Without further ado, the lead generation methods are:
1. The Hunter’s method and
2. The farmer’s method.
Let’s back up a bit and clear out the definitions of what lead generation means and who can be called a ‘lead’.
Lead generation is identifying and cultivating potential customers for your products or services.
A lead, on the other hand, is an individual who has provided contact information and, in doing so, points toward a potential sales opportunity. So in a marketing context, a lead is a potential sales contact.
Now, with the definition out of the way, let’s dive into what these lead generation methods mean for business. Which is the best approach and how can you amplify your sales with it?
First, The “Hunter’s method.”
Businesses practising the hunter’s method, do a ton of cold outreach. It doesn’t matter the vehicle of promotion you use. Whether, email, phone call Social ads, PPC ads etc.
This is where you send cold emails directly gauging interest and asking for a sale. Same with cold calls.
Also, if your social media posts and ads are about singing your product benefits and features and ‘superman-ness’ and why people should buy now, you’re using the “hunter’s method.”
Basically, when you’re practising the hunter’s method, your outreach chants one song and that’s the “buy now, buy now” message via every medium or channel.
More so, because you’re more interested in getting a quick sale, you’d tend to focus all your energies on leads that show the slightest likelihood to close faster and drop the rest like it’s hot!
The hunter’s mantra is “Reach. Hit. Win or Miss” and move to the next.
There is no follow-up plan or nurture campaign to educate, empower and move not yet ready to buy leads to the next or obvious step.
The hunter’s kind of lead generation method doesn’t have that patience or leverage smart tools and automation to make it happen.
What’s the disadvantage of doing this?
I can think of numerous off the top of my head.
However, for brevity sake, I’ll focus on two main disadvantage of running your lead generation with the hunter’s method.
You would get a lot of “No’s”, than you would have yes because your lead generation activities or campaign is out of alignment with current customer buying behaviour and modern customer journey.
You’ll lose a lot of leads. Because the hunter’s method typically lacks the inbuilt nurture campaign.
This will make you fall into the trap of ignoring or avoiding following up with customers still on the interest and consideration stage.
Because sometimes it becomes a ton of work to do it all manually or to trust your memory to remind you of your tasks, to-dos and follow ups you need to make.
Worse, most times, you settle for following up on the whim which only births lacklustre results.
Enough said about the hunter’s method, now let’s dive into the farmer’s method.
The “Farmer’s method”:
As the name implies, the farmer is a cultivator, a nurturer, a gardener. Unlike his hunter counterpart, whose focus is on Reach – Attack – Win or Lose. The farmer uses the Attract – Nurture – Win + Empower Model.
The farmer’s model is focused on aligning contact and conversation with leads based on each individualised customer journey. It’s not a one size fits all approach.
The farmer’s method does not believe in interrupting leads with their buy now sales message but provides empowering and educating content that attracts the right target audience.
They use relevant lead magnets to capture leads.
They send interested prospects down a carefully crafted nurture sequence that educates, empowers, engages and enlightens prospects leading up to a sale.
Doing this will help businesses following this approach to:
Establish “Perceived” authority,
Maximize top of mind awareness.
Furthermore, this will empower businesses to have more leads, connect with more potential clients and close more sales.
Not only does the baked in follow up and nurture touches allow this but the customer acquisition strategy is based on reaching targets where they are with content that provides insights to the pain and need they already have.
The farmer’s method don’t reach complete strangers with the “buy now message” not because he isn’t hungry for or aggressive to get more sales like their hunter’s counterparts.
However, establishing and cultivating mutually beneficial with target audience, leads, and customers is at the heart of what propels the lead generation campaign of businesses operating with the farmer’s method.
A great advantage of implementing the farmer’s method for lead generation is that it aligns with today’s modern customer buying behaviour.
You and I are today’s modern customer and when we have a problem, a need or pain we typically pick up our smartphone and Google the heck out of it seeking answers to our questions, finding ideas and inspiration or just plain old feeding our curiosity.
So every smart business out there will do well if you provide the insight your target audience seek as they research their problem months, weeks, days and even minutes leading up to the purchase.
Maybe you’re still practising the hunter’s method. And I’m not saying it doesn’t work. However, there’s a more effective way to go about lead generation and if you desire to amplify your sales results, you need to implement a profitable lead generation system that’s built on the farmer’s method.
Before you blame a lack of proper sales results on the economic recession, put the farmer’s model to the test.
Let’s put numbers behind this.
Let’s see how “Hunter’s method” works as against the “Farmer’s method” using sales numbers and metrics typical for most industries.
Hypothetically, let’s assume company A uses the hunter’s method. Company B uses the farmer’s method and both share the same numbers below.
As an example, let’s say within a given month both companies are able to reach 100 new leads.
And their lead to customer average close rate sits at 2%
While every new customer spends a minimum of N100, 000 in their initial purchase. (This is just an example, feel free to add your business numbers. )
So what will the Math look like?
Do you see that! While the business practicing the hunter’s method is taking home N200, 000 in revenue, his Farmer’s counterpart is raking the millions in.
This strategy could mean the difference between the extra zeros in your bank account.
Though these numbers are examples, it gives you an insight into what’s possible within your business. Input your numbers, pricing and close rate you can literally tell how well you’re doing right now and how far you could go when you implement the farmer’s method of lead generation.
So whether you’re sending email, making ads, reaching out via social media, do it with the Farmer’s method of lead generation. And if you’re not, it’s pretty obvious you’re losing leads and leaving money on the table.
To help you understand how the farmer method works, what goes into launching a profitable lead generation system using the Farmer’s method, get my free video training that will show you how to get more leads and sales using the farmers method of lead generation.
So Want to be profitable with your lead generation?
Click the image below to receive the free video training now.
Ifeoma Illoh is a data driven growth marketer. As a senior digital marketing and PR consultant she works with businesses to activate and grow consistent revenue using digital channels and online media platforms so they can attract leads, maximize sales and grow exponentially. This is ultimately so that business owners can make impact, have influence and build the legacy they desire. She wears many hats as a serial entrepreneur. She's the Founder of WiredInn Digital agency and Chief Content Officer here at OnlineMarketingIntelligence.com. You can connect with her via Twitter.