What is Lead Generation?

Lead generation is a first and most important stage at the very start of the sales funnel. Lead gen is used to extract outside leads inside the sales funnel. One of the key points of lead generation is to search, extract and export targeted prospect contacts to a database for further management all through the sales process.
Demand generation is not a synonym as it is used to increase awareness about a service/product/company by building opinions about a solution. Lead generation gives you the necessary contacts in order to have a successful sales campaign.

Where do they come from?

In today’s digital information era prospects have social network profile fill with crucial professional information such as their company name, job position, company size, customers, software used, aged, and so on. Social media is gold for B2B sales prospectors. Information can also be got on company websites or by searching on Google. Those leads are call outbound leads.
Another type of leads have emerged the last years and are named Inbound Leads. inbound leads are generated when a prospect has visited a website and leave contact pieces of information. Inbound leads can be measured, tracked and boost using a marketing automation software.

Inbound lead generation technique got quite famous during the last years as it was emphasizing the importance of customer self-education in the marketing strategy. Recently, outbound lead generation has been disrupted with the ascent of social prospecting software

This article will focus on purpose, on Outbound Lead Generation for SaaS companies!

1- Social Prospecting

As explained above, all information are now present on social media and constantly updated by users. Companies – of all size and all industries – and persons – of all age and background – are nowadays present on professional networks which have transformed LinkedIn into the biggest prospecting platform of all time! Successful sales reps already hunt on specific networks where their targeted audience are present and active. For an effective social prospecting, the best way is to use the “Advanced Search” on networks to solely extract prospect’s professional information who fit with your Buyer Persona. SaaS companies leverage very well this approach as in average their customers are very active on the professional network and want to be kept updated with innovative solutions that fit their business.

2- Lead generation software

Lead generation software have arisen after the massification and generalization of social networks and due to large demands of high-quality data. Lead generation tools extract in one click hundreds of data on social networks, where all contact info are continuously updated, and make them easily exportable to any CRM.
Lead generation software are not inbound as they offer immediately prospects info for further outbound sales outreach such as sales email campaign or sales calls.
Nowadays lead generation software are used as top 500 fortune companies (Google, Microsoft, Oracle, and so on) as they permit sales teams to fill their database with very accurate leads (80% verified emails addresses for the best one such as salestools.io) and save around 45% of their prospecting time.

3- Ask for Referrals

Referrals offer you the best in class quality lead ever. Warm leads. Being referred by an existing customer will increase by 40% your chance to get a response from a targeted prospect. The best practice is to ask at each interaction with existing customers if they know someone who might benefit as well from company’s service/product.
Referral programs and coupons are great incentives to push customers to refer their friends or colleague. Successful SaaS companies propose extra credits or premium features to create a bunch of evangelists who promote and improve the brand reputation.

Outbound lead generation helps SaaS companies worldwide to boost their sales process and increase the productivity & motivation of their sales team. Stop wasting the time of your sales team, and let them focus on what they are good at – Selling.