Generating leads is one of the key goals of many marketing teams. We’ve worked on many lead-generation campaigns and have found that it’s possible to optimise them in many different ways. In fact, we have 150 ideas that will help you run better lead-generation campaigns in the future!


A great strategy is the basis of all great campaigns. If you think carefully about how and why your lead generation campaign will work, you’re much more likely to see positive results as opposed to simply pushing out another campaign that looks much like the previous one.

1.      Focus on quality over quantity

The well-known 80/20 rule, which asserts that 80% of outputs result from 20% of all inputs, applies to lead generation campaigns as well as many other things in life. It’s important to understand the campaigns that generate the best results and invest time in making them even better. If you make the 20% of campaigns that generate the best results more effective, it’s a much better use of your time than trying to get less effective campaigns up to par.

2.      Be topical

If you’re able to be agile, creating lead generation campaigns around topical issues is always going to help increase conversion rates. Fortunately in B2B, the news cycle can be quite long, so you don’t typically have to respond overnight. However the quicker you can provide content offers that address changes in legislation or hot topics for the industry, the more effective your lead generation campaigns will be.

3.      Create offers for different buying stages

We all understand that prospects move through a series of stages before they buy. The simplest model is AIDA (awareness, interest, desire, action) but you probably have your own sales funnel or customer journey. At each stage, the needs of the audience changes, so build a model where you have different content that you offer to meet the needs of the prospect as they move towards becoming a customer.

4.      Build personas

Great lead generation campaigns understand the need – or needs –  of the customer. Building personas is one of the most effective ways to understand your audience, from what motivates them to the challenges they must overcome. Use personas to understand what your audience cares about and to create solutions that will generate leads.

5.      Understand the different members of the DMU

Almost nine out of 10 B2B purchases are made by a decision-making unit (or buying committee). Too often we see lead generation campaigns focusing on only one member of the DMU. The best campaigns engage several key members and group leads together by creating a rich picture of the team making the purchase decision.

6.      Understand the customer journey

Building a strong understanding of the customer journey will help you identify the points at which your audience is ready to engage, and the information they need at each of those stages. Although it is possible to use a simple sales funnel model to create lead generation campaigns, the best results are achieved when you precisely target the right information to the right prospect at the right time.

7.      Use scarcity

One of the best strategies to engage an audience is to create the impression of scarcity. Whether it’s a limited time offer, or you require people to “qualify” for the content or programme you’re offering, creating artificial scarcity is a great way to drive action.

8.      Promote offers on product pages

Sometimes lead generation campaigns are seen as separate from other marketing activities such as the company website. This is a mistake! Make use of your website and other marketing channels to promote your lead generation campaign. In particular, offering lead generation content on product pages can not only increase the performance of the campaign, but often provides information the prospect is looking for but can’t find, helping them make a buying decision.

9.      Use your blog to host lead gen offers

Blogs are a fantastic place to promote lead generation campaigns. Typically, when someone is reading your blog they are researching or learning, which is an ideal mindset for your offering of helpful content. Driving traffic to your blog is expensive, whether you use SEO or other tactics, so make sure you take advantage of this traffic by promoting your content offers.

10.  Create content that follows on from blog posts

A great way to offer relevant content at the end of a blog post is to generate “follow on” content from those posts. This might be a white paper or ebook that goes into more detail than you could within a blog post. This type of content offer performs well on the blog as the best performing blog posts will  identify the topics that are of greatest interest to your audience.

11.  Use emotion

It’s a bit of a cliche that, even in B2B, we are still marketing to humans. However, the desire to follow corporate style guidelines and not say anything controversial sometimes makes our lead generation campaigns a little dull. Don’t be afraid to use emotion in your campaigns to grab attention and make prospects understand the importance of what you’re talking about.

12.  Solve problems or help people get promoted

This is perhaps the best, and possibly simplest, tip to improve your lead generation campaigns. If you want someone to register on a form (therefore generating a lead) you should either solve an issue they are struggling with or offer information that will impress others in the organisation. Put simply, if you can help someone solve a problem or get promoted, your lead generation campaign has a good chance of succeeding.

13.  Make your brand stand out

When building a strategy for a campaign, it’s important to stand out from the competition. This can be as simple as using a particular colour palette, or as complex as building a campaign that allows you to “own” a key issue within the industry.

14.  Learn from your mistakes (and successes)

When you are planning the strategy for a lead generation campaign, it’s always useful to review campaigns you have run in the past. Look at what worked, and what didn’t, to find out what you can learn from previous campaigns. Most importantly, identify where campaigns failed in the past and don’t make that mistake again!

15.  Ask for referrals

Don’t be afraid to ask for referrals in your lead generation campaign. Whether it’s giving someone the chance to share content with a colleague, or using telemarketing to ask if there are similar or partner companies that could be approached, referrals are a great way to get new leads. This is particularly important for Europeans, who tend to be less willing to ask for referrals than our American colleagues.

Martech Tools

Using the right tools makes lead generation so much easier. If you have the right marketing technology, and it’s set up correctly, it will make running your campaign simpler and easier.

16.  Have the right tools to track your leads

Make sure you’re able to record and track leads in your CRM. You need to go beyond just capturing leads and monitor them throughout the nurture and sales processes. If you can’t track leads accurately through their life cycle you won’t know the impact that your campaign has had on the business, so any metrics you generate will only tell part of the story.

