How Can You Improve Your B2B Lead Generation Campaigns?
Lead generation can be difficult – B2B, even more so. But as they say, nothing good ever came off anything easy. So while you’re trying to tweak and prime your B2B lead generation strategy to give you the best results, we came up with a gift for you – a wholesome guide on how you can improve your B2B lead generation campaigns!
Let’s see what we’ve got.
What Is B2B Lead Generation?
Let’s quickly glance at what B2B lead generation means for us before we discuss how to improve it.
It is the process of finding ideal customers for your product or service and gathering their basic contact information. Now, in this case, your customers are essentially a business, instead of an individual customer.
The aim is to gather qualified leads with a better prospect of turning into paying customers. You want to gain leads that stand close to your buyer persona and would have more than just a passing interest in your product/service. B2B lead generation isn’t a one-step process. It requires various strategies to work together in order to gain the best possible leads with the highest probability of conversion.
How Is B2B Lead Generation Different From B2C Lead Generation?
Well, there’s an obvious difference between B2B and B2C lead generation – and that’s your target customer. B2B lead generation is about finding leads of businesses that have their own products and services. B2C lead generation is about finding leads of customers that may or may not be affiliated with any organization. B2C focuses more on an individual while B2B focuses on organizations.
Now the difference doesn’t end here.
B2B sales journeys are generally dedicated to bigger purchases as compared to B2C sales journeys. They enter into contracts for services which results in the final sale taking a longer time to process. The B2B sales journey is longer than B2C since transactions in B2C involve lesser people and smaller amounts.
Moreover, the content that you create to attract a B2B and B2C audience would be different. The content targeted at a B2B audience has to be more informative yet brief. It needs to be formal and usually have a corporate tone. B2C content, on the other hand, needs to be more personal and relatable for your audience. It will be more engaging and should aim to invite more interactions from your audience.
Consequently, your B2B audience will have a narrower market while your B2C audience has a wider scope. The B2C audience has a greater variety and needs to be catered a little differently.
These are some of the differences you must keep in mind when you develop a B2B and B2C lead generation campaign.
Now let’s have a look at what makes B2B lead generation so important!
Why Is B2B Lead Generation Important?
1. Know Your Customers Better
Lead generation is one of the first steps to knowing your audience. When a user provides you with their lead information, they show a sense of trust in your organization. And you, on the other hand, get to know them a little better.
So how do you do it?
We suggest going interactive!
When you use lead magnets like interactive content to engage with your audience, you learn about them more. You get to know the kind of solution they’re seeking, their preferences, and personal information too.
For example, suppose you are a software marketing company. You target small and medium businesses and help them automate their marketing process better. Now you can target them with this ‘What is the ROI of your Marketing Strategy?’ calculator. This calculator will not only offer them valuable information on calculating their ROI but also give you an insight into their organization. You get a lead and get to know how qualified it is! What a sweet spot!
2. Improved Conversion Rates
Having a B2B lead generation strategy is the first most important step to having a long-term customer. Why? Because a lead generation strategy helps you ensure that the leads generated are actually interested in your product or service. You may generate a million leads but it isn’t very helpful if you manage to convert only 7 out of them, right? Having a B2B lead generation strategy ensures that you gather a list of potential customers – thus increasing your conversion rate.
This not only saves you money but also helps your team save a lot of time and effort. Hence, you can focus on those who are most likely to buy.
3. Builds Brand Awareness
Having a lead generation strategy means using targeted and relevant content – something that actually adds value to your users. This content gets correctly amplified online to reach the right person and get the right information. This helps your company come off as an expert in your niche. And apart from this, they gain more customized information that they wouldn’t otherwise.
This improves your brand awareness and also helps you give your users an improved experience. Suppose you’re a real estate agent that mainly helps businesses buy and sell office spaces. Now you can use different e-books, infographics, blogs, or an interactive calculator for ‘Find out the Resale Value of your Property’ in order to help them gather genuinely useful information and boost your brand awareness.
4. Creating a Strong Sales Pipeline
The most important reason why you should definitely invest in a lead generation strategy today is a strong sales pipeline. The entire process helps you keep track of your potential customers from the start till the end. It helps you track your leads through the funnel and also entails how you deal with them at different stages. Not every lead that you generate will require the same interaction.
A good lead generation strategy means a well-maintained lead database that helps you convert more leads into paying customers and helps you keep check for leakage. It also helps you understand customer pain points and optimize your consumer experience.
What Does the B2B Lead Generation Process Look Like?
