12 Tips on Lead Generation for Digital Marketing Agencies

Lead generation is all about reaching your ideal clients and driving their interest in your agency. 

And it’s essential to maintaining a client base and growing your revenue. 

This article will cover 12 tips for improving your marketing agency’s lead generation efforts. And suggest tools you can use to maximize your results. 

1. Showcase Your Expertise Through High-Quality Content

Creating high-quality content lets you show your areas of expertise and gives potential clients a reason to engage with you.

And you can use high-quality content to generate leads across multiple marketing channels. Like your website (which can be created with SEO in mind to help it appear in search engines), email marketing, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, and social media.

Some types of content your agency might create for lead generation include blog posts, ebooks, and white papers. And you can use various content formats, like text, video, or audio.

Content formats include text, video, and audio. Content types include blog post, ebook, white paper, YouTube video (long-form), Instagram Reel video, TikTok video, Podcast episode, and Audiobook.

Important: Google aims to prioritize helpful content in search results. So, create website content that’s people-first, reliable, and focused on helping users to increase your chances of generating more leads from organic search.

Helpful website content should:

  • Provide original information, reporting, and/or analysis
  • Cover a topic substantially and comprehensively
  • Provide substantial value in comparison to the top-ranking content
  • Avoid spelling or stylistic errors that appear sloppy

And to get ideas for content, use Semrush’s Topic Research

Start by entering a topic related to the services your marketing agency offers. Then, select your target location and click “Get content ideas.”

"amazon ads management" entered into the Topic Research tool

You’ll see a list of subtopics related to your seed topic. Like this:

"amazon seller central," "customer service," "digital marketing" and other topics found in Topic Research tool

Click “Show more” beneath any subtopic to expand the view.

"Show more" button highlighted beneath the subtopic cards

On the expanded card, you’ll see a list of headlines and questions related to the subtopic you can use as inspiration for your content creation.

a list of headlines and questions related to "amazon seller central" topic shown in Topic Research tool

When you start writing, focus on providing value to your target audience. You can also subtly showcase what your agency offers when it makes sense to do so.

That way, potential clients will be more likely to see you as an expert. And they might even reach out to learn more about your services. 

2. Optimize Your Contact and Service Pages

Most potential clients will reach out to you via your agency’s website. So, optimizing your contact and service pages for conversion can help you turn more website visitors into viable leads.

For example, this contact page from Big Leap uses a submission form, clear calls to action (CTAs), and a unique value proposition (UVP) to drive more conversions.

a contact page from Big Leap, with unique value proposition (UVP), form headline and CTA elements marked

Some best practices for contact pages include:

  • Providing multiple ways for the user to reach out (e.g., phone number, calendar link, chatbot, etc.)
  • Adding a link to your contact page in the header and footer of your website
  • Using clear CTAs with action words like “Contact us,” “Schedule a call,” or “Book a meeting”
  • Including a UVP to entice potential prospects to submit a form or reach out

Similarly, your service pages should also be optimized for conversion. Like this one from Fortunatos.

Fortunatos's services page with different CTAs and UVP highlighted

They encourage the website visitor to convert with a clear CTA, UVP, and a description of how their services can benefit clients. And all above the fold (meaning before users have to scroll).

These pages should also be optimized for mobile. Because some prospects may discover you using a mobile device.

Best practices for mobile optimization include using responsive design, maintaining fast load times, and using dynamic serving.

You can also A/B test different versions of your landing pages to see what optimizations increase lead generation. 

To run an A/B test:

  • Create two separate versions of a page (i.e., a contact page or service page)
  • Change a single variable on one page (e.g., the button color, CTA copy, etc.)
  • Show both versions of the page to the same-sized audience (tools like Landing Page Builder allow you to do this)
  • Track which version generated more leads over the same period

3. Make Effective Forms

Submission forms let your website visitors easily submit their contact information. So you can reach out to begin a conversation about what your agency offers. 

For example, look at this submission form from Pixated.

above the fold submission form from Pixated

They include it above the fold. So website visitors can share their info without having to scroll. 

Forms should be easy to use and have a logical layout. 

And adding required fields like “Services” or “Message” can help your sales team get essential details about the prospect. Which they can use in their follow-up outreach.

The fields you include can also help your agency qualify leads. Which is the process of evaluating how likely a prospect is to become a customer. 

Some helpful required fields you can use are: 

  • Budget
  • Company size
  • Website URL

Knowing a prospect’s budget or size can give you an idea of the revenue potential of working with them. Or whether they’re a good fit for your agency. 

