SECRETS TO ATTRACTING TOP SALES TALENT FOR SMB OWNERS
There is a growing crisis in sales talent. According to Forbes, companies are “struggling to keep the sales reps they have, and having an even harder time finding and developing sales reps to replace them.”
Recruiting and retaining top sales talent has always been challenging. But, if you are trying to grow a small or mid-size company, it’s an added struggle to compete with the bigger salaries Enterprise companies can offer.
To help you attract top sales talent and navigate this era of the Great Resignation, I’ve rounded up six SMB owners to share their advice how they overcame specific constraints to recruiting sales talent.
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE #1. Hiring Salespeople Who Can Produce Quickly
How ClickGuard Overcame This Challenge:
Hiring is tough and in 2022 hiring the right sale people who can produce and ad value quickly is even tougher.
Sales is a competitive sport, and like any good general manager, you should recruit and evaluate candidates based on their track record.
Hire candidates that are already active within your industry with a strong social network of relevant contact which you can benefit from.
Ralph Perrier, CEO of ClickGuard
Protect Your Google Ads from Bot Clicks,
Click Farms and Competitors and Prevent Waste.
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE #2. Limited Budget and Limited Local Talent Pool
How Function Fox Overcame That Challenge:
When we hired our first sales team – we are looking for people physically in our geography, so it was a limited market and we didn’t have big budgets.Rather than looking for highly experienced talent, we looked for aptitude and attitude which opened up our market considerably. By Corina Ludwig Click To Tweet
We hired a former chef who had never really worked in an office before. He became one of our top performers and stayed with us close to 10 years and even got a FunctionFox Tattoo!
We always try to “Stay Creative” with any challenge that comes our way.
Corina Ludwig, President/ Partner – FunctionFox.com
Timesheet and Project Management Software
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE #3. Finding Salespeople Who Were Willing to Hold Themselves Accountable
How Green Rope Overcame That Challenge:
The biggest challenge we faced was finding salespeople who were willing to hold themselves accountable (fortunately, we have a great team now).Salespeople generally are either hunters or farmers, and each has a different personality for the role, says Lars Helgeson Click To Tweet
We have focused our energy primarily on inbound marketing, which is conducive to having a team of farmers.
Farmers are generally better with accountability and providing the data needed for closing the loop on the customer journey. Hunters tend to be more outgoing, extroverted, and harder to keep track of. We have found this role has been the hardest to fill and keep and are still in search of a good one.
Lars Helgeson Founder / CEO, GreenRope
All-In-One CRM with Marketing Automation
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE #4. Managing Budget & Expectations of the Sales Team.
How WeStrive Overcame This Challenge:
As a first-time tech founder, the biggest challenge has been managing the budget and expectations of the sales team.
To overcome this, I’ve taken the time to meet with people who have been in my shoes before.I've taken time to meet with both tech founders and sales leads to better understand sales salaries, commission types, and more, says Cory McKane Click To Tweet
Cory McKane, CEO at Westrive.com
The All-In-One App for Personal Trainers
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE #5. Making the Pivot to Enterprise Sales Teams
How Read Cube Overcame That Challenge:
ReadCube is part of Digital Science, which is part of the broader Holtzbrinck Publishing conglomerate. People who work in the Science Technical and Medical (STM) sectors know that Digital Science is a hot commodity.
So, I leveraged three core ways to be able to attract top sales talent.
- I engaged my network looking for potential sales candidates who already had a rolodex.
- The sellers I recruited worked for me in a past professional life, so we had/have mutual respect for each other.
- I also worked with a headhunter.
From those tactics I was able to source 15-20 top qualified candidates to interview.
Senior Vice President – Enterprise Sales, ReadCube
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE #6. Not Getting Enough Candidates
How DSP Helps Companies Overcome This Challenge:
In our 15 years in business we have been through many challenging times such as a recession and Covid 19. 2022 has been just as challenging, the challenge this time is finding quality talent.