The B2B lead generation process isn’t just limited to gathering lead information. In fact, that’s just the beginning of it. Here’s a quick glance at what the complete lead generation process looks like –
1. Gathering Lead Information
Well, unless you have the right address, you can’t send someone a sweet Christmas present, right? Only in this case, we mean the email address. The lead information may include (but not be limited to) the name, email address, phone number, etc. of a user. As we mentioned earlier (and will discuss in detail later), there are various strategies that will help you gather this lead information.
Unless you have it, you cannot target them with all the relevant content that you generate in order to turn them into paying customers.
2. Lead Qualification
Not every lead holds the same value. Even after you’ve decided on your buyer persona and smartly chosen your target audience, not every lead will turn into a paying customer. The power lies in the idea of lead qualification – assigning a priority to a lead on the basis of their potential of turning into a customer.
This potential may be decided on certain parameters – engagement rate, budget, demographics, interest, opinions, etc. Once you have decided on your high-priority leads, you can focus greater attention on them and provide them with a better user experience.
You can use interactive content like quizzes in order to gain the required information to qualify a specific lead. Suppose that you are a financial advisory that wants to target startups. You can offer a chatbot like ‘Should I raise VC for my startup?’. This chatbot will not only help your leads gain some answers but also help you get to know your customers well enough to qualify them as high or low-priority leads. You may want to focus on startups of a particular industry or size and you can get that information through this chatbot.
3. Sales Opportunity Conversion
Hook, set, and reel. You’ve thrown the hook, now it’s time to set it. Once you have acquired your lead and qualified them as an important lead, it’s time to give them the final bait. Use various forms of marketing and sales communication to convey your pitch to them. You can use various forms of content marketing in order to make them realize the value of your product. These may include using e-books, blogs, interactive content, podcasts, webinars, etc.
4. Deal Closure
And, reel. Once your lead is convinced that your product/service is the right fit for them, it’s time to seal the deal. This will include discussing the pricing, contract, plans, and everything else logistical. A price quote template can help you manage your pricing estimates before presenting them to the potential customer. Dealing with a customer is not a one-time transaction. You need to focus on retaining customers and creating a relationship with them. While closing the deal, ensure that you offer your customers the best possible experience and give and get the best price.
In case there is a last-minute doubt with pricing, you can always offer them something like an ROI calculator for your product to help them move ahead with confidence.
How to Generate B2B Leads – The Best Strategies
1. Social Media
Well, Instagram is great for posting your vacation pictures, sure. But what it can also be great for is – generating leads. Social media is where you get a huge amount of traffic in one single place. And you can turn this traffic into qualified leads.
How? You can share lead magnets and interactive content on your social media. This will not only engage users on your platforms but also encourage them to give out lead information in exchange for valuable solutions. Moreover, sharing contests and giveaways on social media is another great way of increasing your reach and generating leads.
You can also incorporate these lead magnets into your ads such as Facebook, Linkedin, Instagram ads. Here you can specifically select the audience that you want to target.
2. Interactive Content
Interactive content is our magical weapon for every problem, we know. But when it comes to lead generation, there’s no one better. Interactive content is engaging, fun, and value-adding. And this is what makes it generate 2x the leads than static content.
Interactive content like quizzes, calculators, chatbots, surveys, contests, giveaways, etc. aims to offer personalized solutions to users. This incentivizes them to give out their lead information. It also ensures that the leads that you collect are qualified and at the same time helps you gather more data about them. It helps you know your customer better and gives them the experience they deserve.
In fact, interactive content is a great way to generate leads in every industry and for every size of business.
MUST-READ: What Is Interactive Content? Get the full guide here!
Take the example of Outgrow’s Idea Generator. It is a quiz that helps a company understand what kind of interactive content they can create to engage their customer better. The idea generator takes into account their industry and objective in order to give the desired results. This helps Outgrow generate leads that are actually interested in the prospect of using interactive content for their business.
3. Account Based Marketing
Account-based marketing is a focused approach to B2B marketing in which marketing and sales teams work together to target best-fit accounts and turn them into customers. Account based marketing aims to build highly personalized relationships with customers by targeting them with relevant content. It focuses on generating and nurturing leads that have a higher probability of turning into paying customers.
ABM campaigns are personalized and dedicated to specific accounts as opposed to the entire industry as a whole. This shortens the sales cycle and saves time, effort, and cost for your sales team. In fact, 84% of marketers believe ABM provides significant benefits for retaining and expanding current client relationships. You can also use interactive content, social media, etc. to fill gaps in your ABM marketing efforts.
