Generating leads through social media is a very common business goal. So much so, that the platforms now advocate themselves as top dog when it comes to producing customers for your business.
LinkedIn claims that 89% of B2B marketers successfully use the platform for lead generation. They also claim that it generates twice the number of leads compared to other top social media channels, such as Facebook - the largest social media platform in the world.
Meanwhile YouTube - the video share and search giant owned by Google - allows you to create and store an infinite library of material, making it one of the strongest ways to generate B2B leads through quality brand building and problem solving.
The truth is this: it’s possible to convert leads from any social media platform, but you have to know how to do it. Fortunately, we can fill you in.
OPTIMISE YOUR PROFILE OR PAGE
Before you even start to think about generating leads, you need to ensure your admin is in check. You can’t start an operation without the right tools.
A well-optimised social media profile or page (depending on your platform) will feature the following in a clear and user-friendly manner:
Such as a suitable profile image, banner artwork, and mission statement or bio.
Such as your address, telephone number, website link, email address, opening hours, and Google Maps directions.
Call-To-Action buttons (platform dependant)
Such as “Sign Up”, “Get Info”, “Learn More”, or “Message Us”.
When a prospect visits your profile or page, you want them to find everything they need quickly and easily. This makes the user journey simpler, which in turn makes them more likely to further explore.
SHARE ATTENTION-GRABBING CONTENT
Content is king on social media. It’s what keeps your users coming back for more and without a steady stream of compelling content, you won’t collect leads.
On social media, every page, post and promotion is fighting for someone’s attention, and attention spans are shrinking by the minute. This means in order to capture your prospect’s attention, you need to be sharp and showcase what they want quickly.
A good way to do this is by evoking ‘loss aversion’ as part of your campaign strategy. Loss aversion essentially taps into one of our biggest fears: the fear of missing out. As humans, we have a far more visceral response to pain than we do gain.
Consider this. Let’s say you were trying to sell a house. You could word your social post like so:
“Create lasting memories in this beautiful four-bedroom property. Contact our team to arrange a viewing.”
It’s pretty nice and has a positive message. The thing is, it’s just very vanilla. It wouldn’t stand out on a user’s social feed.
Now let’s reword the post by applying the theory of loss aversion:
“Lasting memories are ready to be created in this beautiful four-bedroom property, but they won’t be yours unless you act quickly. Book a viewing today to avoid disappointment.”
Okay so it’s a little on-the-nose, but with this version, the post has activated the user. It addresses them as “you” which has much more urgency, and it pushes them to follow through with a direct action promptly as they want to “avoid disappointment”.
Most importantly, it sets in the fear of losing out. Another family could take the property away from us. We want to be the happy family there. That emotion is powerful.
Loss aversion can be applied to messaging for all industries and sectors, and can be based around a multitude of subject matters and CTAs such as money, productivity, efficiency and more.
DESIGN USER-FRIENDLY LANDING PAGES
Once your prospect clicks the link on your social media post, make sure they arrive at a quality destination. Don’t disappoint them with a sloppy landing page or website - they will simply just click off again. Nobody wants another Del Boy.
Your landing pages should be relevant to the post they came from, and should be well-presented and designed, with user-friendly functions (such as a sign-up form).
Avoid asking for information that doesn’t really benefit the campaign goal in question. The more sensitive the questions, the less likely the completion. For example, studies have shown that forms asking questions about age are more likely to be skipped.
If the goal on the page is the completion of a form or questionnaire, keep it short and simple and auto-fill wherever possible to further streamline this process.
If the goal is a download or a booking, reward them immediately with the information they seek upon completion. Filling out a form for a PDF download and then having to wait ages for it to arrive does not paint your business in the brightest colours.
PROMOTE GATED CONTENT
Providing the key to something locked away is a really desirable incentive; particularly if it unlocks the information your prospect really wants.
Gated content on social media comes in many forms, but traditionally, the likes of white papers/download PDF guides, access to webinars, or private community groups (particularly on Facebook) are among the most common.
The transaction here also makes sense: if someone wants your white paper, they need to provide you with their email address in order for you to mail it over. It’s a fair exchange of information, which is why a recent 2019 report found that white papers drove positive conversion results of up to 26%.
When promoting gated content, remember to tease what’s inside the vault rather than giving away all its secrets. You still need the user to enquire for full access. A great way of doing this is to use carousel posts - highly effective on LinkedIn - to provide a demo version.
Perhaps your white paper or webinar reveals “10 Things You Need To Know” about something. You could reveal say three of the 10 things on your carousel, and then make the CTA built around discovering the other seven. This offers your prospect both immediate value and an exciting preview of what’s to come; making the opportunity to access the full gated version all the more appealing.
SPECIAL OFFERS AND PROMOTIONS
At the end of the day, money talks. If you can provide your prospect with a saving, discount or special opportunity, the likelihood is they will generate into a lead.
Better yet, if you make that promotional opportunity even more limited - say with a time restriction (“this weekend only...”, “For just 24 hours...” etc) - you are also incorporating ‘loss aversion’ as we learned earlier. Therefore, even more chance they will click through and undertake the desired action.
Promotions on social media such as discount codes, reward points, members perks and more are all great ways of making your user feel special and privileged. These can be provided in exchange for information, such as newsletter sign-ups, but remember to keep the transaction fair.
A 10% saving on your services in exchange for a newsletter sign-up is a fair deal. They gain a reduction in cost, you gain a valuable contact who you can now follow up with for repeat messaging and potentially business.
Much like with gated content, you are offering them value in return for theirs, so don’t stake the trade any higher than it needs to be; that’ll just see your users drop off before they commit.
USE SOCIAL LEAD ADS
So far, everything you’ve learnt today is ‘organic’ methods for generating more leads on social media. In essence, that means you can do all of these things without spending any money.
However, should you wish to spend some money on your lead generating efforts, consider our final option: social lead advertisements.
All social platforms offer advertising and promotional packages in a variety of formats. Carousel ads are very common and popular, as are promoted videos.
Each platform will provide you with the necessary steps to complete and host an advertisement; setting your desired budget, targeting it towards your specific user, location and demographic, and enabling you to track its on-going performance.
Social lead forms on LinkedIn are particularly effective, with the average conversion rate on a lead form at 13%, compared to a standard landing page at 2.35%. Advertisement on YouTube is also advantageous, as you can utilise its partnership with Google for higher keyword ranking on both platforms - meaning your promotion appears more frequently and higher up.
There’s no hard and fast rule when it comes to social lead ads, but in general, you want to build your advertisement around an action - such as signing up for a webinar or downloading a white paper like we suggested for the gated content section. Alternatively, you want to push a specific campaign message, such as a “January Sale” or “Now Trading in Your Area”.
Ensure that before you run any paid promotions on social media, you have the earlier foundations laid out to perfection: a fully-optimised page or profile, attention-grabbing messaging, and a professional-looking landing pages or website. This will make the user journey to conversion much smoother and more efficient.