Only 4-5 years ago if we contacted 20 potential candidates we would get 10 quality resumes. Today, if we contact 50 we are lucky if we get 1 strong candidate. What we have done to combat this situation is think out of the box and consult with our clients to do the same.One example of this to change the limiting belief that a candidate must be from your industry.There are many industries that cross over. By Jim McKenna Click To Tweet
Although the clientele might be different the core processes and sales cycles are the same.”
Jim McKenna, President at Definitive Search Partners
We Partner with You to Bring You the Highest Quality Candidates!
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE # 7. Candidates Who Change Their Minds
LinkedIn recently published the top challenges facing recruiters. A staggering 75% of recruiters report they’ve dealt with candidates who went through the entire interview process, only to then change their minds last minute. (Ugh!) Unfortunately, this is growing problem that’s been happening at an increasing rate in the post pandemic world we are living in today.
How Yoon Cannon Helps SMB Owners Overcome This Challenge:
While it is unrealistic to completely eliminate this problem you can expect to greatly reduce candidates changing their minds by focusing on the big rocks I call the 3 R’s:
- Remote Options: The latest studies are finding that 56% of candidates turn down jobs because of lack of flexibility to work remote. They want flexibility more than they want pay and security. Where we have been able to help SMB owners is by designing systems to help you effectively manage a remote or partially remote team while boosting their sales performance.
- Retention through Relationships: Working remote certainly gives your sales team greater work-life balance, but it can also lead to your sales team feeling too isolated and disconnected. Pandemic or not, never forget human nature has proven throughout history that people will often stay with a company longer, not necessarily, because they love the actual work they do, but because they love the people they get to work with.
- Introduce candidates throughout their interview process to multiple managers and peers in your organization.
- Show the vibe of your people and the camaraderie they enjoy through your company videos.
- Create and showcase several videos of you, the founder as well as your leadership team. Don’t make it “corporate”. Be your genuine selves. Candidates will want to work for you if you give them ways to feel like they got to know, like and trust you.
- Recruiting Funnel: There is no one reason why a candidate changes their mind last minute. There are multiple reasons.
- Skills fit
- Personality fit
- Financial fit
- Timing fit
- Lifestyle fit
- Future fit and
- People fit / Culture fit
So, by the time you are reviewing your top candidates you can be confident each of those candidates have determined for themselves the role they are applying for is truly the right fit for them.
Yoon Cannon, Business Growth Coach,
Helping entrepreneurs scale your business growth!
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE #8. Generating Enough Sales as a Startup to Hire Sales Talent Without Any VC Funding
How Peeva Overcame This Challenge:
FIrst off, to make sense of this here is an analogy. Startups are like rock bands. Whereas, rock bands will send out demo tapes to whatever label will throw money at them. StartUps send out pitch decks to whatever VC will invest in them.
Either way, most of them never make it out of the garage. To get a record deal in your favor, getting out of the garage and touring is the best way to do this.
Investors want to see traction and there is no better way to show this than to have paying customers. It doesn’t matter who you know. People with money have it for a reason, they don’t spend it foolishly. Ironically, the far majority of VC funded companies also fail.
My best advice to any Entrepreneur is to get as many paying customers as possible and as quickly as possible. This also comes at great cost if you are irresponsible.
Peeva’s approach is a top to bottom approach.
Rather than hire a ground swell of boots on the ground (outside sales professionals) to make cold calls and hand off marketing literature and then pay them to chase and bother busy prospects, it was much more productive for us to establish a beta relationship with a large corporate chain of vet hospitals.
From the C-level down, we were then able to scale at a much quicker rate with veterinary professionals and hospitals without ever meeting them let alone speaking with them. Our veterinary professionals essentially do sales for us, by selling Peeva to pet owners.I would also recommend getting a channel partner for the mutually beneficial relationships; such as credibility and marketing exposure via email introductions and follow ups, says Michael Hamilton Click To Tweet
I did all of this myself, before requiring any sales professionals. It was not until after I established these types of accounts before brining on a veterinary relations director that overseas 3 other sales professionals that follow the traditional meet face to face sales model. No VC needed, and the only VC’s I ever speak with at this point are those that reach out to us.
I hope this helps many entrepreneurs that will go broke or focus on an exit strategy before getting started.
