Many businesses have taken a hit because of the COVID-19 pandemic – and not just retail businesses. With a volatile stock market and thousands of people being laid off, it seems as if the economy has pressed the pause button. While it may be difficult to drive revenue right now, you can still generate leads in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis that will pay off as things return to normal. Below are some of the ways:
- E-book download
While e-book downloads are a tried-and-true method, creating a good e-book is a time-intensive process. Though it doesn’t need to be long, it does need to bring value. E-books that are essentially sales brochures are a no-no, as are fluff pieces that don’t offer any real insights.
Remember you are in the early stages of the customer relationship. If someone gives you their email address and receives a resource with little to no value, they will drop out of the sales funnel and you’ve lost an opportunity. If you don’t have the time to create a strong piece that will clearly identify you as a subject matter expert, choose a different lead magnet.
People have been using webinars to generate leads for years. They can be a great way to kick off the sales process, as they give you an opportunity to showcase your expertise (and your personality).
Much like an e-book, your webinar must provide value. It’s OK to offer a special deal to attendees or touch on your solution to a pain point, but don’t make the entire webinar a sales pitch. Think of it as the initial serve, rather than a one-shot deal.
Note: Live webinars that promise interaction are where you’ll collect the most leads, but you could also record the webinar and make it available on demand to pick up a few stragglers after the fact.
HubSpot tells us that customers are four times more likely to watch a video than read about a product, and 52% of marketers around the world name video as the content with the best ROI. That means users are more likely to be interested in a video than an e-book.
Many content marketers offer the first minute or two for free to get people hooked, and then ask for an email address to keep watching.
Who doesn’t like a discount? Everyone wants a deal, so offering special offers can be a great way to push someone over the edge into purchasing.
How many times have you clicked on a quiz to figure out which Harry Potter character you’d be, or how well you know the ’80s? While they sometimes feel like clickbait, if you can tie them to your brand, quizzes can be a fun way to engage your audience and collect leads.
One strategy could be like this: Can [service name] save you money? Possible outcomes were yes, maybe, and no, which helps the company qualify leads while being honest with customers about what to expect.
- Trial period
Many people don’t want to make a purchase until they are sure a service is right for them. A free trial takes the risk out of the purchase for them. This is also a great chance to get a user hooked on your premium features and make your service one they can’t live without.
- Challenge / free mini-course
This one might be the most labor-intensive option on the list, but if done well, it also yields some of the best results.
The idea is to offer a mini-course via daily email lessons. While it sounds daunting, the emails don’t have to be long, and they can leverage existing resources.
The reason this works so well is because you are building trust over a period of time. You should be giving away enough information that people find value and start to see results, thus seeing the value of continuing to work with you after the challenge period ends.
How does all this apply to COVID-19?
If we know nothing else, we know this:
- People will be spending more time on the internet, as it’s their main connection to the outside world.
- A lot of people have a lot of time on their hands.
People with crazy schedules, who don’t usually have time to attend a webinar, finally have an open schedule and are looking to occupy themselves by brushing up on their skills or tackling that thing they’ve been meaning to cross off their to-do list.
This makes it a great time to get in front of people and begin building relationships with them.