Marketing & Sales

How To Use Online Platforms To Drive Business And Generate Leads

One of the key areas of business that digitization has impacted is lead generation. A business requires new customers to have continued growth and sales, which is why employing well-thought-out methods to generate leads is of utmost importance.

In today's day and age, technology, and digitization play a pivotal role in the way businesses are run. We undeniably require the efficiency of technology and the ease of access to information in every little task that we carry out. Be it in marketing, sales, or any other aspect of business, traditional methods of generating business are being replaced by the convenience that tech brings.

One of the key areas of business that digitization has impacted is lead generation. A business requires new customers to have continued growth and sales, which is why employing well-thought-out methods to generate leads is of utmost importance. It is all about using the right platform and approach, and in this article, we will discuss just this. There are several methods we can use to generate leads using online platforms and drive your business in the best way. All you require is a laptop, the right strategies, a good Wi-Fi connection, and you're all set to begin. 

Generating Leads

A lead is a potential customer or client interested in a product or service that your business offers. With the right strategies and methods, converting business leads into customers can be easier than expected. There are two kinds of leads, one that is already aware of your business and one that is looking for exactly what you provide. Conversion of the latter is relatively easier as the intent to purchase at the time of marketing to them is high.

When it comes to channels for generating leads, it's best not to adopt a "one size fits all" approach. There are several offline and online platforms you can use to your benefit. Using online platforms for promotion and lead generation can be rather advantageous since they are cost-effective, and you can get sincere feedback. Depending on the type of business, target audience, and location you are catering to, you can utilize emails, blogs on your business website, social media, advertising, referrals, and more. Sure, it can all sound a bit confusing at first. But we are here to demystify the process for you and take you through the best channels to grow your business.

Who Qualifies As A Lead

First things first, not every lead is a qualified lead. You would essentially have to assess the individual's interest based on the information collected and then determine if they fit the criteria for an ideal customer and their readiness to buy. 

If a person has only liked or reacted to your company information, that does not qualify as a lead. You can ascertain the quality of a lead by the level of engagement they show. This can include filling out a lead gen form or survey, downloading an e-book, requesting a demo or pricing information, website visits, and even engagement on your social handles.

Buying leads

While most of the methods mentioned above are organic ways to generate leads, you also have the option to gain new customers by buying leads. Companies like DiscoverOrg and Lusha help owners find curated lead lists based on their target demographic from thousands of data points. 

This may be faster than organically generating leads, but it also has some cons. There is a possibility of your email getting blacklisted if enough people mark your emails as spam. It is also expensive, and there is no assurance on what your returns will be. Although you might save additional efforts in generating organic leads, many others have access to the same kind of lists as you. Before you decide to buy leads, make sure you do your research and filter out the kind of leads you require.

Strategies to Generate Leads

There are many platforms and techniques you can use to generate leads. Some are through social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, while others are through third-party sites and apps. Let's take a look at some of these online platforms and how you can best use them to grow your business with a full pipeline of customers.

Social Media Marketing

Irrespective of the platform, the process of generating leads through social media is almost the same. First, your business must have a registered account on these platforms. All communication to the customer should happen via this account. You could imagine this to be similar to an office on social media. In case your business is too big or has multiple divisions, you can have separate accounts dedicated to each of them. This is especially important if each of these divisions caters to a different target audience.

Make sure you regularly create and upload content for your social media followers. Your followers can be existing customers or prospective customers, and each of them is a lead for your business. Posts that cover the latest updates on your services, new promotional discounts, informative content, etc., can be shared. This is a great way to increase engagement organically and send your audience to your site where they can undertake the action you desire, like requesting a demo, filling in a form, etc.

Now, in order to generate high-intent leads, you can run various marketing campaigns. When you are running a paid marketing campaign, you have the provision to reach an audience beyond the followers of your page. You can target the audience based on location, age, gender, and interests. To make the most of your ads, it is essential to target only the relevant interest profiles and not cast your net too wide. These ads will be featured on the news feed of the audience in the form of images or videos and will include a CTA (call to action) that you desire from the ad.

Those who find your ad interesting or engaging will try to interact with you. You can share a lead form with those customers and ask them to share their details like name, phone number, email, etc. Your sales team can then reach out to them, or you could also direct them to your inbox and personally interact with them. 

Let's dive deeper into the most popular social media sites available.


Facebook is a great platform to generate leads for most B2C businesses and a few B2B businesses. 

Earlier you would have to include outbound links on your Facebook account. However, with the advent of Facebook Ads, you can now reap the benefits of an algorithm that helps you capture leads and directs your followers to your website. Facebook has a large audience, and using this to your benefit can be very profitable. It is highly targeted and responsive, and the chances of gaining a potential customer are very high.

You have direct and indirect lead ads on Facebook. If a viewer is giving out information like name, email, or number in exchange for downloading an e-book or some other content, that would be a direct lead ad. It leads the viewer directly to your website. Whereas if the viewer is browsing through a blog or post that eventually leads them to your landing page, then that's an indirect lead ad.

Facebook will display ads to users who are most likely interested in such content. Facebook's posts are also used to attract potential leads, either through a campaign or by directing them to a landing page. It also has more interactive methods like Facebook Events and Live Videos.


