Skip to main content

5 Lead Generation Mistakes to Avoid (and What to Do Instead)

Published by Spinutech on May 3, 2023

5 Lead Generation Mistakes to Avoid (and What to Do Instead)


Every growing business needs them, but so few businesses seem to understand how to generate them. Of the ones that do, too many celebrate quantity over quality. Worse, those that struggle to generate leads often fail to realize they’re standing in their own way.

As a full-service digital agency that has been leading lead-gen strategies for clients for more than 20 years, we’ve seen businesses make all kinds of mistakes in their lead generation efforts. There are five such mistakes that stand above the rest. Not only are we going to share these five lead generation mistakes, but we’re also going to walk you through how to avoid them.

1. You’re Buying Cold Contact Lists

Buying cold contact lists can seem like a short cut to success, but it’s more likely to be a dead end. Think about it: There is no guarantee the people on that last have even heard of your business. You’d be trying to sell to an audience with zero awareness of your brand. More importantly, they may not even be interested in your product or service. Sending emails to purchased lists can also lead to you being marked as spam, harming your email deliverability.

What to do instead: Convince your target audience to opt-in to your marketing. Easier said than done, of course, but leads earned are a lot more valuable than leads bought. The key is to do the work necessary to understand your audience and their interests and behaviors. If you can create content that is valuable to your target audience, you can then package that content and put it behind a lead capture form. Webinars, events, and offers are great examples of enticing content.

2. You’re Not Marketing to the Full Funnel

Not everyone who lands on your website is ready to make a purchase. You can’t assume that all of your visitors are at the same stage of your buyer’s journey, and if you’re only marketing to those who are in the conversion stage of the funnel, you’re neglecting a significant percentage of your audience. Your marketing needs to reflect the reality of the buyer’s journey, creating opportunities for people to learn more about your business and your product or service.

What to do instead: Sequential messaging in social media marketing is a perfect example of tailoring your marketing to the stages of your buyer’s journey. Users are shown ads based on what ads they have already seen and how far down the funnel they have traveled. By serving ads in a sequence, you reduce the chances of ad fatigue and keep messaging strong and consistent.

3. You’re Not Leveraging Social Media Effectively

If you don’t believe social media marketing is an effective lead generation tool, there is a simple explanation: You’re leveraging the wrong platforms. Too often, we see businesses invest their marketing dollars in a platform they believe makes sense for their business but that doesn’t actually make sense for their target audience. Square peg, meet round hole. The results are predictably poor, leading them to abandon social media marketing as a lost cause.

What to do instead: It all starts with understanding your audience. Draw a map to your target audience by figuring out which platforms they frequent and what kind of content grabs their attention and connects with their interests. Testing is also a critical element of social media marketing. Don’t throw in the towel because one campaign failed to perform. Test to determine whether it was the platform, the creative, or the content that was holding you back.

4. You’re Not Optimizing Blog Content for Lead Generation

If you’re only optimizing your blog content for SEO -- and not also for lead generation -- you’re leaving one of your stallions in the stable. We’ve already covered the importance of marketing to the full funnel. Your website blog provides plenty of real estate for you to publish content for visitors at every stage of the buyer’s journey. But many companies either take a singular approach to their blog content or simply overlook its potential for lead generation.

What to do instead: Expand your blog content to cover topics aimed at users from the top of the funnel to the bottom. Use keyword research to identify the queries most commonly associated with each stage of the buyer’s journey, then write to those topics. Your content should also address the common pain points of your audience. Take care to tailor the CTA of each blog article to reflect where the reader is likely to be in their buying journey.

5. You’re Not Setting Up Your Landing Pages to Convert

When it comes to paid search, think less about the journey and more about the destination. Businesses that utilize paid search in their lead generation efforts can focus too much on driving traffic to their website and not enough on optimizing their landing pages. It’s like driving a customer to your store, dropping them off, and trusting they’ll figure out the rest on their own. If you have the opportunity to guide them every step of the way, don’t miss it.

What to do instead: Be more intentional about where you are driving your paid search traffic. Create landing pages that are tailored to the messaging of your ads and provide clear calls-to-action that encourage visitors to take a desired action.

Admitting a Mistake is Only the First Step

Admitting to a mistake isn’t always easy. But the point here is not to dwell on mistakes made. This is the time to focus on fixes -- and avoid letting the same mistakes that lost you yesterday’s leads cost you tomorrow’s as well. Just don’t make the mistake of not partnering with a full-service digital agency that specializes in lead generation.