Then, you can prioritize prospects with the highest chance of converting.

And with a prospect’s website URL on hand, you can start evaluating their web presence immediately. And explain how your agency can deliver better results.

But don’t overdo it. Too many fields can discourage visitors from completing the form entirely.

4. Create Lead Magnets

A lead magnet is a valuable resource that’s offered in exchange for a potential customer’s contact information. 

For example, Iconic Digital offers a free website audit and voucher in exchange for an email address and phone number.

Iconic Digital's form asking for a name, website to audit, email address and phone number

You can use a variety of content as lead magnets. But some very effective ones for digital marketing agencies include:

  • Free website audits or reports
  • Marketing trends and industry insights reports
  • Original research and reports
  • Actionable marketing guides 
  • Marketing checklists

You can place lead magnets on your homepage, in exit intent pop-ups, or elsewhere on your site. Then promote them in marketing emails and social media posts.

And make sure to track how many leads your magnets generate. So you can create better, more enticing lead magnets in the future. 

5. Conduct Cold Email Outreach

Performing cold email outreach to individuals who fit your customer profile lets you start a conversation with them directly in their inboxes. Which could entice them to respond.

Try Lead Finder to discover and prospect new leads who might be interested in your marketing services. 

And use the information provided by the tool to craft more relevant, enticing email pitches.

To start, go to the tool and select an option in the “Technology” field. This could be a technology businesses in your niche tend to use or one that you specialize in.

Then, select your target country, choose your industry/industries, and click “Find leads.”

select technology, industry and country in Lead Finder tool

When your list is ready, it will populate in the “Lead lists” table farther down on the page.

Click “Lead list #” to open it.

Lead lists page in Lead Finder tool

In the report, you’ll see a list of websites along with their “Lead Scores.” 

A higher score indicates a greater likelihood to make a purchase and a stronger online visibility. Which can help you identify the most valuable prospects. 

Click the blue “View details” button next to a prospect to review additional information about it.

a list of websites with their lead scores shown in Lead Finder

For example, this prospect shows three opportunities that an agency could support the prospect with. One related to advertising, one related to backlinks, and one related to organic traffic. 

a page showing three opportunities the Lead Finder found for a selected lead

If your digital marketing agency offers those services, consider reaching out to them with a message crafted with a cold email template. To introduce your agency and let them know how you can provide value.

6. Get Listed on Reputable Directories and Websites

When your agency appears in marketing agency directories and other relevant listings, it helps potential clients discover you.

For example, Clutch, Capterra, and Crunchbase are popular third-party websites that list digital marketing agencies. And they let you create a listing for free.

Your directory listings should include your agency name, website URL, service types, and geographic location. 

But depending on the directory, they might also require additional information. Like this listing on Clutch. Which asks for agency size and hourly rates. 

Ignite Visibility's listing overview

Being listed on reputable directory websites can send referral traffic to your site and also provide social proof that builds your reputation.

Your business listings should provide consistent and accurate information across all of the directories where your agency appears. To avoid confusing prospects and to be seen as more reputable by Google. 

You can keep tabs on your listings using Listing Management.

Type your business name, website, or phone number into the tool. Once you find your business, click on it.

searching for "big mario's pizza" in the Listing Management tool

You’ll get a summary of your overall online presence, total reviews, and business listings. Including those that require fixes.

a summary of business's online presence, total reviews, and business listings shown in Listing Management tool

The above website has 35 listings to fix. 

To resolve those issues, scroll down to “Fix these to improve and expand your coverage.” The “Status” column will tell you which issue was identified.

Listing Management tool showing a list of listings to fix

To make edits to your listings directly from your dashboard, scroll to “Let your local visibility soar.” Then, click “Continue setup.”

“Let your local visibility soar" section in Listing Management

You’ll then have access to the Listing Management dashboard. (If you don’t yet have a subscription to Semrush Local, you’ll be prompted to sign up before proceeding).

Click “Edit Business Info” to finish setting up your profile. 

“Edit Business Info” button in Listing Management dashboard

From here, you can distribute your information across directories. And manage your listings.

7. Encourage Your Clients to Leave Reviews

Positive reviews can be powerful lead generation tools. Because B2B buyers often look at customer reviews when considering a product or service.

If you know a client who had a positive experience with your digital marketing agency, ask them to leave a review. 

You can direct them to the review sites that will have the biggest impact. Like your directory listings, your Facebook business page, or your Google Business Profile.

