February 1, 2004
A Fresh Look at Lead Generation
Is telemarketing working for you in the age of Do Not Call? If not, there are
a wealth of other options. Our experts reveals some innovative approaches to
finding new customers.
Part One: Savvy Internet Marketing
By Craig Salomon
Marketing and selling telecom services has never been more difficult than
today. With billions of dollars at stake, and thousands of service providers and
resellers competing against each other, the challenge to generate new business
and keep current customers is crucial to survival.
If your company sells business DSL, T1, long distance, DS3, OC3, frame relay,
Wi-Fi, satellite Internet, VoIP, private line, conferencing or collocation, you
can increase sales through Internet lead generation methods. In this case, lead
generation can encompass several areas, including prospecting for new sales,
channel sales opportunities and agent sales opportunities, and strategic
Internet lead generation options include: opt-in e-mail newsletters,
affiliate programs, reciprocal linking, search engine pay per click (PPC), pay
for inclusion (PFI), online discussion forums, how-to articles and white papers.
We recommend spreading your marketing dollars across as many of those following
programs as your budget allows. To focus on only one of these would severely
limit your reach and success rate.
Opt-In E-mail Newsletter
A great way to build a customer base is an opt-in e-mail newsletter. Tell
your Web visitors they can stay informed on a latest trends and technologies in
telecommunications by signing up for your electronic newsletter. A short sign-up
form asking their name and e-mail is generally all that is required for them to
join. The newsletter should be composed in HTML format, so it is viewed like a
Web page in their e-mail. Some providers of this service include Constant
Contact and Bronto Mail.
Pay a one-time fee or percentage of the sale when a partner refers a visitor
from their Web site to yours, if it results in a sale to your company. Affiliate
programs can be administered in-house via sophisticated software programs run
from your Web server, or through a trusted third party like Commission Junction
and others. URL tracking identifies the source of the lead referral.
The more Web sites about telecommunications you have linking to your Web
site, the higher your ranking will be in the important search engines like
Yahoo!, Google and MSN. This is important because 85 percent of all Internet
searches are initiated at these three search engines. Reciprocal link tools
include Zeus and linksmanager.com If you need more Web site visitors from search
engines, have your webmaster or marketing team start a themed link exchange.
Links need to come from other telecommunication Web sites, and stay away from
Free For Alls and Link Farms, as these can hurt your Web site
Search Engine Pay Per Click, Pay For Inclusion
Today, the most popular search engines like Yahoo!, Google and MSN have
become a dynamic landscape, where search results change daily, along with Web
site position. If you want your Web site to be seen more by searchers, you must
do either a form of PPC and or PFI. PPC charges your credit card each time a
searcher clicks your Web site link after searching for key search phrases that
you specify. Your link position is determined by how much you are willing to pay
per click. Cost per click can range from 75 cents to $13. There are many PPC
search engines, including Google, Overture, MSN, Business.com, and Internet.com
and its family of sites. Be careful, return on investment must be considered
before a campaign begins, and constant monitoring of results is crucial for
success. This task should be handled by your webmaster or Internet-savvy
PFI involves paying an annual fee to be included in a search engine index of
results. There is no guarantee on where you will be placed in relation to your
competitors. Only a few search engines offer this service: MSN, Excite,
Altavista, Teoma and Looksmart are the big ones.
When it comes to search engine marketing, be prepared to spend at least 10
hours a week or more dedicated to monitoring and staying on top of the daily
changes that will impact your efforts. Some examples that can impact your
marketing efforts include: A virus propagated through the Internet affecting the
performance of your e-mail and Web servers. The result is, your company Web site
goes down from the server attack, and the PPCs went to a Web site that could not
be found. Consider joining Webmasterworld.com, the authority on Internet
marketing via search engines and others of the above mentioned. The infamous
Google Dance (Googles major monthly index update) is now a stressful time of
month for all webmasters, since Web sites rise or fall in the rankings at the
whim of this now-dominant search engine.
We have focused on Internet lead generation methods in this article. Dont
forget, it is still very important to include traditional marketing methods in
your media mix, such as magazine, radio, cable TV, trade shows and newspapers
Part Two: Telecom Lead Generators
By Jamie Ferraro
As the telecom market continues to increase in demand, youre probably
asking yourself, How can we best position ourselves to win more of this
business? As we all know, in order to increase your business, you need to
connect with customers wanting or needing the products/services you offer. You
need to find them and they need to find you.
Of course, there has always been traditional advertising and marketing
campaigns to generate new business, such as print, TV/radio, company contact
list rentals/purchases and, more recently, online/Internet marketing (banner
ads, sponsored listings, text links, e-mail blasts, etc.). However, these
outlets are very expensive, outdated, non-targeted and takes quite a bit of time
to manage, which ultimately means your return on investment is very low.
Considering all of these cons, you need to look into a more efficient and
productive approach to generating leads and new business for your organization.
Dont despair; there is light at the end of the tunnel, folks! There is a
much better solution to generate high-quality telecom leads for your
organization. Instead of spending (or should we say wasting) a tremendous amount
of time and money in the previously mentioned marketing outlets, why not use
companies that have the expertise in generating telecom leads. Let them do the
work for you, so you can concentrate on what you do best, which is selling your
products/services to customers.
Telecom lead generators can provide highly qualified and targeted customers
looking to purchase your product or service, up to 500+ new customer leads per
Youre probably wondering how these telecom lead generators get so many
qualified customers through their door. Well, its not a simple task. Telecom
lead generation takes a tremendous amount of time and money in order to remain
successful. Lead generators use a combination of their reach of industry
contacts, brand name recognition and aggressive high-quality marketing
initiatives, which consist of both online and traditional marketing venues.
Customers love using them because they are free of charge, and offer a one-stop
comparison-shopping place for any telecom service out there today. The customer
saves time and money in their search for connectivity services by using telecom
lead generators. In essence, lead generators can be viewed as your own in-house
marketing team experts. They spend the time and money to generate targeted
telecom leads, so you dont have to.
But like anything, dont be so fast to form a relationship with anyone out
there. Make sure to do your homework, as some extend false hopes and empty
promises. Be sure to find out how long the company has been in business doing
telecom lead generation, what proven results it can provide, names of customers
(Fortune 500, or just mom & pop shops?), providers represented, and if it
has a non-biased partner neutrality environment. Dont be fooled by sales
pitches; let the numbers and results do the talking and make sure the lead
generator is a viable one.
To sum it up, successful telecom lead generators are an extremely powerful
source to winning a lot of new business today. As more and more telecom buyers
use their business model to shop for options, their services will continue to
rise in demand. You may want to re-think your current marketing plans and
position yourself so that your organization can continue to grow with them.
About the Authors
Craig Salomon is owner of TelecomLeads.net and WebPagePros.net, two Internet
marketing firms specializing in the telecommunications industry. He is based in
Jamie Ferraro is co-founder of BroadBandBuyer.com. BroadBandBuyer.com is
the No. 1 free online service that helps business customers find,
compare and receive the best prices, plans and services from many of
the nations leading service providers that offer various
broadband/telecom solutions. Since inception in 2000, it has
become the most popular site, which specifically targets customers in need
of business-class telecom services such as high-speed Internet access,
data and integrated services.The company enables telecom companies to build
brand-name recognition, and dramatically increase their new business revenue, by
providing qualified telecom leads to their organization. For additional
information, please visit the Web site at www.broadbandbuyer.com
or e-mail at [email protected].
Ferraro can be reached at +1 843 971 1210, or [email protected].
Read more about:Agents
About the Author(s)
You May Also Like