17.  Keep your marketing database up to date

If you’re not updating the marketing database, you’ll obviously not have the information you need to analyse your campaigns. Spending time making sure the database is updated, and using automation tools to save time, are critical for any lead generation campaign.

18.  Segment your database for better targeting

Personalization is crucial, and that is much more than just putting the recipient’s name at the top of an email! By segmenting your database, you’ll be able to send more relevant messages, whether you’re trying to get a contact to become a lead, or nurture that lead to become a customer.

19.  Link your tools together (CRM, marketing automation platform, social, etc)

Today it’s possible to link your marketing technology tools.. By sharing data between the tools, you’ll build greater insight about your contacts and also have more information about the touchpoints for those prospects. Some systems offer capabilities for multiple channels – for example, marketing automation platforms – while others have built-in integrations. If integrations don’t exist there are middleware platforms like Zapier and Make that will integrate your systems.

20.  Use reporting to improve performance

All too often campaign reports are just used to show that money has been well spent. This is crazy! Make use of the data in your reports to understand what worked, and what wasn’t so successful. Spending a little time analysing your reports rather than justifying the expenditure (which I hope you already have) is a great way to ensure your next campaign is even more successful.

21.  Use the mobile apps for the tools

Many tools offer mobile apps that can allow you to quickly access data about campaign performance when you’re not in front of a PC. Setting up those mobile apps means you’ll always have information at your fingertips, something that your boss is bound to notice!

22.  Make use of automations

It’s much easier to think of ideas for campaigns than to execute the campaigns themselves. With the many different channels and tools, most organisations have ideas for far more campaigns than they could ever run. Fortunately, today’s marketing technology systems offer a wide range of automation features and making use of them is one way to increase the number of campaigns you’re able to run.

23.  Build campaigns around goals, not the capabilities of tools

When your organisation has spent a large amount of money on a marketing technology tool, such as a marketing automation platform, it’s often tempting to try to make use of all the features that are available. However, you don’t get leads by using features, you get them by executing well-designed campaigns. If you build your campaigns around specific goals, you’re much more likely to generate results than if you attempt it using only the latest shiny feature in your favourite tool.

24.  Research to allow multi-channel campaigns

We all know intuitively that sending your marketing messages through a single channel is much less effective than a multi-channel approach. Use your marketing tools to research the different channels used by your audience, and to deliver your message across as many of these channels as possible. Although it’s a cliché, “omni-channel” is the way all good marketers should be thinking.

Working with Sales

The Sales organisation can be a great resource when designing and running lead generation campaigns. More importantly, they will probably be the ones who are most vocal about whether or not the campaign was successful. Working closely with sales is essential to creating a great lead generation campaign.

25.  Ask Sales what leads they want

Assuming your leads become qualified, they’ll be passed to your business development representatives or Sales team. Ask then what they are looking for before you start planning the campaign. If you involve them up front you’ll have a much clearer target, enabling you to be far more precise in the way you design the campaign.

26.  Target key accounts (ABM)

Account-Based Marketing (ABM) Is a very effective way to target your marketing spend to the organisations that are likely to have the biggest impact on your bottom line. Even if the campaign is designed to address a very broad audience, it’s often worth using ABM tactics to target a proportion of the campaign budget at segments likely to generate the best results.

27.  Agree a marketing-Sales SLA

Always make sure you have a Service Level Agreement (SLA) with the Sales team. Clearly define what is meant by “marketing qualified” and “Sales qualified” leads (MQLs and SQLs) and make sure the process for nurturing and handing over ,the leads is understood by both sides.

28.  Group leads by opportunity (or company)

We all know that the vast majority of business-to-business purchases are made by a group of decision-makers rather than an individual. If you can group relevant leads from a single sales opportunity, or even group them by company, you’ll make it much easier for the sales team to piece together who is involved in the decision-making unit. This will make their sales process simpler and more effective.

29.  Review progress frequently with Sales

Everyone hates when a campaign has been completes and suddenly Sales says the leads do not meet expectations. It is therefore important to have frequent informal check-ins with the Sales team to avoid the embarrassment and frustration of finding out after the campaign is completed that you were targeting the wrong audience.

30.  Filter out the rubbish before it gets to Sales

This should be simple. Any good lead qualification process will ensure that irrelevant or erroneous contacts are filtered out. However, we often see leads that are obviously gobbledegook get passed through to Sales. Ensure you have a robust process to validate contact data and qualify leads.

31.  Promote big wins among the Sales team

We all too often hear negative stories from Sales about lead generation campaigns. Like most things, bad news is far more likely to be passed on than good. Make sure you highlight the successful campaign you ran. Don’t be frightened of running a little internal marketing to promote the successes: getting Sales to buy in to following up relies on them believing that there will be a benefit to them and the company.

32.  Make sure you work with channel partners too

It’s not just about your direct Salesforce. Your channel partners are a vital part of your Sales organisation, so make sure you talk to them, too. Frequently we see the needs of channel partners being somewhat different from those of the direct Sales force, so don’t assume they will be the same.

Choice of Channels

In today’s digital world there are numerous marketing channels you can use to generate leads. Here are some tips on how to decide which channels to use, and how to customise the content f each channel.

33.  Use social media to warm leads up

Particularly if you are running an issues-based campaign, social media can be a great way to warm up leads and make them aware of a particular topic. If you have a strong following, social media can be an incredibly cost-effective way to reach a large audience. You can then follow up with lead generation on social, email or other channels to drive the lead into your basket.

