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The 4-Step Approach to Effective B2B Lead Generation

Too many stuff are going on in the realm of B2B lead generation that at times marketers have got to stop for a while and look at the basics. Letting yourself get caught up with emerging and short-term activities could make you lose sight of what you’re really aiming for.

It’s not a sin to develop extraneous goals here and there, especially if they contribute to your overall mission, but working in a cluttered setup without a straight-arrowed path to an objective is unhealthy – both to you as a marketer and your campaign in general.

What you need is a guide; an outline of the essentials for you to achieve exactly what you need to achieve. In B2B lead generation, it’s all about raking in quality prospects that have the highest potential to buy. And here are the 4 things you really only need to do:

1. Get Attention

Before, all it took was to paint bright colors and add wonderful images and you’d have all the attention you could hope for. Today, people don’t easily bite at decorations. They thirst for something new and exciting, something that could make their brains actually work. Provocative headlines. Viral videos. Location-based penetrations. Elaborate infographics. Anything that satisfies their need for novelty and quality content.

2. Be direct

Lead generation content is not a suspense novel. You don’t put unexpected twists or obscure characters. You don’t bring your readers along to a confusing, mind-draining ride of garbage. Your message should be obvious and clear. Don’t spend too much time trying to creatively convey what your message is; instead, focus on how you could deliver it so they could grasp it with ease.

3. Back it up

Casual readers would willfully absorb your content without any form of objection as to its credibility or accuracy. But the ones that do question it – those are the ones who are truly interested. They are your prospects. Now if you don’t have any evidence to support the assertions on your content, how can you expect these prospects to trust a company that makes bogus claims.

4. Brew a conclusion

You know that feeling when you’re reading a very compelling piece of article that cites several strong points to prove a claim, going on and on and then suddenly at the end it starts playing safe by saying something completely impartial? Frustrating, right? When you’ve started giving your stand about a topic, stick to it. Make a conclusion. It doesn’t matter whether people would agree or not – what matters is that you’ve chosen a side. Being “safe” makes prospects think that you’ve just wasted their time, and will never consider making business with you.

Effective Lead Generation Tactics: Where B2B differs from B2C

Effective Lead Generation Tactics - Where B2B differs from B2C

In April 2013, research agency Ascend2 (ascend2.com) and financial firm ResearchUnderwriters (researchunderwriters.com) surveyed marketers around the world in terms of lead generation tactics. Their study made particular emphasis on the difference between Business-to-Business (B2B) and Business-to-Consumer (B2C) industries on which tactic they perceive as most effective and which are most difficult to execute.

The results are not very surprising, given the contrast of fundamentals between the B2B and B2C, but it turns out that they are actually the same in terms of choosing which the extremes: Both B2B and B2C industries consider email marketing is the most effective at 51% and 54%, respectively, while mobile marketing came out as the least effective at 1% and 2%, respectively.

The difference lies in the middling tactics, particularly in the second most effective: For B2C, paid search or online ads is at 52%, while for B2B, SEO and Content marketing are both tied for the second spot at 38%. Paid search or online ads only got 29% for B2B.

Another contrast is the use of online events such as webinars. Only 6% of B2C companies perceive it as effective, while it got 27% from the B2B side. This goes to show that regular consumers don’t really like participating in online events, and even when they do, it’s not really that effective. Meanwhile, other tactics such as direct mail or print ads and trade shows get average scores.

 

Now we put the spotlight on social media marketing. If you can notice on the first graph, only 11% of the B2B respondents think that social media marketing is effective. In this second graph, both B2C and B2B industries think it’s the most difficult tactic to execute, at 50% and 49%, respectively.

Mobile marketing, evidenced as ineffective in the first graph, seems to also be a difficult task to pull off, especially for B2C at 42%. Only 25% of B2Bs think it’s hard, but it’s still in the 4th spot. Not surprisingly, email marketing is easier for B2B (18%) compared to B2C (25%).  While SEO is easier for B2Bs (26% compared to B2C’s 29%), Content marketing is harder for them (39% compared to B2C’s 25%).

B2B lead generation is a much more complex task to undertake, considering an audience that’s generally “experts” in the field they are in. Prospects in the B2B industry are not easily swayed by cheap and shallow propaganda; hence, it is important for marketers to distinguish it from how B2C marketers generate leads. Acknowledging these differences can help give better understanding on how people‘s interest are captured.