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Lead Generation

Search marketing as a lead generation tool

Helen Bailey

When it comes to knowing the difference between marketing qualified leads (MQLs) and sales qualified leads (SQLs), it pays to remember that the two are anything but equal.

As already explored in a previous blog, MQLs take the form of people who have shown an interest in what you do or sell as opposed to SQLs who comprise people who are actively ready to buy what you do or sell. The SQL is essentially a prospect that has moved further along the sales pipeline. And if you’re a business owner or marketing pro, then you’ll already know that these are the most lucrative ones.

So, how can we generate more?

Why search marketing is hard to beat

Unlike other forms of promotional activities within the marketing mix, search marketing campaigns have power to deliver SQLs by putting what you do underneath the noses who are already looking to buy.

Search marketing frog-leaps over the entire sales pipeline to deliver hot prospects that are already in the market for what you do. This means that when it comes to lead generation, search marketing techniques such as SEO and PPC really are hard to beat.

Ready made customers

With search marketing, you can forget going for the soft, warm up option. Choosing the right keywords will allow you to penetrate the search results and get your site in front of people who are clearly expressing a desire to act - at the expense of everyone else.

For this very reason, search marketing is different to TV or other mainstream advertising campaigns, because this type of promotional activity is indiscriminate in its ability to differentiate people who are actively in the market for a product or service, from those who are not.

Targeted approach

Essentially, a business that is funding a TV advertising campaign will be spending money to get its marketing messages in front of people who may have no intention whatsoever of investing in what it does or sells.

Of course, advertising to broad audiences has its place. It raises awareness and over time can build a brand so that it becomes a household name. But that’s a different subject and something that’s best left for another time.

What’s important to know is that when it comes to generating leads over the internet, search marketing can be very worthwhile – and cost effective.

In our blog ‘Creating a lead generation funnel’ we take a look at what you need to know on a practical level so that you can begin to map out your own lead generation machine.