Here's a great article by Chris Marriott over at iMedia Connection called: 3 Steps to Email Marketing with Search. It basically explains that when people are at the beginning of the sales cycle, they're just looking for information so provide people a way to sign up for your newsletter or a link to a whitepaper. Don't expect them to sign up for a free consultation. The main purpose of paid search is to get the basic info and to get opt-in so that you can market to them in the future and find out if your company and the prospect are a good fit. As Chris says, don't use this as an "opportunity to propose marriage to prospective customers". Start small and build your way up.
PS: Here are some other useful posts on search marketing:
- Online Marketing is Being Dominated by Search Marketing. What is Your Strategy?
- If you're driving paid ads to blogs (interesting idea): Using Blogs as a Lead Generation Tool
- Sealing the Deal: Your Landing Page
- Why B2B websites fail