How to Boost Your Marketing Strategies and Fill Your Sales Pipeline Into Next Year

Resources and tools for creating a solid lead generation strategy for ensuring continued growth into 2017

Are you tired of cold calling? Then you need a professional service that specializes in bringing leads to your door. Just a quick Google search yields hundreds of results, so who should you trust with your valuable marketing funds?

This is the time of year when most small-to-medium size businesses begin to put serious thought into generating more leads and sales. If you're in the business-to-business (B2B) market, then you've probably felt this familiar pressure before. Even if you're numbers are looking good, it's never the right time to stop making sales or expanding earlier goals.

Finding the right leads at the right time can be a task in frustration and futility if you aren't equipped with the best services, tools, and resources, so here's a list of some of the best of the best. Let some of these lift the burden from your shoulders:

Convertist

This lead gen company does things a little differently from the rest. They work from the perspective of targeting higher-ups in a company first. This is superior to simply throwing heaps of emails at company employees of unknown influence in the hopes of one scoring you a great deal. Their connections, boasting a network of Fortune 500 touchpoints, is impressive. Convertist's strategy for targeting leads begins with phone calls to VP's and executives.

If this approach proves ineffective, they move on to strategic, timed emails that have a positive response rate of about 10% (according to their site). That number may not sound like a big deal, but the challenge of creating positive responses from email marketing is staggering.

The average "click-through" percentage (leads who open your emails and click links to your site or landing page) ranges between 1.9% and 5.4%. That means that you could get twice the average percent of responses as others (who are only using regular cold emails) by using Convertist's specialized lead gen service.

Clearbit

Truly, Clearbit is one of the most valuable services available to businesses that want to discover new leads and enrich existing prospects and contacts. Clearbit produces some pretty sweet results using their secret, but legal, industry techniques.

All you need is a website or email address and the geniuses at Clearbit will turn that into data magic: name, title, company, location, social profiles, industry, employee count, total raised, tech used, and more. That is incredibly crucial data to have, especially if having this information could be the difference between what makes or breaks your business.

Clearbit also offers a prospecting service, so they will help you build a new list of leads with only the freshest data and insights. Without a doubt, this is a must-have service for any business's marketing sales strategy.

Quora

This may seem like a strange addition to my list of tools, but it's actually quite brilliant. One of the best ways to generate new sales is by providing helpful information to your audience. Quora is a mix between a wiki and a social media platform. Members of Quora ask questions within the community and receive answers from people with a background or experience related to the query.

So, how can Quora, a seemingly innocuous question and answer platform help you to score new leads? Simple: create a profile on Quora and begin answering industry related questions, leaving links to your site or landing page along the way.

This is a perfect strategy for anyone who doesn't want to increase marketing expenditures, while simultaneously exposing your company to an audience of thousands and thousands of other helpful question answering folk.

Besides, free is a magic key when it comes to making growth suggestions in your company or to your partners. Members with an active profile often get tens of thousands of views when they post expert answers to Quora. Give it try, because a few minutes a day can generate impressive results.

Blogging and Content Creation

Assuming you have the time to manage a weekly blog, this is another awesome free tool that your company should be utilizing to increase lead generation.

Of course, creating content comes with its own challenges, including knowing when to properly use a comma or a semicolon. However, many readers don't know the difference either (or they simply do not notice), so go ahead and try your hand at creating a content-heavy blog.

One important thing to keep in mind while creating content for your blog and site is that it should be enriched for search engine optimization (SEO). Use keywords that are specific to your industry and write long-form posts of at least 1500 words for the best outcome.

Yes, this is an investment of time, but ultimately, it's better to devote time to a task that could increase cash flow than to spend more of your revenue on risky tactics, in other words, it's worth it! Having extensive content increases your chances of moving up the ranks of Google's search results.

Besides, great content that remains usable forever (evergreen content) can be used for other purposes, such as using your blog to highlight your extensive insights into your company's expertise.