Michael Hamilton, CEO / Founder of Peeva
Universal pet identification and central database
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE #9. Sales People Who Are Transactional
How Qnum Analytics Overcame This Challenge:
The biggest challenge in hiring my first sales team was the transition from their past selling “norms” into trusted advisors that would solve the customers problems as opposed to selling our products and solutions.
I hired sales talent who had the desire and hunger and weren’t too worried about their sales track record as that was in the past and CVs are exactly that past achievement. I was more interested in how I can transform the potential that existed to meet what our customers needed. So, I trained them to be consultative and not transactional.Getting this balance right helped us build better relationships and retain those clients with upsell opportunities as well as referrals, says Bheki Nkomo Click To Tweet
Bheki Nkomo, Founder, Tech Entrepreneur Qnum Analytics
Digitize end to end inventory data capture
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE #10. Attracting Highly Motivated Sales Talent
How Fin vs Fin Overcame This Challenge:
The key is well-structured, performance-driven incentives. Why not offer unlimited upside to grow your business?
Of course OTE must be achievable so that your team can accurately forecast income and plan their lives. But incentivizing sales talent to treat your business like it’s their own has been the single most important thing. How can you make them feel more like an owner, rather than a rep?
Alex Goldberg, Founder Fin vs Fin
Discover the best wellness products
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE #11. Making Our First Sales Hire
How Conmitto Overcame This Challenge:
It’s easy at first to try to go too big, too fast especially while building a solution or consulting business. While growing an early sales team, it usually works well to start with one great sales professional to help you begin bringing your product or service to market.
Early on, it’s about learning quickly and allowing the sales, marketing and product development cycles to evolve together. It’s more difficult to do this with a large team in place, and I’ve seen firsthand how painful it can be to change or adapt once you’ve made a few great but potentially mistimed hires.The first sales hire should either be considered a ringer with serious connections and a strong sales background, or an industry expert that would really act as a sales advisor, says Akash Agarwal Click To Tweet
That will help you define and grow your offerings to fit the needs they’ve seen solving this problem first hand.
Based on the approach that works, it may make sense to hire more sales professionals with a similar background, or it may make sense to partner with a larger firm that is in the industry that can be trained to cross-sell or up-sell for you.
There’s no one-size fits all method, and you may find that direct sales hires, outside SDRs that focus on meeting generation, or a partner channel oriented approach work for you, or a healthy mix of the three may be the best approach. It’ll all depend on your industry and the state of your business, so the first step is to start trying and learning!
Akash Agarwal, CEO, Conmitto
Configurable cloud software for supply chain management
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE #12. Creating a Large Team of Sales Advocates as a Startup Company
How Aqai Overcame This Challenge:
Having been an entrepreneur for over 20 years, growing and scaling multiple teams and companies, sales is the lifeblood for growth. The challenges in hiring great salespeople and teams have evolved over the years. In my latest start-up at AQai we have focused on two key aspects to grow our company through a specific sales and go to market strategy.
Firstly, having a compelling mission, one that deeply resonates and connects with our audience of coaches and HR leaders. This driver to inspire & empower every human with the skills to adapt and thrive. Ensuring no-one is left behind in the fastest period of change in history, has been the corner stone to attracting truly great talent.
The second and important strategy has been to empower a global network of distributed agents to act as our sales advocates. With this strategy we have managed to rapidly train, certify, and enable over 200 coaches and consultants to win more business, and do more interesting work. With their sales and success, driving exponential growth on our adaptability assessment and training platform. This strategy has removed the traditional thinking for hiring, and the barriers of initial funding the growth of a direct sales team.
Using this strategic approach has enabled us to land significant projects with companies like Microsoft, IBM, The Federal Reserve Bank and Havi, among many other pioneering, people focussed organizations.
To find out more about our work, the community we are building focussed on the mental health and wellbeing in the future of work, please check out www.aqai.io
Ross Thornley, CEO & Co-Founder AQai
Change, retain and prepare your people for change
SALES HIRING CHALLENGE #13. Making Sure We’re Hiring the Right Kind of People to Fill the Role.
