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We uncover how you can optimise your lead generation form to get more leads...
Having gated content is one of the most common approaches to generating leads. The key to this strategy working is by making certain that the content is relevant and insightful for the reader, or else they won’t want to hand over their contact details to access it.
Additionally, if you create content tailored toward the different stages of your buyer’s journey, you can also get a high-level idea of what stage of the buyer’s journey your prospect is in.
As helpful and useful lead generation forms are, they don’t come without their limitations. For example, we want as much information about a prospect as possible, but the more fields you add to a form, the higher the friction becomes for the prospect to fill them out.
The constant tug of war between getting as much information as you can but making the process seamless for the prospect is a challenging situation. So how can we optimise our lead generation forms for a better user experience while still getting as much information as possible about the prospect? By using Conversational Marketing.
Many companies may already be using Conversational Marketing in some form, either through a chatbot, live chat, or a hybrid.
No matter your level of experience, this article is for you. We’re not only going to be sharing some insights on how to get more leads with your forms but also introduce some sure-fire ways to qualify those leads better and take your lead generation to the next level.
We know that speed is everything when it comes to engaging prospective customers.
After receiving a form submission from a visitor– whether it's an enquiry about pricing, services, or anything else– that prospect is not expecting to hear back from you immediately and will often leave your site and go on to other tasks.
It is critical to act quickly to keep the prospect engaged (so they don't move on to other things, such as meetings, personal tasks, or even worse, checking out your competitors' offerings). This can be a challenge for any sales or marketing team who are often very busy, and slow response times can erode qualified leads from your funnel and impact revenue forecasts.
Harvard Business Review completed a study that analysed 2,241 B2B sales teams' responsiveness after a prospect had submitted a lead generation form. The results revealed that, on average, it took 42 hours to respond to the enquiry. 26% were in contact in just under 5 minutes - quite a variation. Such variation is due to several factors, such as different internal processes, team sizes, and operating hours.
Once the sales team does respond (typically by email), it takes on average 4.3 days of back and forth correspondence before booking a first meeting. (A quicker response to inbound leads can help reduce lengthy sales cycles drastically). When you’re able to respond quickly, you can shave the average response time down to one day– or even less – how would that kind of efficiency impact your sales cycle?
In our experience, a way to bridge the gap between a lead form and a customer is through conversation. In addition to using your lead generation forms effectively, we recommend you consider adding live chat to your customer journey to reduce lead qualification time.
Whether managed in-house or outsourced, live chat can allow the chat agent to respond almost immediately and qualify those prospects in real-time. Agents can ask a series of open questions to dig deeper in the qualification phase and eliminate a lag time of 4.3 days in mere moments.
Live chat will also lead to a deeper understanding of where each specific prospect is in their purchasing journey and allow you to keep the conversation dynamic. Using live chat often gives ample opportunities for the agent to share additional content like case studies or webinars to support the exact conversation that’s occurring, keeping prospects engaged in real-time. Further, when a prospect can ask questions and raise objections, the agent has a much better opportunity to answer and overcome and help guide the visitor to a sale.
Remember, each prospect is unique, and those unique conversations may also uncover something you weren't aware of that the customer couldn’t find by browsing your website or content.
Potentially, your prospect could share insight into the market you operate in, uncovering marketing demand you didn’t know existed and shaping future product offerings.
When you use this type of strategy, the lead generation form becomes more of a “hook” that allows the prospect to pause and begin filling out their information– the perfect time to engage them in conversation. And if for some reason, they don’t respond to the chat due to preferences or personality, you’ll still have a filled-out lead form to follow up on.
When you begin your sales cycle using live chat and conversational marketing, you’ll not only be able to qualify actual leads clearly, but you can also hand that information over to your sales team, so they know exactly where to pick up the conversation.
This sort of lead flow will keep your sales team focused on selling and provide them with confidence when approaching each prospect (it can also reduce admin work and improve efficiency overall).
So how can you deliver these sorts of leads to your sales team?
When using live chat, agents are trained to identify leads that meet specific qualifying criteria. The chat agents can capture all the relevant information through conversation and then pass these leads (with buyer’s insights) to your sales team.
You can get some invaluable prospect information by using live chat and lead generation forms in tandem and creating a clean, workable funnel of leads for your sales team. But if you want to streamline your lead flow even more, when you work with The Chat Shop, we’ll even use integrations to pass these MQLs and all of the information directly into your CRM system.
In some cases, more qualified leads are even put directly onto the sales team’s calendar. For those leads ready for a demo or meeting, the agents can book this directly with the prospect and share the calendar invite with the sales team, freeing up resources for marketing or sales who can focus on closing deals instead of lead qualification.
So, we all know that lead generation forms aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. But, to stay effective and get as many leads as possible, there are new methods to optimise how you’re using the lead generation forms you already have.
Think of it this way: your content is the bait, your lead generation form is the hook, but your live chat is the actual fisherman that will reel that client into the boat.
In today’s market of Conversational Marketing, you can’t rely on a static, generic lead form to do the same thing as a conversation. There are still people who aren’t interested in conversation, so lead forms should still exist, but they need to be a fallback, not a primary strategy.
Take Action: Lead forms have their place, but they should not be the only method for generating leads. Let’s enrich these forms further by adding conversation. Chat with us today!
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