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The Lead Generation Glossary: 100 Terms You Ought To Know
13th November 2017 Sharanya Manola

The Lead Generation Glossary: 100 Terms You Ought To Know

Both lead generation and lead nurturing are crucial for a marketer. But there are so many terms around these two areas that even seasoned marketers get confused every once in a while. So, we thought of making things easier for you by creating a glossary of 100 important terms that anyone who works in lead generation and lead nurturing ought to know. Dig in!

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A

#1 A/B testing: A/B testing is done to test two or more versions of the same webpage in order to determine which version performs better. It helps understand the effectiveness of changes in design or content of web pages by comparing the performance of multiple versions. Apart from web pages, A/B testing is also used to optimize emails, forms etc.

#2 AIDA: AIDA is an acronym for Awareness, Interest, Desire, and Action. The AIDA model represents the cognitive stages an individual goes through in the buying process.
Awareness: It is to do with creating brand awareness and drawing the attention of people.
Interest: The next stage requires you to keep them interested in your products and services.
Desire: Herein you influence them from just liking you to wanting to buy from you.
Action: This phase is when the interested prospect after evaluating their affinity to your brand decides to buy a product.

#3 API: Application Programming Interface or API stands for a software-to-software interface that allows information to be passed from one system to another. In the context of lead gen, APIs can help you a lot if you want to transfer lead info between two tools or platforms.

#4 Assessment: Assessment is a type of interactive content that uses the question-answer format to gather relevant information about a prospect. Upon completion, a tailored result is provided based on user’s input. They are a great way to generate leads while also profiling the lead and sending them targeted content.

#5 Asset: It includes any kind of material aligned to a buyer’s journey and used to educate and engage the user. For instance, brochures, interactive content, webinars, videos, tutorials, guides, e-books, reports, infographics etc.

#6 Authority: It is easier to generate more leads if you are seen as an authority or an established entity in your industry. It’s the other people’s faith in your brand that will make others buy from you. Some ways you can make your authority visible is by publishing original research, testimonials, certifications, badges on your website.

#7 Awareness stageIn a buying cycle, this stage is where people identify their challenge or an opportunity they want to pursue. They also decide whether or not the goal or challenge should be a priority. Marketers aim to generate leads at this stage with high-level lead magnets intended to educate.

B

#8 Blogging: It means maintaining a blog where one can post about a wide range of topics related to the industry they are a part of. It is a core component of inbound marketing strategy as it bumps up SEO, website traffic and also aids in lead generation.

#9 BOFU: Bottom of the funnel is the final stage in a buyer’s journey where they are evaluating who to buy the solution from. Usually, they need a gentle nudge through offers like free trials, free consultation, demo, discount to finally close the deal.

#10 Bounce rate: The percentage of visitors who land on a page of your website or a landing page without navigating further or clicking on anything. A high bounce rate generally results in poor conversion and is a reminder that you must rework your web pages. Conversely, a high bounce rate for your emails means that your list quality is getting low and it’s time to look into your list management practices.

#11 Buyer's persona: A buyer persona is a representation of the type of person who buys your products and services. When defining a buyer persona, you'll identify job titles, demographic factors and lifestyle attributes of your typical buyer. By creating good content targeted to your buyer persona, you'll attract website traffic that has a higher probability to buy your products and services.

C

#12 CAC - Cost of customer acquisition: It is the total amount of money spent on sales and marketing in order to convince a potential customer into buying a company’s products and services. It can be calculated by dividing all the sales and marketing expenses by the number of customers acquired.

#13 Calculator: A calculator presents complex data in a simple, basic format and is user-driven. Owing to its simplicity it is highly engaging and can be used to generate leads by asking users to exchange their contact information in order to see the results. Some examples are: EMI calculator, ROI calculator, risk calculator and cost calculator.

#14 Commitment and consistency: According to this principle of persuasion once people commit to something they will honor it. Marketers use this principle to create content and copy that creates a commitment in the user’s mind and moves them towards conversion.