How Sched Overcame This Challenge:
The biggest challenge we’ve faced in hiring sales talent is making sure we’re hiring the right kind of people to fill the role. Sched helps individuals and teams create great events with our event scheduling software.
We invest significant resources in training our sales team to be able to offer solutions for our customers’ challenges when trying to plan great events.
We want to make sure our salespeople can uncover problems, explain our solutions and build trust along the way.
Instead of just hiring a Sales rep, we are trying to hire people who over time can expand their roles. Our company is remote, distributed and filled with self-motivated, accountable people. We look for bright, hard working, results-oriented individuals with high levels of integrity because they are the most likely to succeed within our team. Finding these people makes our typical hiring process look more like an audition than the typical “application and interview” process. Hiring good people is tough. Hiring good sales people is even tougher. Our hiring process helps reduce some of that risk and increase the probability of a successful sales hire.
Marvin McTaw, CEO of Sched.com
Event Scheduling Software & Event Mobile Apps
So, there you have it. Thirteen founders sharing their personal advice on how they overcame specific Sales Talent Hiring challenges.
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Working from home is a great benefit for both employees and business owners. It opens up larger talent pools for companies to source individuals from and allows people the opportunity to stay in one place rather than relocate to another. But despite its various benefits, remote work can still have its own set of problems.
While working from home, it can be hard to get everyone on the same page. As a business owner it’s vital to stay on top of your remote team and the responsibilities associated with it. Here are a variety of ways you can streamline your remote team’s process, so you can manage your team effectively.
1. Create Communication Channels
Going hours without speaking or messaging someone on your team is not a good sign, especially when you have team members working from home. If you’re not actively communicating with one another, you will have no clue where a project may be in production.
That’s why constant communication is one of the most important aspects of managing a remote team. When people worked in a traditional office setting it was easy to turn around or walk over to their workspace to talk about a problem or discuss a change. Now that your team is located in different places or even time zones, you need to have multiple platforms for communication.
While it seems like a given for remote work to have an instant messaging and video conference channel, select one that’s right for you and your work situation. If there is a free tool that will do everything you need, you can save some money for your business. Slack, Zoom, and Google Chat are common platforms for daily communication between remote employees.
Aside from conversation tools, also consider project management ones that team members can share materials on or mark the progress on a task. Software like Hive, Asana, and Trello allows your team to check off completed work or share materials with one another. Whichever tool you decide to use, make sure everyone understands how to operate it.
2. Set Daily Expectations
Goals are necessary for a variety of business operations, one of which is daily expectations. If your team doesn’t have a goal for the day, how is anything supposed to be completed? Now, each department is different when it comes to the everyday task to finish. For instance, an HR team will have a different focus than a writing team. It’s up to you, the manager, to work with your employees to establish what needs to be done by the end of each business day.
Start small when making a task list for your team. Maybe, in the beginning, it’s just logging their timecard. Once you’ve developed that steady rhythm, work with each individual and their working style to create larger daily expectations.
Every individual is unique in what they can accomplish in a day. While one employee can churn out multiple tasks and juggle different projects, another may want to focus on one thing for the week. That’s why you need to meet and learn about your individual team members, so you can play to people’s strengths and get things done.
3. Remember That We’re Humans
Unfortunately, the entire workforce has not become robots, yet. What that means for you is that burnout still occurs with your teams, especially when they are remote. Working from home can still often involve traveling to clients. These factors, amongst others, can lead to burnout and other negative health effects. For you as a leader, set the parameters and example for your team by shutting off from work at the end of the day. However, this doesn’t mean you log off every day at the same time, just differentiate circumstances such as a critical deadline.
It’s not just work deadlines you need to consider in your team’s daily lives. People have kids, hobbies, partners, emergencies, pets, personal lives, and other outside-of-work things that can pop up unexpectedly. If you haven’t already, create a leaving work for emergencies policy book or guidelines for your team. That way employees know the proper protocol for how to report their emergency and what qualifies as one. Situations like these pop out of nowhere, and can be frustrating, but remember your people come first, not the job.
