If you're looking for a crazy comprehensive list of ways to generate leads for a local business, you found just the place.
We aren't just talking about how to launch a Facebook ad, or run Google Adwords.
This list covers internet based, social media based, offline, and community driven methods of producing leads and I GUARANTEE you haven't thought of everything we came up with on this list.
Enough about how creative we are at lead generation methods, let's get into it!
Social Media Lead Generation Methods
#1 - Organic Facebook
We'll start with a simple and easy to understand approach for local lead generation.
Make sure you have a business page set up and invite all your friends on your personal profile to follow your page.
Don't take the shortcut and copy/paste generic graphics or images. Take the time to use some creativity and take photos or go live from your page with promos or offers!
A great method for organic growth is running a giveaway contest. Requirements for entry can be that they follow your page, like and share your post, and tag 3 friends on your contest post.
Below is an example of a Facebook page creating an engaging promotion with clear instructions on how to enter (all of which help increase the engagement of the post!).
This kind of promotion of social media greatly impacts the reach and impressions of your post. The more engagement (likes, comments, and shares) you can get, the more people will see it.
#2 - PPC Facebook
If you are already producing consistent organic content, it's time to start working in some paid ads to expand.
Facebook allows you to target various different interests in a paid ad which helps show it to the right audience.
Make sure you utilize the Facebook Ads manager platform to monitor performance and most importantly, keep track of incoming leads!
#3 - Facebook Marketplace
Facebook Marketplace is blowing up right now. It is almost becoming the new Craigslist of local selling, bartering, and offers.
Look up the categories you can post in that are related to your business and drop a post in there!
You can upload images, so take advantage of that. Use a catchy title and maybe even do a "Facebook Exclusive" promotional offer!
If you're looking to send potential leads to a landing page, be sure to put that in the copy of your post.
#4 - Facebook Groups
This is the primary initiative at Facebook right now, and you don't want to miss it.
Facebook wants groups on their platform to grow significantly. They want these communities flourishing with value.
Simple lead generation tactic - start your own! Add potential prospects to a group and cultivate discussion. Solve problems, and educate them on what you do.
This method creates your own private fishing pond to get leads out of!
#5 - Influencers
This social media strategy employs individuals who have large followings. The idea is to get your message and product in front of their audience, and influencers do just this for a fee.
Negotiate the terms and expectations with an influencer and be prepared for an influx of new leads and followers (double bonus of using this method) to your profile.
Instagram is the primary platform to use an influencer, so don't cut corners on the visual presentation your product or service will have when an influencer's audience sees it.
#6 - Twitter
You've got 160 characters. Not much can get accomplished there by way of producing local leads right? Wrong. Plus, theres 139 million active users daily!
Twitter is a great platform to create an audience on and engage with your followers.
Make sure your profile is completely set up with links to landing pages where you can capture lead information. Use the pinned tweet option on your profile as well.
This is the first tweet they will see on your profile. If you have a url in the post, that increases the chance for visitors to your profile to become a lead.
#7 - LinkedIn
If there ever was a social media platform for local lead generation, it is LinkedIn.
Comprised of professionals all looking to network and grow their businesses, LinkedIn is a great way to stand out from the pack and start meeting new people.
Start adding new connections and work up genuine interest in conversation. A lot of people used the platform poorly and you'll get out of it what you put into it.
When looking for people to connect with, maximize the filter options available so you can focus your time on the best prospects you want to become leads!
If you are serious about LinkedIn and want to take a seriously deep dive into how to maximize your leads, check out this thorough explanation
on how to use LinkedIn to its fullest potential.
#8 - Snapchat
Don't ignore Snapchat for lead generation! The platform has some surprising features, including the ability to run paid ads.
You can have ad content show up in the middle of story viewing or even get more local targeted with geo fencing filters for individuals to use in a certain area.
This is a great method of advertising to produce leads, especially around specific events.
Like this idea, but no clue where to start? Check this resource out right here for how to become a snapchat filter boss.
#9 - Pinterest
Recipes and DIY projects are the reputation that precedes Pinterest, but if you spend time there and want to know how you can maximize lead opportunities, Pinterest has the ability to do that!
You'll want to make sure that the pins you create lead to urls that can capture lead content.
Write great content and provide some great visuals along the way and your readers of your pins will be your best source of leads on Pinterest.
Consider that when pins get shared, people who don't follow you may see them as well, so shares can indirectly produce leads for you too. Make sure your content is good enough that people want to share it!
#10 - Instagram
The Instagram platform is largely a visually driven experience. Most users and influencers with large following take great care in curating their presentation.
Going live on Instagram is a way to capture viewers in a similar manner that Facebook allows you to go live.
Running promos on instagram is a great way to work on building an audience quickly.
Offer a discount or promo to anyone who follows you and tags 3 of their friends on your post. Engage in the comments and cultivate leads out of those that show interest.
Don't forget to check your DM's as someone who may be interested in what you do may message you there!
#11 - Use Social Sharing Plugins on Website
The last thing you want to do is produce great site content via blogs or articles and not give readers a chance to share it.
Adding social sharing buttons to your site lets your readers and site visitors share whatever they wish to their desired social media platform.
This additional free exposure introduces your content to their followers and friends which creates opportunities for them to check out your site and services.
Make sure you are providing calls to action at the bottom of your pages and posts so visitors have an easy way to get in touch if they are interested in the service you provide.
Want to scope out some of the top social sharing options out there? Check this list of wordpress plugins out and decide for yourself what works best for you!
#12 - Facebook Messenger Bots
Don’t let the title make it sound like something too complex for you. There are multiple high quality messenger bot services out there to help you drive leads via messenger.
The premise is simple - a “bot” will respond to your inbound Facebook messages and provide a sequence of answers that offer up calls to action or promos based on what you want it to do.
The bot provides support, sales, and customer satisfaction in its own way. It can be programmed to answer questions for you that a potential lead may have on your service or product.
It can also transition the conversation to a call to action such as messaging “Would you like to schedule your appointment today?” and giving the potential lead a button to click that allows them to book with you.
A company like ManyChat gets great reviews and is a user-friendly platform to try out a strategy like messenger bots.
#13 - Join Statewide Business Groups on Facebook & Promote
If you search on Facebook, you'll likely find with no trouble business groups that are specifically for your state or region.