34.  Make the messaging match the channel

Although your communications will have to match the company voice and style guide, you need to tweak the way you say things for each channel. A corporate landing page may need to be much more formal than a post on Facebook or Instagram. Think about your audience’s mindset on each channel and make sure the style of your content is optimised for the way they’re thinking.

35.  Use social for retargeting

Paid social is a fantastic tactic, particularly when you use it for retargeting. Think about using audiences that have already engaged with your content on the social media platform, as well as retargeting those who have visited your website.

36.  Multi-channel is more effective than single channel

When considering different channels, it’s important to think about how you can use multiple channels for each campaign. As well as increasing frequency, which is therefore likely to increase effectiveness, multi-channel campaigns make it more likely that you are using all recipients’ channel of choice. Not everybody is active on LinkedIn, but an equal number of people don’t respond well to e-mail direct marketing. Picking multiple channels makes it more likely you will engage with each contact in a place where they are receptive to your messages.

37.  Email might look good, but beware of talking to your “fan club”

Often the most effective lead generation channel is an organization’s own database. However, because people on the database have probably volunteered their contact details, there is a good chance that you are simply talking to your “fan club”. Don’t compare the results of emailing your own database to other channels and tactics without understanding the inherent bias: you need to reach new audiences, which is not something you can do with your existing database.


Email is a great way to generate sales leads, whether you are trying to activate dormant contacts in your own database or using a third party database to engage with a new audience. Email is also usually a critical part of any lead nurture campaign.

38.  Recipients are vanity, leads are sanity

Like many aspects of digital marketing, it’s easy to get seduced by the numbers. Particularly when running e-mail campaigns, it’s often easy to focus on the size of the database to which you’ll be sending emails. Quality is always more important than quantity. Make sure you focus on relevant contacts and build analysis around those results rather than the number of emails you send.

39.  Write great subject lines

If recipients don’t open your email, your campaign won’t work. The subject line is crucial, as a poor subject line will be quickly deleted without the content being read. Great subject lines grab attention and make the recipient want to read more, but don’t try to be too clever: the subject line should reflect the information offered in the email.

40.  Use AI for inspiration

Artificial intelligence tools are beginning to have an impact on a wide range of marketing activities. We recommend making use of these tools to generate inspiration for your e-mail subject line and copy. However, don’t rely on AI tools to write everything: today AI generates derivative text that can sound bland and boring. Also, if you’re using AI to create images, be careful around issues of copyright.

41.  Have clear CTAs

Having a clear call to action is crucial for any e-mail campaign. It’s not just about putting a link in the text and a button to click: you need to make sure that the CTA communicates exactly why the recipient should click through, and what benefit they will get.

42.  Don’t waffle in emails

Your audience is busy. Don’t imagine that they have time to read long emails that give complex and detailed explanations of what you’re offering. A great rule is to have only one message and one call to action per email. If you want your lead generation campaigns to work, less is more!

43.  Use HTML and plain text

Don’t use only one format for your emails. HTML Is great for including eye-catching images and laying out text in a logical and readable way. But HTML looks like an e-mail from the Marketing Department. Including plaintext emails, particularly if the “From” address is a real individual, can make your campaign more authentic and produce better results.

44.  Remember the from address matters

Email recipients use the ”From” address as one of the factors to determine if they want to open and read an email, or just delete it. Research shows that having a From address from a real person is likely to increase open rates and engagement. Try to avoid generic email address like “Sales”, which might discourage recipients.

45.  Know your DKIMs from your SPFs

Email systems use technology to validate that an email server is entitled to send messages on behalf of the domain in the From address. There are two main technologies: DKIM and SPF. If you don’t set up your systems correctly, there is a much greater chance of your emails ending up in spam folders.

46.  Use email templates and standard formats

There is no need to continually design custom layouts for every marketing email you send. Your recipients won’t remember the layout of an email you sent them three months ago! Use standard templates and formats to speed the creation of your campaigns. It won’t affect the performance, but it will allow you to run more campaigns and therefore generate better results.

47.  Don’t always reinvent the wheel

You’ll often want to send similar campaigns to different audiences, or achieve the same results as a campaign that you ran a couple of years ago. Don’t be afraid to reuse or refresh existing content. If it worked well previously, it’s likely to still be effective today.

48.  Newsletters still work

Although it’s one of the oldest email marketing approaches, newsletters are still very effective. We often see campaigns falter because an organisation does not have sufficient resources to create compelling nurture sequences. Although it’s always better to have a custom nurture process, if you have nothing else, adding your contacts to your e-mail newsletter (with permission if you have an opt-in policy) can be surprisingly effective.

49.  Consistency wins

Although we have all seen the odd campaign that has been disproportionately effective, the reality is that there is rarely a campaign that works like magic. The organisations that have the best lead generation results are usually the ones who work consistently to create and deliver campaigns. Consistent output almost always trumps an incredibly creative one-off campaign.

50.  Multiple emails are better, but there is no magic number of emails

Like almost any aspect of marketing, repeating the message increases effectiveness and delivers better results. Most email lead generation campaigns will see better results with several emails rather than just one. However, there is no “right” answer to the ideal number of emails in a sequence for lead generation. The best number will depend on what you want to communicate, as well as the behaviour of your audience. Tracking campaign results against the number of emails is a great way to ensure you get a better understanding of what works for your audience.


