Targeted lead generation is an area of marketing many entrepreneurs struggle with. Sadly, many new business owners buy into the notion that if they get enough traffic and enough leads they'll have an explosive business. This couldn't be further from the truth!

If you sell curling irons you don't want bald men coming to your website! Even if you get enough leads generated by whatever opt in form you can create, if they are not clients who have an interest in what you sell, have not demonstrated a previous purchase for such things and aren't willing to buy- you'll be extremely frustrated.

Recently I saw an advertisement for training on how to generate more leads quickly. It was from the owner of a lead generation company. His job everyday is to generate leads and resell them. So, it would make sense to want to learn how to generate massive amounts of leads wouldn't it? Not necessarily.

When I was working in my home based business I purchased a lot of leads from different vendors. Some were ok leads, others were pretty good. And then… MOST were just 'crap' leads. These were the kind of leads that had wrong email addresses, were old and resold and many times were from people who were promised something they never received.

For example, when I would call someone back on the phone expecting that they were interested in making money from home, (like I was told by the lead vendor)…. and also wanted more info about building their own business and marketing a product or service online, it was disappointing when I heard over and over again,

"Oh but I just filled out that form because I wanted the $ 25 Office Depot gift card. Sorry, I don't have any money to start a business; we're filing for bankruptcy. "

You see when I'm told these are fresh leads, I expected fresh leads. Who wouldn't? If the ad that was written to sell me these "High Quality Opportunity Seekers" said that these were done in real time and were from people who were dead serious about working from home, how could I tell they were just incentivized leads that people filled out because they wanted a gift card?

The sad fact is I couldn't tell. No one could have known. I only discovered this after I called over 1000 people. What happens to the new person? A bigger disappointment is the fact is that most beginning business people will get discouraged and give up, even if it means working for less money and struggling, if they encounter this.

You can now see my dismay when a lead generation company claims to have insider secrets for generating massive amounts of leads. Unless you are interested in reselling leads every single day, and are interested in managing all of that data, the complaints from people who buy them and the disillusioned business builders who trusted you when you said they are "High Quality Opportunity Seekers" I don't recommend you go that route.

When I built my first multi-million dollar business it wasn't with hundreds of thousands of leads. It was with an online storefront, targeted advertising and PPC campaigns. We marketed the products people were looking for, offered free shipping and excellent service. Our client base grew to over 30,000 people in just 2 years. These clients were loyal, wanted everything we had and month after month purchased items we offered.

We had over 400 kitchenware items and drop shipped more than two thirds of them. Our returns were extremely low, customer satisfaction extraordinarily high and in the early years we didn't even have an Opt In form. They weren't used back then. Major Domo is what handled our email.(See article on the history of email marketing).

Some people seem to think that you need hundreds of thousands of leads or visitors to your website to get to that level in business. We never did and succeeded wildly!

Later, when I got into Network Marketing I began purchasing leads as I described above. After getting disgusted with what was out there from most lead providers, I began to generate my own leads. Who wants to spend $ 5.00-12.00 on a lead that is nearly warm but never hot?! No me! While I did close several people and made great money with these other leads… it was NOT as easy as when I began to generate my own .

No longer did I have to work as hard, use 'sales techniques and persuasive words that keep me asking the questions' in order to get a sale. People began to call me and tell me they wanted to get started on the first phone call! Before I could even 'interview' anyone about the home business I was offering people were already enrolling themselves! Generating my OWN leads was the best way to go. I generated targeted, specific leads for my specific offering.

What was the difference?

First of all I didn't target opportunity seekers. This is way too generic. Actually my ads said, "No tire kickers, opportunity seekers, those who are just looking around and aren't serious about owning their own business. " My sales copy began doing the sifting for me way before I got on the phone with anyone. I generated a lot less leads, called a lot less people and made a lot more money! After generating only 30,000 leads I went from the $250,000 mark to $ 1.0 million and in 24 months…. it kept getting easier. I hit $ 1.8 million in 31 mons, was debt free and hooked on marketing!

