23 Lead Generation Tools to Supercharge Growth in 2019 [+4 Ways to Use Them]Sherri Bohman
Your business is at a stage where it’s ready to grow. You want to supercharge your marketing efforts. The question is, what do you need to have in place to be able to do it?
In this guide, we’ll showcase 23 of the most cutting-edge lead generation tools. You’ll also learn four effective ways to use them to supercharge the growth of your business today.
- Search Engine Marketing
- Email Marketing
- Social Media
- Landing Pages
- Marketing Automation
- Referral Marketing
- Conversion Tools
- Prospecting Tools
- BONUS: How to Use These Lead Generation Tools
Search Engine Marketing
Google is one of the biggest sources of traffic for most businesses. It’s imperative you use online lead generation tools to optimize your search presence. Here are some services to help you maximize both organic and paid traffic to your website.
Acquisio optimizes your SEM and PPC campaigns using the power of machine learning. Their platform automatically optimizes elements such as bid management and data sourcing, allowing you to scale your marketing infrastructure with ease. Check out their recent study of 30,000 paid accounts to see just how effective it can be.
Pricing: Starting at $199 /MO
Email is still the most effective tool for nurturing your audience. By building your email list, you have access to an owned audience that you can communicate and build lifelong relationships with. Here are some powerful email lead generation tools to experiment with:
MailChimp is the go-to tool for marketers who want a simple email marketing infrastructure. It comes out-of-the-box with everything you need to send engaging emails, which includes form builders and a drag-and-drop email designer.
Pricing: Starting at $10 /MO (Free plan available)
Originally built for bloggers, ConvertKit provides sophisticated and automated email marketing features. These come in the form of workflows, which allow marketers and small business owners to create drag-and-drop email journey’s based on user behavior.
Pricing: Starting at $24 /MO
While the above tools are great for inbound marketing, MailShake is a platform that allows you to send cold emails to prospects who have not yet engaged with you. MailShake integrates with Gmail, providing sending calendars, templates, and workflows to organize your cold outreach perfectly.
Pricing: Starting at $17 /MO
Social media is the best way to serve your audience with engaging and entertaining content. However, it can be tough to keep up with the digital chatter on several channels at once. These tools will help you automate and manage your audience engagement efforts.
With Mention, you can listen in on users who are talking about your brand, products, and relevant topics online. Channels include social platforms (such as Twitter and Facebook) as well as news outlets like NYT and Huffington Post. Use this insight to engage with your leads on the social platforms they frequent.
Pricing: Starting at $25 /MO
LinkedIn has quickly become the digital social mecca for B2B marketers. Orca automates much of the connection and lead generation process, allowing you to set criteria using advanced search strings, as well as automated sequences to connect and reach out to your ideal clients.
Pricing: Starting at $50 /MO
Buffer helps you automate content sharing and curation on social platforms like Twitter, Instagram, and more. With powerful scheduling and analytics, it’s easy to monitor your highest performing content. It also ensures your posts are published at a time of the day that generates the highest engagement.
Pricing: Starting at $15 /MO (Free plan available)
Mobile Monkey is a chatbot that helps you get more leads from Facebook marketing and advertising. With organic reach on this social media platform declining, getting leads on Facebook is becoming more challenging. Mobile Monkey helps marketers get more out of Facebook Messenger specifically, allowing them to blast chats while increasing open rates, automate appointments and chats, create segments and build conversion funnels, diagnose lead quality in the platform and more.
Tailored landing pages are a must-have when driving targeted traffic from your marketing campaigns. Whether that’s PPC or social media, it’s important you set up individual landing pages that target the specific pains and desires of your target audience.
Landing pages are imperative for any digital marketing campaign (especially SEM). Unbounce is a drag-and-drop landing page builder, providing templates to build powerful, lead-generating pages from scratch.
Pricing: Starting at $79 /MO
ONTRApages is a free alternative to Unbounce. While the features aren’t as sophisticated, it provides a quick and easy way for business owners to get started with landing page design.
Nurturing your prospects across multiple-channels can be tough. Many marketers use multiple tools to build their “marketing stack,” while others prefer to use all-in-one solutions. Here are some best-of-breed marketing automation tools to help you generate and nurture leads faster.
HubSpot is one of the leading brands in the marketing automation space. They provide an all-in-one solution, taking care of lead capturing, nurturing, content optimization, and more. With the recent release of their customer service tools, it’s become a one-stop-shop for the entire customer journey.
Pricing: Starting at $50 /MO (Free plans available)
AutoPilot is an affordable alternative to HubSpot, making it the perfect lead generation tool for small businesses. With its drag-and-drop journey builder, you can nurture customers using email, SMS, and other channels with ease. It also works seamlessly with other tools thanks to Zapier integration.
Pricing: Starting at $20 /MO
Infusionsoft is similar to HubSpot regarding all-in-one automation features. While HubSpot attracts a mostly B2B audience, Infusionsoft is perfect for small business and eCommerce stores. Features include a CRM, online sales platform, payments, and more.