Retargeting is an incredibly powerful tactic that can be used to great effect in lead generation campaigns. Being a little more creative with retargeting can produce a dramatic improvement in your results.

51.  Don’t always insist on a registration immediately

Most campaigns designed to generate leads will root the contact directly to a registration form as the first step. If you have a great content offer, this can be the best approach. However, sometimes it can be better to demand less at the start: for example, offering a video on social media, and then retargeting the people who watch it, will enable you to focus your budget on an audience that cares about the issue you’re discussing.

52.  Retarget people who have visited key parts of your website

Visitors to your website are a fantastic resource for any lead generation campaign. Make sure you consider whether visiting a part of your website indicates a level of interest that could result in the contact becoming a lead. Also, don’t forget to retarget people who visit your landing page but don’t complete the form: this is a surprisingly effective tactic as people are more likely to fill in a form on second and subsequent visits to the landing page.

53.  Use retargeting on social

When thinking about retargeting, Google is often the go-to place. Although Google can offer a great channel for display advertising to your audience, don’t forget social media. In particular, LinkedIn can be very effective for retargeting as people are in a business frame of mind when they are on the site, although advertising costs on LinkedIn can be quite high.

54.  Test lifetime in retargeting audiences

When creating a retargeting audience, you’re able to specify the length of time that contacts are targeted. Your buyer’s journey should help inform the optimum lifetime, but it is always worthwhile checking by testing different lifetimes. Sometimes, however, you will be limited in what you can select if you have a small audience, as a short lifetime might make that audience too small to target on the platform.

55.  Exclude audiences to be more accurate

When creating a retargeting audience don’t forget to consider who should be excluded. This could be people within your organisation, or you might be able to use behavioural information to determine other segments that will not generate high quality leads.

56.  Don’t rely on audience extension or similar audiences

Most platforms offer the ability to create look-alike or audience extension segments. If you are a B2B company with a specific audience, it is highly likely that the algorithm to identify look-alikes will be far too broad. Although it is possible to use these features successfully, most of our clients find the performance of campaigns that use them to be very disappointing.

Google Search Ads

Don’t forget search advertising as a way to promote your content! Search engine marketing can generate leads through content offers, particularly if your content relates to popular searches. There are some simple ways you can use search advertising to drive more leads.

57.  Do promote content offers with search ads

Probably the most common way of generating leads is through content offers. Don’t forget search ads when deciding your strategy to promote this content: if it solves a problem or answers a question, there’s a great chance that people are searching around these topics, so maximise your results by running search ads.

58.  Target your competitors’ brands

A great approach is to target searches for your competitors’ brands. If you’re trying to persuade the audience to switch supplier, then engaging them when they’re searching for information about your competitors’ products is a great way to do this. Don’t forget, you can’t use competitor trademarks in the advert text (although you can bid on searches for trademark terms).

59.  Answer important questions

Search is a great way to identify the questions your audience is asking. Using search intelligence, you can find common search terms that relate to the questions your content can answer. If you do this, don’t forget to advertise on search engines around the questions you are answering.

60.  Long-tail searches work best

The more specific the search terms you bid on, the more effective your campaign. However, these long tail searches often have relatively low search volumes, so be prepared to run your search campaigns for a longer time. We see some “evergreen” campaigns on search that consistently generate leads quarter after quarter.

Direct Mail

Direct mail sounds like it should have been eliminated as a tactic with the advent of the Internet, but in many ways it’s more effective than ever.

61.  Postal mail is not dead!

It’s easy to forget that postal mail is still a valid tactic for marketing and lead generation. In particular, it’s great for reaching out to dormant contacts on your database or as part of an account-based marketing campaign. Direct mail, particularly creative and eye-catching direct mail, works well because so few organisations use it in a business-to-business context. Sending physical mail stands out and can actually generate great return on investment if it is well targeted.

62.  Find out where your recipient is sitting

After the pandemic, remote working has become more common than ever. If you’re sending postal mail, you really don’t want it ending up at head office if your contact is based many miles away. So make sure you understand where your contact is based before sending.

63.  Be creative

Physical mailers can be expensive, and postage is a significant cost. It makes sense to invest time to be highly creative and generate mail pieces that really grab attention. One of our best physical mailers involved sending a pebble from the beach with a story around it. Ask us if you’d like to know more!

64.  Invest in quality for key prospects/customers

Account-based marketing tactics allow you to focus your budget on the targets and customers who make the biggest difference to your business. Where you do identify those most important contacts, it really is worth spending the money to send high quality mailers rather than low-cost postcards or other low-impact items.

Trade Shows

Despite webinars becoming incredibly popular during the pandemic, there is still huge demand for face-to-face trade shows and conferences. Attending an in-person event can be very expensive as an exhibitor, so you need to make sure you optimise the number of leads you generate to ensure a great return on investment.

65.  Use give-aways to gather leads

We all love a bit of free swag! It’s always good to have something to offer in exchange for a badge scan or business card. Branded giveaways have been proven to work over decades. We recommend giveaways that will either sit on the recipients desk or be played with by their children as being the most likely to continue to remind them of your brand.

66.  Business cards are still useful

People still carry business cards! Although badge scanners have largely replaced business cards as a way to gather leads during events, some people still prefer to leave a business card, so make sure you have a glass jar or something similar to collect them.

