Demand Generation

What Galileo Can Teach Marketers About Lead Generation

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Galileo Galilei (better known by his first name) was a scientist. He lived from 1564 to 1642 and was also a mathematician, astronomer, physicist, and even a philosopher. Einstein called Galileo the “father of modern science.” One of Galileo’s most important contributions to science was proving his theories through controlled experiments. So perhaps Galileo should be called the “father of modern experimentation.”

Before the arrival of digital marketing tools, direct marketers measured response through unique phone numbers, coupon redemption, sales from a specific promotion, and other means. Today’s digital environment makes it significantly easier to test and thus push resources away from tactics that fail and push resources to tactics that produce a significant ROI. This can have massive impact on lead generation.

Inspired by Galileo, here are five lead generation experimentation ideas for your B2B marketing.

  • 1. Pay Per Click Advertising (PPC). PPC works extremely well for some companies but it requires courage, patience, resources, and expertise. It’s highly measurable, and by monitoring results, marketers can effectively identify top performing campaigns (as well as low performing) and reallocate ad spend accordingly.
  • 2. Multivariate Testing. Galileo’s investigations collected what modern scientists would call “experiment” and a “control” data. The two sets of information are very similar, except the experimental group has key variables changed to see how the differences affect outcomes. Marketers should similarly test landing page elements. Testing combinations of headlines, body copy, photos, and even colors can dramatically affect your results.
  • 3. Try Different Offers. Everyone likes a great deal—whether it’s a trial, exclusive offer or a discount. Test the offer. For example, if interest is lead generation and you’re in the B2B environment, test free information (a white paper or special report) against a free initial consultation. Which offer gets the most leads and which one provides the highest quality of lead?
  • 4. Bring New Media to the Old School. Marketers using mail pieces or other collateral should bring these traditional media into the 21st century by including them in your social marketing strategy. Include your Twitter handle in the contact information section or ask them to “Like” your brand page on Facebook. This can also apply to radio, television and other “ancient” lead generation methods.
  • 5. Try a New Approach to Social Media. Much of Galileo’s work included observation and taking measurements: The brightness of stars, the speed of falling objects, the weight of objects. If he were a modern day B2B marketer, he would no doubt be happily measuring social media ROI. Social media can be a powerful lead generation method. Experiment with a new approach to social media based around key metrics. For example, examine the quantity and quality of traffic you receive from a specific social channel. Are you finding that visitors from Google+ are converting at a higher rate on your site? Might be time to increase activity in that social destination.

Two final pieces of lead generation experimentation advice of note. First, measure everything. Second, know the average lifetime value of a customer. The latter will help you determine return on investment for your lead generation and lead management experiments.

Ready for more ideas? For tips and best practices, visit our lead generation resources page.