Lead the Way

In the Information Age, customers want to hear you say more about your product and what it can do for them.
Magazine Contributor
Writer and Author, Specializing in Business and Finance
2 min read

This story appears in the September 2007 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

How will you find your next customer? "Warm" cold calls, speaking at seminars and hosting events are the three most effective lead-generation techniques, according to a report from sales info site RainToday.com (you can download the free executive summary here.)


Brian Carroll, author of Lead Generation for the Complex Sale, agrees with the report, adding that lead generation has moved more toward providing information and service than ever.


"About 80 percent of the people who come to your site aren't ready to buy," Carroll says. "They're looking for information." Free reports, articles and podcasts are great ways to educate customers. However, Carroll advises against following up with a hard sell. "If a customer downloads a free report, they want information. Contact the customer and ask what questions you can answer."


He also advises having materials that make keeping in touch easier. Many reps stumble once they get beyond the product introduction, he says. And customers read repeated keep-in-touch calls as a way of saying, "Are you ready to buy yet?" Carroll suggests companies create special reports, newsletters, case studies and success stories to help keep clients involved in a relevant conversation until they're ready to buy.

More from Entrepreneur

Grow Your Business at Entrepreneur LIVE! Join us on Nov. 16 in Brooklyn, NY, to learn from legends like Danica Patrick and Maria Sharapova, pitch our editors, meet with investors, and potentially walk away with funding!
Register here

One-on-one online sessions with our experts can help you start a business, grow your business, build your brand, fundraise and more.
Book Your Session

In as little as seven months, the Entrepreneur Authors program will turn your ideas and expertise into a professionally presented book.
Apply Now

Latest on Entrepreneur

My Queue

There are no Videos in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any video to save to your queue.

There are no Articles in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any article to save to your queue.

There are no Podcasts in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any podcast episode to save to your queue.

You're not following any authors.

Click the Follow button on any author page to keep up with the latest content from your favorite authors.