67.  Scan in business cards

It’s easy to forget about the pile of business cards you collect at an event. However, there are lots of apps that will scan in business cards to your phone and provide an uploadable file for your CRM or marketing automation system. Make use of these tools and scan in business cards as quickly as possible so you can ensure your nurture campaign runs in a timely fashion.

68.  Competitions can gather lots of leads

You’ve probably seen many trade show booths that have some sort of prize draw. Although it’s true that sometimes these competitions generate lower quality leads, having a competition can increase the number of contacts and generate good qualified leads if you primarily offer it to the people who are already on your booth.

69.  Make sure Sales people don’t “steal” leads

Salespeople can be sneaky! We’ve seen many of them put the business card or contact details of the best leads from an event into their pocket rather than feed it through the Marketing team. Making sure the Salespeople see that your follow up process is effective is crucial to gaining their confidence and make sure they don’t slip away with the best leads from the event.

70.  Have follow-up emails prepared before the event

If you generate leads at trade shows, you’ll want to nurture them with follow up emails. Make sure you generate these emails well in advance of the event. If you leave it to the last minute, inevitably the event itself will absorb all your time and you won’t get the emails written, resulting in less effective nurturing because your campaign will run some considerable time after the contact details were collected.

71.  Invite trade show contacts to engage with other content

The previous tip mentioned nurturing the contacts you gather after the event. At the time, it can be hard to record exactly what any individual was interested in, so encouraging them to engage with additional content after the event will not only help qualify the lead, but also provide more information about topics that interest them.

72.  Badge scanners are a good idea

Exhibition organisers charge an extortionate amount for the privilege of using badge scanners. Don’t try to cut corners: if you want to generate leads, the most effective way is to scan someone’s badge and you have little alternative but to pay the price demanded by the organisers.

73.  Get guest speakers where possible

If you’re running your own event, guest speakers are generally more effective for attracting attendees than your own team. Guest speakers give the appearance of independence and credibility, significantly enhancing the impression given to potential attendees.

74.  Involve customers to provide testimonials

At events, having customers speak and talk about successful projects with your organisation is incredibly powerful. Don’t feel that you can only use customers who had the perfect experience: often tales of how you helped them overcome problems can be the most compelling stories to potential customers.

75.  Make events fun

You’re running an event because you want to sell something. But don’t forget that the emotional response to the event is incredibly important. Make events fun and enjoyable, and your customer will be more likely to buy.

76.  Make events and webinars educational

Your customers’ time is extremely valuable, so make your events and webinars as educational as possible. If they feel they gained value from attending, they will be much more open to sales conversations if they felt the event worthwhile.

77.  Send multiple invites

You might think your event is the most important thing in the world, but prospects and customers probably don’t think the same way. They might not reply to the first e-mail they receive about your event or webinar. In fact they might also ignore the second! Send several invites and reminders before the event to maximise attendance.

78.  Promote events on multiple channels

Like other marketing campaigns, events should be promoted across multiple channels. Think about who you want to reach, and which channel might be most effective. For example, if you want to attract existing customers, then getting sales people to share the event on social media is likely to be highly effective. However, organic social media is less likely to reach an audience that is not already engaged with your brand.

79.  Partner to attract new prospects

To increase attendance, think about partnering with complementary suppliers. It’s amazing how often this approach benefits both sides because, although you’re both working in the same market, you probably have very different customer bases.


Most generation campaigns rely on content offers that are gated behind forms. Getting the content right is critical to the effectiveness of this type of campaign, so make sure you check out these content tips.

80.  It’s the title (and cover) that matter most

We often see huge amounts of effort being put into the generation of high-quality content, and then little attention being paid to the title and design of the cover. Don’t forget that this is typically the only part of the content your audience will see before they fill in the form,  so spend time thinking about what would be the most attractive title and how you can make the cover more enticing.

81.  Test different titles

Experimenting with different titles, and running AB tests, can make a huge difference to the conversion rate of your landing page and forms. Don’t be afraid to test several versions of the same content with different titles to determine which one works best.

82.  Talk in your customers’ language

When generating content, it’s so easy to write in a way that’s attractive for people who work in your organisation. But in practice, your customers probably use slightly different language and tone, so try to make sure you write using their terminology rather than your own.

83.  eBooks beat white papers

The white paper has been incredibly successful for a very long time, but testing shows that conversion rates are higher for ebooks.

84.  Research is valuable

One of the most effective forms of content is a report based on research you have done. Your customers will want to know how others doing the same job in different organisations think, so survey research around attitudes in the market you are addressing can produce content with exceptional conversion rates.

85.  Tools and calculators get engagement

Content doesn’t just have to be presented as written text or by video. Although lead generation calculators and other online tools can sometimes seem a little simplistic, they do get great engagement and can be great sources of leads. It can be time consuming and expensive to do the programming work to create a calculator, but often the results are well worth it.

86.  Webinars are still great

During the pandemic there was a huge rush to produce webinars. Although demand for webinars has fallen due to some organisations producing poor quality online events, the large number of webinars that are available, and the option to attend face-to-face events, mean that webinars still work. Even if the performance of your webinars have fallen, it’s likely that the quality of engagement and return on investment makes the time to produce them very worthwhile.

87.  Offer content to follow-on from the webinar

Just as physical events offer content that follows on from your webinar, valuable content is particularly important for subsequent webinars because people are probably attending to learn something more, and therefore will be open to engaging with additional materialabout the topic.