In these groups everyone tends to promote what they offer and you should do the same, but in a manner that stands out from everyone.
When you post in these groups, encourage people to tag someone needing your services, and perhaps offer an incentive such as "I will give a $50 gift card to the first person that refers me a client".
While most people are in these groups looking to "take", switch it up and go in there with the mindset that you want to "give". You'll be surprised at the results.
#14 - PPC Retargeting Campaigns
Retargeting campaigns are one of the most efficient ways to leverage paid ads. If you are running ads on Facebook for example, they provide you with a code called a pixel.
This small line of code get installed on your website and is able to track every person who visits your site.
This pixel communicates with your ad campaigns to let you know if someone bought your product or booked your service from your ad or not.
A retargeting ad is an ad shown exclusively to those website visitors who did NOT buy or book. Your retargeting audience is essentially interested lookers who haven't taken any action yet.
A lot of retargeting ads will offer a discount or exclusive offer to get them to come back to your site.
This is a more advanced method of PPC, but when marketed properly can be one of the best paid methods to produce leads.
#15 - Ad Swap
This is an easy and effective method. Find another business owner not in competition with you and offer to promote their business in exchange for promoting yours.
Social media is a great way to do this at low to no cost and help build followers that can become leads.
Make sure that both you and the other business owner put a link or call to action in the post so your respective audiences have an easy way to look into the service or promotion you are offering.
Google Based Lead Generation
#16 - Google Adwords
If you've ever searched anything in your life, you know Google run ads. Get in on it!
The Adwords platform is a great way to begin showing up in front of people looking for your service or product.
Consider all the various ways what you offer could get searched and pick your keywords based on that info.
Make sure you send people who click your ad to a landing page that collects their information!
#17 - Multiple GMB’s
You probably already have a Google My Business profile set up in your local market. What about that other city 30 minutes down the road that you’re working in though?
Since your existing GMB profile won’t show up in that city, creating another GMB profile in that market would help give you an online presence that is actually considered local to the market.
Treat this location like a true second location. It needs reviews and attention. In time you can rank this profile and have it producing leads for you for investing nothing but time and effort!
#18 - Trendjacking Blogs & Articles
This strategy really is a piggyback method to get visibility off trending topics and news
The focus is to find a way to bring up whatever is trending via hashtags and articles and work that information into your own blogs and content.
Be sure to use the same hashtags etc, so when you post your content it jumps right into the mix of trending topics as well.
You’ll get some additional traffic to your posts and content simply by including content and hashtags about trending news!
Keep in mind that there is a right and a wrong way to trendjack. If you want to learn even more about this method of lead generation, check this out right HERE.
#19 - Local Level Organic Leads
Nothing beats owning and controlling all of the leads you come across!
Local level organic leads are a never-ending flow of local leads. Simply develop local level websites for potential customers looking for a quote.
Make sure that website is visible for specific keywords that customers are searching for.
When someone hits the website, make it as simple as clicking to call or filling out a form and boom! Local leads for hyper-targeted keywords and services!
Want to learn more about this method? Click Here for training on how to produce local leads that YOU own and control!
#20 - Fill Out Online Directories
Filling out online directories is a supplemental way to strengthen your organic presence in your local market.
One way to quickly manage this is using a service like yext.com to submit them all for you.
If you’re looking for a less expensive way to make sure these 100s of online directories have your information on file, you can manually search them out and submit them yourself for free.
The more citations and directories you have filled out, the higher the chances your website and articles will show up in local searches.
Some of these directory listings themselves may even show up for certain searches, allowing prospective leads to click your website link or call you directly.
#21 - Organically Rank Video Content Locally
Most people are unaware of the fact that Google ranks and serves up video URLs such as content on YouTube. This is a bit of a fast track method to increase visibility for your content.
Create a video that promotes your services and invites viewers to take your call to action (post a url to a landing page in your video post).
Make sure the title of your video includes one of the main keywords that customers would use to find you with and be sure to include your actual city in the title.
Don't forget to check in on your video for comments and questions on the video itself as this can be another potential source of leads too!
#22 - Push For More Online Reviews
Sometimes we forget to ask customers for reviews when it should always be a part of our process.
These reviews factor in to several different things and should be a priority. Regular reviews (Google, Facebook, Yelp etc) show prospective customers that you are frequently servicing customers in your area.
Reviews give leads a chance to read other experiences people have had. Reviews also factor in to where things like your GMB profile ranks organically.
Respond to reviews as well. Not every review will be 5 star and thats ok. In fact, you should see poor reviews as a great chance to display how you do business.
If you get a 2 star review for example and the customer states they were unpleased with some part of the service you provided, acknowledge their issue in your reply and offer a solution to improve their experience.
Immediately reach out to them after replying and if possible come up with a plan to turn their impression of your company from 2 stars to 5 stars.
If you do this successfully, ask them if they would mind updating their review of you as well!
#23 - Issue a Press Release
If you are not already familiar, a press release is when you pay for a statement about your company and services to be issued across 100s of news platforms all at once.
This syndication is a great way to support your credibility for anyone researching your company. These multiple news outlets will appear in the search results, all showing that they have "reported" on you.
On a local level, it can also increase your visibility from an SEO perspective. The more opportunities you give yourself to be found online, the more chances you have to produce leads for yourself.
Consider issuing a press release with new content 2-3 times per year. Don't forget to put a url in the statement that allows readers to check you out online.
Want to issue a press release, but not sure where to start? Here is a step by step explanation of exactly what to do!
Website Based Lead Generation Methods
#24 - Blogging
You either love them or hate them, but writing blogs is a cornerstone of helping produce leads.
Do your best to bring some serious value to your readers. For instance, if you install drywall, offer 5 tips for DIY drywall jobs.
This may seem like it's going the opposite direction of generating leads, but most DIY'ers end up hiring someone to do the job right.
Don't be afraid to give this kind of insight and you'll be surprised at who reaches out after reading your blog.
Be sure to offer a call to action at the end of your blog and give your readers a chance to opt in to a regular newsletter or even become a customer.
Be consistent! Blog at least once a week.
#25 - Email Opt-In Form on Website
If you don’t already have this set up on your website, get it done TODAY!
The hottest prospects are on your website and if we don’t have an easy method to turn them into a lead we’re missing the boat.
