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10 Ways To Generate Sales Leads In Your Small Business

Generate Sales Leads

The life wire of any business is anchored on sales and marketing. Hence, the need to generate sales leads can never be overemphasized, especially for a small business owner. 

One of the most frustrating things that happen in any sales strategy is the inability to generate sales leads for your business. To generate sales leads for your product or service, you must be offering value or solving a problem. Imagine running a marketing campaign for a winter jacket in Africa or a pension account for high school kids? It’ll always lead to frustration. 

See Also: 100 Profitable business ideas to start now for aspiring entrepreneurs and investors.

Start Your Business in 30 Days Even If You Don't Have An Idea
Start Your Business in 30 Days Even If You Don’t Have An Idea

However, you have to bear in mind that some leads will not convert to a sale; whether you’re selling B2B or B2C. But, if you want to cultivate a network of potential customers and build a solid business, you must look for creative ways to generate leads.

More so, contrary to a lot of entrepreneurs believe, you don’t need to break the bank to get results from your marketing efforts. You don’t need an expensive marketing department or sales executive to fill up your sales funnel and generate a pipeline of reliable leads.

See Also: Retail business ideas to start now with low investment and make money.

What Is A Lead?

A lead is a person, or business (if you have a company that sells to other businesses (B2B)), that has an interest in the products or services you are selling. A sales lead is a person or business that has the capacity to purchase your company’s goods or services.

A lead becomes a prospect once you’ve identified their level of interest and fit as a customer for your business. However, there are different methods to identify a sales lead. 

Alright then, let’s sip from the same cup of thoughts, and get a broader view of how to generate sales lead for your small business.

See Also: Free growth hacking tools for entrepreneurs to achieve success.

Different Ways To Generate Sales Leads

1.) Don’t Sell Ice To Eskimos

I know you must have heard the phrase “Identify Your Target Audience”  for the umpteenth time because that’s the genesis of generating sales leads. You can’t successfully reach and sell to your ideal customer if you don’t know exactly who they are.

Therefore, you have to research your audience and come up with a clear cut picture of who they are, where they live, what they like to do, how much money they make, their lifestyle, personality, and behavioral pattern.

See Also: Effective ways to sell on WhatsApp for Business in Nigeria.

2.) Networking Events

According to the general saying; we are 5 people away from anybody in this world. Meaning, we use what we have to get what we want. We all have a network of family, friends, acquaintances, work friends, past and current business associates, neighbors, service professionals.

Yes, I know they say familiarity brings contempt; It is easy to overlook these people when you want to generate sales lead. However, they should be one of your first points of contact when generating sales leads, since, you already have their trust.

If you’re a small B2B company, networking events are indeed a goldmine for potential leads. Opportunities they say rarely waits for nobody. You have access to a lot of industry networking events, which is a hotbed for hundred of potential clients. These events of all industry experts are opportunities that are non-negotiable if one is serious about generating sales leads.

Go from idea to starting your business in 30 days
Go from idea to starting your business in 30 days

During networking, it is important to ensure you break the ice, by allowing people to lower their guards, naturally. Resist the urge to always approach people with your sales pitch. Build a connection, a calm and casual approach is the best. Focus on building a relationship first, then try to nurture that relationship and finally convert them to a lead.

3.) Ask Current Customers For Referrals.

Never underestimate the power of referrals. People buy more from who they know and trust – which is one of the biggest models of influential marketing. You’re more likely to buy a product that’s recommended by a friend than buying because of an advert.

Warm referrals are more powerful and effective than cold calls and emails. You can generate sales lead from current customers. They can be your best source of sales because they’ve already purchased from you, so they know your products and services and can easily preach the gospel of whatever you do. Therefore, they should be an integral part of your strategy to attract new sales leads.

Yes, you can always up-sell current customers, but an even more effective strategy is the ability to get referrals from your current customers. Beyond providing support or customer service, take out time to reach out to your already existing customers and ask them for referrals in the most subtle way possible.

See Also: Apps and platforms that will help you put your business expenses under control.

4.) Use Relevant Social Media Channel

Your sales lead are actually human beings and they’re on different social media platforms. Everyone is online, including your sales leads. It’s just a matter of finding and connecting with them.

If you run a B2B business model, you might want to consider LinkedIn as a resourceful social media platform to generate sales lead. LinkedIn is a place where you can have direct access to c-suite executives or marketing managers of different organizations. 

However, using LinkedIn to generate top quality sales leads isn’t a walk in the park as it requires a well-planned strategy. Your brand has to be in the eyes and faces of your most desired connections, target market, and companies who are in your niche.

