What Is Lead Sourcing - Tips, Tools and Strategies

What Is Lead Sourcing – Tips, Tools and Strategies [2024]

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When running an online business, it is important that you have a constant flow of qualified leads so that you are able to get steady sales to run a sustainable business. To do so, it is necessary to have proper lead sourcing strategies in place.

You need to ensure you have the right tools at hand and a well-planned lead generation process that you are in control of.

Today, you will get a basic guide on lead sourcing and various strategies that can help with active lead sourcing.

So let’s begin.

What Is Lead Sourcing?

Lead sourcing is the process of identifying, collecting, and qualifying potential customers or clients for a business. It is a process of looking for people and organizations that may be interested in your products or services.

Effective lead sourcing gives you more opportunities to generate sales. You can reduce dependency on inbound leads and take charge of lead generation.

What Is A Qualified Lead?

A qualified lead is someone who shows interest in your offerings, fits your ideal customer profile, and has high intent to buy your service/product.

For example, suppose you decided to host a webinar to discuss solutions to one of the pain points that your target audience faces. People who will register for this webinar are qualified leads and you can target them with services to solve their other pain points.

Your qualified lead will have a clearly defined need or pain point that your product or service can potentially solve.

Why Is It Important To Conduct Effective Lead Sourcing?

Sourced leads convert at a higher rate as they are proactively identified and engaged through a process. Lead sourcing also enables you to target niche audiences that inbound content may not always reach.

Manual lead-sourcing activities like email outreach, social media prospecting, and phone calls are crucial for predictable revenue growth. Relying solely on inbound leads from your website, ads, or other channels can result in an imbalanced sales pipeline. Conducting continuous lead sourcing ensures you have enough sales opportunities to hit your growth goals.

How To Conduct Proper Lead Sourcing

When done right, lead sourcing can significantly increase sales opportunities for your business. Let us look at a step-by-step process of setting up an effective framework for sourcing leads.

1. Defining Target Audience and Buyer Personas

Start by creating detailed buyer personas, and identifying characteristics of your target audience.

For example, if you are part of a B2B software company, you may target mid-sized enterprises seeking project management solutions.

You should clearly define their interests, pain points, goals, ideals, etc. Do some deep research on your audience on forums, social media, and their websites to prepare a persona that tells you the core areas you can focus on for marketing and lead sourcing.

2. Identify Channels Where You May Find The Right Audience

Do a proper customer analysis to find out which channels are more comprised of your target audience. If you notice your target audience are more active on social media, then social media marketing must be one of your target marketing channels.

List down platforms like search engines, social media, forums, events, etc. where people matching your buyer personas may be present.

This will help you choose lead-sourcing strategies tailored for each platform.

For instance, Reddit and Quora may be best for community building while LinkedIn could be ideal for one-on-one outreach.

3. Using A Proper Lead Sourcing Strategy

Every lead-sourcing channel requires a unique strategy to extract quality leads without being spammy. In the next section, we will share specific tactics for different platforms. But in general, the strategy should focus on building authentic connections and nurturing leads.

Avoid directly blasting product pitches or promotional content. Instead, share relevant insights, have meaningful interactions, build relationships, and subtly convey how your offering may help them. This organic lead nurturing converts better than hard-selling.

Skip the rest and read about lead sourcing strategies.

4. Focus On Quality Content

Create content that resonates with your target audience. Whether it’s blog posts, videos, or infographics, ensure your content provides value and addresses potential leads’ pain points.

Ensure your content is well-researched and of high quality as it will help you gain credibility and authority in your niche.

5. Track Your Strategy & Optimize

Closely monitor the performance of each lead generation channel using relevant metrics. Measure data like new leads acquired, lead quality, lead-to-customer conversion rate, channel ROI, etc. Use this to double down on better-performing platforms and fine-tune your underperforming efforts.

For instance, suppose you tried lead generation through guest posting on industry blogs. But only 2% of leads eventually converted to customers, with a poor ROI. So, you may shift focus to a different channel, let’s say, creating a lead magnet or building a Facebook community which have delivered higher results.

