As a marketer, you know that you need to reach your audience at the right time and place. Following the inbound way means giving people different ways to get in touch with you once you've captured their interest. One way to connect with your visitors is through the HubSpot Lead Flows tool.

Lead flows are HubSpot's pop-up form tool, and all HubSpot Marketing users now have access.

We've all seen our fair share of pop-up forms that are annoying and disruptive, so it's no secret that they've fallen victim to a bad rap. It's hard to shake memories of deceptive, flashy pop-ups dating back to the early days of the internet which would make false promises and ruin our browsing experiences. But the truth is that pop-ups work when it comes to conversions. They work if you're mindful of their potential pitfalls and formulate a thoughtful strategy about when and where to implement them on your site.

Done well, pop-ups can be an effective inbound tool for converting visitors into subscribers or leads. In fact, AWeber found that using a pop-up form for obtaining blog subscribers converted 1375% better than a traditional form, and research done by Sumo showed that the top 10% of pop-up forms convert at 9.3%.

So with that in mind, if you haven't experimented with pop-up forms on your website yet, it's worth integrating them into your conversion strategy.

Tips for Using Lead Flows

Here are a few tips to get started with lead flows.

1) Consider your format

Remember, intentionality is key, so your Lead Flow should match the page you're placing it on. Avoid picking a format at random and sticking the pop-up just anywhere. Instead, take a close look at the page or piece of content that you want to boost and assess its purpose. Visualize the visitor's experience and understand why they've landed there.  Reflecting on those points will help you to choose which type of lead flow will add to the visitor's experience, rather than detract from it. 

For example, looking to place a lead flow on a blog post? Try a slide-in box or a dropdown banner that gently prompts your readers to subscribe if they're enjoying your content.

What about your most valuable offers? If you need to grab someone's attention, experiment with a pop-up box.

You also have the option to adjust when your lead flows appear on the page, so depending on what you're offering, think about whether you'd like to trigger the form based on a user scrolling 50% down the page, or after a certain number of seconds has passed. Making changes to either could be valuable based on the action the person is taking on that particular page. For instance, if they're reading a blog post, they're scrolling, so consider triggering the lead flow once they've gotten halfway through the post. 

2) Align your "call-out" with your content

A lead flow consists of the call-out and the form. The call-out is the text you write which compels the viewer to click in and expand the form, so it's important to get this part right. The most effective lead flows have a call-out that matches the content on the page, so make sure what you're offering through the form is relevant to what the person is reading on the page.

The call-out is a chance to exercise your skills in writing with brevity without sacrificing creativity. You've only got a couple lines of text to convince people that it's worth it to enter their contact information, so make sure what you're saying is both interesting and actionable. Be specific with what you're offering on the other side of the form, and use the text in the CTA as an other opportunity to describe exactly what you'll be delivering.  

3) Connect lead flows with your nurturing efforts.

If you're a Professional or Enterprise customer, lead flows can be used as a trigger for automation. If someone fills out a lead flow, you can send them a follow-up email, enroll them in a workflow, or whatever other activities coincide with your nurturing efforts. Adding follow-up actions will help you bucket leads and subscribers correctly and pick the path that will best help them convert into happy customers down the line. 

Give lead flows a try and experiment to see what works best for your website. Used effectively, these pop-up forms can be a great asset to your inbound strategy. 

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Originally published Jun 6, 2017 3:00:00 PM, updated February 27 2018