After enrolling in some copywriting classes it became clear that finding 'targeted prospects' was the goal. A home-based business opportunity seeker was not as targeted as I needed it to be. I began to learn about "The Big Idea" and "Speaking Your Prospects Language." I also learned what a USP was.

My desire was to find people who had at least $ 1000 to get started in business, were serious about working their own business, had at least 15-20 hours per week to work and were willing to be trained to do so. The kind of people who came to my site were now very aware that this was not a fly-by-night "Making Money Online Is EASY!" scheme. This was a very real legitimate business and would require work. Ironically I began to hear less and less excuses such as "I don't have any money, my time is very limited and how hard is this going to be?" More and more people came to my website who were ready to go… and go they did!

This experience is what led me into the copywriting and marketing world as a full time profession. Writing copy and doing online and offline marketing became something I was so passionate about. It is still my two favorite things to do in business!

There was a rush that came when words spoken in the 'perfect language' of my ideal client caused a response that was targeted, specific and quantifiable. These same words would lead the customer to not only purchase whatever it was we were offering, but it led to a long term business relationship.

Not only was it hugely valuable to me to be able to generate and eventually work with highly targeted prospects it was the funnest thing I've ever done in my entire business career!

Writing copy for large and small companies for a few years along with my own sales copy paid me another handsome 7-figure income. It also increased my skills even more.

This is when the decision was made to begin teaching others how to build their own business, using online and offline marketing tools, to create bigger profits.

By the way, if you are reading this it's very likely you are my ideal targeted client . You desire to have a better life, increase your business profits, use online and offline marketing strategies to get there and are very serious about learning all that you can. You are an action taker. You're not a quitter, don't give up easily and are not looking for a hand out.

As a matter of fact if you need any help it's with a hand up and needing someone to believe in you. You desire a direct step by step plan of how to bring this dream of a business you hold in your heart into a reality.

Did I do good? I know I did. And because I know who you so well, it's a joy to serve you, be able to assist you and get to know what you need each step of the way. You, my ideal client, are just like me. You are who I was every step of the way and it's such an honor to serve you.

Let me just remind you of this fact in closing. If you instantly had 500,000 people to your website in one week as some ads claim- it is now your task to sift through those leads and hope some will stick. You'll increase your email server, phone lines, customer support and that's just a surface demand. It would get worse!

Your website would most likely crash with that kind of huge increase super fast. You'll have to pay extra for that kind of bandwidth and web space. When we started seeing hundreds of thousands to our website we had to purchase 2-dedicated servers QUICKLY… but I'm used to that and was prepared with staff waiting. Are you? Most people would freak out with that happening super fast. It's not wise to go from 1000 to 500,000 over night. Any self- respecting business owner knows that. MOST businesses will implode.

The ones marketing this kind of thing tend to get off on big numbers. Unfortunately they just love to give people what they ask for…..EVEN if it's not good for them! Most UNWISE business owners are crying for fast, easy, big and more… without any wisdom. Some business owners think it's 'great business' to give people what they want. Where is the integrity in this?

It's best to get targeted traffic, grow with them as they increase, hire staff and you'll stay in business longer. Massive increases in traffic that are not your ideal client means a lot of extra work and no guarantee of increased profits. Most likely a nervous breakdown!

The next time you see these ads for "Get massive traffic to your site!" or the banner that pops up that says, "I generate 90,000 leads per day!" just laugh and shake your head, knowing you are building a business that is strategic, long term focused and one that serves your customers first.

As you put your customers first you aren't chasing big numbers, you're chasing quality service, the ideal client and excellent results for those who come to your website.

It is this focus, on your customers, that will pay you an enormous amount of money. A customer centric company is the best company you'll ever build.

Author's Bio: 

Sandi Krakowski is a "Back To Basics Step By Step Business" expert who currently serves more than 92,000 clients in over 136 countries. Her systems help the average business owner as well as big corporations get extra-ordinary results quickly. She has a track record for her 'bringing it into action' processes that company owners find easy to implement with quick results. She has been working online successfully for the last 14 years.