#15 Content management system: It is a tool that can be used to design, manage and publish a website. It allows multiples users to collaborate and create digital content which can be optimised for search engine too. Popular example of CMS are WordPress, Magento, Drupal and Joomla.

#16 Case study: Case study is a customer’s story that explains the details of a problem they were facing, how they tackled this problem and finally, the results they got. It is a popular content format as it allows marketers to showcase their products and services through a real-life problem.

#17 Chat: A live chat feature provides a real-time, faster resolution of queries which results in better user experience and also helps in lead generation. Besides, it helps understand the behavior of a visitor and pain points, if any, instantaneously.

#18 Cheat sheet: A cheat sheet is similar to a checklist except it gives guidelines to users to perform a task. These are usually very actionable and high-value and so make for an excellent lead generation and engagement tool.

#19 Checklist: A checklist is an extremely easy-to-make lead magnet wherein the steps required to perform a complex task is presented in a condensed format. Companies like HubSpot use lots of checklists to engage and convert their traffic into leads.

#20 Consultation (free): A consultation is whereby you give a session to prospects to understand their pain points and then propose how your product/service can fix them. It also serves as a great way to push your prospects into the final buying stage.

#21 Conversion rate: It is the percentage of people who complete a desired action. For example, if 100 people arrive on a landing page and 10 people fill out the form, the landing page has a 10% conversion rate.

#22 Conversion rate optimization: CRO is a process of improving conversions on site or landing pages by conducting A/B tests or deploying optimizing techniques.

#23 Conversion path: A conversion path a description of the steps taken by a user of a website towards a conversion. It starts from when the user arrives on the website and ends at conversion.

#24 Cost per lead: CPL is the amount it costs to acquire a lead.

#25 Cross-platform marketing automation: It’s the ability of emails to display properly across multiple platforms like mobile devices, tablets and desktops.

#26 CTA: Call-to-action or CTA refers to a button or a link that literally ‘calls out’ or prompts the user to take an ‘action’. A good CTA is one that clearly states the value proposition so that users know what’s in it for them. For example: “Download this ebook to know the secret formula!”

#27 CTR: Click-through rate is that percentage of people that have clicked on your ad or your post. The formula is total number of clicks divided by total number of times the link was viewed. For example: 1click/100 views = .01% CTR

#28 Customer: A prospect who ends up buying your products, services or solutions is called a customer.

D

#29 Design: Design - which includes color, font, visual impact - is critical to generating leads. The landing page/email/ad should be visually exciting as well as have a logical flow otherwise it might result in users not engaging with whatever is in front of them.

#30 Drip marketing campaigns: They are an automated set of emails that are sent out over a specific period of time. The purpose is to engage with leads and push them onto the next stages of the purchase funnel. For example, if someone has registered for a product webinar, but haven’t yet pulled the purchase trigger, you may want to send them a case study which will act as a social proof and perhaps elicit a purchase or a sales query.

E

#31 Ebook: An ebook is a lead magnet which provides comprehensive information on a specific topic or list of topics. It is a useful method to build thought leadership as well as generate and nurture leads.

#32 Email bounce rate:It refers to the percentage of sent messages or emails that were not delivered to a recipient’s inbox. A high bounce rate indicates an out-of-date list with invalid or not-in-use email addresses.

#33 Email marketing:It is component of digital marketing where emails are sent to subscribers, leads and customers to engage with, promote or upsell a company’s products and services.

#34 Email validation:There exist a range of tools that can be embedded on a landing page to verify if an email address as valid or not. They measure the legitimacy of an email address with the help of a combination of algorithms because it is critical in order to collect valid data and create a clean email list to which emails are sent.

#35 Evaluation stage: The stage of buying cycle wherein leads are aware that your products and services fulfill their criteria, and that they are trying to evaluate why they should choose you over others. Lead magnets that can be used at this stage are product webinars, case study, product demonstration video etc.

F

#36 Facebook: It is a social networking site where marketers can do targeted advertising to create brand awareness, attract new leads by bringing them to a landing page.

