How To Use Social Media for Lead Generation


February 06, 2015

The majority of marketers (59%) use social media for 6 hours or more each week. (Social Media Examiner) With stats like this, it is obvious that Social Media is a lead generation tool to include your marketing strategy. It is estimated that by 2017, the world population will reach 7.44 billion,  and 31.3% of the world will be using social networks.

This post will explain how to use Social Media for lead generation and start utilizing this fantastic tool to generate more leads for your business.

1- Identify your buyer and their Social Media usage behavior

Identify your buyer persona (a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers). When creating your buyer persona(s), consider customer demographics, behavior patterns, motivations, and goals. The more details you include, the better). Make sure that you identify which social media networks they use, how they use them, and the times they are active on these networks.

2- Develop remarkable content and offers

Develop remarkable, educational, and not too salesy content that will appeal to the buyer personas you identified in the first step. Use the 80/20 Rule for your content: 80% of your content should be informational/educational, and the remaining 20% should be self-promotional. 

The more targeted and personalized your content is, the more likely prospects and leads will engage with you. There are many types of content ( such as blog posts, white papers, infographics, memes, videos, webinars, etc.) that you can create depending on your buyer's persona and which social network you will use.

👉  Related post: 9 Demand Generation Mistakes to Avoid

3- Create a plan to promote your content via various social channels

Identify which social media networks your buyer's persona spends time on. Also, it is important to include forums and online communities in the list. You can run a survey among your existing customers to find out which forums, user groups, or communities they use.

Once you compile a list of all the social media networks and forums, develop a content plan for each specific network and a posting schedule since the content type, the text you will use in the post, and the time of the day the post will be published will vary depending on the channel it's being sent on, to attract the highest number of views and engagement.

4- Social sharing

Social sharing amplifies your message and your lead generation efforts. So the question is how to get people to share your content? The answer is simple .... they need to get motivated to do so. Here are some ideas:

  • Referrals: Create a compelling offer for both the referrers and referees. 
  • Contests & Sweepstakes: Create a contest and get your entrants to spread the
    word on your behalf. 
  • Polls and voting: Since everyone has an opinion, and most people are happy to share it. Polls and voting are a good way to engage your audience and compel them to share their opinions, in addition to gaining knowledge about your leads’ opinions, likes, dislikes, and preferences.
  • Instant deals: Create a sense of urgency with a strong Call To Action (CTA). A time limit can increase brand awareness and bring in new leads.

"When it comes to sharing on social media, pick the channel where you can best tell your story. If you’re better at a video, use YouTube. If you’re brief and quippy, use Twitter. Pick what you like.” – Chris Brogan, CEO, and Founder, Human Business Works.

👉  Related post: How to Use LinkedIn to Build Buyer Personas

5- Facebook for lead generation 

Facebook has nearly 1.2 billion total users.  Over 71% of businesses use Facebook for business purposes, nearly 78% of Facebook users use the Facebook mobile app. The content you post to Facebook must render visually well on mobile devices.

Constantly check your Facebook Page Insights to know the best times to post and engage with your audience. Facebook offers self-service advertising options. Put a little extra leverage behind your white paper or webinar offer by boosting the post or running a sponsored ad that targets a specific audience or interest segment. This will help to extend the reach of social promotion and increase the number of active registrants.

6- Twitter for lead generation 

Twitter is a highly effective platform for targeting leads. Twitter beats Facebook 9:1 in lead generation. It has 284 million monthly active users. Additionally, 82% of leads generated from social media sites are referred from Twitter.

High-quality content will attract followers and clicks, and if your content is appealing, it will be retweeted or favorited by Twitter users. It will result in a quick amplification of your message. 

Consider including #hashtags on your tweets to help increase the reach of your tweets and place your tweet into larger related conversations happening on Twitter. 

Twitter also offers self-service advertising options that allow marketers to promote tweets in search and timeline and target based on interests, keywords, followers, and demographics. When promoting a tweet, it is best to include only one call to action, like the URL, without using hashtag or @handle so that you don't offer your prospects too many options and drive them away from your main call to action.  

7- LinkedIn for lead generation

LinkedIn has 187 million monthly active users. In addition, 40% of buyers say LinkedIn is important when considering purchasing a service. In addition, 62% of businesses with a LinkedIn profile saw an increase in customers. LinkedIn is the Social Media Network mostly used for business purposes. 

It is important to note that LinkedIn is most often used right before and right after work hours. Tuesday and Thursday typically receive the most social media traffic from business people, and posts during work hours receive less traffic. Remember this when building out a social posting schedule. 

With LinkedIn groups, the number of relationships you can have is no longer limited to the number of people you could meet. Now you can build hundreds – even thousands – of relationships with prospects before you even meet them, then leverage that trust by reaching out to prospects you do want to meet. Your success using LinkedIn groups for lead generation starts with writing about something important to customers.  

8-  Forums and Communities for lead generation


Forrester's research shows that independent communities and forums get more traffic from B2B decision-makers than branded social networks. Of those surveyed, 85% visited these forums, and many of them for personal and work purposes. 

9- Instagram & Pinterest 

90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual, and visuals are processed 60,000X faster in the brain than text. (Sources: 3M Corporation and Zabisco) This stat shows that it is important that you are consistently using images in your marketing messages. 

Pinterest has about 53 million monthly active users and can curate visual content like infographics, videos, company culture, and even blog posts. Pinterest can help promote creativity, but always make sure that your content is relevant to your audience.

Instagram has around 300 Million monthly active users. Use Instagram to humanize your brand by capturing events and office culture photos. You can also leverage the application to run contests. 

Remember to fully utilize social media networks and achieve your goals and targets, and you need time, patience, and testing. No one model or strategy fits all. It depends on your industry, which social media network you are using, your buyer's persona, and the constantly changing trends and best practices for each social media network. 

I hope I gave you some ideas on using social media for lead generation, and I’d like to hear about your experience in generating leads using social media. 

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My name is Izzy and I am a co-founder of CRM Toolbox, an award-winning HubSpot Solutions Partner. I lead our team of consultants who provide professional guidance to help businesses implement the HubSpot CRM platform migrate, integrate their tech stack to HubSpot to create a seamless environment for sales reps to use. There is nothing I love more than solving the challenges that come up when someone wants to migrate an old system or integrate their tech stack with HubSpot - it's like a puzzle!

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