A pop up form to website visitors is a great and fast way to collect lead information. Try to keep the form simple by only requiring email.
Consider giving the lead a coupon or promo via email once they opt in. This is a great way to turn window shoppers into buyers quickly.
#26 - Live Chat on Your Website
This is a great way to quickly engage with website visitors. Put a plugin on your website that allows them to chat with someone right away for any questions or concerns.
These new chats can push right to a mobile device and allow you or a staff member to jump into conversation with a live lead instantly.
These leads are extremely hot, don’t miss them!
Zendesk is a popular option as they provide Apple and Android apps for management.
#27 - Split Test Landing Pages
Split testing is ALWAYS a good idea. Next time you work up a new landing page on your site, split test it.
It’s simple really, just make another landing page, but change one thing. Maybe you want to test out different colors, or the verbiage, but focus one changing one main thing.
Then you send half of your traffic (social media posts, email campaigns, etc) to one landing page and the other half to landing page number two.
Compare the conversions or opt ins and eliminate the one that performs more poorly. Then try it again with changing something else and continue optimizing to improve conversions!
#28 - Offer a Webinar
Webinars are a great way to hold a captive audience interested in what you have to offer. You have a few different ways you can collect lead information with this method.
One method is collecting their info up front in exchange for a link to access the webinar.
Another way is providing an opportunity at the end of the webinar for attendees to get something like a PDF checklist of high quality information or content when they opt in with their information.
The attendees that have made it to the end of your webinar are often people very interested in what you have to offer.
Consider even offering a webinar only special if they move forward with the service or products you offer and those leads could instantly become paying customers!
#29 - Offer Helpful “Printables” on Your Website
A simple way to capture lead information right on your website is to offer helpful resources or “printables” that someone can print right off your site.
Examples of this would be if you were a real estate agent, and wanted to get information of potential home buyers. You could put a “Checklist to Closing” document together that they could print and follow on their path to purchasing a home.
When they go to download it, have a form pop up that asks for their name and email address before it downloads. You’ll have a great potential lead here that you can quickly follow up with.
Printables can be anything from scheduling organizers, to checklists, to custom planners that your potential customers would appreciate having. Get creative and get some leads!
#30 - Build Out Testimonials On Website
We should always be working on gathering customer testimonials. Use them on your site by building out a dedicated section to display them.
Potential leads visiting your website will see testimonials and reviews as a sign of credibility which increases the chances of them becoming a lead.
A great way to place a call to action on this section of your website is with a button that says “Ready to be our next 5 star review? Click Here!”.
Set that button to either call you directly when they click it, or direct them to a form they can quickly and easily fill out.
#31 - Create a Quiz
This method meshes a little fun and creativity into producing some leads. A general good practice for a quiz title is “What kind of (insert idea here) are you?”.
Keep the quiz process around 2 minutes and when they reach the last question, set up a gate that requires them to put their email address in to see their quiz results.
This method works quite well especially when some creativity has gone into the quiz. Take the opt ins and follow up with them offering your services.
If using email, try to integrate their quiz results for a personal touch.
#32 - Use a Website Pop Up (we have free suggestions!)
If you don’t have a pop up on your website already, set one up today! This message that shows up and requires interaction from a visitor is a perfect opportunity to incentivize them to opt in.
Offer new visitors a one time extra discount or coupon for opting in. This is a great way to convert the visitor into a customer with the extra incentive.
Be sure to have processes in place that put these new leads into an email campaign right away.
A psychological tactic used regularly on pop ups to reduce the percentage of visitors who close it without opting in is changing the verbiage from “No” when they want to close the window to something like “No thanks, I hate discounts”.
You want to make them feel like it’s a no brainer to opt in and suggest that most people who see the pop up are also opting in.
If you wanna scope out some great pop up plug in options out, look at this list, a lot of them are even free!.
#33 - Create High Quality Gated Content
Gated content is simply content that someone wants to access, but requires their opt in before they view it.
One great way to generate intrigue and interest that could bring in leads would be if you created a small video series on your website.
If you were an insurance agent you could promote "My 3 must watch tips before you change insurance providers" and when someone wants to access this content they need to opt in to your form first.
Once you have new leads coming in, follow up with them and address why you felt you needed to make those videos (ex. I really want to educate people on their options.).
This concern matters to people and they will see you as a thorough authority on your products.
#34 - Add Visible Floating Bar to Website
A floating bar on your website functions a bit like a tiny pop up that never leaves.
Use a floating bar plugin for your website to keep a constant bar where a visitor can opt in to what you are offering.
The floating bar can be as simple as opting in to your email newsletter, or more aggressive like emailing them a one time promo code for a set amount off their first purchase.
The visitor can't click out of the floating bar as it stays pinned to either the top or bottom of the browser window, so it's a great way to keep an opt in option in front of visitors the whole time they are on your site!
A floating bar will usually look like this:
It will either permanently stay at the bottom or the top of the window and will keep your CTA front and center!
Email Based Lead Generation
#35 - Email Sequencing
Make sure that you aren't letting all those email records in your database go to waste!
If you have an email opt-in option on your website or landing page for leads, email marketing is a great way to connect with them.
Give them value such as a one time coupon or promo, and pull them into your customer circle.
Don't forget past customers in your database too! Leverage loyalty programs or special offers to consistently communicate opportunities to be a customer again.
#36 - Email Signature
Step 1 - make sure you have an email signature actually set up. This not only shows a sense of professionalism but is a great CTA at the end of any email correspondence.
It’s not a bad practice to simplify their click with some kind of button in the signature that conveys your CTA like “Click Here to Schedule Consult”.
Make sure your formatting looks good on mobile as most emails get opened there!
#37 - Cold Email Campaigns
This email strategy is a bit different that setting up email campaigns for people already in your CRM.
If you're having trouble connecting with decision makers or owners at local businesses you want to acquire as a client, comb their websites for email contact info.
A lot of small businesses still just list their owners email or contact info on the website.
Prepare a message for this audience who has never spoken to you before and make sure your subject line is attention grabbing (not not click-baity).
Use a service like Bananatag to track if your emails get opened, links inside your email get clicked, and if they re open the email regularly.
This is a great way to see who is interested and looking at your emails and who is not.