#37 FOMO: Fear Of Missing Out is one of the principles of persuasion used by marketers to boost conversions. Essentially, it means creating an anticipation around your content/offer/product so that people fear that they will miss something amazing if they don’t get access to it.

G

#38 Gated content: It is content offered in exchange of contact information. Typically examples include, downloadable content like whitepapers, ebooks, case studies, guides, reports, but can also be non-downloadable like free consultations, product demos, free trials etc.

#39 Guides: Similar to ebooks, guides are a lengthier lead magnet to create. They work as an exceptional lead nurturing magnet since they are educational in nature and can nudge prospects further in the purchase funnel.

H

#40 Hard bounce: It means the email bounced back to the sender without being accepted by the recipient’s mail server. Such email ids must immediately be removed from the subscriber list.

#41 Headline: Landing pages and blogs must have headlines that are engaging and should be relevant to the content on the page and relatable. It should motivate visitors to not just take an action like filling out the lead form but also share it with their peers.

I

#42 Inbound marketing: Inbound marketing focuses on attracting customer attention through content like blogs, social media platforms and search engines. It is based on pull strategy used by marketers to create brand awareness and get people to enter the marketing funnel by their own choice.

#43 Interactive content: Content and tools like calculators, quizzes, assessments that provide an interactive, two-way communication are called interactive content. They help in lead generation and convert better than passive content (like blogs) because of valuable knowledge, insight and personalized experience it offers to users. Besides, it helps marketers educate, profile and nurture leads once they are in the marketing funnel.

#44 Interactive whitepaper: A static piece of content which is transformed using interactive elements like visuals, animations, and questions is called interactive whitepaper. Users love it because it is not the passive consumption of content rather an experience. Ideally, they should be used in the MOFU or BOFU stage.

K

#45 Keywords: A targeted search phrase that internet users type in search engine. Websites, blogs and landing pages must be search engine optimised which is to say that they should have a combination of short-tail and long-tail keywords that people search for in order to get more traffic and so improve chances of generating leads.

#46 KPI or key performance indicators: In marketing terms, KPIs help marketers keep track of how their marketing efforts are paying off. They evaluate their performance against standard metrics such as customer acquisition cost, customer conversion ratio, landing page conversion rate etc.

L

#47 Landing page: Landing page is a web page that has one goal - pushing people to take a certain action. Usually, it contains a lead capture form or a clickthrough button which helps marketers capture visitor information. They are usually linked to email campaigns and SEM campaigns.

#48 Lead: Any person who shares his/her contact information is called a lead. The lead can be generated through ebooks, whitepapers, quizzes, calculators, blogposts, website etc. They are a potential sales opportunity.

#49 Lead capture form: Lead capture form is a critical element of a marketing campaign as this is what visitors fill to give their contact information and gain something in return. The design of the form and the messaging it contains has a direct impact on the completion rate.

#50 Lead magnet: An irresistible offer that helps convert visitors to leads in exchange of their contact information is called a lead magnet. For example: interactive content like quizzes, calculators, assessments, reports, guides, cheat sheets, checklists, webinars etc.

#51 Lead management: It is the process of tracking and managing leads right from the first stage of them entering the marketing funnel, handling their queries, filtering them based on lead quality, nurturing and finally converting them into customers. 

#52 Lead segmentation: The process of grouping leads based on common characteristics like website behavior, geographical location, and demographics.

#53 Lead scoring: Lead scoring refers to the technique of assigning a score to a lead based on various attributes like demography or behaviour on the website. For example, if a lead downloads an ebook you might give them a score of 10 and if they ask for a demonstration you score them 40. Typically, lead scoring helps sales in prioritizing which leads should be given more attention.

#54 Lead to customer conversion ratio: It is calculated by dividing total number of customers by the total number of leads.

#55 Lead quality: Lead quality (whether high or low) confirms whether they are how likely they are to convert from a visitor to a customer. A high-quality lead, for instance, is one that matches any company’s buyer persona and hence it is better that the sales and marketing efforts are channelized to push them further down the purchase funnel. 

