10 ways to use social media for lead generation

By |2023-05-09T09:41:56-04:00November 17th, 2021|FDI Insights, Lists|

Generating leads can sometimes be the most difficult part of marketing any business. The good news? Social media — you know, that interactive tech that’s used by 3.6 billion people across the world — can be used as some of the most valuable lead generation platforms, if you know how to execute it properly. If businesses focus their energy on the right strategies, channels, experiments, and strengths to their advantage, they can turn social media into an evergreen source of high-quality leads.

It’s simply a matter of using the right tactics at the right time.

Businesses that use the proper social media lead generation strategies are likely to build better brand awareness and boost sales conversion. According to the International Data Corporation (IDC), 75% of B2B buyers and 84% of C-level executives have incorporated social media as a “key strategy” in the “vital roles” of the business-related decision-making process.

Because social media’s growth is continually exponentially around the world, social media has become one of the strongest platforms to look for new customers. If you’re willing to invest the time, the benefits can be bountiful. To get started generating leads through social media, a company’s first step should be figuring out its target audience. Secondly, it’d be beneficial for businesses to figure out what constitutes as a lead, depending on what industry you’re of and what you want to accomplish.

Once businesses have defined those first two important steps, they can start implementing strategies and optimizing them for lead generation.

Here are some ways ResearchFDI advises businesses to use social media for lead generation.

What is social media lead generation & why you need it:

A lead refers to any type of information a business can use to identify a prospective client interested in a company’s product or service. A lead can be anything from a name to an email address, occupation, or employer detail. Social media lead generation, therefore, is the process of collecting said needs using any social media platform.

Generating leads on social media helps both B2B and B2C businesses identify potential customers who are interested in them. These leads act as a bridge to the potential customer to make special offers and convert them to loyal customers. Essentially, lead generation helps businesses establish an invaluable resource to potential customers. And social media amplifies your lead generation efforts by helping you raise brand awareness, drive website traffic, and improve community engagement.

Now let’s focus on how you can generate valuable leads using social media:

How to generate leads from social media

1. Optimize your profile

Before leading your social media campaign, you’ll first want to make sure everything is in place on your profile to collect leads. Your profile should have, at least, all the means for customers to contact you. Additional details like signing up fr your newsletter, shop, or website should be there as well. Sometimes, pinning important information as a Tweet or header works well.

  • Provide contact information
    • Relevant contact details should be readily available on every business’ profile. Ensure sure you’re able to support customer inquiries whether it’s by phone, email, Messenger, or any other platform.
  • Create call-to-action buttons
    • Depending on company goals and strategies, having a call-to-action button is a good feature. Have a “Sign Up” button, a “book,” “reserve,” or “get ticket” action buttons, which are available on all mainstream social media platforms.
  • Add a link to your bio
    • You’ve probably heard the “link in bio” reference. It’s used when more specific tools aren’t available. Adding a link to your bio, means you can add a link onto the main landing page of your Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, or Pinterest feeds that give potential customers even more information.

2. Have clickable content

You need compelling content to collect leads.

Everyone on social media is competing for some sort of attention. In today’s world, where attention spans keep getting shorter and shorter, you need to stand out. Images need to be crisp and content needs to be honest, sharp, and interesting. If you’re aiming to generate led, ensure your creative content is in line with that you’re trying to sell.

Make sure your links are clear, your photos are relelvent, and you give your audience tempting call-to-actions.

Having some Search Engine Optimization knowledge won’t hurt either.

3. Design user-friendly landing pages

When you get potential customers to click on your link and visit a landing page, don’t disappoint by providing sloppy websites.

If someone is expecting to find a certain product, service, or specific information when they click on a link, make sure the landing page is relevant. Without corresponding content, it’s easy for internet users to close the window and move on.

Good landing pages are visually stimulating and scannable. It should give users a clear path, vision, and should be as accessible as possible.

4. Host contest and sweepstakes

Everyone loves receiving stuff. Social media contests and sweepstakes are a great way to attract people to participate. It’s easy, takes little time, and has the potential to generate leads. Contests also help to grow your following, generate brand awareness, jumpstart engagement, and grow your email list.

The classic “like and/or comment to win” is a tried and true way to increase engagement and can be held across any platform.