Even if you don't get a response but you see someone opening your email once or twice, reach out to them again!
Cold emails can produce leads for you, just stick with it!
Using Online Forums To Generate Leads
#38 - Reddit
Reddit is a unique platform that is driven primarily with discussion. In these discussion boards you can search for various topics. Find ones related to your business that you can answer or assist in.
Solve problems, answer questions, and give advice. You'll find yourself becoming an authority in the forums and this recognition is a path to produce leads when Reddit users need some help.
Download the Reddit app and get started today! Forum platforms are all about improving everyone's knowledge and creating community so avoid spamming posts or promotional content as you'll get banned quickly if you do.
#39 - Be an Authority in Niche Relevant Forums
Search the internet for forums related to your industry, you should find some without trouble.
Register and dive into engaging the users on the forum. The best way to become an authority is to regularly engage and provide solutions/answers to any issues or questions posted.
When people begin to tag you on posts or looking for your opinion on topics, you’ll know that you’ve become a voice of authority.
Once you achieve this, it is an easy decision for users in the forum to turn to you when they need something that you do cause you’ve already proven you know what you’re doing.
#40 - Quora
Quora is a great Q & A platform that brings several users looking for accurate answers.
Comb through the questions relevant to you or what you do and engage on the platform.
Bringing value is always a priority and when you help others looking for answers, they begin to see you as an authority like we’ve discussed before.
This position is the best place to be when wanting others to look to you for answers or help!
#41 - Register on HARO
HARO is a platform for reporters (Help A Reporter Out) who are looking for information and stories to publish.
You can register on the platform and select the “I’m a Source” option which creates an account with access to posts that reporters and journalists make who are looking for content.
Keep an eye out for any posts related to your field or niche and when you see them fill out the form with the requested info and see if you get selected!
This method is a great way to have your information broadcasted across multiple media sources, increasing the opportunities for your brand and company to get visibility which can translate into new leads.
#42 - Use the Growth.org B2B Forum
This platform is a bit like a Reddit for professionals. It is forum driven, but largely revolves around business and marketing topics.
Comb through the entries and threads to find topics and questions related to your expertise and jump in!
Follow up personally with the individuals asking the questions on the forum and provide your knowledge or help further if needed.
You’ll find someone asking questions that you have the answer to and if you continue to provide the forum community that kind of value, leads will inevitably come.
#43 -Post & Engage on medium.com
Medium is an online hub for trending topics, politics, tech, business, and more. The platform is unique in the fact that they don’t offer any paid ad or promotion methods on the site.
Bring your best blogs and topics to Medium and publish them on there. Reach out to medium influencers to request additional posting/promotion.
Engagement is necessary, don’t just post and leave. Find relevant topics you can provide value on and engage in the comments.
Keep a sharp eye on your posts for comments and shares as this is a great area you’ll see lead opportunities come up.
Online Third Party Lead Generation Sources (Paid)
#44 - HomeAdvisor
The HomeAdvisor platform is one of the most simple ways to grab leads almost instantaneously.
Set up an account and pay to become a member. Then you can list your services on there and you'll be granted access to the platform.
Customers looking for your services fill out quote requests daily on their site.
Simply bid on the leads that come through and you'll get a chance to land a new job!
Keep in mind that while the platform serves up lead opportunities, you will not be getting exclusive access to the leads.
Other business owners will be bidding and reaching out to them as well, so you'll need to move fast if you want to see the leads you buy turn into customers!
#45 - Thumbtack
Thumbtack lets you bid on jobs or quote requests on their site and allows the lead to select who they wish to work with.
You'll want to stay sharp on your response time as other competing companies will be vying for the same jobs as well.
Monitor your average job selection rate with what pricing you are quoting. Less jobs may mean your quotes are too high, while higher volume means you may be able to look at increasing your price!
#46 - Craigslist
The service section of Craigslist is a great place to post about your services you provide to produce leads. This basic platform is home to about 50 million DAILY search queries!
Find your local market and post in the services section what you are offering (a small fee to post may apply). Make sure your title stands out from your competition and your description is focused on why they should pick you.
Provide multiple channels for a potential lead to reach out. This includes direct phone calling, texting, as well as email and landing page directions.
#47 - Yelp
Yelp is a great locally-focused database of businesses that provides a free local listing as well as paid promotional options to produce leads.
Focus on the keywords you use on your profile as this impacts your visibility for certain searches.
Reviews play a big role in customer/lead perspective so be sure to remind customers to give you 5 stars!
Paid promotion on Yelp gives you increased visibility in specific areas and lets you show up for selected keywords.
Engage with your reviews and show your audience that you care and will listen to concerns. This goes a long way when someone is contemplating giving you their business and will improve the lead flow you see from Yelp.
#48 - Use Data From Melissa.com
Melissa.com is a great database of contact information for prospects as well as a way to build lists off of recent homeowner moves and purchases.
If you're looking to segment your prospects based on statuses such as renters, vehicle owners, medical conditions, and several more, Melissa lets you dial in that kind of info.
Create your target ideal customer and then register on the platform to begin. There is a fee to have access to this information, so make sure you maximize the targeting features on the platform.
Create a compelling message that you will reach out to this audience with, and consider creating a friendly introduction with a special offer just for them.
Video Based Lead Generation Methods
#49 - YouTube (organic)
If you don’t have a youtube channel already - start one!
Build an audience by providing industry relevant content tips and tricks.
Make sure you utilize the content section of your video posts to drop links for potential leads to click and opt-in or fill out your form.
#50 - YouTube (paid)
Youtube is a great platform to display paid ad content. Video length and formats can vary, so make sure your video ad is right to the point AND catches their eye!
Make sure your Call To Action is clear and instructs the viewer on how to get more information.
Monitor your analytics and see what ads perform best.
Make sure you are ALWAYS tracking ROI.
#51 - TV Ad
A straightforward method for lead generation - grab a spot on your local stations!
Focus on the quality of your message AND the offer you are putting out for the audience to see.
Consider what makes you different from your competition and convey that in an energetic (but not annoying) manner.
Similar to other “traditional” lead generation methods, create a promo code or offer specific to the TV ad that lets you track the return on this approach.
#52 - Leverage Video Content
This applies to your website, social media, and about anywhere else you can put video content.
Quite simply - use it! Video content is consumed at a significantly higher rate than text-only content.
