June 10

Lead Generation Check list – Part 6: A Multi-modal lead generation approach

Lead Generation


This is the sixth in an eight-part series I’m calling the ‘Lead Generation Checklist.’ I wanted to provide a checklist that helps organizations optimize their lead generation process.

My first post was on the mindset we should have – one that involves “pulling” not pushing; in the second installment, was on how to drive sales and marketing at one time; thirdly, I outlined steps for creating an ideal customer profile in addition to an un-Ideal customer profile.

We should be smart with our time and learn to recognize the signs that tell us when not to pursue a lead. In my fourth installment, I outlined how to create a universal lead definition that drives sales. My fifth step was on treating your marketing database as a valued asset. Now for the sixth step on developing a multi-modal lead generation portfolio. 

To successfully generate leads for a complex sale, marketers can’t rely on one specific tactic, but rather they need to leverage a portfolio of channels. I created a mind map of what multi-modal lead generation looks like (click image to enlarge).

It begins with a mindset that sees lead generation as an ongoing conversation – with human beings – both multi-modal and iterative. This isn’t about doing random acts of marketing, hoping something sticks.

Here are a few tips for creating a multi-modal lead generation approach that will positively affect your bottom line:

See lead generation like a financial portfolio.

If you can’t measure channels or programs regarding return on investment to the organization (leads generated, the business closed, opportunities in the funnel), then the company should not be expected to invest in them. Maintain an assortment of researched and/or proven best-fit channels that can be drawn upon whenever needed.

Assess the number and mix of channels required.

The model above shows a vast number of ways to generate leads for the complex sale. As you look over it, ask yourself a few questions: Which of these channels are we using? Which are our competitors using? Now think of what you know about your prospect’s buying process. Identify the gaps.

Adopt a flexible and iterative approach.

Your program should allow marketing and sales to retrofit messages whenever a prospect’s position in the buying process changes. What worked yesterday may not work today. Complacency is not part of the marketing game. Well-performing or under-performing tactics should be quickly identified and dealt with accordingly. If a tactic fails to deliver, be ready to modify it or replace it.

Understand the synergies of various tactics for the best ROI.

Do you know how your tactics are performing? Are they working together in a complementary way to connect each step in the customer’s buying process? Try to detail a lead generation calendar for the year that maps out anticipated programs and tactics by month and quarter. Employ an effective closed-looped feedback system to structure information from the sales force converted to actionable tactics. Collect sales feedback regularly and as rapidly as possible.

Not only do the disciplined integration and maintenance of a history of touches in the database aid relevancy, they open doors to tactical personalization.

Test and improve every tactic in your portfolio.

The best way to maximize your budget resource is to get more out of what you’re already doing. I don’t know a CEO or CFO who doesn’t already think this way, so why should marketers be different? When was the last time you looked at your program and asked, “how can I make this channel perform better?”  Are you testing how you can optimize your lead generation results?

We know that in the complex sale, most contacts do not become immediate leads, so once the dialogue has begun, other tactical modes should be set up to keep the conversation going. Remember, every touch should represent and communicate value. The tactics you choose should ultimately help your future customers (aka leads) form their opinions, directly or indirectly, as they proceed through the buying process.

Related Posts:

How to do lead management that improves conversion

9 1/2 Ways… to Generate and Follow Leads
Lead Capture: How undermining value impacts conversion
Lead Generation: It’s all about building relationships
Lead Nurturing: 5 Useful Tactics to Get More Opportunities

About the author 

Brian Carroll

Brian Carroll is the CEO and founder of markempa, helping companies to convert more customers with empathy-based marketing. He is the author of the bestseller, Lead Generation for the Complex Sale and founded B2B Lead Roundtable LinkedIn Group with 20,301+ members.

  1. Hi Brian,

    Thank you for this, very useful and thorough. Which makes me realize that we simply don’t set sufficient time for these important tasks but often go run after internet leads. The link to step 4 seems to be broken.


    Edward (The Netherlands)

  2. Mr. Caroll,

    thank U 4 UR share. Great and usefull 4 us. More comment will follow, but for now:
    I just noticed UR 4th link to 4th part returns empty page becouse wrong URL on the end of URL address.

    Best regarads

  3. I will have to go back and read your “Mindset” post.

    I have been preaching pull v. push for years and it still feels like an up hill battle. My theory is that it stems from the inherent mis-alignment of marketing and sales goals (crazy as that sounds), but I am always looking for good support–makes me feel less eccentric 🙂

    I love the financial portfolio analogy. You are great for making the complex smart and simple.

  4. Excellent lead-generation formula here in this series, Brian. And I agree the “mindset” is really key.

    These days, moving the “free line” and giving away more differentiated value up front is absolutely key to acquiring and nurturing leads, since there’s so much competition for everyone’s time and inbox.

    I really like the way you’ve shown so many available avenues for lead acquisition channels that should be evaluated and considered.

    Thanks for the quality work that’s going into this series. I’d love to see this entire series of posts consolidated into a PDF for easier printing and consumption.

  5. Great post Thank you, for such a clear and comprehensive post. Since I’ve been reading you, I feel I have begun to understand more about this topic. Please keep writing. I just hope people are listening to you and reading you.

Comments are closed.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

Related Posts