You can approach your social media marketing with some of these strategies, in other to generate sales lead:

  1. Like attracts like. Connect with people who share similar ideals and people in your existing network. There is always a second and third-degree layer to every connection – where your friend’s network becomes your network and their friend’s network also becomes your network. You never can tell, these connections can be a source of great sales leads.
  2. Preach the gospel of your brand and let your network know about your ideal prospects and the types of problems you can help them solve.
  3. Write relevant industry posts or articles that spark curiosity and demystifies their problems.
  4. Ask two to three current clients to provide recommendations or testimonials for the work you’ve done for them to demonstrate your value and customer service.

There is no one cap fit all approach to social media marketing. It is important to know that these strategies are geared towards LinkedIn. However, you can expand your company’s reach and brand to other social networks that fit your business, such as Instagram, Facebook for Business, Twitter, Snapchat, and so on.

5.) Email Marketing:

Clearly, email marketing/newsletters still perform magic and shouldn’t be underestimated when you want to generate sales lead. Email series that are automatically sent to groups of people in a mailing list can generate sales leads and make you smash your sales goal. The goal is to use email marketing to build recipients’ interest in your company’s products or services.

There are two main types of email sequences:

  1. Trigger-based sequences send emails based on the person performing a certain action, such as browsing a page on your site, buying a product, subscribing to your email list, or leaving something unpurchased in a shopping cart.
  2. Time-based sequences send emails at specific times, such as two weeks after making a purchase, immediately after opting in to receive a newsletter or an anniversary date.

To generate sales lead using email marketing, email letters should be sent with a call to action. Also, the content of the email should be educative in a way that captivates the reader’s mind to make a purchase.

6.) Content Marketing

Content marketing, through the use of written and published informative articles or blogs, can help your brand to build authority in your industry. People trust brand who command authority in their industry, which in turn generate sales lead.

Writing a blog post or article can help establish you as an expert in your field. Write about what you know and how your knowledge can help others. Keeping your audience in mind will help you when generating content.

With time people will start seeing you as an expert, which increases your visibility and helps your brand identity. Industry experts will start approaching your brand for your products and services. 

Nonetheless, you don’t necessarily have to use only your website and blog to publish such articles. You can guest post on other popular blogs, websites and industry journals.

7.) Training, Webinars, Workshops, and Seminars. 

Tell me and I might forget. Teach and involve me and you’ll remain in my mind forever. Teaching, workshops, and seminars are a great way to generate sales lead because they aid interaction with your prospect.

One thing webinar and online workshops do is that they avail you the opportunity of deeper and greater depth in sharing your knowledge with prospects, which can be more impactful in generating sales leads.

See Also: How to calculate and measure your Customer Lifetime Value. 

8.) Revisit Closed And Lost Opportunities.

It is good to know that not all sales strategies will work for every prospect in the first trial. Sometimes, you might need to tailor-make the sales strategy for some specific prospects. Their initial “no” may mean “not right now”, hence, the need to give them time to ponder on your product or service. 

There’s no harm in trying again. Some products and services you’re currently loyal to right now did not win your loyalty at the first try. They reached out to you over and over again, through adverts or different sales pitches, before you succumbed. Revisit closed or lost opportunities, but don’t bug or become a nuisance to your prospect.

One beautiful thing is that these things can be done in a subliminal way, through blog posts, personalized communications, marketing emails, or even a warm call. 

9.) Cold Calls

Though a lot of people run away from cold calling prospect, however, brands lose out on a lot of goody bags that comes with cold calling.

Fill up your sales funnel by picking up your phone and making those sales calls, then watch how you generate more sales leads.

Of course, you’ll get a lot of “No’s”. However, the more “No’s” you get the more your chances of getting a “yes” which takes you a step closer to your sales target. 

See Also: Guide for an entrepreneur to create a business continuity plan.

10.) Freemium

You can generate sales leads by offering some free services to your prospect. Who doesn’t want free products and services? Set a bait for your potential prospects by offering them these freemium packages.

However, make sure you don’t throw caution to the wind when making such offers. Don’t bleed the cash flow of the business because of these offers. Make sure your offers are done with the best of strategy that attracts the best of the best of sales leads. 


To generate sales leads, your team has to apply the right marketing strategy. Business is a body and demands that every aspect of the body function properly for the whole to work. To keep customers returning, you must deliver value or quality products with excellent customer service. Also, your team and internal processes must be functioning at optimum level to deliver an excellent service.

Now that you understand the different ways and techniques to generate sales leads, which of them do you plan on using for your sales strategy? Let us know in the comment section below.

Let’s create visibility for your brand today and put your business on the world map. Contact us today to make your brand the preferred choice among our audience of entrepreneurs and business leaders.

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