Lead Generation: Why Businesses Struggle (And How to Fix It)

For many businesses, lead generation is a major source of stress and anxiety. Why is lead generation so difficult? And what can be done to make it easier? In this blog post, we’ll explore why this is the case and offer some solutions.

“I am not good at sales.” This is something I hear a lot from small business owners. And when I ask them why they feel this way, the answer is usually some version of, “I don’t like to be pushy.” 

This is totally understandable. Most of us were not taught how to sell in a way that feels good. We were taught transactions – you have something I want, I have something you want, let’s make a deal. But true selling – the kind that creates advocates and raving fans – is about so much more than that. 

What is Lead Generation?

The first reason businesses struggle with lead generation is that they don’t have a clear understanding of what it is. Lead generation is the process of identifying and nurturing potential customers who are interested in your products or services. Generating leads is often a numbers game. The more leads you generate, the greater your chances of success.

Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to make lead generation easier. First, start by clarifying your target audience. Who are you trying to reach? What needs do they have? What are their pain points? Once you have a clear picture of your ideal customer, you’ll be in a better position to generate leads that are actually interested in what you have to offer.

Keep in mind that just because someone shows an interest in what you’re selling doesn’t mean they’re ready to buy right now. That’s why lead nurturing is also an important part of the sales process – it allows you to build relationships with potential customers so that when they are ready to buy, they’ll think of you first.

Systems, Systems, and More Systems

The second reason businesses struggle with lead generation is that they don’t have a system in place for doing it effectively. The best way to generate leads is to use a combination of methods, including content marketing (such as blogging or webinars), search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, and social media outreach. The key here is to produce good content that your leads find useful and engaging. This is not the area to skimp on. 

Each of these methods requires its own set of skills and knowledge. For example, SEO requires an understanding of how Google’s algorithms work and how to optimize your website and content for them. PPC advertising requires an understanding of how to create effective ad copy and landing pages. And social media outreach requires an understanding of how to build relationships and engage with potential customers on various platforms.

The Cost of Lead Generation

The third reason businesses struggle with lead generation is that it is very resource heavy, whether it be your time or money,  to do it properly. 

One option is to learn how to do it yourself – there are plenty of resources available online that can teach you the basics of SEO, PPC advertising, social media outreach, etc. Another option is to outsource lead generation to a freelancer or agency – this can be more cost-effective than hiring someone full-time, and you’ll still get the expertise you need without breaking the bank.

We highly recommend Katie Kastner, Freelance Content Writer & Strategist, for all things social media, content writing and SEO. She is who we go to for advice, training and services.

Where Did That Lead Come From?

The fourth and final reason businesses struggle with lead generation is that they don’t know how to measure their results. ROI (return on investment) can be difficult to calculate when it comes to lead generation because it’s not always easy to track which leads came from which sources. They often rely on the spaghetti method of throwing a bunch of stuff out there and see what sticks.

Whether your business is large or small, having a  process to track where leads come from will give you insight into what is working and what isn’t so that you can make decisions accordingly. Privacy practices change on what seems like a daily basis, so you must stay abreast of all those changes to avoid any interruptions in your ads and tracking.

Lead generation is essential for any business that wants to succeed in today’s digital world. However, it can be a challenge—particularly for small businesses that don’t have a lot of time or resources to invest in it. By taking the time to educate yourself, clarifying your target audience, having systems and processes in place and tracking your results, you’ll be well on your way to generating the high-quality leads your business needs to grow and thrive.

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