One of the top priorities for every business is generating new leads. With so many communication channels available, it begs the questions as to which one will serve your needs the best from a lead generation standpoint.
While cold calling is the standard, perhaps even the most overused, way of contacting interested clients to turn them into leads, text-based communication is an effective alternative that you can use for lead generation purposes.
Email and text messaging are two of the most common communication channels. You will be hard pressed to find anyone that does not use either one of them at all times. These channels can also be used to generate new leads for your business.
The question is whether which one is, ultimately, the better lead generation channel. Even though both channels serve the same purpose, they are uniquely different in their own ways.
So let’s try to explore what the differences are and what makes them so effective. Consequently, this will determine which channel is best-suited for lead generation.
No matter how much technology evolves and how many new, trendy marketing gimmicks appear, email marketing still remains as one of the top communication channels in all of marketing. Despite being the oldest channel, its effectiveness lies in its simplicity.
Whilst available data suggests that other forms of communication (like text messaging, push notifications and whatnot) are more effective in terms of open rate and conversion rate, email marketing still boasts the highest ROI (return on investment) among all marketing channels. A survey among 2,500 digital marketers by GetResponse has proven this claim to be true.
This makes it a pretty powerful lead generation to be reckoned with, albeit its shortcomings from a customer engagement standpoint.
So how do you use email marketing to turn potential customers into legitimate leads? You can follow these steps to ensure your success:
- Get people to opt in to your email marketing campaign.
- Segment people into groups using relevant criteria (age, gender, profession and so on).
- Start sending personalized emails to different segments, including relevant information for each group.
As far as the content of the email goes, make sure they are engaging. In other words, stuff like the subject line and the body of the email have to be attention catching (especially the former) as well as clearly stated. Additionally, include visual content to break up the wall of text. Most importantly, a powerful CTA (call-to-action) should be included either in the beginning or at the end so that people know what course of action you expect them to take.
With over five billion mobile device owners worldwide, SMS is the only communication channel that can reach people on their mobile phones instantly. People spend a lot of time using their mobile platform. As such, from a lead generation standpoint, you should heavily focus on this channel.
Multiple reports show that customers prefer interactions with businesses over SMS as opposed to phone calls. More than that, almost half of the customers prefer to get offers and promotions through SMS. This means that people are already open to the idea of conducting business over SMS, thus making lead generation via this channel all the easier.
Lead generation via SMS follows the same fundamentals as email. Get people’s permission to text them, construct short and concise text messages with a CTA in the end, and finally start sending them out to your customers. Needless to say, personalizing messages for different demographics is a must.
Which is the Better Lead Generation Channel?
Both of these communication channels are vital in lead generation. To say that one is absolutely better than the other is virtually impossible. There are aspects where SMS excels in (better outreach, higher open rate and customer engagement) and there are certain aspects where email excels in (e.g. very high ROI).
Ideally, you can use both these channels to generate new leads but selecting just one requires you to carefully consider what the needs and wants are of your business as well as what objectives you intend to accomplish. In which case, it is totally down to your preference.