88.  Keep webinars short (<45 mins)

It’s hard to stay focused on a webinar for a long time. Most of our clients find attendees start to log off somewhere between 30 and 45 minutes after the start. Although some people will continue to watch the webinar for well over an hour, we recommend aiming for around 45 minutes as this seems to be the optimum length.

89.  Double-down on the best-performing content

It’s vitally important to monitor what content generates the best results. You’ll probably find a small percentage will generate the vast majority of leads. Don’t keep creating completely new content; repurpose the best performing content as source material for different channels, formats or just new versions of the content you know works best.

90.  Try different formats

Most companies focus on a small number of formats. For example, you might be highly invested in the company blog or prefer to create only white papers. Try to avoid such a narrow focus: having a wider range will allow greater reuse of content, which will save you time, and also mean you are more likely to be engaging every member of your audience in the format they prefer.

91.  Video can be gated

With many companies posting their video content to sharing sites or leaving it ungated on their website, you might think that gating video is a bad idea. If you have the right video content – for example interviews with board level executives of your customers – then gaiting video might not only be possible, it might be the best way to generate high-quality leads.

92.  Worry about design

Although tools exist to create content in different formats without requiring any design expertise, you should be very conscious of good design. Great design not only makes the content more attractive and encourages people to read it, it also makes consuming the content simpler and increases the likelihood of that your audience will remember the message.

93.  You can gate content that is publicly available

Just because information is available in the public domain, it doesn’t mean you can’t gate it. One of the best lead generation campaigns one of our  clients ran was a collection of publicly available blog posts packaged up as an ebook. If you can make the content more convenient to consume, then it’s definitely worth considering using publicly available information for lead generation.

94.  Create teaser content

It’s important to try to show your audience what they will get if they register for your content offer. Creating short teaser content, particularly on social media, is a great way to increase interest in your content and therefore improve the conversion rate of your landing page and forms.

95.  Test which format is most popular

Just because you like a particular format, it doesn’t mean your audience will like it, too. It’s important to test different formats to see which one is most effective. Does your audience prefer white papers or ebooks? Is video preferred over written content? Although you can use rules of thumb, your audience will be slightly different from everyone else’s and testing is the only way you will really understand their preferences.

96.  Use snippets to promote content

When creating teaser content, don’t overthink it. Quite often the table of contents and first chapter of an ebook, which takes virtually no effort to produce, is great teaser content. Think about how you can use snippets from that content as a teaser rather than having to create something new.

97.  Promote your offers in other content

If someone is reading, watching or listening to your content, then it’s likely they are open to more. So promote within your content. Perhaps the best place to do this is in podcasts, where you can generate leads by offering things such as ebooks to download.


Whether it’s a social media post or an email, one of the first steps in lead generation is a call to action (CTA). Getting the call to action right is critical to ensure your campaign generates the results you want, and keeps your boss happy.

98.  Make sure your CTA is visible (above the fold)

Although it sounds obvious, it’s easy to let your call to action be hidden below the fold. This is particularly common with emails that might look great on a desktop, but hide the CTA when viewing on a mobile. Make sure you check that your call to action is clearly visible on all devices.

99.  Be clear – not clever – with your CTA

When writing a call to action, it’s not the time to be clever or witty. A clear call to action will always outperform one that is more confusing, no matter how clever the language you use.

100. Make your CTAs stand out visually

Make use of visual cues so that your CTA stands out. In particular, think how you will draw your audience’s eyes to CTA buttons through placement, design and colour.

101. Start the CTA with a strong verb

It’s a bit of a cliche, but it does work. Starting your CTA with a strong verb, which can be as simple as “download”, is a great way to improve the performance of your campaign.


In most cases when you’re collecting contact data, you’ll need a form. The design of the form can have a huge impact on the conversion rate of your landing page, so follow these tips to maximise the number of leads you generate.

102.  Limit the length of your forms, particularly for lower-value offers

In general, the shorter the form the higher the completion rate. This isn’t always the case, as some research has shown that for high value items, a longer form can perform better. In most cases, however, reducing the number of fields is a good thing so consider whether you can eliminate any fields from your forms.

103.  Don’t just use the default text on the submit button

The submit button is a call to action. Make use of the text on the button by having a strong verb and sell the benefits of submitting the form. Leaving the button with the default “submit” text will reduce the conversion rate.

104.  Don’t space the form out too much

Although design is important, too much space can have a negative impact on forms. If you space the fields out too much, the form looks bigger and your audience will be less likely to complete it.

105.  Use progressive profiling

Marketing automation systems and most form managers can do progressive profiling, where once you have the answer to one question the system automatically adds a new one. By getting your prospects to fill in multiple forms, you increase the information you gain about them without ever making them face a form with a large number of fields. Progressive profiling can therefore enhance your data as well as increase conversion rates.

106.  Auto-fill fields

If you know information about the contact, don’t make them type it in again. Auto-filling fields reduce the amount of work to complete the form, and therefore increases conversion rates.

107.  Hide auto-filled fields

If your systems offer the capability, it’s a good idea to hide the auto-filled fields. This reduces the length of form that your audience sees, making them more likely to complete and submit it.

108.  Use hidden fields to send more data

You can gather more information than your contacts enter on the form. Hidden fields allow you to gather additional data: a great use of this is to harvest the Urchin Tracking Module (UTM) parameters from the URL, which means you have information about the source of the lead added to the contact records.