4. Build Fun Opportunities
All work and no play are not conducive to keeping a remote team motivated. Take a break every few weeks or perhaps after a project is done to celebrate and relax a little. Virtual happy hours and other team bonding experiences became popular when the COVID-19 pandemic first made many businesses go remote. But now it’s time to bring back these virtual games to break up the workload and build bonds between teams.
Scavenger hunting, cooking, show and tell, or virtual home tours are all ways to get to know each other and not talk shop for a little bit. Ask your team if there’s an activity they want to do or if someone wants to lead a session. You’ll be surprised at what hobbies or skills people have outside of work. Kicking back to relax and just chatting is okay to do as well. Just mark time on your calendar every few weeks for fun activities like this to help your team unwind.
Managing a remote team can seem daunting some days, but it doesn’t have to be the case. Using the right communication tools, setting daily expectations, remembering that everyone is human, and scheduling time for fun are all ways to make a team unit run efficiently. At the end of the day, your business’s success depends on your employees, and working together with them will help your end goals.
READ NEXT: CREATING HIGH PERFORMING SALES TEAMS
Guest Blogger Brian Thomas is a contributor to Enlightened Digital. He enjoys reading and researching tech and business. When he’s not looking into the latest trends, you can find him out cycling.
The majority of the difficulties in starting a business depend on doing the little things correctly. Any good coach will tell you at some point that the fundamentals are what get you to the top. There are many factors that play a huge role in the making and success of a business. So, if you are considering starting a business, here’s some important business success tips to follow:
1. Be data obsessed.
The more data you can track, the better your business decisions you’ll be able to make. Business always demands some “gut feel” decisions, but it is smarter to inform your gut as much as possible with all available facts.
Tracking key performance indicators for your company and understanding why they rise or fall can help you make decisions that will help your company grow and stay on track. By creating systems to provide you all the important and accurate data you need, you will ultimately make your business run smoother because you’ll be able to make better decisions each step of the way.
Be sure to have databases of people you interact with, that includes their names, job titles, business phone number, or even client’s feedback so that your decisions in the future will be based on all the information you have collected over time.
2. Pay attention to online reviews about your business.
Your business is “always on” even if you just operate from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Every company should set up Google alerts to monitor what their customers are saying about them, their competitors, and the market in general. Google Alerts is a fantastic and free tool for “listening” online. Be the first to know when a customer leaves a negative review or when someone praises your company online. Use these methods to remain ahead of the conversation and capitalize on it.
3. Be aware of your competitors.
Both your direct and indirect competitive options must be known and understood. You should continually be aware of your competitors’ activities, including what they are doing, how they market, and how they price their products. You may be the only one of your kind in your town or industry, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have indirect competitors.
RELATED ARTICLE: MAKE YOUR SMALL BUSINESS STAND OUT FROM THE COMPETITION
4. Have a greater goal: a strong mission.
People prefer to work for companies that are more than just a money-making machine. That’s not to say you can’t have sales or profit targets; it just means that if your employees feel like they’re part of something bigger, they’ll work harder and be more loyal. Customers also like to buy from companies that they believe have integrity and a valuable mission.
Here is an example of my own mission statement of why helping entrepreneurs matters https://www.paramountbusinesscoach.com/about-yoon-cannon/why-it-matters/
Certainly, there is way more advice I don’t have the space in this short article that go into making a startup business successful, but use these four starter tips to help you take some baby steps forward.
Overall, today’s business requires flexibility as well as solid planning and organizing skills. Many people start a business with the expectation of turning on their computers or opening their doors and immediately producing money, only to discover that making money in business is far more difficult than they anticipated.
You can avoid this in your business operations by taking the time to seek out experts to give you invaluable advice, feedback, support to coach you to success. Investing in yourself early on in your business will save you hundreds of thousands of dollars of costly mistakes, not to mention save you from years of struggling and spinning your wheels.
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QUESTION: What question can I answer for you next about growing your startup business? Share your comments and questions below.
As an entrepreneur, you’ve likely dealt with some unimaginable circumstances and challenging decisions over the course of the pandemic. Although the last few years might have been filled with some extreme lows, both professionally and personally, there’s still a light at the end of the tunnel.
