Lead generation involves attracting prospective customers to any content related to your business. If you’ve conducted a successful lead generation campaign, then these potential consumers will turn into someone who pays for your product or service. It’s pretty much one of the big aims of marketing. However, it can be difficult to put together the correct strategies to gather more traffic to your website or social media. That’s why it’s of great importance to put a massive focus on maximizing your lead potential.
We recently talked to Levi Meyer, who provided us with some great advice on how you can improve your lead generation. In 2020, a lot of companies that relied on in-person events and services had to find different things to focus on. Increasing the amount of leads and traffic to your content is a productive strategy to conduct while you wait for things to go back to normal.
In today’s Rediscover Marketing post, we’ll put a big focus on lead generation and provide you with some hacks on how to increase your traffic as much as possible. Alongside this, you’ll get a close look at some of Levi’s top tips on marketing in general.
Levi Meyer is the PR and Marketing Manager of Buffalo Bill Center of The West, which is a museum complex comprising five museums about the American West. They offer hands-on experiences and are located around an hour away from Yellowstone National Park, which is a major tourist gateway.
As marketers, Levi’s team are museum marketers, but they are also tourism and destination marketers. The museum is not like others based in an urban area, as the town consists of less than 10,000 people. However, Levi and his colleagues will see over 100,000 visitors in a 3-4 month span in the summer. Their job is to help visitors understand where the museum fits into the greater picture of a once-in-a-lifetime vacation to Yellowstone.
Levi defied his role as helping make visitor’s trips as easy and enjoyable as possible. He also helps people learn more about the museums on social media before they travel. The team consists of a number of people working on different things, and it’s a big group effort to work on the entire marketing strategy.
2020 was extremely different from other years for Levi and his team. As tourism marketers and as a museum, their entire strategy was flipped on its head in March 2020. A lot of people canceled trips, and no one was certain about when they’ll be able to travel again. Despite all this, Levi is proud of everyone for getting out of their comfort zones and being extremely flexible as marketers and creatives.
Levi and his team had to slam the breaks on certain channels and strategies and figure out how they were going to pivot. Would they be saying ‘see you later this summer?’ or ‘see you next summer?’. There was so much uncertainty. However, they decided to be more content and social media focused by capturing people’s interest organically over longer periods of time. In the end, Levi found they were acting much differently to some of the digital marketing campaigns for tourism in other sectors.
Since the museum couldn’t be open during the lockdowns that Covid imposed, Levi and his team spent their time still being productive. He thinks times like that are a great opportunity for people to have a look at the quality of their own properties, such as websites and social media channels. Also, take the time to see how your ticketing system works and how your CRM is working. Levi believes it’s such a good time to work on and improve these things, especially if you aren’t fully geared up for a big digital or traditional print campaign.
By improving your owned media properties, communicating messaging better, and optimizing websites, you’re maximizing your lead potential. From awareness to conversion, you’re making the process for leads so much simpler.
You also want to think about human messaging. Some people think we are at the end of the pandemic, and things are getting better, but we all experienced the struggles of the past year, and it still resonates with us. Levi believes that we need to be more passionate and empathetic of people’s struggles in messaging and communication. Don’t go back to normal - realize what people have gone through and adjust messaging to that.
Below are some extra tips on how you can increase your lead generation:
Data review is important for all marketers, and Levi shared his process with us. When it comes to the digital marketing components, he looks at stuff on a weekly and 30-day basis. People plan trips in a 4-6 month window, and from January-May, Levi closely tracks the museum’s traffic. He looks at how well their lead capture is working and how their web traffic is looking. From there, he sees if they improve month over month and how they are scaling.
However, it’s more difficult now as there’s uncertainty on what people are thinking about travel at the moment. Levi looks at data and compares it to normal years, which helps see where they are at and predicts what their revenue will look like by the end of the year. This gives them the ability to forecast a bit better while the world is a bit all over the place.
The data that Levi uses is a mix of audience and market survey data, website data, and general visitation data. This data helps give him a better understanding of audience demographics and the pain points of people’s travel experiences. Website data doesn’t always translate to those coming through their doors in the summer, so he wants to see why it’s happening and what turns them away. From there, he can look at offering more programming and new exhibits which are a collaboration of the curators and the senior management.
Levi shared an interesting tidbit with us. He says “People in 2020 (and 2021 still) are nervous about being in large crowds for obvious reasons. So our market potential for free, large group museum tours evaporated. To pivot, we decided to monetize tours and make them private, behind the scenes tours with museum professionals. People could book a tour for themselves and avoid the crowds while diving deeper into museum content.”
He said that this decision all started with anecdotal feedback from visitors and, by diving into the marketing data to make confident and actionable decisions.
When it comes to data review, you have to get the data somewhere, so we asked Levi about his opinion on the amount of data advertisers gain daily. He told us that he can’t fully comprehend how much data there is, but in some ways, it’s useful. By advertisers having this data, he’s been exposed to so many things that he really enjoys and supports that he would not have found otherwise. He also thinks that there’s a fine line between targeted advertising and potentially predatory advertising.
Levi thinks that you have to have a strong and ethical mind as an advertiser to make the right decisions and advertise your products and services while still keeping the people in mind. The damage that predatory advertising can do to oppressed groups is massive. Therefore, there needs to be more clear, ethical boundaries in place for advertisers. Levi believes it’s the responsibility of large companies to dictate this stuff.
Since Levi is a marketer, he feels very positive about using targeted advertising to get his messaging in front of people. However, he believes it becomes harmful when it comes to things like news content and ecommerce. If he had to make the call over data being provided, he believes people would be better without it in general. Once you’ve opened that box, you can’t close it, and a lot of people cross the line. Therefore, his opinion leads to data doing more harm than good.
A few extra pieces of advice Levi provided us at the end of the interview were that flexibility is the biggest thing for marketers in today’s age, and you need to adapt. You should be careful but not too careful with your general strategies. The past couple of years have shown the importance of a contingency fund so you can make the most of areas of opportunity as they appear. It’s also useful for when uncertain things happen, and you need to try new things.
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