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How To Generate Leads – 7 Ways to Get More Sales Leads

Sales Lead Generation Article: Part 2

by Jeffrey Dobkin.  This is the second part of the series on lead generation,

In the first part, we examined why your lead generation system was broken, and some insights on how to fix it. Here are 7 new ways to make your lead generation strategy more effective.

Some clients jump ship every couple of years, and some of yours did, too.  You can fix that hole with a better sales lead strategy, and a better sales lead generation program.

Lead Generation Tip 1.

First, figure out who your current customers are.  

Clone your customers.  Dig through your files for commonalities: is it location? Income level? Value of home? Is net worth the driver? Neighborhood? Business type? Circle of Friends? Do they go to the same sites on the Internet.  Not those sites, you’re disgusting.  Besides, everyone goes there.  I mean do they belong to any groups in LinkedIn or Facebook?  Write all this stuff down on a sheet of paper. This will become the focus of your sales lead generation program.  Now that you have those statistics, look for people just like that in your new sales lead program.  Join those groups.  Or… you can buy a list with any of the above parameters, and mail to them.  If you don’t know what to mail… did I mention we sell some great, highly responsive sales letters?

Hey… if I do this research for you: figure out who your customers are, and write it down on a sheet of paper – I call it marketing research and charge you two grand. You can do this for free, and call it whatever you like — it’s your sheet of paper.  Unfortunately just like if you hired me, it will take time and effort. A lot of time and effort – but if you do it correctly the results are worth it. Fortunately, I’m available for hire and you won’t have to do this thankless but necessary chore.  It’s not cheap but won’t necessarily cost you two grand, and I”m always happy to quote. Call 610-642-1000.

Sales Lead Generation Tip 2.

Figure out where your current customers and clients hang out.

And hang out there, too. What restaurants do they eat at? What do they read, and what mailing lists are they on. Do they read – what newspapers or magazines? What do they watch on TV? What circle of friends do they go out with? What charities do they donate to? What gym do they work out at? What associations do they belong to? What schools do their kids attend? Now, go on – hang out there yourself.  If you’re selling million dollar boats, you’ve got to join the marina.  Get it?

Lead Generation Tip 3.

What do your customers own?

Do your customers all drive Chevys? Do they all own boats? Airplanes. Tractors? Write all this down, too. It’s part of the marketing research. (Remember, two grand?)  Then buy a mailing list…  Don’t know where to buy a mailing list?  See our free posted article  “Where to buy a mailing list” on this-here Jeffrey Dobkin website, with my compliments.

I say buy a mailing list because you can get a list of specific people who own these things.  You can buy a list of tractor owners in your own neighborhood.  If you’re selling tractor insurance you can market to them with no wasted expense – every person you mail-to will have a tractor.  That’s the beauty of direct mail.  You can mail to a select zip code.  Or get a head of household list who are worth over a million dollars. Or dock owners.  You can get mailing lists of almost anything.

Lead Generation Tip 4.

Now — What exactly do most of your clients have in common?

If you could clone a few clients, what are the common characteristics they’d all have? Because that’s exactly what I’d start looking for in new clients: the same demographics of clients in my own customer database. Section out people who have those same commonalities with your current clients, and advertise or mail to them.

Suppose you find out that every one of your clients reads the same 3 magazines. Those magazines would be good places to start a highly qualified lead generation program: take out an ad schedule, or send press releases regularly.

If all your prospects eat at the same restaurant, I’d start eating there too. If it’s an upscale restaurant, that might be a good place to sponsor the coat check room for a few nights. For a few dollars, I’m sure most restaurant owners would be happy to put up a small sign noting tonight’s coat check is FREE, courtesy of your firm. A small and tasteful sign does it, and leave your business cards there.

Of course if your clients eat at Denny’s… then, yeee-ha: time to get some new clients there, Jethro. Sorry. If it wasn’t for bad jokes, I wouldn’t have any jokes at all.

You could always sponsor desserts for an evening. Or if you’re in the city – sponsor parking.

Lead Generation Tip 5.

Create media awareness.

As a traditional direct marketer, I don’t believe in unfocused mass advertising for generating leads, especially when you are seeking higher quality sales leads in a specific industry or for a specific product. Too much wasted advertising – your message is delivered to people who have no need for your product.  And it costs something to reach each of those people  in an ad.  It’s called CPM, which stands for cost per thousand.  The cost to reach a thousand people.  If only 20% of those people use your product, you just wasted 80% of your ad spend.

Some campaigns in traditional mass media such as area newspapers, local magazines and local TV can work well to raise the level of awareness of your firm in your own back-yard, and generate quality local leads…and phone calls. And do you know who likes to shop in their own back yard?  Everyone.

Create the right message, the right image, and present it consistently in the right media, and presto — people get to know you. Then you know what happens? The phone rings.

Marketing Tip 6. Create trust.

Build up your network of referrals and referral sources.

Start by referring customers to others, and it will come back to you—in spades. Remember, every referral – whether you make one or receive one, needs to be followed up by a WRITTEN piece of correspondence – either thanking someone for giving you the referral, or letting someone know that you just referred a potential client to them. Written. No, a call is not the same.

Sure you can call the referral source, but then… you still need to write something down and send it.  When a call is over, you cease to exist.  When you send a letter of “Thanks for your referral,” or “I’ve just referred you to so and so…” it can sit on someone’s desk for weeks, and can be referenced if filed.  Around here, it can sit on my desk for months.  We offer a “Thanks for your referral!” letter on this site, I’ll also send one to you free on request.

Lead Generation Strategy Tip 7.

Pick up the phone and call.

Just say thanks for your business – everyone will appreciate it. Don’t sell anything. Just thank customers, and ask if you can help with anything, or provide any information they may need.

Giving away something FREE is one of my favorite offers. Free pens, free notepads, a free lunch. And certainly Free Quotes.  Offering something FREE is always great because it usually represents the very first part of a sale: someone calls.

Jeffrey Dobkin


Jeffrey Dobkin has written a series of Insurance sales letters that don’t sell insurance… they are written to make your phone ring.  His philosophy: People don’t buy insurance from a sheet of paper.  People buy insurance from other people.  His insurance sales letters make that introduction.  His sales letters drive as many callers as possible to call you.  Click here to see a sample insurance sales letter. To call Jeffrey: 610-642-1000 rings on his desk.  He’s also very responsive t0 your email….

Thank you for reading this article.  For more articles (some of our direct marketing articles are even better than this one!) please visit our Marketing Articles Pages.  Thanks.