WordPress Can Build a Lead Generation System
... when used with the Formidable Pro plugin
The problem with content management systems is that the standard installation is not very effective at interacting with customers. This makes it difficult for the system to easily obtain potential customer names and contact information. Content management does allow site administrators to build systems that display information to customers but interactions are limited to simple user comments. While it is a PHP based system, creating pages that are usable by customers is a fairly difficult process. Using standard installs to create a lead generation system is a major undertaking, one that requires extensive customizations, specialize programming and the use of complicated utilities.
Luckily, Formidable Pro is available as a plugin. It is set of utilities that gives the site administrator a robust set of tools with which any kind of user interaction form can be created. By crafting a number of related forms, Formidable Pro can be used to create a very functional customer generation system. Customers can be presented with excellent content from the WordPress system. When they are interested in details that are relevant to them, they can easily interact with the system using the forms developed by the site administrator. Customer contact information can be requested and saved. Follow-up messages can automatically be sent to the site visitors. An effective lead system can be constructed in a short period of time. More importantly, the system can be flexible enough to allow easy changes - all without any custom programming at all.
Consider what elements comprise an excellent lead generation tool. It must be flexible for the site administrator. It must be able to record email addresses and other contact information for potential customers. It must provide management reports that allow easy review of the activities on the site pertaining to leads. The combination of WordPress and this form tool give site administrators an excellent set of tools that can be used to develop great systems in general, and great customer tracking systems in particular.
Each element to consider is as follows:
Flexibility: content management systems allow for easy and fast creation of pages. The pages fit the site theme automatically. Many settings are available to customize the look and operation of individual pages. There is little technical knowledge needed to add pages or to make changes to existing ones.
Record customer information: While the standard install is actually fairly poor at this, the Formidable Pro plugin is quite excellent. A site administrator can develop a custom form using it in minutes. Such standard items as name, email, address, etc, can be requested from the visitors to a page.
Report customer leads: Both of these tools use the same database to store information on the site and any responses to forms. Site administrators receive email notications when potential customers provide information in the system. It also provides custom reports that show activities by site visitors. After a visitor enters their information on the lead generation system, the site can automatically register the visitor as a site user. It can also forward the visitor to PayPal for payment processing, enter the visitor's name on a custom mailing list and send required email messages to the newly registered visitor. Amazingly, none of the customer reporting requires that the site administrator write any program code at all.
Typical lead systems are very complex and expensive. They are custom developed and contain thousands of lines of program code. The agency responsible for the system is usually trying to make a profit. WordPress, on the other hand, is an open source development project that is free for all uses. The Formidable Pro plugin must be purchased but for a very reasonable cost. When a site administrator considers that using Formidable Pro for the development of even one form will save at least one hour of an expert developer's time, the plugin actually has an incredibly high return on investment.
A WordPress site administrator with the Formidable Pro plugin will be able to easily perform the following steps to develop a lead generation system:
Landing page: Develop a WordPress page describing the main points that are of interest to potential customers. This is the landing page. The site administrator includes keywords, tags and other search criteria on the landing page. This is the first page that visitors see so it needs to have well written content, an attractive display and it should be relevant to the potential customers' objectives.
Customer lead form: A Formidable Pro form is developed for the landing page. This form requests the customer contact information. When the visitor fills in the form and submits the information, the form can optionally send a message to the site administrator, automatically register the visitor and send them to PayPal to provide a payment to the site. The site administrator can also have the visitor's email added to any of the mailing lists established for the site. The landing page form is very flexible depending on the requirements of the site.
Customer confirmation: Usually, potential customers are directed to a confirmation page or they are given a message indicating that their information has been received. For a double verify customer lead system, an email message is dispatched to the address given in the customer lead form. Upon receipt of this message, the customer needs to click on a validation link in order to doubly indicate that they agree to opt in to the site. The customer confirmation page or email should indicate the next steps for the customer.
Delivery: When the customer confirms their intent to opt in to the campaign, WordPress would then provide the necessary access. This might be a page in a protected area of the WordPress site or it could be an automatic download. The latter is generally used for delivering free informational reports, which are themselves extensions of a customer lead generation system.
Reporting: WordPress site administrators can use a complete range of customer activity reports with WordPress and Formidable Pro. As new customer leads are entered, they usually become site users that can be reviewed in the user management section. The customer responses to forms can be viewed from the Formidable Pro dashboard. Custom views of the submitted information can be generated by Formidable Pro. If the customers were added to mailing lists, or if they paid money through PayPal, there are activity reports highlighting those activities as well.
While a WordPress standard installation may not be adequate for agencies requiring customer lead generation systems, the simple addition of the Formidable Pro plugin grants the ability. Customers can be given detailed information that they need. They can provide their opt in information to the agency through a built in form. The agency can respond by developing a business/customer relationship. All of this is possible now with WordPress, Formidable Pro, and it no longer requires countless hours of custom program development.