Effective Lead Sourcing Strategies To Maximize Your Clientele

While planning a process for sourcing leads may be time-consuming, with the right strategies in place, you will be able to boost the overall lead sourcing process and build up a large list of qualified prospects.

Let us look at some of the most effective strategies to source leads.

1. Using Lead Magnets and Opt-in Forms To Source Leads

A lead magnet is a valuable incentive that you can offer to potential customers in exchange for their contact information. This may be an ebook, useful webinar, templates, or any content that addresses the target audience’s needs.

Simultaneously, you may use opt-in forms strategically around your website or landing pages to capture lead data.

A great way to use these is by using a lead generation funnel. Create a 2-step funnel that includes a landing page to promote the lead magnet and a thank you page to give instructions on how to access the free resource. On the landing page, use a copy to highlight the benefit of your lead magnet and place a simplified opt-in form where the prospects have to share their contact details to be able to get their hands on the free resource. This funnel, you may share this on various marketing channels to drive targeted traffic and get qualified leads.

You may also rather use a pop-up opt-in form on your website to casually offer a lead magnet. That way, you will be able to narrow down the people among all the traffic, that are potential leads.

2. Lead Sourcing via LinkedIn Prospecting

LinkedIn is a great place where several business-minded individuals maintain a profile and is a prime channel for prospecting.

To execute this effectively, start by optimizing your LinkedIn profile to showcase your expertise and align with your target audience. Utilize advanced search features to identify prospects based on specific criteria such as industry, job title, or location. Once potential leads are identified, initiate personalized outreach messages that highlight the value you bring to their professional sphere.

Best practices for successful LinkedIn prospecting include:

  • Personalization: Tailor your outreach messages to each prospect, referencing their specific interests or achievements to demonstrate a genuine interest in building a meaningful connection.
  • Strategic Timing: Send connection requests and messages at optimal times, considering your target audience’s time zone and work schedule to increase the likelihood of engagement.
  • Content Sharing: Share relevant and insightful content on your LinkedIn profile to establish credibility and position yourself as a thought leader in your industry.
  • Consistency: Maintain a consistent and thoughtful approach to outreach. Regularly engage with your network by commenting on posts, sharing updates, and participating in relevant discussions to stay on the radar of potential leads.
  • Utilize LinkedIn Features: Leverage LinkedIn’s features, such as InMail for direct messaging to individuals outside your network, and LinkedIn Groups to join industry-specific communities where you can connect with potential leads more organically.

3. Social Media Prospecting & Community Growth For Lead Sourcing

Leveraging social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook groups, subreddits, forums, etc., to identify people discussing issues your product can solve. Plus, it will involve a strategic combination of content creation, engagement, and community building.

To initiate prospecting, start by optimizing your social media profiles with relevant information about your business or offerings. Engage in keyword searches and hashtags related to your industry to identify potential leads or customers. Actively participate in discussions, reply to comments, and follow key influencers or businesses within your niche to expand your network.

Maintaining a community on social media can significantly enhance lead sourcing efforts. By cultivating a community around your brand, you can create a space for meaningful interactions and relationship-building.

Encourage user-generated content, run polls, and host Q&A sessions to foster engagement. This will not only establish trust but also position your brand as an authority in your industry.

The community can act as a valuable source of user-generated leads, as satisfied customers are more likely to recommend your products or services to their network. Additionally, it will provide an avenue for direct communication, enabling you to gather insights, address concerns, and tailor your offerings based on the feedback received. Overall, social media community growth will complement prospecting efforts by creating a dynamic environment that supports lead generation and retention.

4. Hosting Webinars & Workshops To Collect Leads

Conduct educational webinars and online workshops related to your industry targeted at professionals matching your buyer personas. Promote these events on social platforms, niche communities, paid ads, email outreach, etc. to drive registrations.