Tag a friend, photo caption contests, and “vote to win” campaigns are all easy to set up and great for engagement.

Gated content, such as whitepapers, invite-only webinars, and access to private Facebook Groups also make for compelling incentives.

5. Live video

Live video is a great way to stimulate engagement.

It sounds simple but going live on video sends a notification to your followers who can instantly tune in to your video pitch. Other ideas include:

  • Live discussion with an industry expert
  • Taking live questions, or AMA (ask me anything) around a relevant topic
  • Demonstrating some tricks and tips of a specific trade
  • Showing how your service or feature works

Live videos don’t need to be part of some heavy and expensive production, either. Some of the most popular live videos are simple — prop up your phone, ensure the audio is good, and give it a go.

6. Social media ads

It’s always worth trying out advertising on social media.

A paid social media advertising strategy is highly effective for generating leads on social media. You can use highly specific targeting options of paid social ads to show your audience offers that are tailored to capture their interests specifically. It’s a bit more expensive than trying to garner free engagement but a lot less expensive than the traditional advertising model.

7. Host a virtual event or social media conference

Virtual conferences and events are a great way to attract a highly relevant audience while establishing your expertise in a field.

Try hosting a virtual conference on topics that would intrigue your target audience and that relate to your brand’s area of expertise. Use the event to discuss trending industry topics, provide tips, and invite influential speakers.

Generate plenty of viewing and content opportunities by posting on social media while the event is live, or repurposing content into lead magnets later.

8. AMAs (ask me anything)

Another great way to generate social media leads is by answering questions and be identified as a problem solver. Industry AMAs (ask me anything) has become a valuable tool in getting more views and generating engagement.

It’s an effective way for industry experts to show that they’re good at what they do. Twitter and Reddit typically tend to be the best platforms for AMAs.

As a business, simply announce that you are open to questions about your field and let the comments pour in. You might want to consider creating a custom hashtag so people can use it to ask you questions. With AMAs, you’re essentially getting marketing qualified leads and then getting an opportunity to directly answer them into your sales funnel based on client’s needs.

9. Target and personal your offers

A little bit of personalization can go a long way when it comes to lead generation on social. A 2019 study found that personalizing marketing efforts on social media generates the best return compared to any other marketing goal.

Targeting your audience is a good place to start. Take advantage of targeting tools available on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter to reach the right audience. Run separate campaigns for different audiences so you can tailor your message accordingly. For example, you can split campaigns by gender, occupation, or age.

According to LinkedIn, ads that directly address someone have a 19% higher click-through rate and 53% higher conversion rate than ads that don’t.

10. Measure data and analytics

If you’re going to be collecting social media leads, don’t stop there. Start collecting analytics insights as well.

Setting up goals with Google Analytics is free and it will track leads on your website. Data monitoring allows you to see which social media platform is the best source for your business. If you notice posts on LinkedIn for example are outperforming those on Facebook or Twitter, it might be worth re-assessing your strategy on the social media outlets that aren’t performing as well.

Sometimes a simple indicator can help generate more leads. As an example, a UK retirement community developer called McCarthy & Stone found that images of apartment exteriors received more clicks than computer renderings and the insight helped the developer generate more than four times the sales leads in its next campaign.

In closing

In the end, monitor all the social media conversations that are happening and try to turn the conversations into conversions. See what users are saying about competitions, which can help you identify any opportunities to generate high-quality leads.

Considering nearly 4 billion people across the world are active on social media, it’s a market that should definitely be tapped into with the proper strategies and targets in your ever-expanding quest to generate leads.

Looking for even more tips on how to generate leads? Visit the ResearchFDI website or set up a consultation with one of our experts.

By |2023-05-09T09:41:56-04:00November 17th, 2021|FDI Insights, Lists|
stef small
VP Trade and Export Services, ResearchFDI
Stefan is a FDI and trade development expert, frequently offering advice to economic development and trade promotion agencies on the latest global business trends and insights. His areas of expertise include international trade, FDI, B2B sales development, digital marketing, and data analysis. Stefan has successfully planned and executed numerous trade missions on behalf of various public and private clients at major industry trade shows. As an important figure in the industry, Stefan actively participates in several trade associations, including SIDO, the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce, and AMCham, showcasing his dedication and commitment to the trade development sector.