4. Content Marketing
Content marketing refers to using content types such as blogs, e-books, webinars, podcasts, courses, checklists, etc. Demand Metric revealed that content marketing generates 3 times as many leads as traditional marketing. And costs 62% less.
Make sure that the content you create is relevant to your audience. It can be shared on your website, landing pages, social media, etc.
Suppose you are a marketing consulting platform and you have created an e-book on demand generation. These content types can be gated in order to generate qualified leads in exchange for valuable information. Now the leads that you collect through this will be more likely to be interested in your content and product as compared to others.
5. Growth Hacking
Growth hacking is a cross-functional strategy to scale your business, essentially aiming at maximizing growth at minimum costs.
Some of the growth hacks for lead generation can include paid ads, retargeting campaigns, influencer campaigns, demand generation campaigns, optimized landing pages, free tool offerings, etc.
Here is a blog to help you gain better insights on how you can use growth hacking for lead generation.
Some Tips for Effective Lead Generation
1. Always A/B test your content. Try to figure out what works best for your audience by trying different versions of landing pages, posts, ads, etc.
2. Optimize your 404 pages to generate leads. You can include interactive content and lead magnets on your 404 pages in order to convert that abandoned traffic into qualified leads.
3. Optimize your content for multiple devices. A potential customer’s experience should not be ruined irrespective of the device they use your platform on.
4. Focus on long-tail keywords. They help you rank better on search engines. The better visibility you have for your lead magnets, the more leads they’ll be able to attract!
5. Score the leads that you collect. This will help you prioritize which leads to you need to pay more attention to. Focus on leads that have a better chance of turning into paying customers and fit into your buyer persona.
6. Host more and more webinars and podcasts. They are a great way of generating leads. It helps you offer your expertise in exchange for lead information. 73% of B2B marketers say a webinar is the best way to generate high-quality leads.
7. Try to make sure that your entire lead generation process is seamless. Try to perfect your customer experience, this will ensure a higher probability of getting qualified leads.
8. Use interactive pop-ups. We’ve all been sick and tired of static pop-up ads coming in our faces everywhere. But what if they’re interactive, add value, and relevant to your audience? Well, you can only find out if you try!
Examples of Successful B2B Lead Generation Campaigns
Now that we’ve given you the tips and tricks to lead generation, let’s have a look at a couple of companies that were successful at it!
Here’s an example of Snack Nation, a healthy snack delivery service. They used a lead generation form in order to facilitate the download of their award template library.
This simple gated content helped them generate 880 leads and 20 new customers in 10 months!
Next, we have the example of StepOne Agency – a digital marketing agency that helps companies develop and strengthen their marketing strategies. StepOne Agency used Outgrow to create two chatbots. The first chatbot was created for Compare CPA, a firm that aims to connect you to the best accounting services available. This can be helpful especially if you don’t use a tool to create your own accounting reports.
The second chatbot was for a company that looks to connect you with the best legal service present out there. The chatbot was for an injury compensation assessment. As a result, their lead generation increased by 2.67x.
Top B2B Lead Generation Companies to Try
There are many many lead generation tools today that help you smoothen and automate your generation process. Here are some of them –
Outgrow – to generate qualified leads through creating interactive content
Constant Contact – to grow and segment your contact list
Mailchimp – to automate your email marketing strategy
Unbounce – for the best-looking landing pages!
Drift – to generate leads through live chats
How Does Outgrow Help With B2B Generation?
What makes Outgrow such a fantastic lead generation tool? Well, if only there could be just one answer.
Outgrow is an easy-to-use platform that helps you build interactive content like calculators, quizzes, chatbots, etc. without any kind of code. You can create and embed these content types in various forms. Leverage the personalized nature of these content types to gather leads through a lead generation form. Also, you can optimize them for conversion and engagement.
The Outgrow builder offers a lot of customization with the kind of questions and inputs you can add to your interactive content. It allows you to add various types of questions – single, multi-select, text input, slider, ratings, etc. Outgrow also allows adding different types of media, visuals, gifs, etc.
What’s more? – It offers a dashboard for end-to-end analytics. So, you can easily track the leads you gather, segment them and export them to different software. These are just some of the features of Outgrow that make it an amazing lead generation tool.
Well, we have reached the end of our holy book on lead generation. Let us know if you have any lead generation tips that we missed out on.
The next step?
And if you want to try out some of that interactive content for some qualified leads, give Outgrow’s free trial a spin!
Antara Agarwal is a full time marketing consultant at Outgrow. She can be found packing her bags for her next trip, often to the mountains. And in one of those bags you will always find a half finished book she’s been struggling with for months.