Online lead generation software is a powerful engine that enables businesses to engage customers, boost their marketing campaigns, and build effective sales funnels. It eliminates the need to develop separate tools to send lead capturing emails, show website contact forms, track social media visits or conversions, and complete a range of other critical tasks.
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A continuous lead generation process is essential to supply your business with potential customers and grow profit. Ideally, you should develop a lead generation funnel that automatically walks customers through the conversion path. This way, you will get a sustainable source of website leads and enjoy easy customer relationship management.
To help you choose the right lead generation software, we have completed an overview of TOP 34 best lead generation tools. Note that this list isn’t a rating, so feel free to spend some time and familiarize yourself with different software systems.
What is a Lead and Lead Generation Process?
A lead is someone who has shown interest in your website, product, or service. This is a person that, for example, has found your profile on social media and decided to subscribe or visited your website after getting an email. In fact, lead generation options are extremely diverse and depend on the marketing channels you use for business promotion.
Lead generation is the process of attracting new people to enrich your customer database. Their contact details and other relevant information are added to a marketing software system or contact management tool to nurture the leads and convert them.
What is Lead Generation Funnel?
The lead generation funnel is a sequence of stages that allow businesses to nurture leads and turn them into paying customers. A quality lead generation funnel is impossible to build without advanced automation software that tailors marketing communications to each lead based on their personal attributes.
Here is a popular scheme used to illustrate the stages of the lead generation funnel.
Each step of this lead generation funnel makes a freshly acquired lead closer to becoming a customer of your business.
- Awareness. Use SEO, paid ads, social media marketing, and content marketing to generate website traffic.
- All names. Include all potential leads to your database.
- Engaged. Encourage users to interact with your website (e.g. watch a webinar, subscribe to a newsletter, etc.) or social media to engage them and turn into leads.
- Prospect and recycled. Perform lead scoring of the collected leads to find out who you should focus on.
- Lead. Qualify the leads with high scores for further marketing. At this point of the funnel, the sales team usually starts working with leads.
- Recycled. Add leads that are still not ready to buy into your recycled leads database and continue nurturing them with educational materials.
- Sales lead. Ask the account executive to evaluate if the person is a sales lead or needs additional nurturing.
- Opportunity. Continue engagement and opportunity marketing.
- Customer. Voila! You have turned a lead into a customer.
Of course, in reality, the lead generation funnel includes many other interconnected efforts. Luckily, they are easy to implement and integrate with the right marketing strategy and advanced marketing software.
Strategies of Lead Generation Campaigns
There is no standard or universal solution for all websites. Every company and website lead is unique and requires a custom approach. In most cases, businesses combine several lead generation strategies in a single marketing campaign. This helps to achieve a cumulative effect since diverse approaches boost each other.
Here are the most common types of lead generation strategies and campaigns:
- Lead capture campaign. Businesses use forms or landing website pages to collect information about their potential leads. Such lead capturing forms usually include a CTA.
- Email marketing lead generation. A company collects and targets customer email addresses to stay in touch with them. This approach of website lead generation is a highly popular strategy used in many lead generation campaigns.
- CRM lead management. Marketing teams integrate special CRM management tools with existing systems to track prospects and nurture sales leads. CRM services collect information on all collected leads.
- Lead prospecting. Businesses use lead prospecting to find new leads and drive traffic to the main website pages and social media. They also conduct data analysis to determine whether a specific person can become a prospect lead.
- Sales lead generation. A company takes steps to turn new leads into sales. This strategy is mainly focused on lead nurturing techniques.
- Inbound lead generation campaign. Companies invest in search engine optimization and content marketing to attract visitors to their websites. They don’t contact the people directly and mainly rely on their content, website pages, and social media profiles.
- Outbound lead generation campaign. Contrarily to the inbound strategy, this method may include cold calling, outbound messaging, direct mail, and display ads. The targeted people haven’t agreed to be contacted and haven’t displayed an interest in the company.
- Social media lead generation. Businesses create accounts on social media to find people that like their company. Later these social media contacts can inform leads about new offers, important updates, or news.
None of these approaches is self-sufficient and can cover all the stages of the lead generation funnel. Besides, to connect them and efficiently analyze the results, you need to use marketing automation software. Professional marketers usually combine several tools that complement each other, expanding their marketing capabilities. Such tools comprise a range of features necessary to convert fresh leads into sales and, later on, loyal customers.
TOP 34 Best Lead Generation Tools and Software
Categories of Lead Generation Tools:
Lead Capture Tools
Plerdy is a multifunctional online tool for website promotion and optimization. It helps online businesses capture new leads, optimize their websites for search engines, and improve customer conversion. For example, with Plerdy’s PopUp Software, website owners can collect leads by configuring custom pop-ups on their web pages. In addition, advanced SEO functionality helps to make a website more noticeable in search results, whereas heatmaps allow marketing and sales teams to fine-tune navigation.
