Marketers spend a ridiculous amount of time creating content. For many, that effort is all about lead generation. Recent research tells us that as many as 85% of marketers put lead generation and sales at the top of their goal list for content marketing.

A steady stream of leads is an essential component in keeping a SaaS platform afloat in a market that's becoming increasingly competitive. Here are 10 lead generation tactics you can use to give your marketing a much-needed boost.

1. Give Fewer Choices

Hick's Law is based on the principle that fewer choices help eliminate confusion, thus making it easier for someone to make a decision. In the case of your platform, offering fewer choices helps with converting more visitors into leads.

A case study of MySiteAuditor reveals how eliminating navigation options put the attention on the opt-in, which resulted in a 25% lift in conversion rates. This is a smart tactic to deploy because you can use it on any landing page and you don't have to try to generate more traffic--you're just getting more leads out of the traffic you already have.

2. Gate your content

There's always been a debate about whether or not high-value content should be given freely, or gated in order to gather leads. I say do both.

Top-of-the-funnel content like blog posts and even a great ebook can all be given freely with no opt-in required. When you've got the audience hooked on the knowledge you provide, hit them withsome 10x content that's gated with an opt-in form.

3. Try a new delivery method

As part of its content marketing strategy,Quoteroller built a list of SEO directories for the Australian market. The content was successfully generating traffic (over 800 visits monthly), but it wasn't generating leads or opt-ins.

In an effort to capture lead information, the company created a downloadable PDF version of the document that it offered in exchange for an email address. As a result, Quoteroller gainedup to 5 new leads daily with hundreds of new subscribers added.

4. Build a better About page

Your About page is a critical part of your business, and it plays a part in your conversions. Check your analytics right now, and I guarantee you'll see some traffic to your About page. This is the opportunity to show people who you are, what you're about, and articulate your value proposition.

It's also an awesome spot for a call-to-action (CTA). They've just read about how terrific you are and what you can do for them, so use a compelling CTA to convert them into leads.

5. Push content on LinkedIn

There's a good chance that your platform addresses the need of a business customer. Many (not all) SaaS platforms operate in the B2B sector, and that's what LinkedIn is all about. According to a HubSpot study surveying 5,000 small businesses, LinkedIn vastly outpaced competing social networks for lead generation.

Leverage that by publishing content on LinkedIn Pulse. Don't just share content as an update--actually publish the content on the platform.

Remember, that's just the first part of the strategy. You also need to include a compelling CTA that draws your potential customers out of LinkedIn and over to your landing page in order to capture the leads.

6. Answer the tough questions

I still love Quora to this day, even though I use it considerably less now than I once did. The site remains popular and is a great way to generate leads for a SaaS company.

Quora allows you to generate a profile with links back to your site. You can then find questions relating to your industry, service, or product, and answer those questions to generate exposure and leads.

Eventbrite had a lot of success when it answered questions on Quora about what users should do on New Year's Eve. It created value-filled answers and linked back to Eventbrite events.

7. Go find leads on social

You should make it a regular practice to manually listen to the chatter on networks like Twitter. A quick search with the right keywords can tune you in to people who are currently interested in what you're doing or have questions/issues that relate to your platform.

GNC tried this tactic and found that many customers (and potential customers) were asking questions about general health and wellness. Customers also had basic questions about GNC products. GNC was proactive with its engagement, reaching out directly to those users. It was able toincrease inbound sales from social media by 25%.

You don't need to be an Ecommerce giant to use this tactic. Provide value, help prospects, and push users toward gated content, trials, or a landing page to gather leads.

8. Leverage microtools

This is one of my favorite tactics for generating leads. Micro tools, ebooks, and whitepapers can be created around informational or ancillary keywords in relation to a SaaS product. This is great for collecting email addresses as well as building social shares.

At When I Work, we built Excel templates that we gave away for free. During 2014, these templates drove over 2500 new trials. Micro tools like this combined with gating on your website will make your lead counts soar.

If you look at sites developed by experienced influencers likeNeil Patel atQuickSprout,Peep Laja ofConversionXL, andAnn Handley ofMarketingProfs, you'll see similar tactics used.

9. Guest post for leads

I do a lot of guest posting around the web, and I always focus on providing as much value as I can pack into each piece. When I write about content marketing, I fill each piece with actionable insights and provide a link back to my tool,

Guest blogging generates hundreds of new leads every month, and costs little more than the time it takes to produce the content. Even if you need to hire a quality writer to produce high-value content, the quantity and quality of leads is worth the investment.

10. Keep more leads during onboarding with email

A free trial offer is a key lead generation tactic for any SaaS company, but every SaaS has some measure of lead drop-off during the onboarding process with free trials. These are leads you already have, so you want to convert as many as possible. With just a little extra effort, you can convert more of the leads you already have.

I like to set up a drip campaign that continues to provide high-value content while reselling the value proposition. Maintain that education and provide incentive offers to get the lead to come back. I've gone so far as to create 12 month drip campaigns with alternating frequency to great success.

What are some clever or insightful tactics you use to generate more leads for your business/SaaS? Share in the comments below: