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Do you want to start using social media to generate leads for your business? Are you already trying to produce results, but not having much luck?

Social media is becoming a valuable lead generation tool for many businesses. Not only does it have a 100% higher lead-to-close rate than outbound marketing, but businesses that effectively use social media for lead generation have seen a significant increase in revenue.

That being said, there is definitely a right way and a wrong way to go about managing leads through social media platforms.

Here are 9 surefire ways to lose those valuable social media leads:

1. Be at the wrong place at the wrong time

Different demographics are active on certain platforms at various times day. Depending on the particular audience you are trying to reach, you risk losing business if you’re not posting on the right platform at the right time.

Tip: Know your audience and be strategic about which platforms you’re on. Also, figure out what time of day is best for posting by monitoring your analytics and using a social media management tool to schedule posts when your customer base is active.

2. Make sure your business information is hard to find

Everyone loves the thrill of a good game of hide and seek for information on the internet. The deeper your customers have to dig to access your information, the higher the likelihood they will give up and find what they are looking for elsewhere.

Tip: Make good use of the information fields on all your social media platforms. Most platforms have a place where you can include business details, such as your website address, you phone number and/or your location. If the platform offers a call-to-action button, like Facebook, take advantage of it!

3. Don’t have a strategy

If you don’t have a strategy to acquire or manage leads through social media, you might as well kiss those leads goodbye.

Tip: Having a clear social media strategy in place with a plan for generating and managing incoming leads will work in your favour. Incorporate some of these powerful ways of turning likes into leads (hyperlink) in your strategy.

4. Don’t have an ad budget

Relying solely on your existing audience can have you missing out on leads, especially if you’re a small business that’s just starting out on a social media platform. A loyal following takes time to build and your business can easily get lost in all the noise on social media if you aren’t plugging in a few ad dollars here and there to extend your reach.

Tip: Facebook’s Edgerank system has greatly decreased organic reach in the last couple of years. This means your message isn’t getting out to as many people, even the one’s that are following your page already. Strategic ad campaigns and boosted posts can generate more awareness and engagement, and potentially more leads in the long run.

5. Don’t interact

Being anti-social on social media does not do you any favours in life or in business. If you’re ignoring engagement on your platforms and not making the first move in some cases, you might be missing out on opportunities to grow your business.

Tip: Social media is a great way to connect with other businesses and potential customers. By liking and commenting on other people’s Facebook pages, retweeting interesting content shared by others on Twitter and participating in LinkedIn group discussions, you will expand your network of potential clients and customers.

6. Don’t respond to direct messages

In a world where Google can provide millions of search results in a fraction of a second, people have gotten used to receiving answers to their questions immediately. If someone has taken the time to reach out to you directly via a private message and you don’t respond right away, they will probably move on to the next business or service provider.

Tip: Whether you decide to set up push notifications on your phone, hire someone you trust to respond on your behalf or clearly state the hours during which you will respond, make sure you have a plan in place to answer any inquiries that may come in via social media in a timely manner.

7. Don’t listen

A lot of conversations take place on social media platforms. If you’re not listening to what people are saying about your brand and your industry and seize opportunities when they arise, you’re going to lose out on new business.

Tip: Monitor industry hashtags and keywords on platforms like Twitter, so next time someone is talking about needing the product or service your provide, you can (tactfully) jump in. Social listening done right can.

8. Sell all the time

Nobody likes a constant barrage of sales pitches. If all your posts and tweets appear self-serving, your audience will be turned off.

Tip: Use social media to tell your brand story and to engage with your clients or customers. Ask questions, share interesting content from other sources, highlight behind-the-scenes photos and videos. Sure you can throw in the occasional, well-crafted pitch, but it shouldn’t be your sole modus operandi.

9. Don’t use customer information you’ve gathered

You’ve gathered a bunch of valuable customer data through a strategic call-to-action, a social media contest or off a landing page connected to a social media ad and now what do you do with it? If you’re going to let it sit there collecting virtual dust, you’re not going to get any new business.

Tip: First of all, make sure the information you’ve gathered and your methods comply with local anti-spam legislation (ex: Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation). Once that is confirmed, you have opened up the door to gain further insight into your audience and to contact them directly.

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Remember, social media marketing is all about building relationships with your audience. Successful lead generation starts with a strong strategy and builds over time with consistency, quality and creative marketing ideas.

What are your best tips for social media lead generation success?

For more on how Lifeblood Marketing can help you generate leads using social media, contact [email protected]

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