In this article:
- What are cold leads?
- What are warm leads?
- Why do cold leads bounce?
- How do I turn cold leads into potential customers?
- Our final tip
The most important facts in brief
- Leads are a critical factor in expanding a working marketing strategy
- There are different types of leads
- To generate more warm leads, it requires a close look at the desires, goals and interests of the target group
In marketing, all companies are after the same goal: winning customers. But in the first step, targeted marketing requires expanding the company’s reach and awareness. If your offer gets the prospective customer’s attention and they reach out to you, it’s a lead.
Leads are qualified contacts. In other words, people who have already interacted with a company and passed on personal data for further communication. However, not all leads are the same, and depending on the interest in a product or service, a distinction must be made between different groups of people.
What are cold leads?
Cold leads are people who have already contacted your company and provided personal information, but are unlikely to buy a product or use a service. Cold leads often don’t know what exactly you offer or what benefit or advantage they get from your offer.
What are warm leads?
Warm leads are potential customers. This group of people regularly interacts with your company and looks for reasons to make a purchase or use a service. Warm leads know exactly what benefits they have and identify with your company’s vision.
Why do cold leads bounce?
The paths to lead generation are often straightforward – a prospect goes to your company’s website, the freebie on offer sparks interest, and the visitor just needs to enter their email address to receive the gift. Granted, there is a lot of work behind automating such processes, but the goal is clear: to retain leads for the long term and win them as customers.
But often the long-term interest is missing and the leads do not get in touch with you anymore. The visitor has no further incentive to interact with your company, and there are several reasons for this.
How do I turn cold leads into potential customers?
The goal is to win back cold leads and move them forward in the Customer Journey. Let’s take a closer look at how to convert cold leads into real prospects.
This is how you convert cold leads into warm leads:
- Take action on retention from the start
- Offer more variety
- Clearly communicate added value
- Spark emotions
- Improve user experience
- Good marketing automation
- Place CTAs correctly
Note: Not every cold lead is a potential customer. Often, people provide a barely used email address – or may have greater incentive in going to a competitor.
Take action on retention from the start
Prevention is one of the best ways to improve and successively expand existing processes. Cold leads lack important information, incentives or don’t even know their own challenges. The more you consider such aspects when expanding your marketing strategy, the more likely you are to generate warm leads.
Offer more variety
Good marketing is innovative and regularly offers something new. Gamification is a good way to do this, for example – interactive, playful content converts cold leads into potential customers, because it brings variety and creates incentives. In practice, gamification looks very different and ranges from reward systems to playful interaction. For example, users of various fitness apps have the opportunity to earn virtual medals by completing workouts, and particularly active users on online platforms unlock new ranks the more often they comment on posts.
Clearly communicate added value
What benefit does my product or service offer? Many companies do not know a clear answer to this question. Put yourself in the position of your target group and clarify the added value in your communication. Preferably in such a way that even someone without background knowledge recognizes advantages and benefits.
Figures, data and facts are important in order to make the advantages clear to your own target group. In the end, arousing emotions is the best means of persuasion. Based on data about your target group as well as results from market studies, you know what the “triggers” of your potential customers are and which needs you ideally allude to. Examples of customer needs are status, security, variety / innovation, social aspects, cost saving and growth / profit.
Improve user experience
Aesthetic content, easy-to-use page navigation, and short load times – these measures all help optimize user interaction. Take the perspective of your website visitors and ask yourself if they can find their way around even without background knowledge and experience with websites.
Good marketing automation
Don’t give prospects the opportunity to turn into cold leads in the first place. With good marketing automation, you keep your leads’ curiosity alive, because the processes permanently involve the prospects in the company’s activities. There are several ways to do this, such as regular content in conjunction with software to build and automate lead generation.
Place CTAs correctly
Website visitors in particular need incentives. The lack of a call-to-action (CTA) is one of the most common reasons why companies fail to generate quality leads. Ease website navigation and leave visitors no option at all but to leave their contact information. A regular CTA (“Read more”, “Contact us”…) helps.
Very important: Many CTAs alone will not help you, because good marketing processes are needed afterwards to pick up the leads as potential customers as well.
Final tip: Recognizing dead leads
With cold leads there is the potential to win them back as prospects, but with dead leads it’s a different story. Good marketing also means recognizing when certain people are not interested in what your company has to offer. Dividing groups of people into different lead categories is an important step for future evaluation of relevant key performance indicators (KPIs) and dead leads should be included in the statistics.
Example: Assume a company has 1,000 newsletter subscribers and by converting cold leads to warm leads, the click-through rate averages 50 percent (500 people). If the click rate settles in this range, approximately 500 subscribers are dead leads. Again, there is the opportunity to further exploit optimization potential and, for example, adjust the newsletter, but ultimately it is rather unlikely to win back every subscriber as a potential customer. It is much more likely that these people no longer use their deposited email address or have lost interest in your company.
You have a variety of ways to generate quality leads. Ideally, you communicate the benefits of your offer and create incentives to attract the attention of existing leads. But good marketing automation and “outside the box” strategies also help – gamification is an interesting option to win back the interest of cold leads.
Finally, we answer frequently asked questions related to leads.
What is a Lead?
A lead is a qualified contact who provides personal data to a company. Leads show stronger interest in a company’s products or services.
What is Marketing Automation?
Marketing automation describes the automation of all marketing processes within a company. The aim is to save resources in the long term and establish efficient processes.