Entrepreneurs, such as yourself, now have an opportunity to reinvent and grow their businesses in ways never considered before. By taking advantage of this new perspective, you can set yourself apart from other companies and invest in one of the most important components of the business – your people. If you’re looking for some helpful ways to show your remote or hybrid workforce that your company is worth investing their energy and future in, keep reading along.
Encourage Work-Life Balance
The pandemic has certainly heightened the need to be able to maintain a balance between work, family, personal obligations, and caring for our own health. Of course, this has always been something of value to individuals and professionals, but not at the same frequency it is now. From employees with aging parents unable to risk a trip to the grocery store, to parents of young children with changing school schedules, employees need the flexibility to adapt their careers to their life, not the other way around.
Supporting a flexible work arrangement as an employer is more critical than ever before and establishes trust within the employer/employee relationship. When employees are given the freedom, they need to be successful in their personal lives, it makes it easier and more enjoyable for them to be motivated and productive during their working hours. Rather than feeling stressed and anxious about a personal obligation, with flexible hours they can step away from their work for an hour and make up that time when they’re feeling calm and focused.
Adjust Benefits to Support Employees and Families
With the personal and professional lifestyle changes brought about by COVID-19, employee benefits should be reviewed and adjusted accordingly. According to the American Psychological Association, one-third of Americans developed mental health issues related to working from home coupled with the stress of the pandemic. Consider rethinking employee benefits to better suit their needs in this post-pandemic world. For example, enhance your well-being benefits to cover flexible schedules, caregiving, financial well-being, and mental health services. Whether it be online therapy, a life coach, or simply a way to navigate new challenges, evolving benefits will positively impact the way employees work.
Hold Financial Literacy Training
Financial issues have been increasingly prevalent because of the various changes in employment, pay, childcare, and so on. That said, your employees might feel strapped when it comes to making financial decisions that impact their future. Providing virtual training that allows employees who’re both remote or hybrid to continue building their financial literacy can help them feel empowered in their daily lives and more satisfied professionally. Employees might be wondering if they need to start setting more money aside and building an emergency fund for difficult times. This is recommended by financial professionals in general, but especially over the last few years, it’s been clear that you can never be too prepared.
Others might be looking to grow their family and, with that, are looking to purchase their very first home, upsize, or move. Employees might be uninformed about how to get preapproved for a mortgage, especially if this is their first time investing in the market. Providing resources that outline the documentation needed to start the process, when to get preapproved, and how long the period lasts is all helpful information that can guide them in coordinating their next steps with less stress.
Create Team Bonding Opportunities
Team bonding is a great way to inspire connections and get to know your employees on a more personal level. Even if it’s partially virtual, having conversations and activities that go beyond work deliverables and sales discussions is extremely beneficial for the company at large. Of course, building a strong professional team is key to your success as an entrepreneur. With that being said, to continue to foster those relationships, it’s helpful to know your people both personally and professionally.
Don’t leave it all up to your employees, as a business leader and entrepreneur you should also get involved in team bonding experiences. Host a trivia night, scavenger hunt, recipe swap, or happy hour. If you have a hybrid workforce that comes into the office on certain days you can schedule a field day at a local park, a hike, or a team picnic outside. The point is to simply make room for communication outside the walls of the office and create more personal relationships.
Establish Open Communication and Organizational Transparency
When times are tough or uncertain, employees want to feel like they can trust their employer to be empathetic to their changing needs. Establishing an environment where employees feel comfortable asking questions and voicing concerns is healthy for everyone. Creating a transparent work culture comes with some effort required, but it’s more than worthwhile. If your employees don’t feel they can trust you, there might not be a long-term relationship formed between the two, and therefore you’ll experience some issues with retention. Providing your company with regular financial updates that showcase the health of the business as well as being transparent when it comes to new opportunities in the company, changes in leadership, promotions, problems, and so on will help your people feel connected and involved.
Invest in Coaching Leadership
Leadership can make or break your success as a business owner. If you have strong, effective leadership, you’re likely to run a much smoother operation and experience positive growth. If you have employees who don’t like or respect management and other members of your leadership team, you’re bound to run into turmoil.
