Generating New Leads For Your Business (Email 1 of 4)

This post is a reprint of an email from a marketing series that helps creative business owners learn and build the systems that grow their businesses.

Links to the other emails will be added below:

Let’s talk about generating new leads.

The responsibility lies with the CEO of any business to create and optimize these systems (more on that bit later).

If you’re looking at your business and realize you either a) don’t have a system, or b) it’s not generating the results you want, this email will help you fix that.

Without a functioning system, you’re left scrambling at the last minute to find work - any work - to cover your expenses and stay in business. That’s not a fun way to work.

Here’s what the process looks like:

  • Generate awareness
  • Create a lead magnet
  • Get the right people on your email list

Step 1 - Generate Awareness

Most creators don’t struggle with a product or service problem. They have a bigger problem - no one knows they exist.

Creating awareness is essential to this part of your business system that we’ll create over this email series. There are a myriad of ways to tell people about your business and how it can help them.

A few options:

  • social media (LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Instagram)
  • content (blog, newsletter, YouTube channel, podcast)
  • paid ads (Facebook/Instagram, Google, LinkedIn, Quora)
  • appearances (conferences, webinars, industry trade shows)
  • sponsorships (newsletters, podcasts, YouTube channels, conferences)

There are two questions I like to ask when thinking about how to generate awareness for your business. Take a few minutes to answer these for yourself before you keep reading.

  1. Where does your ideal customer already hang out / who has the audience you want?
  2. Where do you enjoy spending your time and creating awareness?

(This is an active email series - nothing will change just by reading the emails and taking in new info. You’ve got to take action and implement the things we talk about here.)

What we want from these two questions is a) the platform you’ll choose to get awareness, and b) the way you’ll do it, or the “vehicle” you’ll use.

I like the term vehicle because it’s something that gets you from A to B. But you could choose a bad vehicle and struggle getting to your destination...

Which is a better car, a Ferrari or a Ford SUV?

Well, it depends right? A better question is “which is a better car to take on a road trip across the country with a family of five?”

Obviously the Ford. The vehicle you choose matters.

So, what did you come up with? Maybe your audience is on LinkedIn and you enjoy creating videos. That combo totally works, so that becomes your singular focus for the next three to twelve months.

If you want to be more hands off and have an advertising budget, you could identify four conferences or industry events and five digital channels to advertise on, and create a winning message that reaches the right people that you want to pull into your audience.

How do you know if you have enough awareness?

This question comes up a lot with my clients. How much is enough?

There’s this concept of a “minimum effective dose” that Tim Ferriss brought up in one of his books years ago.

That’s what we’re after. What’s the minimum effective dose for audience awareness? It depends on your conversion rate on your offer, which we’ll talk about more in email three.

For now, look at your average conversion rate. If you presented your offer to 100 people, how many would say yes?

If you don’t have data on that, make an educated guess. How many people did you talk to in the last three months, and how many became clients?

Then, how many clients do you need at what price to have a sustainable business?

Maybe it’s 4 clients a month at $10k a piece. How many people do you need to talk to to get 4 clients? 10? 50? 100?

Based on those answers, that’s how many people you need to attract in a given period of time. I like to measure in weeks, rather than days or months, because for my businesses I want to be having sales conversations on a weekly basis.

If you’ve got a smaller offer (< $1,000) you might want to measure daily. If you have a much higher ticket offer ($50k+) maybe monthly is ok.

We’re getting into the weeds a bit, so lets take a step back and talk about point #2:

Step 2 - Create A Lead Magnet

Awareness gets people off of a “platform” (or event, or piece of content) to your website, a page that presents something valuable that will help your audience.

That small offer is called a lead magnet, and it’s generally exchanged for an email address, that way you have permission to communicate with this lead over a longer period of time.

Some businesses use strategy calls or free consultations rather than emails, but the idea is the same. “I’ll give you something valuable if you let me know how to contact you”.

When creating lead magnets, I like to ask “what’s something I can give away for free that the ideal customer would pay $1,000 to learn?”

That’s a great way to think about the value you need to include in your lead magnet.

If your lead magnet is a complimentary consultation, what would $1,000 of value look like? If you decide to create an ebook or an educational series (email, videos, audio), what is something your audience is desperate to learn that would make them think, “wait, all I have to do to get this is put in my email?”

That’s what you’re after here. We want it to be specific enough that it’s only valuable to the ideal person, your dream client. Don’t make something for everyone, you don’t want to clog up your system with a bunch of people who will never be interested in ever becoming a customer.

This leads to point 3:

Step 3 - Get the right people on your list

This part is essential to an optimized system. What good is having the emails of 100,000 people if only 0.00001% are interested in what your business offers?

Much better to have 100 people that open every email, click on links, schedule calls, and become customers.

Plus, email lists cost money. You don’t want to be paying a monthly fee for thousands of email subscribers that will never see the value in your offers.

The way to accomplish this is throughout this whole awareness journey, be specific about who your business serves, what it helps people accomplish, and how you help them.

If you only work with big brands with million-dollar ad budgets, you don’t want to be attracting people looking for help with their first Kickstarter. That should be clear in your messaging, your website, your lead magnet, and the emails you send to your new subscribers.

So, you likely have some homework.

I’ve got a free blueprint to help walk you through all of this - getting it set up, deciding the vehicle you’ll use to attract the right leads, and the different pieces you want to have in place to connect this system and get it up and running.

You can download it here:

Tomorrow, we’ll dive into the next part of the system, increasing your conversion rate by segmenting your audience, creating tension and context, and presenting offers to the right people at the right time.

See you tomorrow…


PS - I'd love to know: what is the biggest struggle you have in your business right now? Shoot me an email and let me know!