Since so much of the sales cycle is over now before potential clients contact any network consulting services firm, it’s critical for your website to attract the right visitors and convert those visitors into leads.
While there are a variety of ways to turn strangers into website visitors – including blogging, social media, and email marketing, websites invariably need effective landing pages to convert visitors into the leads.
But there’s one more vital area to think about when planning your online lead generation. What happens immediately after your newly generated lead completes your landing page form and clicks the “submit” button?
In this post, we’ll review, identify, and explain the two biggest mistakes that most network consulting services firms are making with their lead generation funnel.
Thank You Pages (Also Known as Confirmation Pages)
Thank you pages and email confirmation messages are a very important part of your lead generation efforts and overall Inbound sales funnel. However most novices are completely missing the boat and fail to tap into the power of these critical sales acceleration assets.
After a website visitor completes a form on a landing page and clicks the button, that visitor is redirected to a “thank you” page or confirmation page. Whether you realize this is happening or not, you probably are involved in something like this at least a few times every month.
So in the case of a webinar recording landing page, when you click the button at the bottom of the form for Watch the Recording, your visitor session is redirected from the landing page to the corresponding thank you page. What’s the job of a thank you page?
A thank you page
- Follows up with new leads
- Makes good on the landing page promise
- Manages expectations about what’s coming next, and
- Recommends the next logical call to action (CTA), further down the sales funnel
In other words when done well, thank you pages accomplish a lot. The trouble is for most network consulting service providers, thank you pages at best cover one of these four basic areas.
Just like landing pages, thank you pages are business assets that work for you 24/7. And that word asset is very important.
Creating content for inbound marketing isn’t an expense. It’s asset building that can pay dividends for years. This is a very different mindset than Google AdWords advertising, or a magazine ad, or a trade show booth, or a postcard mailing.
SP Home Run has YouTube videos created in 2008, that probably took 3 to 4 hours each to create, that are still generating leads pretty much every single month, several years later. If your business values long-term clients and long-term referral sources, inbound marketing is a great approach.
Thank You Emails (Also Known as Confirmation Emails)
An email confirmation delivers largely the same information as your thank you page, except it goes direct to the email inbox for longer-lasting value.
An email confirmation should come from a real person and allow for a two-way dialog.
Don’t use noreply@ or info@. We used to do this in the mid 2000’s, but stopped for a bunch of reasons. Why? It hurts deliverability and pretty much kills your chances for engagement. Classic battle of the techies vs. the marketers.
You don’t want to make that same mistake when some of those receiving that confirmation email could want to reply back with magic words like, “Wow what a great white paper! We could really use your help getting our IT problems under control. Can you give me a call on Monday morning at 10?”
An email confirmation should follow all standard email marketing best practices including:
- A clear goal
- Concise, action-oriented subject line
- Personalized greeting
- Multiple clickable links with calls to action that all focus on that same goal
- Bullet points for skimmers
- Short paragraphs (Tip: preview on your smartphone)
- CAN-SPAM compliance
- Above the fold image that’s clickable and has ALT Text
- Social sharing icons for the related landing page
- Focus on engagement
- Testing and tracking
- Analyzing results
It takes a lot of work with strategy and traffic generation to get the right strangers and visitors to visit your landing pages. It takes even more work to develop a well-optimized landing page and form with a significant conversion rate, generally at least 20%.
So after you’ve gone so far, don’t make the ultra-common mistake of leaving these super-interested new leads, ahem your future clients, dangling.
In this article, we looked at really important best practices to follow on your confirmation page and confirmation emails.
How are most network consulting services doing with their lead generation? What do they seem to be doing right? What are they failing at? Let us know your take in the Comments below.
And to learn more about the topics introduced in this post, be sure to watch the "Inbound Revenue Acceleration Webinar for Managed Services & IT Consulting."
Topics:- B2B Lead Generation