6 Ways to Generate Leads That Aren't Cold Outreach: A Comprehensive Guide

Unique, effective ways to generate leads with a fresh perspective on lead generation.

Rory Sadler
August 8, 2023
February 24, 2024
Unique, effective ways to generate leads with a fresh perspective on lead generation.
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Other than polar bears, no one thrives in an environment that's always cold. This is true of salespeople as well. Some stats on this, so you know you’re not alone, include:

  • 48% of B2B salespeople are afraid of making cold calls.
  • Less than 2% of cold calls lead to a meeting (which means 98% of calls are unsuccessful rejection fests)- and getting a meeting doesn't necessarily mean getting a sale.
  • 63% of salespeople say cold calling is the worst part of their job, and that same research shows that it takes an average of 18 or more calls to reach a prospect with cold calling, which is a huge waste of time and energy.

Okay, so it’s pretty obvious that cold calling is a hassle and a headache for which there is not enough Paracetamol in the world. Finding other ways to generate leads will help you get just as many leads (or more!) without making 63% of your salespeople contemplate not coming to work.

1. Ask For Referrals

This is an oldie but a goldie. When you do a good job and create happy customers they want to talk about it. They want to tell their friends how awesome an experience they had. That they got the coolest team in the world to create something fantastic for them. Sure they usually do it over wine at wing night but with some polite questions and the right confidence you can get this natural bragging desire to work for you.

Asking clients for referrals is like asking them to gather their own leads. This takes a lot of the effort off you but also gives you instant credibility. Your client gushing about how awesome you were and saying, "Oh, Susan, they did such a great job; you just have to talk to them about your issues!” is the best lead generation strategy out there.

This strategy has the extra bonus of showcasing your humanity. Making these connections through this lukewarm contact makes you a real person instead of just a salesperson.

At the close of a sale, talk to your buyer about what they liked about your service and if there's anyone they know of who can benefit from your product or service.

2. Lead Nurturing and Referral Follow-Up

Once you get referrals, your job isn’t necessarily just done. You must work to turn that referral into a client, which doesn't always happen immediately. Cultivating referrals is cultivating a relationship with them, whether they convert instantly or not. Never simply drop a referral just because they weren't ready to buy right when they were referred to you.

You can use lead nurturing to keep yourself in your referral's mind (and, dare we say, heart) until they're ready to convert. This can include sending them helpful information about their interests and business, supporting them where possible, and making a connection. If this seems like a lot of work and effort you might not have time for, there are different automated software you can leverage to automate this process, streamlining it while keeping the human connection.

3. Leverage Content Marketing to Have Leads Come to You

In an ideal world, we wouldn’t have to generate leads because everyone would just come to us for the things they need. However since the world doesn’t work exactly like that we need to get inventive about finding ways to show potential customers that we’re the ones they want to work with.

Content marketing is a multi layered approach that checks a lot of boxes at the same time. It sets us up as experts, can be done without sinking a lot of money into an ad or marketing campaign, and leverages existing customer practices.

Let us ask; if someone asks you a question you don’t know the answer to, how likely are you to Google it? And even if you do ask someone else, how likely are they to just Google it themselves? Pretty likely, right?

Content marketing can be things like posting blogs and articles that are search engine optimised. This is so when someone Googles something about your business you have a better chance of being the website that answers that question. People who need your services are literally looking for you so you just have to find ways to help them find you.

4. Be a Trusted Source of Information

Have you ever been talking to a friend about a problem you have and had them say, “Oh, I’ve got a guy who knows all about that.” And then not used the guy whose experience is so valued? No? Us neither.

Being known as a trusted source of information, expert, or knowledgeable human being is worth its weight in gold because it sets you up as the go-to. Becoming a product expert in your field makes you an advisor customers know they can trust to handle every imaginable angle of their experience because you’re the expert. You’re no ordinary salesperson; you’re a guru, a savant, the person who knows this stuff inside out and backwards.

Since the customer has all the power here (you can’t force them to buy from you), further empowering them by helping them get the information they crave sets you up as the perfect resource to go with.

5. Network Online

Networking has never been so accessible. Touch base with new people who are looking for your expertise and services. Sites like LinkedIn make networking online easy, allowing you to meet new people and companies and generate leads in a natural if digital, way.

6. Attend and Speak at Events

Another classic form of lead generation is through networking, and a great place to do that is at events and conferences.

These are places where like-minded people looking for specific or broad things within an industry will go to rub elbows and find new products, services, and people. Networking like this is popular with those who like to read body language and facial expressions, meeting a person face-to-face for that personal connection.

Leverage events by going to the ones your potential clients are most likely to be at. Also sign up for workshops that might attract people who need your products and services.

Remember that this isn't an opportunity to talk about yourself, it's an opportunity to listen to others as they tell you the pain points you can solve.

Speaking at these kinds of events is another great opportunity to generate leads. Event speakers are positioned as industry experts, given automatic credibility, and stand up in front of a room of people interested in what they have to say to discuss how they can solve problems.

This is the ultimate dream of value-based selling techniques because it offers value right from the beginning.

Generate Connections and Leads

Alternative ways to generate leads that connect with new people meaningfully will get more out of your outreach with less hassle. Better outcomes with a better journey there is better business practice in our books.

At trumpet, that’s what our business is about- creating better journeys and better connections among the people taking those journeys. We've created a platform that humanises the sales process by making information easy to share. For more tips and tricks on making better connections in sales, check out our website.