Landing Pages

Most lead generation campaigns route the audience to a landing page where they need to fill in a form. The design of the landing page can have a huge impact on the results your campaign generates.

109.  Use dedicated landing pages

The first tip is always to use a dedicated landing page. Routing your contacts to pages that are not designed specifically to convert with a form fill will reduce the performance of your campaign because they have much lower conversion rates than dedicated landing pages.

110.  Landing pages should only do one thing

Generally, the purpose of a landing page is to get someone to fill in a form and submit it. When designing a landing page you should only have one objective, and typically it’s form completion. Although it might seem helpful to have other information available to landing page visitors, this approach will reduce the conversion rate and make your campaign less effective.

111.  Don’t use too much text on landing pages

Landing pages should only do one thing. Too much text will distract from the goal. Keep your text succinct and clear, and always remember that overcomplication is a bad idea.

112.  Use the thank-you page to make a second offer

When someone submits a form on a landing page they are typically routed to a thank you page where they can download or view the content. This is an ideal place to promote related content, particularly if you have a form with progressive profiling so you can gather more data about the contact.

113.  Make your headline action-based

Tests show that landing page headlines are more effective if they’re action based. A very simple example of this would be changing a headline from “Marketing Ebook” to “Download Your Marketing Ebook Today”.

114.  Have clear subheading

Subheadings can expand on the page headline, and generally landing pages perform better if they have a subheading. Like all content on your landing page, make the subheading clear and succinct.

115.  Include an image

A landing page that just has text is not very inviting. Adding images will, in general, compel the viewer to linger and increase conversion rate. Typically landing pages have an image of the item that is being offered, for example the ebook. A good image, which requires good cover design, makes a big difference as the content being offered feels more tangible to the visitor.

116.  Use bullet points

Keeping the text short is important, but bullet points arre more effective. Bullet points make it easy for the visitor to see what is being offered and the benefit of sharing their contact details to secure the item. We always recommend using bullet points on landing pages.

117.  Make form visible

Don’t put the form at the bottom of your landing page. Making the form visible above the fold will increase the conversion rate of the landing page. It’s not always possible to have the form immediately visible on mobile, but think about the designed to ensure that visitors don’t have to scroll endlessly to find it.

118.  Have a text and visual CTA

On the landing page it is important to not only have a clear call to action in the text, but also to have a visual CTA that really stands out. Sometimes we see the clever use of arrows to highlight the form that needs to be completed, although you should match the visual CTA to your brand.

119.  Remove distracting navigation

We mentioned previously that a landing page should have only one purpose. Removing distracting navigation content from the template allows the visitor to focus on the content offer and the form, resulting in better performance of your landing page.

120.  Make sure your landing page matches the CTA that drove the prospect there

This seems obvious, but if you’re running several different campaigns with many landing pages and promotions, you might have a mismatch between the advert, blog post or other item that drives the person to the landing page and the content on the page itself. Always try to ensure the landing page matches the CTA that brought the person there in the first place.

121.  Encourage social sharing of landing page

You should make the landing page as widely available as possible. Any “free” promotion of the landing page is a good thing, so encourage visitors to share the landing page on social media profiles to increase traffic and leads.

122.  You need several landing pages

Don’t feel you only have to create one landing page. Visitors coming from different sources may need slightly different landing pages, and optimising the page to their needs will maximise your conversion rates. Just make sure that each landing page does only one thing.

123.  Use social proof

Even if you are a well-known brand, “social proof” is likely to improve the performance of your landing page. Make sure you include customer testimonials, relevant certifications and other credentials that will provide reassurance that you are a reliable supplier and have delivered successful projects to existing customers.

124.  Use SEO

Increasing the distribution of your landing page is a good thing, so make the page visible in search engines and think about SEO. Having the landing page rank well in organic search can dramatically increase traffic and therefore the number of leads you generate.

125.  Support all devices

Don’t assume your audience will visit the landing page from a desktop or laptop computer. Make

sure you support all devices, particularly mobile phones.


Your website should be one of your best lead generation tools. Here are some ideas to increase the number of leads you generate from the prospects who visit your website.

126.  Use popups and (not too intrusive) promotions

Don’t be afraid to use pop ups and other promotions on your website to generate leads. You obviously don’t want to overdo it and spoil the user experience, but having these types of promotions on your website can be a great way to generate leads.

127.  Offer gated related content on web pages

Offering related content is a great way to help website visitors. If the content is behind a registration wall, it’s also a great way to generate leads.

128.  Promote your newsletter

Newsletters are one of the best ways to nurture contacts, and a good newsletter is highly valued by recipients. Don’t forget your newsletter when building pages on your website, and make sure that there are multiple promotions and ways to sign up to receive these regular emails.

129.  Make sure forms are on key pages

Forms shouldn’t only live on landing pages. Make sure you have forms on key pages that coincide with the best performing blog posts or other content.

130.  Use SEO to drive traffic

Obviously, you’ll be using search engine optimization to drive traffic to your website. Understanding the search terms that are being used to drive people to particular pages can lead to helpful insights about which content to promote. Also don’t forget to optimise for organic traffic that is searching for problems your content can solve.


LinkedIn is an amazing lead generation tool and we believe it’s worth a separate section of these tips and tricks. The ability to target people based upon company and job role makes it an excellent platform for lead gen, but you need to get LinkedIn right as it can be costly.

