small business lead gen

Small Business Leads Generation Detailed Guide For Beginners

What are small business leads?

Leads are the persons that are interested in purchasing your products or services.

Small business leads refer to those who are working in small companies and are interested in buying your products or services. Small business leads are usually B2B leads, these people usually hold executive positions at their companies and have the power to influence or decide which products or services their companies will buy.

Small business leads are often the founders, owners or CEOs of their small companies. It’s usually easier to reach out to these people when their companies are still small. When companies are bigger, it’s much harder to have contact with the executives because salespersons will most likely need to get through the stage where they will have to communicate with the support first.

Leads are what every business is striving for. In order to stay afloat and grow bigger, businesses must constantly generate leads to feed their sales funnels.

How to generate small business leads effectively?

Small business lead generation with ads

Using ads is one of the most popular ways to generate leads effectively.

Very few ad platforms such as Linkedin can actually have an option for advertisers to specifically target small businesses, it’s not the case for Facebook and Google Ads.

Therefore, you can try Linkedin to generate leads, however, many businesses didn’t find Linkedin ads effective since they can be very expensive.

The cost per click of Linkedin ads is usually more than $2, however, a click doesn’t always translate to a lead, therefore, the cost per lead can be much more than that.

Having said that, Linkedin ads are still effective for some businesses. The only way to find out if the ads actually work for you or not is to try them out. You can always stop running ads anytime, so there’s not much risk in doing it.

Small business lead generation with SEO

SEO is one of the most reliable ways to generate leads and sales consistently. However, SEO isn’t used for targeting small businesses. Also, SEO has become so much more challenging in the past few years, this is especially true when you’ve just created a new site.

You can always try SEO to generate traffic and leads for your business but if you focus on generating small business leads, we don’t recommend it.

Small business lead generation with cold emailing and calling

Cold emailing is the most popular outreach strategy to generate leads nowadays, it presents many advantages for businesses such as its low cost, excellent reachability, automation, etc. It’s also suitable for generating small business leads.

Cold calling is another outreach method to generate leads that you should know about. It’s an old way to get leads and is becoming less popular compared to other methods, however, it can work depending on how you run it and what type of products you’re providing.

Similarly to general lead generation, small business lead gen with cold emailing & calling consists of two main parts. The 1st part is prospect generation and the 2nd is outreach.

However, businesses that look to generate small business leads will have fewer choices of strategies for prospect generation.

1. Prospect generation

Usually, using data scrapers or digital marketing tools can help generate prospects effectively. However, they’re not specifically designed to harvest data about small businesses.

Even if you search for prospects manually on the Internet, you wouldn’t be able to find many prospects with information about their company size and revenue to determine if they’re small businesses or not.

The only way to generate excellent small business prospects quickly is to use a data provider, in this case, a reliable leads database.

However, not many databases out there provide an option for you to get small business data only. Not to mention the number of good data providers on the Internet is small, you will need to be cautious when giving them your credit card.

The followings are what you must look for when using a data provider:

  • Free trials
  • No credit card is required
  • Excellent support
  • Refund policies
  • Generous discounts for first-time clients

At Limeleads, a leading B2B leads database, we offer all the above-mentioned and many more. We’re a team of lead gen experts that will be your companion toward your lead gen success.

If you need expert lead gen advice, feel free to contact us via [email protected] or our live chat support, there will be an industry expert to help you out for free!

When it comes to generating small business prospects, Limeleads is a perfect choice for you since we provide the company size and revenue filters to help you get the exact data you want.

Limeleads company size and revenue filters

Simply sign up for an account here and get your free trials with us. It only takes you a couple of minutes. No credit card is required.

2. Outreach

Outreach is the process of contacting your prospects and turning them into leads. The more leads you have, the more sales you’ll be able to generate.

Prospect generation is a crucial step because doing it right will help you reach out to the right people that present the highest probability of becoming your clients.

Outreach will then decide how many leads you’ll be able to generate and what your prospects’ perceptions of your business look like. Sending too many emails or calling too many times can annoy your prospects and leave them with a very bad impression of your business.

Outreach mainly comprises cold emailing, cold calling and targeting ads. Cold calling is becoming obsolete and targeting ads are usually expensive, therefore, we’ll be talking about cold emailing only since it’s the most popular outreach strategy nowadays.

Use cold emails to generate small business leads

Cold emailing is understood simply as sending emails to your prospects to turn them into leads.

Cold emailing has some major advantages as follows:

  • Cold emailing is affordable
  • It can reach a lot of prospects fast
  • Cold emailing campaigns are easy to manage
  • Cold emailing is relatively simple to start
  • There are many good online tools that are created specifically for cold emailing.
  • Email automation is making cold emailing much more efficient

Now that you understand how cold emailing can help your business, let’s dive into the simplified steps to run cold emailing campaigns properly.

  1. Set up SPF, DKIM and DMARC properly for your sending email address’ optimal deliverability
  2. Warm up your sending email address manually or by using a good email warm-up service.
  3. Research and pick a suitable cold emailing software, we recommend Mailshake.
  4. Create email sequences because you most likely will need to follow your first emails with other messages.
  5. Personalize your email sequences using personalization codes
  6. Schedule your emails to be sent at specific times or/and based on your prospects’ interaction with your first emails.
  7. Analyze the performance stats for optimization.
  8. Create new campaigns and test them against the existing ones to see which one works better


In most cases, cold emailing will be the one that works for your business. Cold emailing is a continuous effort, it will likely take months or years to generate leads effectively and for you to optimize your campaigns for optimum performance.

Aside from cold emailing, we also recommend using Linkedin ads to generate small business leads, however, do so slowly. For ads to reach their full potential, they will also need some time for machine learning to do a better job and also for you to optimize your ads campaigns.

If you got stuck at any stages of your small business lead gen effort, feel free to contact us for expert advice. We wish you all the best!