Pricing: Starting at $50 /MO
According to a Nielsen study, people are four times more likely to buy from a brand when a friend recommends it. Referral marketing, therefore, is a must-have for any brand serious about growth. Here are some tools to help you do it.
Referrals are the lifeblood of many online businesses. ReferralCandy makes setting up referral programs a breeze, allowing marketers and business owners to choose rewards, set up landing pages, and promote it all from one platform.
Pricing: Starting at $49 /MO
KingSumo helps businesses set up contests and giveaways. Prospects and customers enter their email address for a chance to win. When they share with friends, they increase their chances of winning, adding virality to every contest.
Pricing: Starting at $8 /MO (Free plan available)
Ambassador is another all-in-one referral marketing tool, offering more sophisticated analytics. If you’re in the real estate, energy, tourism, or finance sector, this may be the preferred tool for you.
Pricing: Starting at $800 /MO
Driving traffic to your website is useless if you don’t convert them into subscribers, leads, or customers. Use these tools to maximize the conversion rate from your owned marketing assets.
Sumo is an all-in-one conversion and content optimization solution. Not only can you generate leads with their various form features, but you can also optimize your content using heat mapping and content analytics solutions.
Pricing: Starting at $24 /MO (Free plan available)
Drift is a live chat and chatbot platform that allows marketers and sales teams to communicate directly with website visitors. Drift believes we’re in the age of “conversational marketing,” where forms will soon be replaced with one-to-one interactions with visitors. Whether or not this is true, Drift is well worth testing.
Pricing: Starting at $50 /MO (Free plan available)
OptinMonster provides conversion-driven widgets such as welcome mats, popups, sidebar forms, and much more. It’s a complete conversion solution to get the most out of your content and web pages.
Pricing: Starting at $9 /MO
If you’re interested in using outbound marketing to go on the offensive, you need to know who you’re targeting. These prospecting and data enrichment tools will help you find your dream clients and show you how to reach them.
If you’re looking for specific email addresses, Hunter.io can help you find it. Simply enter the target prospect’s full name and domain name, and Hunter will do the rest. You can also upload CSV files to find email addresses in bulk.
Pricing: Starting at $49 /MO (Free plan available)
FullContact provides data enrichment for your prospects and existing contacts. It collects lead data from various social media platforms to provide deeper insights into your prospects. You can then use this data to attract more of your ideal prospects and tailor your messaging.
Pricing: Starting at $9 /MO (Free plan available)
UpLead provides instant access to accurate, affordable company data. Simply enter your target account criteria, and UpLead will provide the contact details of the best leads to pursue. Rich profiles provide a deeper view of each leads’ experience and digital footprint.
Pricing: Starting at $49 /MO
How to Use These Lead Generation Tools [Bonus]
You now have access to the best lead generation tools. The question is, how do you use these tools to attract new customers? We’ve included four ways you can test and implement these tools today.
#1: Attract Leads with Value-Driven Thought Leadership
Driving top-of-funnel traffic is one of the biggest challenges marketers and small business owners face. The best method of overcoming this hurdle is to create practical, entertaining, and engaging content.
Follow these four steps to establish yourself as a thought leader and attract traffic through top-of-funnel content:
- Research: What questions are your prospects searching for online? What topics are the influencers in your space talking about? Look at the leading publications and blogs in your space. Pick up the phone and talk to your customers. Ask them what challenges they’re trying to overcome. This will give you the insight you need to fuel your content efforts.
- Creation: Mediocre content is not good enough. It must teach your audience how they can solve their problem. They must come away knowing exactly how they can reach their goals. Use your content as a platform to tell stories, both your own and from your customer’s perspective.
- Promotion: Of course, nobody is going to read your content if you don’t share it. Create a regular social media calendar to promote your content out to key channels. Reach out to influencers who would find it of interest. Create a scalable link-building strategy to boost your organic search ranking.
- Optimization: Don’t just leave your content to go stale. Keep it regularly updated as the topic evolves and expands. Run regular experiments to boost conversion rates by testing new widgets and calls-to-action.
Restaurant chain Leon blend recipes and news articles on their blog. This allows them to empower their audience to create the kinds of food that align with Leon’s mission (natural fast food), building a loyal audience as a result:
Good content focuses on solving problems and telling compelling stories. Look at the highest performing content in your space and see how you can make it even better.
#2: Use These PPC Hacks to Boost ROI
Google AdWords is a fast way to generate new leads with a positive ROI. If you’re already running PPC campaigns, or are thinking about starting one, then test these five techniques to ensure you get positive results fast.