This is a great way to provide a visual into what you do or what makes your business unique. Talk about your process and make the viewer feel like they’re getting an “inside scoop”.
Give them a call to action opportunity at the end to opt-in.
#53 - Create a Case Study
Reach out to a past customer who had a great experience with your company. If you exceeded their expectations ask if they would provide a video testimonial of what you did.
Coaching them through this tends to work best, think about some questions you can ask them, such as “Why would you recommend our company to other people?”.
This video can then be added to a special “case study” section of your website and even used on social media or paid ad outlets.
Case studies are intriguing to prospective customers and gives them an objective review from another customer.
Highlight how you exceeded their expectations and how you will do the exact same for your leads that come through.
Networking Methods For Lead Generation
#54 - BNI Groups
Most cities or counties have a BNI chapter or similar organization you can join. Search them out and get active in it.
They will often let you have a little time to present your business and offerings so work on your elevator pitch!
The biggest thing to remember is other businesses are there to network and produce leads as well.
If you can help bring a lead or customer (or be one yourself) to another BNI member, they will usually do their best to return the favor!
Want to find a local BNI chapter? Look HERE
#55 - Networking Events
Often these events cost money to get in, and having a booth is an additional expense too.
Here’s the best way to maximize these events: Go in with a stack of cards and target booths that would be an ideal connection for you.
Anyone with a booth is invested and WANTS to chat people up. Go be genuine in their service and they will gladly reciprocate to hear you out on what you do!
#56 - Host a Local Seminar
This one takes a little leg work, but if you leverage social media and your existing network, you can set up a local weekend seminar and discuss topics that are likely to bring in a crowd.
Focus on education and providing them with information that is worth their time. They will appreciate this.
Make sure you collect their information on registration! Name, number, email, are vital.
Give an offer at the end that allows interested prospects to schedule an appointment or buy directly from you at the event. This method creates sales and leads at the same time!
#57 - Networking At Industry Conferences
Trade shows and industry specific conferences are sometimes seen as an environment where you mingle with the competition.
Think bigger and seek out other business owners who serve markets outside of your service range and offer up the idea of sending leads you get that are out of your area to them.
They will likely be willing to do the same thing for you. Over time this relationship will build trust and you will be able to pass leads and referrals back and forth in your local markets.
#58 - Sign Up For a Co-Working Space Membership
Depending on your specific area, co-working spaces are becoming very popular. These community working areas are a great area to produce some high quality leads.
A membership to these facilities usually are flexible and come with unique perks. Most other business owners working out of this community work space have a high desire to network and grow.
Strike up conversation with other members and learn about their business. You’ll be surprised at what referrals and leads can come from this.
A lot of them have public posting areas too for their members to share what they do. Maximize the opportunity if you join one and let everyone there know what you do!
If you are interested in seeing what one of these look like, check out a Co Working company that is growing rapidly in Ohio!
Additional Online Lead Generation Ideas
#59 - Run a Contest/Giveaway
Running a contest or giveaway is a great way to utilize giveaways and also grow/build your audience.
Offer a free gift or perhaps a gift card for your services/product and require people to comment, share, and like your post.
A great way to build hype around the giveaway is to go live with it and randomly draw a name from the participants on live.
This brings an element of fun to you and your brand as well as helping create an engaging audience out of your new followers.
#60 - Launch a Podcast
Many businesses have found great success launching industry-specific podcasts. Maybe you aren’t in the most exciting of industries - thats ok!
Dive into topics that matter to your audience. Talk about the pitfalls customers can avoid.
Building a podcast audience that regularly tunes in a great way to give captive listeners opportunities to become lead and then customer.
Maximize all the areas you can write content, from your hosting website to the notes you can write on an episode (you can even drop links here!)
Our readers have found these tips on Forbes to help in the launch of their Podcast.
#61 - Get Interviewed on Podcasts or Shows
It’s a pretty common practice in the podcast community to have guests on their show.
With so many industry specific podcasts out there, a guest interview on another podcast is a great way to introduce yourself and your company to a new audience.
If you are a window cleaning company for example, look for podcast shows that discuss business, marketing, or strategy as it pertains to the service-based industry.
Even if your interview does not produce a large amount of leads, you will also have the added benefit of new content that you can share on social media.
Not only does this show your activity to your audience, but it increases authority in your voice and brand.
To the average social media follower and potential lead, this kind of activity creates credibility and is the kind of company your lead will be likely to reach out to.
#62 - Create a Free Tool
This one requires a little development creativity, but for instance if you are in the mortgage industry, you may want to consider putting an easy to use mortgage calculator on your site.
Put it somewhere easily accessible and let your visitors use it for free.
Some websites even rank organically due to the traffic their free online tools receive!
Regular users to your free tool will have you in mind next time they need your service if they are frequently using your online tool and always on your website.
#63 - Guest Blog On Other Sites
By now you should be a blogging pro on your own site, so let's leverage that skill in other areas too!
Network with popular blogs and offer to write a special content piece for them.
For instance, you may have an auto repair shop and you could find a blog that discusses automotive related topics.
Make sure you focus on quality and take in consideration who the audience is that you will be writing for. You want to keep them engaged on your content.
At the end of your post, include a way for them to get in touch with you and cultivate those contacts into leads.
#64 - Create An Affiliate Program
This is the closest thing to cloning yourself as you can get in business! Structure an affiliate program that allows influencers, bloggers, and sales reps to promote your services!
If you sell apparel for instance, all the aforementioned individuals could promote and share links to your products. In exchange for this, you pay them a small commission on each sale.
Affiliate tracking programs are relatively straightforward and offer multiple payout structures based on your choosing.
Using a platform like iDev affiliate tracking, you can integrate this into your website and automate your affiliate payouts which reduces headache and time spent tracking all analytics.
#65 - Find New Local Businesses For B2B Leads
Use a little detective work next time you want to grab some fresh B2B leads. Look up new LLC's that are filed in your state and find the ones opening up near you.
Sort through the business based on type and likelihood of you being able to service them as a customer.
Personally deliver to them a "welcome to the neighborhood" kind of package and learn about their goals and what they hope to accomplish.
Offer to think through your list of existing clients for anyone who may be a good candidate or lead for them.