Make webinars interactive using polls, Q&As, etc. Share actionable advice and case studies. Avoid sounding salesy.

Later retarget attendees with limited-time discounts or free trials to convert sign-ups.

People who register for your webinars are qualified leads, and the people who attend and take action after the end of your webinar are SQLs.

5. Create Actionable Courses To Source Potential Leads

Courses are a great way to attract potential leads. You may craft courses that provide tangible value and address the pain points of your target audience can help you establish your expertise and position your brand as a credible source. These courses can be distributed through various channels, including your website, social media, or dedicated learning platforms, drawing in individuals interested in acquiring new skills or knowledge relevant to your industry.

Moreover, embedding promotions or demonstrations of your tools within the course material can seamlessly introduce your offerings to the audience. For instance, if you offer a software solution, integrate tutorials or case studies showcasing how your tool can effectively address challenges discussed in the course.

This will not only educate participants about the practical applications of your product but also generate leads from those genuinely interested in implementing the solutions presented.

The combination of educational content and strategic tool promotion will create a synergy that will aid in lead sourcing and nurture leads through an informed and engaged journey.

6. Allow To Request Product Demonstrations To Get Qualified Leads

Allow potential customers to request product demonstrations is a proactive approach to securing qualified leads.

A product demonstration will allow you to offer potential clients a firsthand experience of your offerings, showcasing the product’s features, functionality, and value. This interactive and personalized engagement will allow prospects to better understand how the product addresses their specific needs and challenges.

When users express interest in a product demonstration, it often signifies a higher level of intent and genuine consideration for the solution. This will not only streamline the lead qualification process but also provide an opportunity for your sales teams to tailor their approach based on the prospect’s demonstrated interest and engagement during the demonstration.

Offering product demonstrations as part of the lead generation strategy will enhance transparency, build trust, and significantly increase the likelihood of converting these leads into satisfied customers. This approach will help you align your marketing efforts with the customer’s decision-making journey, creating a more informed and confident buyer.

7. Lead Acquisition via Content Syndication and Guest Posting

You may use content syndication, i.e., republish or share your valuable content, such as blog posts, articles, or whitepapers, on third-party websites, industry publications, or content-sharing platforms. By doing so, you can tap into existing audiences and expose your content to individuals who might not have encountered it on your own channels.

You may also use guest posting, i.e., create and contribute content for publication on external websites within your industry or niche. This will position you as an authority in your field and allow you to include links back to your own website or landing pages, driving traffic and potential leads to your business.

Both content syndication and guest posting expand your online presence, increase brand visibility, and establish credibility, creating an avenue for attracting a targeted audience interested in your products or services.

If your content resonates with these audiences, it will become a powerful tool for lead generation, drawing in prospects who are genuinely interested in what your business has to offer.

8. Quora and Online Q&A Platforms For Lead Sourcing

Quora, with its vast user base seeking answers to diverse questions, offers a unique opportunity to engage with potential leads. By identifying and responding to queries relevant to your products or services, you can showcase your expertise and subtly introduce your offerings in a non-intrusive manner.

To effectively use Quora and similar platforms for lead sourcing, start by creating a profile that highlights your expertise and includes links to your website or landing pages.

Regularly monitor topics related to your industry and provide thoughtful, informative responses that address users’ concerns. Consistently offer value to build credibility and attract users genuinely interested in your field, subsequently converting them into leads.

Additionally, including relevant links to your content or resources can drive traffic back to your website, contributing to a holistic lead generation strategy.

Overall, active engagement on Q&A platforms can position your brand as an industry thought leader while organically drawing in potential leads seeking expert advice.

9. Event Sponsorship and Speaking Engagements

You may sponsor relevant events or secure speaking opportunities at conferences, trade shows, or webinars, to position your brand as an industry leader, gaining exposure to a concentrated group of potential leads.

Event sponsorship offers brand visibility through various channels, including event materials, online promotions, and on-site signage, effectively reaching a targeted audience interested in the event’s theme or industry.