131.  Use LinkedIn lead gen ads

LinkedIn lead Gen ads are fantastic. They generally produce better conversion rates than your landing pages will. However, the ads can be expensive in terms of cost per lead, so use them for your most valuable prospect companies or job roles.

132.  Don’t worry about LinkedIn guidelines

You’ll see many different guidelines on LinkedIn, and often the best advice is to ignore them. Like many platforms, LinkedIn wants to maximise its revenue, so suggestions such as the minimum audience size should be 300,000 people are somewhat self-serving. In fact some of the best campaigns we’ve seen on LinkedIn have targeted an audience of just a few hundred. Small audiences mean more personalisation and relevance, which often produces better results.

133.  Understand LinkedIn data you can use

LinkedIn offers you a range of demographic and firmographic information that you can use to target your campaign. It’s important to understand the data you can use and its impact on the audience you reach. Experimenting to understand what it means for your particular industry is invaluable.

134.  Know how LinkedIn does matching

LinkedIn doesn’t always exactly match the criteria you enter when selecting an audience, particularly when it comes to job title. In fact, LinkedIn groups different jobs together, so putting in one job title will result in the campaign targeting people with different, but usually similar, job titles.

135.  Review the demographics of people who engaged

When running a LinkedIn campaign, you can review the demographics and firmer graphics of the people who have engaged with the campaign. It’s essential to make sure the people who are viewing and clicking your ads are the ones you really want to target. This is particularly important as LinkedIn doesn’t always deliver exact matches to your criteria.

136.  Link your marketing automation tool to LinkedIn

Many marketing automation tools offer a direct connection to LinkedIn. It’s always worth setting this up to avoid the need to manually upload the leads you generate. Let’s be honest, uploading leads probably won’t be your top priority, and at some point there will be a delay, but getting the contacts into a marketing automation system will impact the effectiveness of your nurture campaign.

137.  Use personal networks

Although advertising on LinkedIn is incredibly powerful, don’t underestimate the value of organic LinkedIn posts. If you have salespeople with great networks, it’s worth spending the time to explain to them the value of posting about your campaigns.

138.  Make it easy by sharing canned posts with the Sales team

One way to get access to your Sales team’s great networks is to write the posts for them. There are systems available that aim to make it easier to share “canned” posts, but often sending them as emails is a better way to ensure the salesperson sees and acts on the content you’ve created for them.


We’ve mentioned testing several times in this blog post, and it’s vital that you test to understand the behaviour of your audience and what works best for them. Here are our tips to help you develop a better testing strategy.

139.  AB test often

Try to make testing apart of all campaigns. The more you test, the more data you’ll gather, and the more you’ll know about your audience.

140.  Ask different people for ideas

Marketing doesn’t have a monopoly on the best ideas. This is particularly true when testing. It’s always worth asking other people, particularly the Sales team, for their ideas and trying them out. Even if you don’t think an idea will work, it can be worth trying: you might be wrong, but even if you’re right you might learn something from the test.

141.  Have a plan for testing

When you run tests there should always be a reason for doing it. Each test should be designed to answer a question or find something out. Make sure you have a clear plan for your testing. It will not only make the process easier, but it will help you analyse the data at the end of the test.

142.  Never think you have reached perfection

It’s easy to think you’ve understood your audience and have the perfect campaign, but people change over time. Even if your campaign is performing brilliantly, it’s important to keep testing as attitudes and behaviour can change. You might even be able to improve the performance of what you think is the “perfect” campaign.

143.  Remember different personas respond differently

When testing it’s important to make sure you run separate tests for different personas. Different personas have different needs and interests, and will not behave in the same way. Each of those personas is also subject to change.

144.  Measure quality as well as quantity when testing

Don’t be a slave to the numbers when you are testing. Simply counting the number of leads might not be the best measure of the performance of your lead generation campaign. So include qualitative metrics that measure how good the leads are, as well as volume metrics that count the number.

145.  Focus on the outcome, not on vanity metrics

With any campaign it’s important to focus on the impact to the business wherever possible by measuring the value of business done with the leads you generate. Even if you can’t, use metrics that assess the quality of the lead. Relying on vanity metrics like impressions, clickthrough’s and even form fills can be misleading.

Steal Good Ideas

However good your organisation is, you won’t have all the good ideas. We strongly recommend looking at what the best in class companies are doing and make use of this intelligence to inform how you run your lead generation campaigns.

146.  Monitor your competition

Make sure you also keep an eye on your competition. You don’t want to blatantly copy their campaigns, and copies are likely to be less effective anyway. However, you should understand your competitions’ strategy and when you see a great idea executed, it’s always worth thinking about how you might do something similar.

147.  Ask customers (or Sales) what information would help

Your customers probably have some of the best ideas for lead generation campaigns – even if they don’t know it! It’s always worth asking customers what information would help. If you can’t talk to customers the Sales team is the next best alternative.

148.  Spy on Google Ads

Because of transparency requirements, it’s possible to see the Google ads being run by your competitors. This is a great source of ideas as well as competitive intelligence.

149.  Use social to monitor offers

Many lead generation offers are shared on social media, so monitor what your competitors and customers are talking about.

150.  Use an agency for ideas

Our last tip is the one we naturally think is most important: use an agency! Agencies bring a unique perspective because they have run lead generation campaigns for many different companies, and therefore have lots of data, experience and ideas.

Hopefully, you’ve seen this in the tips and tricks we’ve shared in this blog post.