By investing in proper training for current and future managers, you can establish a better system of trust and authority. In addition, expanding leadership’s knowledge of the different types of workflows and support needed by some employees can be beneficial. If leaders can understand their team and the way they work, they can create a schedule that allows them to be productive without unnecessary stress. Most individuals aren’t natural-born leaders, and even if they do a great job, there is always room for improvement.
Prioritize Employee Recognition
According to Forbes, a happier team is not only more creative and energized but they actually have the ability to get more work done! The key to productivity is happy employees which translates to improved customer service, efficiency, and satisfied customers. According to Tanner Learning Group, 79% of employees leave their place of work because they don’t feel appreciated. This makes sense, but the numbers are truly astounding. By simply taking the initiative to create a recognition system, regularly checking in with your employees, and asking them how you can make them feel more valued, this number can be drastically reduced.
It’s no secret that happy employees make for a successful business. Although this is true, it’s much easier said than done when addressing the needs of every employee, increasing productivity, satisfying customers, and making your company a great place to work. By slowly implementing some of this protocol into your remote or hybrid workplace, you can begin taking steps towards those goals and seeing the positive impact on your employees.
Lead generation is crucial to any business – but that doesn’t mean it needs to be expensive, or difficult. Blogging to generate leads is one of the most powerful, easy and effective ways to generate leads; and these 3 methods will have you inundated with new leads in no time.
Blogging to generate leads through SEO
Search engines represent the most direct route for generating leads. Prospective customers search for businesses and products through the likes of Google and Yahoo!, and click the most relevant links – with 33% of all search traffic going to the business ranked #1 in the search engine results page. Blogging allows you to climb these rankings by filling your webpage with relevant keywords and links.
The more times you include a particular keyword in a page, the more likely that page is to appear high-up in the search engine rankings. Blogging allows you to regularly create keyword-rich pages, boosting your websites search engine visibility and directly generating leads.
Great blog content is also regularly shared; and the more people share it, the more links your website receives from other sites. This is great for lead generation for two reasons:
1. The more links your site has, the higher it will appear in search engine results. This generates leads because of your increased visibility.
2. If other websites share your blog content, your post becomes visible to a whole new target audience – generating traffic and leads as a result.
Blogging to generate leads through Social Media
Social networks, like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn , allow your business to engage with thousands of potential leads. Each social network is home to industry-relevant communities – from health and fitness through to digital marketing – and every single community member represents a potential customer.
Your business can attract these leads by blogging. Social networks are built on sharing, and by making your blog a resource of problem-solving, industry relevant content, you encourage people to engage with and share your posts. If your business is blogging to generate leads in the health and fitness industry, create content that answers the common questions in that niche:
* How can I lose weight?
* How can I gain muscle?
* What’s a protein shake?
Sharing this content across social media attracts visitors that are looking to answer their questions; and by the answers, you achieve two things:
- You bring your visitor one step closer to purchasing a product or service.
- You create gratitude for your business, for providing your visitor with beneficial information.
In other words, blogging to generate leads not only creates the lead; it also sales-qualifies them.
Blogging to generate leads through email marketing
Great content is half of the puzzle; and to generate as many leads as possible with your blog marketing, you need to publish consistently and regularly. By tackling the latest industry issues, and periodically releasing new and beneficial information, you create an incentive for your visitors to regularly return to your business website. This allows you to create a blog subscription call-to-action, and build an opt-in email mailing list.
Opt-in email is a tried-and-tested lead generation technique. It allows you to communicate and engage directly with your blog readers; building trust and appreciation of your business, and encouraging visitors to become leads, and eventually customers. By sending out a monthly blog summary, you ensure that your lead is regularly benefiting from your great blog content, and as a result, they’re more likely to respond to your promotions and special offers. Best of all, you can keep track of your leads through email open rates, and continue the process of lead-nurturing with further, targeted emails.
QUESTION: Do you regularly use keywords, social media and mailing lists alongside your blog? Have you used blogging to generate leads for your business? Let me know in the comments!
Blogging is just one key piece in your overall marketing strategy. Be sure to grab your free copy of MARKETING CHECKLIST for SERVICE BASED BUSINESS OWNERS here.
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