Speaking engagements provide a platform to share expertise, showcase products or services, and establish a rapport with attendees. This direct interaction fosters trust and credibility, making it more likely for audience members to consider your business when seeking solutions related to your field. Additionally, events often attract individuals actively seeking information or solutions, making them prime channels for lead generation.

You may leverage these opportunities to collect contact information, distribute promotional materials, and initiate conversations that can evolve into meaningful business relationships.

In short, event sponsorship and speaking engagements contribute to a comprehensive lead sourcing strategy, combining brand exposure with direct engagement to generate high-quality leads.

10. Chatbots and Live Chat Support

Initiate the use of ChatBots and live chat support on your website.

AI Chatbots can be programmed to initiate conversations with visitors, answer queries, and guide them through various interactions. Through strategically designed chatbot workflows, you can prompt users to share their contact information, preferences, or specific needs, effectively converting website traffic into valuable leads.

Live chat support takes the engagement a step further by offering immediate assistance. This personalized interaction will create a conducive environment for lead collection, as users are more likely to provide contact details or express their interests when they feel a direct connection with a representative.

These are great ways to collect leads and then initiate campaigns to nurture them into potential clients.

11. Targeted Online Advertising

Strategically design and deploy ad campaigns to reach a specific audience likely to be interested in your products or services.

Platforms like Google Ads, Facebook Ads, and LinkedIn Ads offer powerful tools to precisely target users based on demographics, interests, and online behavior. You may craft compelling ad creatives and refine audience parameters to tailor your messages to resonate with the specific needs and preferences of your target audience.

Effective targeted online advertising will help to increase brand visibility and generate leads by driving traffic to dedicated landing pages or contact forms.

You can optimize campaigns by tracking user interactions, analyzing conversion data, and adjusting their strategies accordingly.

Moreover, the ability to set budgets and measure return on investment will provide a cost-effective means of lead generation.

Whether through search engine marketing, social media advertising, or display campaigns, the precision of targeted online advertising will ensure that your marketing efforts are focused on capturing the attention and interest of individuals most likely to become valuable leads.

12. Issuing Contests & Competitions

You may run contests and competitions to generate leads. Offer incentives such as prizes, discounts, or exclusive access to entice individuals to willingly share their contact information or perform specific actions, effectively transforming participants into potential leads.

Additionally, encourage participants to share the contest on social media or refer friends to further extend the reach of the campaign and attract a broader audience.

This approach is great for collecting potential leads that are likely part of your niche.

Reliable Lead Sourcing Tools To Collect More Qualified Leads

Complement your sourcing strategies using the right tools for automated lead capturing, scoring, and management:

Email automation tools with lead collection

  • MailMint
    Simple email marketing automation tool along with lead capture forms.
  • MailerLite
    Simple email marketing & automation tool for leads.
  • GetResponse
    Advanced email funnel creation for lead sourcing.
  • ConvertKit
    Lead sourcing for content creators using lead forms and email marketing.

CRM with leads management & scoring

  • Hubspot CRM
    Powerful CRM tool to manage leads and customers.
  • Zoho CRM
    Quality CRM to manage SQLs and customers.
  • Salesflare
    Effective CRM to craft long-term relationships with leads.
  • Pipedrive
    Lead journey builder for prospects and customers.

LinkedIn lead sourcing tools

Pop-up builders

Lead generation funnel builders

  • WPFunnels
    Visual funnel builder for lead generation and sales.
  • ClickFunnels
    Advanced sales funnel builder for online businesses.
  • Leadpages
    Landing page builder for lead generation.
  • Instapage
    Quality landing pages for lead sourcing.

Chatbots for leads sourcing

  • ManyChat
    Facebook messenger chatbot builder.
  • Chatfuel
    AI chatbot creation for Facebook, Telegram
  • FlowXO
    WhatsApp business chatbot integration
  • Customers.ai
    Omnichannel chat messaging tool.

