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By Gary Thill, PSP/Deck 360 News Editor
When it comes to lead generation, few names are more well respected than Dave Yoho. Yoho’s firm, Dave Yoho Associates, is one of North America’s largest, oldest, and most successful small business consulting companies.
Dave Yoho has appeared in over 100 training videos. He is the author of the best-selling book: Have a Great Year Every Year (Oakhill Press). His company developed the sales methods which are used by the most successful people in the in-home sales industry.
In this Q&A, Brad Yoho, Director of Marketing for Dave Yoho Associates, discusses the state of lead generation for pool and spa pros in 2021, while also analyzing some of the most common mistakes that are made.
PSP/Deck 360 News: The pandemic has changed the way pros do business in many ways. Post-pandemic how has lead generation changed the most?
Brad Yoho: The paradigm has shifted tremendously for companies that relied heavily on face-to-face leads as a significant part of their marketing mix. In 2020, shows and events were cancelled entirely and many canvassing programs were either stopped or scaled back. As a result, companies invested more of their marketing dollars on traditional strategies such as direct mail and cold calls to prospects, while also concentrating on powerful, proven tactics such as SEO, email marketing and social media.
PSP/Deck 360 News: Some pros feel like they have too much work post-pandemic. Why do they need to stay focused on lead generation?
Brad Yoho: There is a well-known saying in business: “Always be hiring”. The thought process behind this is that you don’t want to be rushed into a hiring decision in a time of need. The same process can be applied to lead generation. Despite many roofing companies being flush with leads, there are numerous reasons to keep generating them at the same pace:
PSP/Deck 360 News: What would you say are the biggest mistakes pros are making when it comes to lead generation?
Brad Yoho: There are several mistakes we see companies make which have a detrimental effect on lead generation:
PSP/Deck 360 News: Some pros feel they don’t have time or money to devote to lead generation. What are some of the lowest-hanging fruit or biggest bangs for the buck they can use to generate leads?
Brad Yoho: If you have salespeople, then you should require them to self-generate leads. We recommend a model where salespeople generate up to 20% of their business from leads which they developed personally. It’s also imperative that you teach and enforce referral solicitation as part of the sales plan. With proper scripting, your customers will want to help the salesperson, the company and themselves, especially when you put the time in to develop a simple but creative referral system.
PSP/Deck 360 News: Social media is a powerful lead generation tool. What are the best ways to capitalize on it?
Brad Yoho: First, it is critical to recognize that pouring your resources into every social media channel is not a wise approach or a good use of your time. Several networks are more effective for B2B companies, and while you shouldn’t necessarily avoid these, it’s best to pour your efforts into social channels that are more effective for B2C businesses. We would rank them in this order:
If you have not utilized social media marketing, or used it sparingly, the best approach is to start out with one or two channels to begin with. Remember the “80-20 rule” — 80% of your posts should be non-promotional and focused on giving people beneficial information. Always use relevant hashtags — this is one of the best ways to build up your list of connections. Share positive reviews from your customers. Finally, if you don’t have the manpower to effectively utilize social media marketing, there are numerous companies and freelancers that can assist you.
PSP/Deck 360 News:: Looking toward the future, what are the emerging lead generation techniques that you’re most excited about?
Brad Yoho: There are several lead generation techniques that should take advantage of over the next couple of years:
Companies would be wise to take note that lead generation trends are constantly evolving, and by next year, there could be significant differences in what yields the best results. However, if you stay on top of these trends you will set yourself up for success in the years to come.