing, according to the B2B Content Marketing 2014 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends report published by the Content Marketing Institute. What are the key steps that these effective content marketers take?

In today’s post, we are going to answer this question, so put on your lab coat and let’s get started.

1) Determine Your Lead Generation Goal

The first step in this scientific process is to determine your lead generation goal based on your company’s revenue goals. HubSpot simplifies this process with a free inbound marketing traffic and leads calculator. It will help you determine:

  • The number of leads you need to generate each month
  • What your conversion rates need to be
  • How much traffic you need to get to your website

TRAFFIC X CONVERSION RATE = LEADS

Once you have determined your lead generation goals, you must track your progress. There are many marketing automation platforms that provide dashboards with real-time reporting that take the mystery out of tracking traffic and leads, but you can setup your own using Excel spreadsheets and graphs.

2) Perform Content Analysis

Now you have your lead generation goal established, and you have a method to measure your progress toward your goal. Time to figure out how to hit your goal.

Choose the right topics to drive traffic to your blog

This post will teach you how to create engaging content that drives traffic.  Once your think you are on the right track with content creation, it’s time to perform content analysis so you can confirm what is working and what needs modifying.

Establish your content metrics

Content cannot be measured with a single metric, because no one data point can successfully or satisfactorily tell you whether your program is working.  - Jay Baer,  ConvinceAndConvert.com

If you are using HubSpot, you can easily measure your ROI for every inbound marketing campaign. If you are doing your analysis manually, here are some items to analyze to determine which content is helping you hit your lead generation goals.

Consumption. This is a fundamental content metric and can be easily derived from Google Analytics or a similar program.  This metric tells you how many people consumed your content.   Ideally your posts drive a lot of traffic to your blog and have a high conversion rate.

Sharing. This metric tells you how often visitors share your content with others.  Make it easier to drive this metric up by making social sharing easy on your blog.

Conversion. This metric tells you how often your content visitors turn into leads.  Some key questions to ask are:

  • Which topics converted more visitors into leads?  The majority of your content should revolve around the topics that get the most consumption and conversion.
  • Which days are best to publish your content? Your analytic tool should be able to tell you which days are your prime publishing days.
  • Which content formats convert the best? Do your visitors prefer posts with infographics, how-to posts or opinion posts?
Analysis Paralysis

Brainstorm – don’t get stuck in analysis paralysis.

Try different combinations of the items above and look for trends, then approximate the number of leads you can expect to generate from each post. This will help you figure out how often you need to publish to reach your lead generation goal.

Sales. This metric tells you how often your leads become customers. It is easiest to measure this by using a CRM and tracking which downloadable content each potential customer consumes.

You will need to combine your analytics numbers with a good dose of common sense to identify patterns in the data.  Use this information to test different content marketing variables and drive up the ROI of your content marketing efforts. Don’t get mired in analysis paralysis, you need to keep moving to generate results.

3) Brainstorm Content Campaigns

It is time to unleash your inner creativity and do some brainstorming. Develop a list of content campaigns and working blog titles that align with the most successful topics and formats you found from step 2. 

Concentrate on content with a proven lead generation track record. Gather many ideas at first then narrow them down to a few GREAT ideas. You want to end up with a handful of winning strategies.

Need to get your creative juices flowing? Download the free report, The 30 Greatest Lead Gen Tips, Tricks & Ideas.  This free report helps you come up with winning content marketing strategies to generate leads quickly.

4) Create Content & Monitor

The last step in this scientific process is to produce new content for the campaigns you identified in step 3. Create this content in-house, hire guest bloggers, or outsource to talented ghost writers. Professional content writers are familiar with lead generation strategies and can produce content that increases traffic and conversions.

For best results, monitor traffic patterns and lead generation continually. Reevaluate your content marketing strategy whenever leads dip below your established goals. If you are consistently meeting your lead generation goals, consider adjusting your goal upward and challenge your team to improve your metrics.

You do not have to be a scientist to learn how to generate leads from content marketing, but it does help to think like one.

Hey, thanks for the info. Now what?

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Trent Dyrsmid

Right after being a husband, a father, and riding dirt bikes, Trent's next love is digital marketing. He is the author of the Digital Marketing Handbook and spends most of his time helping his clients succeed.