Lead scraping tools

How To Collect Leads Using A Lead Generation Funnel?

Lead generation funnels guide your website, and visitors, through a pre-defined conversion workflow using strategic page sequencing. Here’s a quick step-by-step overview of creating such a funnel:

  1. Choose a reliable funnel builder.
  2. Select a “Lead Generation Funnel” template
  3. Edit the hook page with a compelling offer like a lead magnet, free trial, etc., and a strong CTA
  4. Add Lead Capture form gathering key information like name, email, role, etc.
  5. Further Pages Requesting More Details depending on business needs
  6. Thank You Page& Access To Offer with an option to redirect to your email CRM

This will help to seamlessly capture contacts that are directly interested in your offering for further nurturing until they convert. You may also set up A/B testing variations for each page to test out multiple tactics with the copy and design.

you may create this whole process using WPFunnels, one of the best sales funnel builders in WordPress, which will allow you to visually plan your funnel journey and set up the overall lead capture process.

How To Infuse Email Automation With Lead Sourcing?

Mail Mint is a great email marketing automation tool for WordPress and WooCommerce that you can use to capture leads, manage them, and set up email automation to nurture them for conversions.

You can visually build beautiful lead capture forms, and embed them across your website using their Forms Wizard. For example, create a “Request Quote” form for your product demos.

Then set up automated Marketing Workflows based on form submission data like:

  • Trigger “Request Quote” workflow on form submission
  • Visitor enters details into the form
  • The thank you page redirects to your website
  • Follow up “Quote Request Received” email with proposed times
  • If they choose a slot, send a calendar invite for the demo
  • After the demo, email a discount coupon or trial promo code

This complete, personalized sequence increases engagement and conversions without manual follow-ups. The drag-and-drop workflow builder simplifies complex automation. You also get real-time analytics into your form and workflow performance helping optimize lead generation.

Conclusion

Effective lead sourcing fills up your sales pipeline so you can consistently grow revenue. Define your target audience, identify prospect discovery channels, and set up conversion frameworks leveraging tools like WPFunnels and MailMint. Experiment and track multiple lead-sourcing tactics to drive more qualified opportunities.

Start implementing methods outlined here – like lead magnets, communities, and outreach sequences. Optimize the highest ROI channels through meticulous measurement. And accelerate growth by automatically capturing and nurturing every lead the right way.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What are the best lead sources for small businesses?

Some of the best lead sources for small businesses include content marketing, social media, referrals, networking events, lead magnets, email marketing, SEO, PPC ads, and chatbots. Low-cost tactics like optimizing website pages for conversions, building an email list, and engaging social media audiences can generate quality leads.

2. How much should you spend on lead generation?

Most small businesses can dedicate 10% to 20% of their total marketing budget to lead-generation activities. The ideal cost per lead metric to aim for is under $50. Conduct incremental testing with small budgets and expand high ROI channels. Measure lead-to-customer conversion rates and pipeline impact to optimize spending.

3. What is the average cost per lead?

The average cost per lead varies widely by industry and lead type, typically ranging from $10 to $200. For B2B technology, it’s $122 while real estate has an average CPL of $47. Calculate your average CPL by dividing total lead gen expenditure by the number of captured leads monthly. Use it to allocate the budget effectively.

4. How can I automate lead generation?

You can automate lead generation using chatbots, landing pages with forms, website pop-ups, email marketing funnels, social media lead ads, marketing automation workflows, SEO traffic optimization, and more. For example, tools like WPFunnels, Privy, and Mailmint integrate different tactics into automated sequences for hands-free lead capture and nurturing at scale.

5. What are lead nurturing best practices?

Effective lead nurturing best practices include segmenting your contacts, sending personalized content, automating journeys using marketing automation, prioritizing relationships over hard selling, providing value at every touchpoint, addressing questions/concerns quickly, following up consistently via multiple channels, and offering incentives to progress.

Samiha Nawar

Works as a technical content writer at Get WPFunnels.

Samiha Nawar

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