Lead Generation is a key priority for B2B marketers with many – according to research by Hubspot – claiming that over half of their budget is spent in this area.
A survey by BrightTALK identified however that around 80% of B2B businesses rate their lead generation as largely ineffective.
After years of working with clients on Lead Generation projects, we’ve identified specific areas where B2B businesses can improve their Lead Generation performance, so what are they?
1. Build market perception
Regardless of which channels are most relevant to you, modern Buyers will evaluate your marketing messages through their own research as well. Lead Generation may create an initial interaction with your potential customer, but this will be stronger, and more likely to result in an engaged prospect that turns into profitable revenue if they already have awareness of you.
When prospects evaluate you, the experience that they have, and their perception needs to be confirmed and aligned with your message and value proposition.
It is therefore essential that alongside your lead generation activity, you invest in marketing assets. These include a modern, responsive website and a selection of content materials you can use to share your expertise, and experience of working with other clients.
Lead generation results and the Return on Investment from your marketing is improved by integrating activity. By integrating Lead Generation with Sales and other marketing across multiple channels, you can obtain better results.
As an example, by identifying from Sales potential customers that haven’t proceeded with you and creating a programme of engagement and Lead Generation targeted specifically at them, you may be able to re-invigorate this dormant sales pipeline.
Nurturing your prospect database via email with insightful content that demonstrates your expertise will help ensure that Lead Generation is more effective for this audience.
3. Have a plan. And follow it
Many businesses follow a short-term campaign led approach – exploring one marketing channel or segment for a while, then jumping to another. This often leads to disappointing results as the audience does not build real awareness through a consistent message.
Putting in place a measurable plan with short and long-term objectives makes it easier to build momentum and to assess the effectiveness of your Lead Generation and other marketing activity. This means initially looking carefully at your value proposition and market and identifying the channels and messages most likely to engage your potential customers.
As you develop a detailed plan you can identify the resources, skills, technology, assets and timescales that are required in order to implement it and make it effective. It also means that measurement and objectives can be built-in to assess performance.
4. Get the right mix of skills
There are more marketing channels than ever before, and you need to be communicating over many of them (but not necessarily all of them). To undertake an effective marketing programme incorporating Lead Generation – a wide range of knowledge, skills and experience is needed. This skill mix might include (but is not limited to):
- User experience
- Web development
- Email marketing
- Social media
- Marketing Automation
There is also an element of project management required to co-ordinate activity. Although the amount of time that you require for any of these areas might be low, a high level of expertise is still required. For many B2B businesses cost-effectively accessing the right mix of skills and abilities, at the right level of expertise is a challenge. It is therefore important to identify the key elements that you need internally, and match this with external resource that can support your team with the supplementary skills as required.
5. Monitor and continuously improve
When embarking initially on a new Marketing and Lead generation programme the only thing that you can guarantee is that you don’t know exactly what the results will be! By monitoring and evaluating performance over time your programme can be adjusted and improved as it develops.
By addressing these areas, it is possible to ensure that your Lead Generation delivers a constant flow of well qualified and engaged prospects that can be converted into profitable customers. We have worked with many customers to help them to achieve this so if there are areas we can help you with then do get in touch.
Find out how to implement effective Lead Generation in our comprehensive guide.