How to capture customer email leads during coronavirus

Gathering new customer leads is one of the many challenges businesses are facing throughout the COVID-19 quarantine. Traditional foot traffic in stores or business offices has slowed or even been paused entirely. So let’s take a look at some ways you can keep gathering leads during a time like this. 

Get Leads Through Social Media Ads

Running social media ads for your business is one of the first things you should consider. This tactic can tie in multiple channels for customers to learn about you, and also let you learn about them.

The ability to drive these leads to any web page you choose is highly beneficial for lead capture. Through a simple button on your ad, you can directly link people to a page where they can enter their email info in exchange for a number of things (which we’ll go into greater detail on throughout this blog).

The targeting tools at your disposal make this one of the most effective methods. The people you decide to reach will be predisposed to spend money on your business. And during a time in which social media usage is at an all time high, targeting tools only become more effective. The dollars you spend on driving clicks have become more effective, and the cost per lead has dropped significantly.

If you followed the link above to read those social media stats, the site you found yourself on should have popped up a window asking for email info. These pop ups are called lightboxes, and any page your social ad links to should absolutely be utilizing these.

Lightboxes are a powerful attention-grabber. The website behind this window darkens and the viewer feels compelled to read and hopefully fill out any info boxes presented to them. This lightbox doesn’t have to lock out the viewer from accessing your page, so don’t feel like you’re forcing customers to fill it out. 

But should you decide to lock any of your pages behind this, you’ll find that you’ll gather more customer emails than ever before. You’re not asking for money yet, and if your business’ offerings are desirable enough, the customer should want to give you their email. Offering discount notices and newsletters are a great way to make people want to give you their email here.

Hold Contests to Capture Info

Contests and giveaways make great use of the inability to walk into actual stores or businesses right now. People are realizing that they’re saving money by not going out for what might be considered “frivolous” spending. So what better way is there to keep them interested in your product, than by giving it away? But the real goal here is to gather emails that can be re-marketed to.

Local Charleston retailer Kassis Brother’s Shoes found success in a contest we helped them run. Through giving away a pair of shoes, the business received 280 opt-in emails. 

These potential customers aren’t just valuable because the business knows they’re shopping for shoes. The contest also captured valuable audience insight including why the leads might be looking for a new pair of shoes. 

Kassis Brother’s Shoes is able to hold onto and build marketing campaigns from that customer info for when their doors open again.

Building off of the last section on Social Media Ads, contests are a great thing to promote and link to from outside your website. You can even make this the content of a lightbox when a customer clicks onto your website from an ad.

Imagine seeing a Facebook ad for a perfect pair of shoes, clicking on the link to check their price, and being presented with the chance to win that pair for free. The simple ask of an email address would be undeniable to almost anyone.

Offer Compelling Content to Customers

Email marketing is a powerful beast of its own. But what kind of content should emails include to help you gather new customer leads? As long as its valuable content, it should be placed behind a form-fill.

Show that your company is valuable for more than just its products right now. Build customer confidence by showing that you’re a source of useful tips and advice related to your industry. This can come in the form of blog posts or downloadable pdf guides.

A downloadable report or e-book is the perfect way to collect info by offering something of value. But what you offer needs to stay short and address a pain point your customer might have.

For example, if you’re in the business of selling plants, you can be offering a plant care guide to customers. Of course, this is info that also can be shared for free on social media or through video content. And if you’re doing that already, you can simply repackage that content into a single guide that gathers all of your advice into one place. Customers will value the convenience of this. For them, this is more than worth the cost of entering in their email address.

Don’t stop any of this when you reopen

While there is no better time to focus on lead generation than during a quarantine, the truth is that all of these methods should be utilized year-round. Getting started on contests, social ads, lightboxes and more right now just sets you up for continued success later.

In the end, the one thing all of these points have in common is making sure there’s something in it for the customer, when you ask for their email. A contest is the purest form of this, and people love entering contests. But every other tactic you can use to gather info can be built off of that same premise.

The end goal with gathering emails is remarketing new products or services to customers. You want those customers to open your future emails and see value. Don’t be just another number in a red circle adorning your customer’s email phone app.