Opening a new business is stressful enough, and having a local fellow entrepreneur stop in and show some kindness goes a long way.
Make sure you provide them your contact info and be sure to reach out to them personally if they ever send you a lead.
#66 - Set Up Tracking Numbers
If you really want to dial in where your leads and inquiries are coming from, use a tracking number system like the platform CallRail.
For instance, if you know your Facebook page produces leads, but you're not sure exactly how many calls are coming in from it, set up a tracking number as the number on your page.
A customer will click it and the call will still route to your primary number you have.
The customer experience doesn't change at all and you're able to now see accurate analytics on where and when your calls are coming from.
Most softwares will record the phone calls too which provide an added benefit of quality assurance in case you (or the customer) forget what was actually said on the call.
Offline Lead Generation Methods
#67 - Physical Billboards
Roadside billboards have existed for this long for one reason - they work!
You want to make sure you put a method in place that lets you track the ROI of your billboard, so use a special promo or tracking number on the billboard.
Consider the strategic location of the billboard. Will traffic entering the city or exiting the city see it?
Visual appeal and quality is important and with the right message can produce leads for you out of your local market.
#68 - Direct Mail
Postcards are often the most cost effective method for direct mail. Make sure your card has a graphic/display that has a chance at catching someones eye!
Don’t be afraid to put a great offer or promotion on the card.
If you already have neighborhoods you’re working in regularly, put signs in your customers yard and mail everyone else in the neighborhood.
Seeing your postcard and the signs in their neighbors yard will increase the likelihood that they remember you when they need your service.
Check out Send Jim for a SUPER targeted way to leverage direct mail is with a service.
#69 - Radio
Grab a spot on your local station and be enthusiastic about what you have to offer!
When using methods like this that don’t have an easily trackable ROI like a landing page for example, use a unique coupon code or offer only to listeners. This gives you a way to measure your return.
For example, on your radio spot, tell customers that if they mention “Radio10”, this gives them an extra 10% off their next order!
#70 - Launch A New Service
This works well often in the service based industry. If you clean windows as a service, but don’t offer anything else you should!
Don’t start up a painting service though, consider something like gutter cleaning or pressure washing. These services are commonly provided by a company that does all of them.
If you’re not doing the same, you’re leaving money on the table from existing customers!
#71 - Become an Author
Write a book about your industry and dive into a topic that shows you are an expert. The objective is to make you an authority on your industry and create trust in your readers.
The book should always push the readers to trust you on the topic and in turn look you up when they have questions or are interested in the services you provide.
Always make sure you have websites listed or if an E-Book, links that can be clicked to allow a potential lead to easily get in touch with you.
#72 - Form Partnerships
This one is worth the time to make great connections. If you offer a service such as landscaping, find property management companies and offer your services to all their units.
This creates a big influx of business for you and allows the property company to have to only work with one vendor.
These partnerships work best when you can eliminate their pain point of wasting time and resources to get their properties taken care of.
Be on top of communication and deliver a great service and you’ll be amazed at how much business can come out of strategic partnerships!
#73 - Sponsor a Local Event
It doesn’t take too much effort to find a local sporting event or community event that is needing sponsors.
On a local level, this is a great way to get your name out there and also convey that you are invested in your local community/events.
For locals this often symbolizes the roots you consider having in your community and locals LOVE supporting local business. So get local!
#74 - Local Newspaper
The newspaper isn’t dead! Consider your target demographic, but the newspaper passes through 1000s of hands a day and a strategically placed ad still converts leads.
Give attention to your headline. Make it grabby but not clickbait (touchbait?).
Make sure you are using an offer or promo specific to this newspaper ad so you can track ROI on this lead generation method.
#75 - Handing out Flyers in Town
Be strategic in the location you pick. What areas get the best/most foot traffic? Print up some flyers and put on a smile, these areas are a great way to blast your message out affordably.
This is a bit of a shotgun style approach, but a lead generator nonetheless.
Strike up conversation with each person that receives a flyer. Don’t just settle for handing them out! You may find a customer right there.
#76 - Door to Door
Get boots on the ground! Hire a team of sales reps to hit the neighborhood and knock on doors.
These reps can present a limited time offer to get them to buy now. If they pass, they still are able to hand out a flyer with a coupon or special offer on it.
Incentivizing the reps to close sales is a great way to take this method from simply passing out flyers to creating new customers right now.
Once you have closed leads from this method, consider reaching out to their immediate neighbors while you’re there to see if you can pick up an extra sale!
#77 - Text Message Marketing
Text message marketing puts you in front of the eyes of a customer guaranteed. We all keep our phones on us 24/7 and strategic SMS marketing is a must.
Once potential customers opt in to your messages, you can fire off time sensitive offers and deals incentivizing them to buy.
Send messages strategically. This isn’t a license to fire off texts every few hours unless you want a ton of opt outs.
Keep them on the hook with great promos occasionally and your text message marketing will convert leads to customers like clockwork.
We recommend using a platform like SlickText for your SMS marketing management.
#78 - Cold Call
Want more leads? Pick up the phone! Sometimes we like to overcomplicate things and if you’re looking to get new business today, grab a phone book and start dialing.
If you are B2B focused, look up all the businesses in your area that could use your produce or service.
If you sell direct to consumer, hit the residential numbers and give them your best presentation on the phone.
Be prepared for a few hang ups, but the ones who stick around on the phone and give you some time are the ones that you have a shot at getting as a lead or customer today!
#79 - Pin Business Cards in Public
There are countless locations you can drop a pinned business card at in public. Local coffee shops, gym, and some post offices have cork boards dedicated to local information.
Next time you are out, keep a stack of cards with you. Look for these boards and when you see them pin a business card to it.
Since these boards are often located near an area where foot traffic waits in line, you’ll now have your information in a visible location near them.
Consider making up some special business cards just for these locations with a unique offer or promotion on them!
This method works better for some industries than others, but scaling your company via franchising is a great way to drive revenue, growth, and leads out of new markets.
If you have a service or product that makes more sense to provide with another location, franchising is a method that can accomplish that.
If you aren’t looking to manage multiple locations or employees, offer a franchise approach where prospective business owners can buy into the company and own their own location.
The local leads and customers that come in from a new market that you don’t own or manage is a powerful way to scale your volume.
