SEO and lead generation are often spoken of as if they are two sides of the same coin—yet it’s important to note the ways in which they are distinct, and to consider how each might benefit your business.
Clarifying the Terms
Let’s start with some basics, then. SEO is not lead generation. Lead generation is not SEO. SEO, or search engine optimization, is all about expanding your website’s overall search engine visibility. It makes you more easily “discovered” by Google users. It may generate leads—but that’s not really the main focus.
Lead generation, meanwhile, is all about getting more leads for a particular product. The goals here are much narrower, much more highly targeted.
One more definition that’s required: A lead is not the same thing as a customer. When you have a lead, that usually means you have some very limited information—a name, an email, and if you’re lucky maybe a phone number. But there’s still a lot of work you have to do to turn those leads into actual, paying customers.
SEO as a Basis for Lead Gen
While SEO and lead generation are not at all the same things, they can be connected in important ways. Specifically, SEO can be the basis for lead generation.
Our data shows clients that have an SEO campaign tend to do better in their lead gen campaigns, both generating more leads and also getting higher-quality leads. The reason is that customers trust brands they know to be prominent/recognizable—and that’s something SEO can help you with.
Additionally, we’ll note that SEO Content is highly useful for lead gen purposes and for tactics such as retargeting, as downloadable content, etc.
Finally, SEO plays an important role within the larger consumer journey; it’s something that’s important at all stages of the sales funnel, whereas lead gen usually just comes in toward the end of that sales funnel.
You Don’t Have to Choose
Ultimately, you don’t have to settle for one or the other. Our recommendation is to combine both. Use SEO to raise awareness of your brand and product(s), and to establish trust. From there, you can focus on lead gen—though how much you focus will depend on a few things:
- Your marketing budget;
- Your short-term vs. long-term business goals; and
- Your industry, competitors, etc.
The Best of Both Worlds
SEO and lead gen can both offer big benefits—and when you use them in harmony, you can really start seeing some results.
Whether you’re just launching a company or you’re trying to expand one, we recommend a holistic approach that integrates these two disciplines. We’d love to help you put a plan together.
Learn more about how SEO and lead generation can go hand in hand. Start by calling to arrange a consultation with our digital marketing experts. Reach out to Sefati & Company —a leading name in integrative digital marketing—and make an appointment today!