#56 Lifetime value of customer:  LTV refers to the projected revenue that a customer will generate during their lifetime.One of the best ways to improve LTV is by focusing on customer satisfaction which will eventually result in improved retention. 

#57 Liking: Liking is based on the fact that you can exercise influence over people if they like you. As a company, you can improve your likeability in a number of ways like using interactive content that creates a two-way dialogue, personalised emails, and emotion evoking images and messaging which establish an immediate connect with audience.

#58 LinkedIn: A social networking site, LinkedIn, is as popular among jobseekers as with employers and those who want to grow their professional network.It has about 400+ million users which also means there is a huge opportunity to generate leads for businesses who sell products and services, especially B2B.

#59 Loss aversion: Loss aversion is a principle of persuasion based on the idea that most people have a tendency to avoid situations that could result in a loss.

M

#60 Marketing automation: Marketing automation refers to using a software that automates marketing tasks and repetitive actions like sending out emails, social media posts and other actions on the website. It is largely useful in working on a large database and nurturing them down the marketing funnel by sending them personalized content. Many marketing automation platforms have a robust analytics component for tracking behavior on the website and personalizing the communication based on that.

#61 Marketing funnel: It is a model that represents a customer’s journey from awareness to actual purchase of a product or service. Right at the top of the funnel there will be a lot of visitors and leads, but gradually the number decreases with each passing stage with only the interested and engaged leads at the end who turn into customers.

#62 Marketing segmentation: It is the process of dividing a market of potential customers into groups, or segments, based on different characteristics. The segments created are composed of consumers who will respond similarly to marketing strategies and who share traits such as similar interests, needs, or locations.

#63 Mobile optimization: Designing and optimising a website, blog or landing pages so that it is easy to navigate from a mobile device. It can be done by either making a responsive design or creating a website especially for mobile devices.

#64 MOFU: Middle of the sales funnel or MOFU is the stage when the buyer is aware of the problem and is looking for the best solution.

#65 Marketing qualified lead: MQLs are those people who have expressed interest in your product and are progressing down the funnel, but are not yet sales-ready.

P

#66 Pay-per-click: PPC campaigns are paid marketing efforts to direct targeted traffic to a website or a landing page. The website owner pays the publisher a certain amount of money every time the ad is clicked by a visitor.

#67 Personalized emails: Personalized emails is a technique to improve performance of email marketing campaigns. They bump up conversion rate up to six times more than non-personalised emails.

#68 Product email: It is an educational email regarding your product. Such emails are usually a part of lead nurturing campaigns, but shouldn’t be sent to your entire list since they are relevant only to leads who are engaging with your product.

#69 Prospect: A prospect is a potential customer who has already submitted their contact data in order to receive more information from you. They are preparing themselves to make a decision and are engaging with you. Essentially, they are sales-ready leads and so closer to an outcome.

#70 Prospect analysis: Prospect analysis is the process of analyzing prospects based on their demographics and behavior to judge the likelihood of them converting to customers.

#71 Purchase stage: The stage where some of the leads generated at the top of the funnel are now interested in purchasing from you.

Q

#72 Quiz: Based on the instant gratification principle, a quiz is a type interactive-content which is extremely engaging and highly shareable. They are a great lead magnet to generate leads.

R

#73 Reciprocity: Reciprocity is based on the principle of returning a favor and so it works brilliantly on a landing page wherein you return a favor for a favor. The giveaway should not be refusable and be of utility to your audience.

#74 Report: A report is a collection of facts, figures, and data after extensive research. They work particularly well as a B2B lead magnet.

#75 Responsive design: Your website, landing pages and emails must have a responsive design, which is to say that they should adapt to various screen sizes, maintaining uniformity and providing a smooth user experience.