Franchising has a lot of moving parts if you have never done it before, so we highly encourage you to check out this comprehensive guide to franchising if you're looking to expand your company!
#81 - Create a CTA In Your Voicemail For Missed Calls
Ideally we would never miss a phone call when a potential customer calls us, but that’s not reality, right?
Make sure your voicemail message provides a “next step” for leads beyond just a greeting that says you’ll call them back asap.
Let them know they can text you, or provide a unique url where they can put additional information about their needs. This keeps them engaged with you until you can reach back out.
Other Unique Lead Generation Methods
#82 - Utilize Unique and Silly “Holidays”
Did you know there are national days for donuts, pickles, and about a million other things?
They don’t get the kind of attention that Christmas or Easter does, but that doesn’t mean a strategic email or social media post can’t leverage these fun days into leads!
If it’s national pretzel day, make a social media graphic that says every customer today gets a $10 gift card to (insert a local place they can get pretzels).
These kind of posts are fun to engage in and regularly get a lot of impressions. Look up more unique national days HERE.
#83 - Use A Car Wrap or Magnetic Sign
Sometimes we tend to forget how much of an asset our vehicles can be for marketing. We drive them all around town and no one knows what you do.
Change that with a car wrap or for a cheaper route, a magnetic sign.
Display your company info on it and be sure to include obvious ways for a lead to reach out such as a phone number or website address.
Make sure if you provide a service at a customer’s house such as carpet cleaning, that you keep your vehicle nice and visible in the driveway or street parking so neighbors and local traffic can see your information.
#84 - Participate In a Local Parade
Most cities and/or counties have some type of a local parade at least once a year. Get registered and participate!
Since its common for floats or companies in the parade to have walking companions handing out candy etc, think of some little items you can pass out as you go through the parade.
Candy bags with stickers or tags attached that have your message and branding on it is a way to get in front of your local audience while also showing community involvement and support.
#85 - Rent a Booth at Your County Fair
If you’ve ever been to a county fair or festival, you know they have way more than just some sketchy rides and fair fries.
The buildings and displays often contain local works of art as well as places for businesses to promote and interact with the foot traffic.
Set up a booth with information about what you sell or do, and put a hook out there to get people to want to come by. This could be free swag items, candy, or even a drawing for a gift card to a local restaurant.
The best leads in this method will come from you personally manning your booth and being willing to engage with the people walking by.
Be genuine in conversation and you’ll be surprised at what leads you can produce at the county fair!
#86 - Provide Restaurants & Bars With Usable Items
Get your name in front of the regulars at the local watering hole. Print up some coasters or napkins with your logo and website/number on it and offer them to the bartender or owner for free.
You’ll get prime time placement at a location that people tend to hang out at for long periods of time.
Not only does this give you an opportunity to get leads from patrons at these locations, but you’ll be in the head of the owners and bartenders who talk to a lot of customers every day.
I would want them to keep me in their recent memory in case your service ever came up in conversation.
#87 - Drop Off Goodies At Prospective Client Locations
Warm them up to you with some fresh morning donuts and coffee! This is a sure fire way to get the gatekeeper receptive to your visit.
If you know specifically that you want to acquire the business of a local company and you are trying to get a leg up on the competition, show up with some pastries and a smile.
Don’t try to close the deal hard in this unannounced visit, simply surprise them and make sure they remember you and your name.
If you can get the name of a decision maker while you’re there, even better cause now you have the contact info for your lead!
This approach is very personal in nature and best used when you know a deeper relationship needs to be cultivated to close the lead.
#88 - Offer Free Estimates
No matter what kind of business you’re in, providing the option of a free estimate upfront is a great way to break the ice in a new relationship with a prospect.
The free estimate approach not only makes it easy for a potential lead to reach out to you, but can also get you into their home or business which is a great position to turn them into a customer.
Be sure to promote and advertise that you give free estimates on your website, business cards, and social media post so people know they can reach out for a no obligation conversation with you.
When you are providing a free estimate to somebody consider offering them an incentive or small discount if they allow you to service them that day.
They want to think about it that’s OK too, just put them into your follow up process and continue to cultivate that lead until they become a customer.
#89 - Use Yard Signs at Recent Client Projects
If you provide a service at a home or business such as landscaping where people passing by can visually see your work, as your customer if you can put a sign in the yard.
This lets you take claim for your fine work and is a literal billboard for it. Make sure your sign has simple info that is printed bigger.
An ideal call to action on this sign to produce leads is your number with the ability for someone to text or call you.
If you're looking for some signs at a good price, check out these guys for a good deal.
#90 - Donate Time to Local Charity or Shelter
This philanthropic approach to producing leads requires a willingness to give of your time. Giving time to help out at a local charity or shelter will always pay off.
Not only will you impact those in need with your help, but you will also develop a reputation in your community as a business vested in making a difference.
You'll find local customers who appreciate that simple fact and will intentionally support companies who give to their communities.
Be careful to not overshare or embellish on all your good deeds as this is a turn off for people. At the end of the day, just be genuine and care for those in need just like you care for those leads who become customers eventually.
#91 - Offer Free Trials
Depending on the industry you are in, free trials are often a great way to produce a large volume of leads you can work with.
Let's say you are a local gym owner. Gym memberships are a great way to produce reoccurring revenue, but sometimes its hard to get people to switch from what they're used to.
While some gym owners shy away from a free trial concept, others embrace it and use it to their advantage.
A free trial of your services really allow a customer to feel like they are not only getting some great up front value, but they also are able to more thoroughly experience what you can offer.
Leads off of free trials should close at a very high rate if you deliver an exceptional experience.
#92 - Put Flyers on Windshields
While we can't speak to the local laws in your area regarding flyer drops on windshields of cars, we will give you the best ways to get leads from it.
Think of movie theater lots, or large mall areas as a target. Print up a brightly colored flyer with eye catching info on the paper.
If you are a local business, such as a restaurant, offer them a great promo like a free appetizer if they come to your restaurant today.
Keep in mind that you'll likely only have a few seconds before someone decides to crumble it up and throw it away, or be interested in what it say.
Make sure your call to action or "offer" is near the top of the flyer!
#93 - Barter Services with Another Local Company
A great way to establish a local partnership that can produce leads for you is simply bartering your services with a different local business.
If you are a window cleaner, offer to clean the business location of a landscaping company office in exchange for them to mow your office or property.