On Twitter, you can use Twitter Lead Gen Cards, where the user's information like name, email, and more are collected when the user selects 'submit.' The platform also offers a free tool known as Tweroid Analysis which analyzes your Twitter followers' activity. This will help you understand what to focus on and how to improve your strategies. You will get information like when a user is most responsive, hourly graphs, best tweeting times, etc. Another option you can use to your advantage is Twitter Ads, where you can promote your content through video ads, carousel ads, takeover ads, etc. The advantage of using Twitter ads is the extent of how many people you can reach, and it is a constantly developing platform that has high click-through rates. 

Some tips that might help you when using Twitter is to have a good bio to create a good impact on your potential customers. You could also include links to relevant hashtags. Make sure to include your products and services as well; the more a viewer knows, the better your chances are at lead generation and conversion.


You can use LinkedIn Lead Gen Forms to engage with potential customers. With this, users can send their professional information to you, and you receive highly accurate information, unlike when you buy leads. Once a user clicks on your ad, it automatically fills in their details like name, designation, location, etc., without them having to type anything. This makes the process much simpler for users, and it creates leads effortlessly. When they submit the form, it leads them to a destination of your choice, like your website or blog. 

Google Ads

Google Ads is an online advertising platform developed by Google for organizations to promote their business. The two commonly used ad campaigns on this platform are pay-per-click (PPC) ads and Search Engine Ads. Pay per click is an advertising model where ads are placed on various platforms. When you're reading an article or playing a game and see an ad placed on the website, that's a PPC ad. As the name suggests, you are only charged when someone clicks on the ads. Search Engine Ads are paid ads that appear on search engine results pages like Bing, Google, and Yahoo. Although there are multiple providers of PPCs and search engine ads, the most efficient is Google Ads. All you need to run a Google ad is an email address and a well-optimized website. 

Google Search Engine

Let's say someone searches Google for "best professional painters in California" with the intent of subscribing to the services of a local painting company. The top results will be the websites of those painting companies that have a strong SEO, thus increasing their visibility to potential customers with a higher readiness to purchase.

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the process of optimizing your website as search engine friendly to drive both paid and unpaid traffic and visits. A built-to-convert website can be used for Google Ads to generate leads as well as appear on top of search pages with SEO-friendly keywords, backlinks, etc. In fact, a strong Google Ads campaign can place your website on the first page of search results even if you don't have a strong SEO. This will help the business garner the potential customers' attention, direct them to the site, and then have the chance to convert them with the right content and CTAs. 

At Hoist, we understand the importance of a powerful website in generating the right customers and hence, incorporated an easy-to-use landing page and website builder onto our platform. When business owners partner with us, they can access our free SEO-optimized website templates that are completely customizable, right down to the domain.

Google Products

Google Ads place display ads and banner ads on their products like Youtube, Blogger, etc. The placement of these ads can be random or relevant depending on the parameters selected by a client. For example, a popular YouTube channel covers home decor and renovation projects and gains a lot of traffic from the USA. If you own an interior design firm, chances are that your potential customers are subscribers of this channel. To reach those potential customers, you can place an ad for your painting business on the videos on this channel. The ad could be placed as a video ad that plays at the beginning, or as a banner ad played during the video. 

Third-Party Sites and Apps

Similar to placing ads on Google Products, Google Ads places banner ads on third-party sites and apps. You can select the websites as well as where you want your ad to be positioned. The right selection will help you to reach more potential customers. 

Google search ads are one of the best way to generate authentic leads online. Unlike social media ads that follow the push strategy, Google search ads have a pull strategy. In the case of the former, the ads are shown to a targeted audience based on their interests. That doesn't mean that the audience needs the services or the products. But in Google search ads, your ads are shown only to those who make a relevant search on the search engine. When someone is searching for keywords relevant to your business, it indicates that the person is actually in need of something related to that query and is more likely to be converted into a lead.

Email Marketing

In email marketing, the interaction is from you to your potential clients. You have an opportunity to make your communication more personal and convincing. You can use email marketing for sending weekly newsletters, informative pamphlets, sales updates, and more to connect with your potential customers. 

First, you identify who your potential target audience is, and once you understand their pain points, you can market your services as a solution to the same. When you send your mail, ensure it's not lengthy but to the point; no one wants to read long emails. Your subject should be short and catchy, as should your email body. And remember to add in relevant CTAs and links so that you can increase footfall to the high-conversion and high-traffic pages on your site.

Youtube Marketing

Once a platform for niche content, YouTube is now the most viewed video platform in the world. Strategic use of this platform can greatly help marketers like you generate leads. Many provisions are available on YouTube to promote your services and garner business. To create awareness, you can upload videos related to your business, its services, and customer testimonials. Aim for better engagement with your target audience by hosting live events and Q&A sessions. 

Much like SEO on blogs and websites, Youtube provides account owners with the ability to optimize the content on each video. Make sure to include your brand name in the video titles and descriptions so that you appear more frequently on search results. You can also utilize the description to add catchy CTAs along with shortened links that will prompt people to visit your site. Another tool in your YouTube marketing kit is undoubtedly the ads. With niche search parameters such as interests, re-targeting, geotargeting and more, you can easily reach potential leads and generate interest.


Online platforms have a great potential to help businesses grow socially and create a brand name. The information shared in this article is just a sneak peek of their potential. The more you utilize these tools, the more you will learn about their innovative usage. With so many unique ways to capture leads, you will soon be drawing in high-intent customers, and how! Just remember, a little research and a bit of experimenting go a long way. It's all about knowing what your customers want and creating ads, content, and experiences that engage them, turn them into a lead, and ultimately convert them into loyal customers of your brand.

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