#76 ROI: Return of investment is a performance metric which evaluates the profitability of an investment. The formula to calculate ROI is (Revenue made from investment - investment made / Investment).
#77 Revenue performance management: It is an approach that marketers use to analyze and identify what’s boosting or hurting revenue generation. This boosts sales and marketing alignment by continuing to focus on revenue metrics like CPL.

S

#78 Sales and marketing alignment: When sales and marketing goals are aligned it results in higher conversions because both work in tandem with each other and not in silos. This also highlights the fact that sales is not just the responsibility of one team but the entire organization.

#79 Sales funnel: A sales funnel refers to a set of steps that are designed to guide visitors to take buying decisions. The funnel is broader at the top and keeps getting narrower which is also the last stage in the funnel. At every stage educational content are introduced to nudge visitors to come closer to taking a decision.

#80 Sales qualified lead: SQL is a lead that is worthy of making a direct contact with by the sales team. They are people who are ready to buy.

#81 Scarcity: Scarcity increases the value of a product or a service by using the Fear Of Missing Out principle. For example, a coupon code that expires within a few hours.  

#82 SEO: Search Engine Optimization is a means of improving a website’s visibility on search engine results.

#83 Social media: Social media is an excellent platform to reach your audience, generate leads and also to stay in touch with your prospects and keep them updated about your products and services. Word of mouth on social media increases brand awareness as well.

#84 Social proof: It is a psychological principle in which people tend to follow what the majority is doing around them. Marketers use social proof as a tactic to increase conversion in a number of ways like customer testimonials, media mentions, social share counter, certifications, case studies, subscriber count, ratings and reviews, real-time stats etc.

#85 Soft bounce: Soft bounce is an email message that does reach the recipients mail servers but bounces back undelivered either because the recipients inbox was full or the server was unavailable.

#86 Subject line:  Subject line of email campaigns should be compelling and prompt recipients to click on it and see what it entails. It should be well-thought and relevant to the campaign.

T

#87 Targeted content: Targeted content is content created keeping in mind the buyer’s persona. It is the best way to engage and nurture a lead as it shows that you understand their needs and pain points.

#88 TOFU: Top Of the FUnnel refers to the top-most stage of a sales funnel. It comprises of people who are trying to identify a problem and are looking for information about it. Marketers educate these people about the solutions available without pitching their own products and services.

#89 Twitter: It is a social media platform that allows businesses to share messages and engage with their audience.

U

#90 Unsubscribe rate: It is the percentage of recipients who click on the ‘unsubscribe’ option at the end of an email you send to them. Ideally, it should be less than 1%.

#91 User: A user is a person who is a step away from being a customer. He/she is someone who uses a product without actually paying. Once they start paying, they turn into a customer.

#92 User experience: Overall experience of a visitor on an app, a web page or a landing page.

V

#9 Value proposition: Value proposition of your business refers to the unique value you provide which makes you irresistible to your target audience. It also help you differentiate yourself from the competitors.

#94 Viral content: Any piece of content that gain immense popularity on the internet and shared by people in huge numbers is called viral content. Creating viral content can result in huge brand awareness and eventually generate valuable leads and business.

#95 Visitor: A visitor is a person who lands on your website.

W

#96 Webinar: Webinars are highly effective in lead generation as they have a high perceived value. They are audio-visual and immersive. Being educational and interactive in nature, they are usually more effective in generating and nurturing leads than ebooks, guides, blogposts etc.

#97 WordPress: It is a Content Management System (CMS) used by the majority of websites aroud the world.

#98 Workflow: In sales and marketing terms, a workflow is essentially a series of triggers and actions that faciliate the movement of a lead or prospect from one stage of the buying cycle to another.

Y

#99 YouTube:  It is video-sharing site where users can view, upload and share videos. It is highly interactive and so many organisations use this platform to increase brand awareness as well as generate leads.

Z

#100 Zeit: Caught you! That’s a German word for time! Yes, it’s now time you brush-up with these terms to mark a start to your journey to become a successful lead gen and inbound marketer!

  • Fred Vinson

    do you have any examples of quizzes created with outgrow that resemble a buzzfeed quiz?