Once you have shared services with each other, offer to mention your landscaping services to clients you clean windows for if they would be willing to mention you as a local window cleaner to their clients.
Follow up with the company (partner) occasionally and remind them that you're available to help their clients when needed.
Really try hard to bring them the first lead and that will help set the tone for the relationship moving forward.
#94 - Ask Friends & Family
In case you haven't already done this, pick up the phone and call all your friends and family members!
Some may own businesses already (start with them) and offer a great f&f discount if they become a customer.
All other customers and relatives should be asked if they know someone who could benefit from what you sell or do.
If you want to motivate them extra quickly, give them a nice little cash bonus or gift card and make sure the rest of your family and friends know you're willing to thank them for their time!
#95 - Offer to Participate In Career Day/Job Fairs at Schools
Most high schools offer at some point in the year a focus on careers and jobs. Make sure you participate!
Not only is it a possible opportunity to find a summer intern who is interested in your field, but the parents and faculty will be mingling among the booths as well.
If a family or parent has intrigue in what you do, give them a special deal! It may not hurt to also put on your booth a small advertisement about your offer too.
Ask for a number or email you can use to follow up with anyone you speak to and connect with them the following day. Community involvement, especially in an educational manner is never a bad idea!
#96 - Incentivize Employees With Spiffs
This method extends to both sales teams and office personnel. Encourage office personnel to not just mindlessly answer the phone and not ask for the sale.
A spiff promotion or contest is a great way to foster friendly office competition, drive new leads, and close more sales!
Consider offering your staff members who are non-sales a $50 bonus every time they generate a new customer. This may be from foot traffic or a personal referral.
If you have an existing sales team, turn up the heat and offer the top rep for the month an extra $500 bonus or perhaps an extra 4 days of vacation this year.
Don't go cheap, give them something they actually want to work for and watch production, leads, and sales rise!
#97 - Give Swag Out To Customers
If you provide your services to a customer in person, bring along some cool swag items you can give them once you wrap your job up!
Great items for this are magnetic calendars, pens, hats, and even air fresheners. Think of items they and their visitors will be likely to see.
If you don't provide services in person, thats ok too! Take the time to make up a small "swag package" with various items like we just mentioned.
Spend a few bucks to ship it to them and include a handwritten thank you note.
Customers that can represent you in their home, car, or by wearing an item is one of the easiest ways to keep your name out in the market place and produce leads.
#98 - Referrals (from past customers)
It’s super simple - print out all your past customers from the last 12 months.
Call them and first thank them for choosing you as a provider.
Explain to them that you are looking to deliver high quality service to others as well and do they know a neighbor, friend or family member who would like your services too?
BONUS TIP: Offer them a discount for each referral they send you!
#99 - Local Billboards
These aren't going anywhere any time soon, so use them to drive leads out of your local market.
Think strategy of what locations receive the most traffic daily and the direction they travel.
Consider the speed limit on the road and how long a passerby has to read your board.
Make sure it catches the eye and is an easy to read call to action. Less is definitely more here.
Use a tracking number on the board so you can monitor what leads are coming directly from that board and what your ROI on it is.
#100 - Offer a Scholarship From Your Business
This concept helps solidify your care in the local community. Set up a scholarship fund from your business that a local student can qualify for.
Use social media to share that you are now offering this in your area and encourage students to apply for it.
On your posts ask people to share and tag families who could benefit from this scholarship.
Engage in your commenters and the people who share your post. This method shows your legitimate care for your community by actually putting your money where your mouth is.
Over the years your scholarship fund will receive more applications as more schools and students learn of it. Take a picture with the winner and congratulate them and their family on social media once you pick someone!
If you're ready to set up a scholarship, but you aren't sure what to do, here is a thorough and easy to understand setup guideline you can check out!
#101 - Local High School Sports Pamphlets
Most high schools and booster organizations regularly are looking for sponsors and donors to their programs.
If you haven't been called and asked if you'd like to be a sponsor, reach out to the local schools and ask where you can advertise in their sports programs.
Most schools sell space in their pamphlets and season programs, and you should be there! Don't miss a chance to be in front of thousands of local eyes.
Keep your message simple and calls to actions obvious. Don't forget to give the school team a quick good luck note in your ad!
SO WHAT NOW?
By now your gears should be spinning with all the new knowledge you have to generate leads and how you'll use them.
Some of you may rush off and get to work, while others may be sitting there scratching your head thinking, "So which one is THE BEST?".
We'd be lying if we didn't tell you our honest and objective thoughts on that.
We've spent time generating leads via all the categories listed above.
Time and time again we have come to the conclusion that method #19 in our list, owning your own local lead generation properties, is the highest ROI and lowest headache.
This method literally turns you into the local lead gen legend. You will develop a reputation and be heralded for your Google wizardry.
It’s really like this - we know that most of the time local business owners (especially in service-based industries) often find themselves trapped in the never ending loop of owner/operator.
Things like marketing and accounting often get pushed off or ignored entirely.
This creates a unique vacuum that can be filled by the creative thinker.
Why is this lead gen method great though?
Check This Out:
- You have complete control of the lead flow and distribution
- Your risk/exposure is minimized by your position of power in “owning” the leads
- This leverage ensures you get paid well and paid CONSISTENTLY
- Your skillset translates to more than one way to acquire clients
- You can crush local competition fast
- You have the capability of scaling state or even nationwide
- You can literally OWN page 1 of Google in almost any industry!
Pick an industry you would love to dominate on a local level. Let's say its for tree removal or trimming.
Imagine that you owned a website like this on page 1 for the highest searched keywords in that industry:
And if you are smarter than all the other people locally when it comes to being number 1, it would produce daily calls with hot customer leads like this:
Now let's just stick the just the ONE industry (tree removal) and do the exact same thing in another city. And then another city.
Getting the idea here?
There's just one problem right now.
You understand the concept of how the best lead generation method works, but you don't actually know HOW to do it.
If merciless, take no prisoners, 100% local domination of local lead generation is what you are wanting, I would HIGHLY suggest that you check out this specialized coaching program that does exactly that.
Don't know a thing about websites? Or SEO? Forget about the know-it-all bloggers trying to confuse you on these topics, this coaching gives you what you need and nothing you don't.