B2B Lead Generation Strategies

September 15, 2020 / By Beau Peters

In a world in which maintaining outdated traditional standards of lead generation prohibits growth, B2B marketers must utilize new tools and strategies in every aspect of lead generation. Positioning & Messaging WorkshopB2B is dependent on the ability of the marketer to generate leads — and though there are plenty of ways to go about finding interested customers, the technology and artificial intelligence-dominated landscape of current online marketing requires B2B marketers to be at the top of their game.

This article will explore the following B2B lead generation strategies:

  1. Social Media
  2. Search Engine Marketing
  3. Trend Utilization
  4. Email Marketing
  5. Outsourced Marketing

Any B2B marketer understands the importance of these components in generating leads, but here, we will discuss strategies to help implement useful marketing techniques all while adapting to the technology that has changed lead generation and sales.

Here’s what you need to know.

1. Social Media
Knowing where your audience is and personalizing content to them are key elements of lead generation. With these goals in mind, B2B marketers can generate content focusing directly on customer concerns and interests.

Because of the analytical tools and insights offered by social media, eCommerce sites can see demographic and sales data in one cohesive place. This is invaluable in building a highly personalized strategy for advertising.

Additionally, social media provides a handy portal for customer content, both generated by them and created for them. From chatbots to customer education microlearning sessions and FAQs, your social media marketing strategy should focus on customer success. Getting B2B customers online and then making that online hub an easily navigable, highly useful and shareable tool can help spread customer interest and recommendations.

Social media content can also be highly useful in generating content that increases your capacity to find leads. Organizations like Buzzfeed have had massive success in this regard, with interactive quizzes that users can share and spread — all the while gathering useful market demographics. Use social media quizzes to help you in the first tenet of a successful B2B marketing approach: understanding your ideal customer.

When it comes to social media in lead generation, big data is your friend. You can use the insights generated from these platforms to understand current customers and create an experience that helps you personalize content and draw in more interest.

The number of people estimated to be on social media by 2023 is 3.43 billion. Your B2B marketing strategy should take advantage of that massive resource for advertising and data gathering.

When designing your social media strategy, keep in mind:

  • Billions of people use social media every day
  • Social media data insights are highly useful in understanding an audience
  • Personalizing content can increase sales by 19%
  • Helpful customer service tools on social media help create a positive customer experience

2. Search Engine Marketing
Another central aspect of B2B lead generation is understanding the basics of search engine optimization (SEO) and integrating that understanding into your content. Marketing to search engines helps ensure your content will be found by browsing potential customers, and the data generated from those stumbling across your eCommerce site will help you better target your efforts.

Understanding the basics of SEO helps B2B marketers understand their target audiences. In turn, they can better craft keywords and content to meet the needs of search engines. This makes search engine marketing one of the best processes and strategies you can use for lead generation.

Search Engine Journal lists the following as the top 7 ranking signals for SEO content. Integrate each one in your marketing strategy:

  1. Quality
  2. Mobile-friendliness
  3. Security
  4. User experience
  5. Page speed
  6. On-page optimization
  7. Backlinking

Search engines like Google are smart enough to rank content based on quality—just like your actual. Building quality content for B2B lead generation means understanding how and what people search, then providing them with helpful, readably content.

Expanding from that is the necessity of mobile-friendliness, security, user experience, and page speed. In our high-speed mobile world, we want clean, readable information instantly. Providing that will net you interested users, gain you leads, and help you convert those leads to customers.

On the technical side, you need to understand how on-page SEO content like internal links, metadata tags, or schema markup affects how your content is being found.

In an ideal world, your leads will all but generate themselves. SEO will help you get there.

Keep in mind:

  • SEO is necessary for your page to show up in search engine results
  • Quality should be your top priority
  • Creating shareable information and graphics helps you get backlinks
  • As much as a 4-second delay in page loading can decrease views by 11.02%

3. Trend Utilization
In a digital world constantly disrupted by technology, marketers must maintain an awareness of changes and be ready to adapt. As algorithms and tech like Google’s search functions and AI usage change, so too must our ability to generate leads.

Today’s world of B2B marketing requires a finger on the pulse of customers and markets. This means data gathering, A/B testing, and technological experimentation and integration to assist your business practices.

Data Gathering
Lead generation strategies rely on data. Without it, you are shooting in the dark, relying on cold calls and emails to generate interest. No one wants that. Instead, use big data and AI analytic tools to understand and segment your marketing strategies for personalized content.

This is a great place where social media and website traffic tools come in handy. From insights on social media sites like Facebook and Instagram to the tools provided on popular eCommerce page building sites like Squarespace or WordPress, you can glean a lot of useful information about your customers and better anticipate trends and new user interest.

Some social media sights, like LinkedIn, even have useful lead form templates that do a lot of your work for you. From the engaging content you have produced — like fun, shareable quizzes — you can gather not only customer interests, but contact information as well that will put you in touch with an email address where you can direct more personalized messaging.