Sending people to your blog, mentioning other companies, and linking to reputable sites can assist your marketing endeavors. If cold emails are the hooks of lead generation, then content is the fishing net. Don't forget to cast yours.

Google Adwords Keywords Planner

After you decide to start the blog that will help launch your lead generation plans to success, you'll also need to know how to plan each post according to the best keywords available. Anyone can set up a free Google AdWords account, and the account also comes with some free tools, such as the Keywords Planner.

Google's Keywords Planner is incredibly helpful, because it allows you to see how many searches are being made each month for words related to your industry. For example, automation (one of our top keywords) generates between 10k-100k search results each month.

Additionally, the Keywords Planner allows you to see how high the competition is for any given keyword. This lets you know what you're up against when planning strategic posts for your blog or site. If you choose to use Google AdWords you'll have to pay a bid price that will have a corresponding cost associated with the level of competition, but you can still access their tools without buying ads or paying extra fees.

Canva

Once you begin creating your very own content for your fancy new blog you're going to want some cool images to match. There are a few options here. You can spend thousands learning to design, hire a designer, or use an easy design tool called Canva.

Canva makes designing for a blog or social media ad (among other possibilities) a breeze. It's straightforward and easy to use once you get the basics of the interface down. Learning to create your own designs quickly and convincingly well done is a huge achievement.

If you've ever been frustrated with the lack of images related to your niche, or if you've ever needed to design the perfect infographic for your brand, then Canva can meet those needs and more. This is a great alternative to expensive design tools for the busy content manager who's working on the fly. I used Canva to create this cool infographic about CodePilot automation:

Almost any beautiful design you can imagine can be created, minus a few limitations, such as dynamic art with differing shapes. Unfortunately, Canva only allows you to design on 4x4 surfaces. That limitation aside, it's an excellent resource for adding a dynamic and original aspect to your online project.

Automation

One of the best ways to stay on top of any lead generation and marketing endeavor is to enable automated actions. We regularly assist businesses of all sizes and industries to automate complex lead generation scenarios. These scenarios feature our engineered connectors and modules for empowering automated data movement.

CodePilot's automation modules can give your business the edge it needs in today's competitive market. Our modules can automate cold email campaigns, create specific notifications when a lead is contacted or created, and move your data from one place to the next. Our automation connectors transform and repurpose your data and set you up with the powerful acceleration modules previously mentioned.

Automation is an investment that pays for itself by freeing up time (not to mention how affordable our modules are). There are nearly unlimited possibilities for incorporating automation into your business's lead generation and marketing goals. Plus, we'll even give you a free CRM if you want/need one (and it's an incredible CRM, ERP, and more). There's no obligation other than meeting with us to learn how automation can transform your business processes.

Choosing the Best Strategy

Although there are many strategies for building a cohesive strategy that will work best for your unique needs, it's possible to find the right fit by experimenting with a few first. If creating a blog on your own isn't something that you have the time or skill to complete, then consider hiring a qualified content writer to take on the task on your behalf. There are even companies such as Scripted that specialize in creating quality content for your niche.

If you are hopelessly searching for new leads—with little to no results—then find a professional lead generation service or tool that will give you a hand up. There are many options to choose from, besides the two mentioned in this post. It's all about working with the services or resources that make you comfortable and meet the criteria you set forth.

Either way, automation is one strategy that no business can afford to go without. Having a solid automation marketing plan can make or break your lead generation goals. For that need, CodePilot.io is at your service, providing excellent, comprehensive automation tools and services that will give you the boost you need. Without a doubt, automation is a worthy investment for any business.

Other tools and resources can be found here and here .

Are you ready for 2017? What does your sales pipeline look like?

James David Wade

About James David Wade

James is an automation analyst for Twin Engine Labs' CodePilot.io. He also happens to be our chief documentarian and an excellent editor who enjoys helping our customers better understand what we do.