How to improve lead generation as a small business

May 19, 2023

person using google search on laptop

We understand that small businesses deal with smaller marketing budgets.  Spending is not unlimited and each advertising campaign has to count. You came to read this article with hopes of receiving tips on how to effectively allocate the limited budget you may have. And that is exactly what we are going to deliver.  With 25 years of experience working with small to large businesses, we have successfully helped organizations grow from local shops to national powerhouses.

Here are 5 steps to start generating legitimate leads for your small business.

  1.  Invest in your website

    No matter the type or size of your business, your website is the most important advertising tool.  Without a website you don’t have a place to effectively convert your leads and all digital and social campaigns are not worth any additional investment.  You must have a platform where a client can verify the information about your business, your skills, and competencies, and has an easy way to either find your address to visit your location, call or send a request, or place an online order.
    Your website has to have good navigation, basic information, and helpful content.  The largest expense regarding improvements on your website will be time. Bettering your online positioning can completely change the number of organic leads you bring to your site.  This is not very complex and you can start with writing helpful blog content.  Don’t fall into the AI-generated content trap.  We are referring to high-quality blog posts that only you can produce because after all, you are the expert in your domain.
    Constantly expanding content on your website will start moving the needle.  Watch your keyword rankings and within a few weeks, you should start seeing movement.

  2. Google Ads

    Yes, Google ads.  Whatever myths you may have heard about generating leads, for small businesses Google ads are still the most attainable advertising tools. Start with a $250 per month investment.  If you have more, invest it.  Make sure you take time to set up your Google ads correctly or ask for an expert’s help to get your ads going.  There is a big difference between a $3,500 billboard that will only give your brand some exposure versus getting an actual visit to your website from someone who just search specifically for what you are offering and they are ready to make a purchase.  Don’t misunderstand that billboard advertising does not have a place.  It does, but not necessarily in your starter marketing budget.

  3. Social Media

    You have to find a social platform that suits your audience and geographical reach.  You cannot micro-target locations with TikTok ads but you can with Facebook. Whatever service or product you are offering, you have to find a social media platform that works for you.  Also, don’t focus on organic content only.  If you don’t run ads on social media, don’t waste your time creating content unless you have built out a very large group of followers.  If your Instagram post reaches 10 people, it will not change or grow your business.  You have to be aware of the engagement and invest into posts that perform well. Advertising on social media is VERY inexpensive.  Spend some time studying the platforms and find the one that works best with your location, audience, reach and service or product.

  4. OTT TV

    Over-the-top digital streaming TV ads. You pay per impressions so you can be sure your ads are being seen by the right audience.  You can select targeting – from income to location, buying preferences and more.  Don’t know where to start? Work with a local TV station or a provider like Spectrum to reach broader audiences with this very inexpensive option to advertise on TV. It is a lot more affordable than traditional TV advertising.  And although 3 years ago maybe you reach was not as big, with the amount of consumers cutting cable and moving to streaming only, you can be sure it’s the right investment.

  5. Focus on One Thing

    You may think that this is not a way to generate leads.  This is probably our best piece of advice.  Many small businesses fall into the trap of trying to be everything to everyone and they will invest a lot of money to provide one specific service or one very customized product.  Focus on the one thing that you are really good at and invest your marketing budget, your time and your efforts into it.  You will notice and immediate difference in the effectiveness of your campaigns.  Work on what you are the most confident in and the rest of your business will grown organically. Simplifying processes and delivering just one or two very good quality products or services with give you a strong start.  You can diversify down the road when you have built out enough capital.

Lion Tree | Raleigh is an award-winning, full-service Raleigh website design company that specializes in design, development, and web strategy.