Additionally, AI analytics tools can help you understand the bigger picture of your ideal audience. Then, you can use that data to tell a story. Putting customer needs and trends in a narrative is a useful way to help you structure marketing and better find and appeal to leads.

With big data, that narrative is possible.

A/B Testing
Understanding and capitalizing on trends requires the use of experimental tools like A/B, or split, testing. To acquire new customers and expand your business, these tests that determine the better between two marketing options within a sample group are incredibly useful.

Not only will you find the best way to engage customer interest, you can help your new audience through the conversion funnel where they will emerge new customers.

Some benefits of A/B testing in your lead generation strategy include:

  • Solving customer pain points
  • Generating more interest
  • Improving website design
  • Improving product and pricing

You can use social media tools, even quizzes, to help you target this testing to get results that will generate the best lead acquisition strategies possible in a rapidly changing online world.

Tech Integration
With so much tech constantly altering the marketing industry, plenty of software tools exist to help you get results with B2B lead generation. From email marketing to customer relationship management (CRM), this software can make a breakthrough in the amount you are able to achieve in little time.

While integrating tech may sound expensive and daunting, that doesn’t have to be the case. Many software platforms require only a monthly subscription at a marginal fee. If they can help generate business, the cost may well be worth it.

Keep in mind:

  • Data gathering is an essential component of lead generation
  • Many social media platforms have built-in tools to help you track traffic
  • Telling a story with your data to help communicate customer needs
  • Software programs can help you generate leads and conduct split tests and CRM

4. Email Marketing
Lead generation, despite the changing landscape in which it finds itself, still very much lives or dies by the cold email campaign. Luckily, however, what you can change is the manner in which you go about cold emailing. If you have been generating the kind of data and information that will serve AI tools and narrative analytical processes, you have the ability to craft emails to personalize their content for greatest effect.

This segmented approach to email marketing allows you to structure highly effective messaging. Here are some of the ways you can segment and structure your demographics:

  • Buyer interests
  • Location
  • Pain points
  • Additional products used
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Industry

Analytics and insights give you the power to make these distinctions and target your messaging. Further, you can use AI tools and smart software to organize and mail out mass emails to help you better find leads without a substantial time commitment.

Email marketing is still an essential step in B2B lead generation, one that if done right can net you a greater ROI.

Keep in mind:
● Use email surveys to further generate buyer information
● Build potential customer profiles to better craft messaging
● Reach out with lead magnets that will appeal to the specific customer
● Use chatbots and discount offers to help generate email lists

5. Outsourced Marketing
A winning B2B lead generation strategy doesn’t always happen in-house. Often, you will need the help of third-party advertisers to help you generate the kind of interest that will earn you leads and boost your ROI.

When outsourcing your marketing, there are two types of ad strategies to keep in mind: affiliate marketing and paid-per-click advertising.

Affiliate marketing
Affiliate marketing uses paid third parties to advertise for your business. This marketing method accounts for 15% of all digital revenue and is an essential component of generating new leads. You can pay for others with their own tools and networks to expand upon the potential audience you can reach, gaining outreach potential you may never have achieved on your own.

Pay-Per-Click Advertising
Similarly, paying for pay-per-click (PPC) advertisements to be hosted on websites across the internet can be an excellent way of generating new leads. This type of ad is responsible for increasing brand awareness by up to 80%. That kind of outreach helps ensure that interested customers stumble upon your products, where you can then begin the process of sales conversions.

This method works best for retargeting users who have spent time on your website. Services like Google Ads will find these users and present them with ads on sites they use to direct them back to your page. You’ll know they have some level of interest due to the time they’ve already spent browning your products.

This form of outsourcing your advertising is also great in that you only pay for effectiveness. You will be charged each time a user clicks on your ad, indicating that your outreach worked.

Keep in mind:

  • Outsourcing marketing strategies can help you grow your audience and generate leads
  • Affiliate marketing can be useful for creating content like video that generate user interest
  • PPC advertising can increase brand awareness by 80% with the right targeting
Successful Lead Generation
It’s time to change your strategies for B2B lead generation.

In a constantly changing online landscape, you need the methods and technologies that have emerged to assist in digital marketing and generate leads on a scale never before possible. Through social media, SEO, trend utilization, email, and outsourced marketing strategies, you can build an inventory of prospective customers and better convert them into buyers.

The right tools will help you implement these strategies, but the key is constant experimentation and adaptation. Finding the right methods of lead generation for your business might be a process, but once you have a strategy that works, you’ll boost your ROI and create a broader base of customers.

This is a guest post. We welcome guest posts about helping manufacturers increase sales and/or advance their marketing function. Email in your idea and you too could be a guest blogger on MMG.

Guest blogger - Beau Peters is professional with a lifetime of experience in service and care. As a manager, he has learned a slew of tricks in the business world and enjoys sharing them with others who carry the same passion and dedication that he brings to his work. When he is not writing, he enjoys reading and trying new things.

Image source: Pexels

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