The Optinmonster system’s functionality helps capture new leads and turn website traffic into real sales leads and customers. This lead capture software offers different forms, including inline forms, floating bars, slide-in scroll boxes, etc. Such pop-ups are essential to enable website visitors to share their contact information quickly. Optinmonster also supports page-level targeting for lead segmentation.
Unbounce is renowned among many businesses as an easy-to-use custom landing page builder. It’s one of the most advanced drag-and-drop website building tools for SaaS, agencies, and e-commerce companies. This system also provides A/B testing functionality that allows you to make sure the created website really attracts users.
Leadpages is online software that promises to “turn clicks into customers” with the right landing website. You can publish first website pages in several minutes using conversion-optimized and responsive templates. Then take your time to customize and test the website. Besides, this lead capture tool can show pop-ups, opt-in texts, and alert bars.
Sumo lead capture system is a budget software for email collection. It enables business owners to configure website forms on their own. Besides, they can add social share buttons to websites, encouraging visitors to repost the content. Such lead capture functionality helps to obtain valuable addresses and build a better social media presence.
This lead capture system comprises two tools: Experiences and Pulse. The Experiences tool allows website owners to tailor their online content to every website visitor. For example, the look of a website will differ depending on the lifecycle stage, industry, company size, etc. The Pulse tool displays notifications on what other visitors do on a website (e.g., 2 people are checking this product). This can help your company create a feeling of scarcity and entice website visitors to become leads.
Email Marketing Lead Generation Tools
As the name of this lead generation tool implies, email marketing campaigns are its superpower. Really Good Emails offers hundreds of email templates divided into 7 main categories: Behavioral, Inaugural, Promotions, Miscellaneous, Industry, Punctual, and Enhancement. These types of emails can benefit all the stages of the lead generation funnel, from lead capture to nurturing or retargeting.
This software is fully dedicated to emails. Its website includes an online search bar you can use to find the email of a specific person or domain. Hunter.io also provides a Chrome extension and supports email verification that saves you from wasting time on invalid email addresses.
Among multiple features supported in AWeber, AI-powered smart email designer and landing pages builder are particularly useful to capture leads. Furthermore, you can try out automated newsletters tied to your blog or other online resources to nurture engaged users.
CRM Lead Management Tools
Although Salesforce is equally suitable both for small businesses and large companies, such software is mostly used by professional marketers. Since there are so many capabilities, you need to know how to use them right. In particular, this CRM ensures smooth management of your website customers thanks to the following key features: account, lead, and contact management, sales forecasting, lead scoring, campaign impact analytics, marketing strategy reporting, and more.
Conversion rate optimization tools (CRO software)
Mixpanel offers a bunch of professional dashboards for data comparison and analytics. You can segment your target audience to see what behaviors lead to a specific goal. As a result, you will be able to model website visitors’ behavior based on your needs. For example, show an ad if they encourage social media users to complete a purchase. Such CRO software is essential to launch a sales strategy that truly works.
#12. Lead Forensics
This sales funnel optimization software identifies leads in real-time. You can instantly detect anonymous website visitors’ business names, demographics, contact info, and behavior. Lead Forensics also performs lead scoring, allowing you to focus on the most profitable leads. As a result, your company quickly processes website traffic and starts nurturing potential customers.
Inbound Lead Generation Tools
SlideShare is a professional service for content creation powered by LinkedIn. Your company can use it to create presentations, videos, infographics, and documents. SlideShare allows you to collect emails of the leads that download your presentations and add links or CTA to slides. Such indirect marketing will boost your inbound lead generation strategy.
Marketing Management Tools
This software helps your company see what content is trending online. You can use BuzzSumo to sharpen your social media strategy. It shows the most high-performing posts, predicts viral hits, identifies influencers, and collects data based on geographic filtering. You can also view all the comments left by users and rapidly respond to them.
Lead Prospecting Tools
Datanyze people targeting enables you to determine key decision-makers in a specific company or organization. The tool generates a list of potential leads with their job position, location, company, and marketing tools currently used. As a result, you obtain a selection of high-quality leads that can benefit your company.
Although Quora is known as a question-answer website that covers any social or business topic, it’s also helpful to generate B2B leads. You can either contact a company that posts on Quora directly or post yourself to get noticed. This strategy is effective to communicate directly with the company’s representatives without being too pushy.
As you can see, the selection of the best tools for lead generation and management is broad. First, such software helps you attract new customers through pop-up forms, emails, videos, social media, and other channels. After that, you can nurture the leads with useful content and quality user experience to turn them into buying customers.
With modern software, every stage of the sales funnel is easy to orchestrate and manage. It minimizes marketing chores and allows you to focus on building an effective marketing strategy.