Social media continues to reshape how we do business. It’s estimated that at least one-third of the world’s population uses social media, making platforms like Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, or LinkedIn among the most effective places for companies to spread brand awareness and generate new leads.
Read on to learn more about the fundamentals of social media lead generation, such as how it works and what strategies are best for drawing new people to your business.
How Does Social Media Generate Leads?
In short, businesses that build a following on social media can engage with a much broader, global audience of potential customers. Companies today use social media to:
- Advertise new goods or services
- Spread word of mouth about their brand
- Drive traffic to their primary websites
Given time, social media can serve as a powerful lead-generation tool that can far exceed the success of traditional engagement strategies like direct mail or cold calling.
What is Social Media Lead Generation?
The purpose of a lead generation campaign is to attract people to your business. While it’s possible to cultivate leads through methods like PPC (pay per click) advertising or email marketing, social media platforms offer a ready-made medium for connecting with potential customers around the world.
Social media lead generation works by drawing individuals to your profile through informative, entertaining, and engaging posts. From there, leads can navigate to your primary website or a specific landing page to learn more about your company’s offerings.
To maximize the number of leads social media generates, many businesses will create accounts on several platforms and publish content catered to each community. For instance, YouTube is an excellent place to post explainer videos or product demos, while LinkedIn provides a more professional space to share case studies and special offers.
The Best Social Media Platforms for Generating Leads
Apps like TikTok, Snapchat, and Instagram are specifically effective at reaching younger individuals, while platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn tend to appeal to a wider demographic.
Determining which social media outlets to utilize when generating leads will largely depend on your target audience and the types of engagement strategies you plan to use.
How to Measure Lead Generation on Social Media
Many of today’s most popular social media platforms offer built-in analytics to help businesses track and evaluate the performance of their lead-generation efforts. Instagram Insights and Facebook Insights are two examples of native tools that provide valuable information on the popularity of your posts, how many impressions your posts generate, and critical demographic data about your followers.
Using these embedded tools for measuring lead generation in concert with other tools like Google Analytics makes it fairly easy to project the potential ROI of your lead generation efforts. They also tell you what type of content is likely to attract more leads in the future.
How to Use Social Media Strategies for Lead Generation and Brand Awareness
To make the most of social media and consistently attract new leads, it’s important to understand the strategies companies use to build a loyal following online. If you’re new to social media engagement, consider trying different lead generation methods to find the approach that works best for you.
As an example, here's an attention-grabbing tweet from one of Cleverly's founders that resulted in huge engagement:
(You can see the full thread of Bruce's top posts, comments, and replies here.)
Below are some more ways to bring attention to your brand on social media and ultimately garner more qualified, convertible leads.
Increase Website Traffic by Sharing Engaging Blog Posts
One of the simplest ways to generate leads through social media is to share informative, well-researched SEO content, such as blog posts from your business website. Providing followers with educational insights or fresh perspectives on relevant topics will help to position your brand as an authority. This makes it far more likely for potential customers to select your company over the competition.
In addition, consider sharing relevant content related to your business from other reliable online sources. Doing this will lend more credibility to your brand and help Google and other search engines correlate your business with other trusted names in the industry.
Cultivate Trust With Your Audience Through Personalized Responses
Social media platforms provide excellent opportunities to engage with individuals in a more personalized way through comment replies or direct messaging. Answering questions in the threads of your posts or starting a conversation with a new follower demonstrates a willingness to communicate openly with potential customers, sending a positive signal to your entire audience. Encourage your followers to share their thoughts or invite them to submit their own testimonials regarding your products or services.
Start a Contest for Followers
Creating a photo contest, video challenge, or product giveaway is another effective strategy for drawing new leads to your brand through social media. To maximize engagement, allow followers to submit their entries directly in the comments section of your post. If you’re running a sweepstakes or product giveaway, consider allowing followers to participate by simply clicking the ‘like’ button or sharing the contest to their own timelines.
Host a Digital Event
Organizing a live event online through social media can also generate leads. For eCommerce brands, consider hosting a live shopping stream that showcases some of your newest products. If your business provides legal or financial services to clients, you can think about creating an AMA (ask me anything) stream or a live Q&A where followers can learn more about your company and the trends related to your industry.
Explore Posting Gated Content
Often referred to as a ‘lead magnet,’ gated content is insightful or educational information that requires individuals to provide basic information, such as their name and email, to access it. Gated content may include whitepapers, research studies, an instructional webinar, or a free trial of your offering.
Promote your gated content on social media to attract leads to a landing page on your website that explains the offer in more detail. Later in the buyer’s journey, you can consider touching base with leads through email to potentially convert them into loyal customers.
Create a Poll
Starting a poll that gauges the thoughts, concerns, and bing sentiments of your followers is a great way to get leads involved directly with your brand. At the same time, you’ll gain unique insights into how your target audience feels and behaves, which can help to inform future engagement strategies. Just make sure your poll relates to your business in some way. For instance, if your company sells clothing online, consider asking followers if affordability, speed of delivery, or product quality are most important when selecting an online retailer.
Promote Referral Rewards
Consider starting a generous referral program that encourages current customers to introduce their friends or loved ones to your brand. The rewards followers could win may include an instant rebate on their next purchase or a discounted price on member-only content. Another idea is to offer free merchandise like a t-shirt, coffee mug, or USB dongle to any follower who recommends a lead that becomes a customer.
Scale Up Engagement through Automation
As your brand’s social media presence grows across multiple platforms, it’s worth exploring solutions that can help to organize and automate the process. For example, look into using Facebook’s AI chatbot to provide followers with fast answers to frequently asked questions. It can also be used to automatically generate a ticket when a customer experiences a problem like a delayed shipment or refund request.
You may also want to explore automation tools that can help orchestrate all your posts across several social media sites at once by scheduling content ahead of time and publishing them live at predetermined intervals.
Sponsor a Popular Influencer
Social media influencers tend to attract loyal fans from around the world. Thus, their content can provide an excellent forum to showcase your brand. Consider sponsoring a popular influencer or content producer who regularly discusses trends and topics related to your industry. After partnering with them, provide them a promo code they can share with their followers so audience members are encouraged to navigate to your landing page for more information.
How to Increase Lead Generation through Social Media
There are innumerable approaches to garnering more leads on social media, and following just a few of the strategies listed above can produce powerful results.
At Cleverly, we provide a range of services to help your business improve lead generation performance across social media channels. Our content ghostwriting for LinkedIn can be a great way to build your presence, expand your network, and find potential customers on the world’s largest professional social media platform.
Contact us for a free consultation anytime. We’d love to learn more about your company and goals, and see how our expertise can help you reach them.