- Use Ad Extensions: Capture search engine real estate by using extensions. These include sitelinks that provide extra options for searchers:
- Optimize for Mobile: If you rely on phone inquiries, consider using click-to-call and SMS extensions. These allow your prospects to communicate directly with your business from Google:
- Optimize Quality Score: A higher quality score means a lower cost-per-click (CPC) and therefore a higher ROI. To do this, ensure your target keywords, ad copy, and landing pages all match. Relevancy is the aim of the game.
- Use in-market audiences: Use Google’s owned data to target audiences who are interested in specific topics. This feature organizes data into various market categories, including legal, real estate, travel, and more.
- Customize ads in real-time: Manually changing your ad copy to keep up with sales can be exhausting. Luckily, Google allows the use of dynamic text to update your ad copy based on several variables automatically. Here’s an example of an ad where the copy is dynamically updated to display how many days are left in a sale:
#3: Tap into The Professional Power of LinkedIn
If you’re in the B2B space -- or a consumer brand looking to partner with other organizations -- then LinkedIn is the place to be.
In the last 24 months, LinkedIn has become a melting pot of unique written and video content. The rise of unique and thoughtful content on the platform has created hundreds of new business thought leaders. This is mostly due to the high amount of engagement this content generates.
Is it too late to get on board? Absolutely not. We analyzed the top performing LinkedIn influencers to see what made them stand out. It all starts with a polished, completed profile. When putting your own LinkedIn profile together, be sure to include the following:
- Profile Picture: Images naturally draws people’s attention before words do. You should consider getting a professional photographer to capture a high-quality photo.
- Header Image: Use this as a vessel to showcase your expertise. Include the logos of companies you’ve worked with or publications you’ve contributed to.
- Headline: Why should people pay attention to you? What makes your credible? Include your job title, the topics you care about, or the publications you’ve been featured in.
- Bio: Once you’ve hooked them in, use your bio to put your value proposition forward. What problem do you solve, and how do you do it? Include as much detail as possible.
- Recommendations: Ask co-workers and clients to write recommendations for you. Encourage them to include the value you bring and what you’ve done to help them.
Allen Gannett, CEO of TrackMaven, is a great example of these elements in play:
As you can see, he uses his new book as his credibility booster, showing he’s a published author on a specific topic. Furthermore, his bio shows exactly what his mission is and how his company helps marketers achieve their goals.
#4: Optimize Your Landing Pages
When running your marketing campaigns, you must always use dedicated landing pages that focus on the specific pains of the customer segments you’re targeting. However, you shouldn’t just set and forget them. You must constantly be optimizing them for better results.
Here are some best practices to follow when designing your landing pages:
- Remove Navigation: When driving traffic to your landing pages, you must give visitors a single action to take. This call-to-action could be filling out a form or dialing a phone number. Regardless, removing navigation gives fewer distractions and reduces bounce rate.
- “Above the Fold": “The fold” is the visible area of your landing page seen before the user begins to scroll. Therefore, it’s important to keep the most important information in this area. This information includes headlines, forms, and calls-to-action.
- Hero Shot: Include a visual representation of what you’re offering. For example, if your landing page offers a free eBook, include an image of the cover.
- Social Proof: Include testimonials of happy customers on your landing pages. You could also add the logos of companies you’ve worked with or publications you’ve been featured in.
- Benefit-Driven Headline: Your headline must convince prospects why they should stick around. Focus on benefit-driven copywriting. State what your prospect will gain by taking action.
- Form Length: If you’re capturing prospect details through a form, ask for the most important information only. The more form fields you include, the more “friction” your leads will feel.
In the example below, Uber have many of these elements in play. They have removed navigation, kept important information above the fold, and have used a hero shot that literally puts the hero in the spotlight: their drivers.
As you can see, landing pages don’t need to be complicated. By keeping things simple, you get out of the prospect’s way. This, in turn, leads to a higher conversion rate.
Feature Image: Unsplash/rawpixel
All screenshots by author. Taken January 2019.
Image 1: Via Acquisio
Image 2: Via MailChimp
Image 3: Via ConvertKit
Image 4: Via Milkshake
Image 5: Via Mention
Image 6: Via Orca
Image 7: Via Buffer
Image 8: Via Mobile Monkey
Image 9: Via Unbounce
Image 10: Via ONTRApages
Image 11: Via HubSpot
Image 12: Via AutoPilot
Image 13: Via Infusionsoft
Image 14: Via ReferralCandy
Image 15: Via KingSumo
Image 16: Via Ambassador
Image 17: Via Sumo
Image 18: Via Drift
Image 19: Via OptinMonster
Image 20: Via Hunter.io
Image 21: Via Full Contact
Image 22: Via UpLead
Image 23: Via Leon Naturally Fast Food
Image 24: Via Google SERPs
Image 25-26: Via Google Support
Image 27: Via Twitter
Image 28: Via Uber
Sherri has over 7 years of business development and marketing experience in industries ranging from financial services and healthcare to her current focus in martech. She has her MBA in marketing and entrepreneurship from the University of Texas and is the Product Marketing lead for advertising solutions at Web.com.