Looking for Leads: Refining Lead Generation as European Businesses Embrace the 'New Normal'

The pandemic has forced consumers to change their purchasing habits. Now time for businesses to refine their lead generation strategies and focus on what works today, tomorrow, and beyond.

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Lead generation has become an essential part of the marketing process for online businesses. The Covid-19 pandemic has forced companies all around Europe toward digital transformation in a bid to adapt to lockdowns across the continent. Now, as vaccines point the way toward some form of normality, the act of refining the lead generation process for businesses will become key to adapting to this new era of the "new normal."

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According to data from Marketo, companies with strong approaches to lead generation typically achieve at least 133 percent more revenue that have weaker approaches in place. 

As the data shows, although some digital agencies saw a large portion of their leads increase by 65 percent, 20 percent of agencies that saw a decrease in leads experienced falls of more than 50 percent. 

The pandemic brought with it some major lifestyle changes for consumers, which has prompted a larger rethink of their purchasing habits. This means that there’s no better time for companies across Europe to refine their lead generation strategies to focus on a new market that could be more receptive to marketing approaches. 

But how can European businesses returning to normal refine their lead generation techniques? Let’s take a deeper look at some of the key approaches being adopted today:

Champion digital content.

Many businesses across the continent will undoubtedly be eager to open up their brick and mortar doors for customers once again after more than a year of operating in fully digital environments. However, as working from home has gathered momentum since 2020, it’s reasonable to expect your prospects to be more active in digital environments. With this in mind, keeping your business active in a more online setting is vital for lead generation. 

Keep your digital footprint as large as possible as we transition into the age of the new normal. This can help you to reach a remote audience while safeguarding your business for any prospective return to lockdowns in the future. Your digital footprint can be increased in a number of ways:

  • Virtual events are likely to remain popular after the pandemic. By hosting or participating in virtual events, your business can increase its exposure online and put you directly in touch with a far wider audience. 

  • Webinars are excellent ways of sharing knowledge with your audience about your products or services and establishing value along the way. In the age of the new normal, webinars will continue to aid businesses in winning new leads and leveraging more sales. By adding interactive elements like Q&A sessions during your webinars, you can offer a level of engagement that audiences may not even get in brick and mortar environments. 

  • Video is only becoming more powerful in the world of marketing. There are few approaches to lead generation that offer similar levels of versatility and engagement for audiences. As the data shows, 60 percent of marketers believe that video marketing is either extremely important or very important to their strategy. This channel can leverage tutorial videos, promotions, testimonials, product openings and much more. Video is also a far cheaper approach to marketing than you may realise, too. With the majority of marketers noting that each video they create usually costs less than $100. 

  • Podcasts are another way of sharing your expertise with a wider audience. Podcasts help to educate prospects about your products and services in remote environments. Podcasts can be utilised by businesses to showcase their expertise and promote their brand. Which? is a popular consumer website that’s created a podcast format to focus on key consumer issues - like product reliability and sustainability. It’s been reported that 74 percent of people listen to podcasts to learn about new things. This makes the platform ideal for educating prospects and teaching them about your products or services. 

  • Chatbots are the perfect tool for adding a comprehensive and quick-thinking layer of support to your website. Chatbots help your marketing and lead generation efforts by being there to solve customer queries 24/7/365.

The pandemic has caught many marketers flat-footed as business models and consumer habits have shifted significantly since early 2020. However, it’s still worth expanding your digital footprint in the age of the new normal in order to a world that’s only becoming more remote. 

Champion wholesome marketing strategies.

The pandemic has been a difficult time for those directly and indirectly affected by Covid-19. Many people have struggled to see their friends and family over the past year and have had to adapt to isolation over long periods of time. 

One of the most effective approaches to marketing during this difficult time can revolve around striving to improve the personal lives of your leads, and to spread feelings of goodwill. 

Small gestures like freebies can facilitate a memorable experience that can not only help your audience on a personal level during this difficult time, but it could also forge a level of brand loyalty that would otherwise take years of pleasant on-site experiences to build. 

Leadfeeder offered its subscribers a small range of bundles to help leads to stay happy and productive during the pandemic. Although this approach can be costly when you’re not directly expecting anything other than a subscription in return, these freebies can resonate strongly with your audience in a way that’s more likely to convert them into loyal customers.

More wholesome content, in general, can be a great way of playing your part in lifting the moods of a consumer base that may be suffering in the wake of the pandemic. Look to offer tips and industry-relevant guides for using your goods or products for good causes. Remember that many of your customers may be going through a hard time, and keep this in mind when marketing your services. 

Use analytics to monitor your progress.

Statistically speaking, the Covid-19 pandemic has prompted a significant shift in consumer behaviour. This trend presents new challenges and opportunities for businesses as we enter the age of the new normal. 

In the wake of the pandemic, as much as 75 percent of consumers have tried a new shopping behaviour, with many altering their shopping methods, trying new brands and browsing different retailers to find the products and services that they want. 

Because these fundamental changes are fresh, it’s vital that your business adapts quickly to what’s working and what isn’t in your approach to marketing. 

Now’s an ideal time to trial new approaches to the content that you create to see what resonates best with your leads. 

By tapping into analytical platforms like Google Analytics, you can comprehensively gauge from where your traffic is arriving from which approaches are more successful than others. 

With Finteza’s session metrics, it’s also possible to use analytics platforms to see how users are engaging with your pages. The content with the best sessions is more likely to have resonated with your audience, whilst content with fewer unique visits and more bounce backs is a key indicator of a marketing dead end. 

Remember that it’s okay to make mistakes when marketing to these new audiences. As long as you spot what’s working and what isn’t early on, you can make changes on the fly to avoid lost revenue. 

The brave new world of lead generation in a post-pandemic era is going to be a mysterious one for European businesses that are returning to normal. Exactly how audiences are going to adapt to easing restrictions after more than a year of isolation is difficult to chart, but with actionable insights and key metrics surrounding audience behaviour, we can make reasonable estimates as to what a post-pandemic marketing environment will look like. 

With the added security of some short-term trial and error, the transition to the ‘new normal’ has the potential to be a prosperous one for businesses that have been waiting to open their doors again across the continent.