Businesses results on Google SERP, showing reviews summary for a selected business

The more reviews your agency gets, the more social proof you build in the eyes of potential customers. 

So, it’s good to track reviews across all of the websites where your agency is listed.

8. Publish Case Studies and Testimonials

Case studies and testimonials showcase tangible results from your past digital marketing campaigns or services. And are great for digital marketing agency lead generation because they can persuade prospects to take the next step.

Writing an impactful case study entails showing how you helped your clients reach their marketing goals.

You can use the below format to develop impactful case studies:

  • Headline: An engaging headline that showcases a key data point (e.g., “How Company X Achieved a 600% Increase in Organic Traffic”)
  • Customer background: Information such as industry, budget, or length of the marketing campaign
  • Problem: Context about the problem or issue that motivated the customer to seek out your marketing services
  • Process: Exact services your marketing agency provided like SEO, Google Ads, or content marketing
  • Results: Outcomes measured in concrete data like clicks, conversions, or other marketing key performance indicators (KPIs)
Elements of a case study: headline, customer background, customer problem, how you solved the problem, the customer outcome

Customer testimonials can also serve as social proof to potential leads. So, consider featuring them on your website. 

Just ask a past customer to provide a written testimonial. Or record a video review. Like these testimonials about Jumpfly.

Jumpfly's testimonials section, showing written reviews and videos

9. Run LinkedIn Ads

LinkedIn Ads are a great option for digital marketing agencies trying to reach B2B audiences. Because users provide the platform with specific information about their company and role.

LinkedIn’s business-focused targeting capabilities allow you to target your ideal customer profile. Which can get your ads in front of the B2B leaders and stakeholders who make decisions about their company’s marketing services. 

You’ll need to create a Campaign Manager account to get started.

Enter an account name, your agency’s LinkedIn page, then click “Agree & create account.”

create a Campaign Manager account page

Once you set up your account, you can create ad campaigns using business-focused targeting. Which can help improve lead generation from your ads.

The following targeting attributes can help you narrow in on marketing professionals in the industries you hope to reach.

  • Company targeting: Company Industry, Company Size, Company Name, etc. (e.g., “Technology,” “500+,” “Asana”)
  • Job targeting: Job Title, Job Seniority, Member Skills (e.g., “Marketing Director,” “Director,” “Marketing”)
  • Interest targeting: Member Groups and Member Interests (e.g., “Project Management Passion” and “Social Media”)

10. Attend or Host Industry Events

Attending industry conferences and events is a great way to have face-to-face interactions with potential customers. Which can be more memorable than interactions over email or social media.

You might also meet other marketing professionals. And that can be beneficial considering agencies are often willing to share leads with trusted agency partners who focus on different services than they do.

Conferences and events also provide opportunities to establish your agency as a marketing thought leader by:

  • Submitting a team member to be a keynote speaker 
  • Sponsoring a panel 
  • Hosting an exhibitor booth

You can also host events, webinars, or podcasts on your own. Depending on your resources and your team’s size.

11. Establish a Referral Program

Referral programs motivate your past or current clients to recommend your marketing agency to prospects in exchange for some type of incentive. Which can generate leads without you having to take any specific action.

For example, Adapting Social offers a 20% commission on the value of client referrals. 

Adapting Social's referral program

Unlike some marketing channels, you can design a referral offer that fits comfortably within your budget.

And because people often trust recommendations they receive from their personal or professional network, prospects that come through referrals can be highly motivated to convert.

12. Apply for and Mention Awards and Certifications

Awards and certifications show your potential clients that your agency is skilled in the services you offer. And that your expertise has been acknowledged outside of your organization.

So, mention any certifications or awards you have somewhere on your website.

For example, PBJ Marketing includes their certifications in their website’s footer. To help potential prospects see those certifications on every page they visit.

PBJ Marketing includes their certifications in their website’s footer

Some certifications your agency can apply for include:

You can also apply for various marketing awards throughout the year. 

Awards programs often have multiple categories and require you to detail services, client work, or revenue growth in their applications.

For potential prospects, these awards can be convincing proof that your agency has earned a reputation as an industry leader.

Elevate Your Lead Generation Efforts

Marketing is a competitive industry, and clients will come and go. Which means lead generation is a constant part of running a successful agency. 

And you can use the following tools to improve your lead generation efforts:

To gain access to additional agency-focused tools, sign up for our Agency Growth Kit as part of your Semrush plan. 

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