If you’re in a B2B industry, your business lives on leads. If you have a lot, your company will survive, only a few, it will whither and die.
The question is, what’s the best way to generate more of them?
As the owner of a growing advertising and content marketing agency, I’ve experimented in many B2B lead generation techniques. Some of them were a waste of time and money, others led to huge leaps in our success.
B2B Marketing Trends 2017
Real and False B2B Marketing Trends in 2017: Let’s Change Prism!
Affected by a growing complexity, the marketing function is looking for its brands. Throughout the year, we will propose on this blog an analysis of the main substantive topics of B2B marketing and e-marketing.
If there is a significant evolution of the marketing function in recent years, it is this growing complexity of the business due to an avalanche of new technologies and a data tsunami. Understand digital transformation.
Of course, every transformation has good sides – we keep saying on these pages that marketers are living a great time. They have never been so close to the general management, they have never been given so much responsibility, budgets and teams, they have never had so many tools at their disposal. Sign of the times: According to Robert Half, the wages of the digital marketing progressed of 5% in 2016, much more than average.
But the mountain also has a darker side. Many feel disoriented, confused, sometimes even threatened, including – especially? – among the most experienced. It’s all going so fast! With the web and social networks, the purchasing behavior of B2B decision makers has changed dramatically, and this evolution that is digital marketing continues at a frantic pace. Classic marketing (based on phone, trade shows, and advertising) becomes ineffective both in understanding the motivations of prospects and in identifying projects. We have to adapt: from the phone we went to emailing, from emailing to SEO, then to inbound, nurturing and social selling … For some, these terms resonate like a promise of tomorrow that sings. Others still see only barbaric names, smoky acronyms opening up on technologies as innovative as uncertain, on new practices too vaunted to be not doubtful. And how not to feel lost in this orgy of data from heterogeneous sources, you have to know how to treat, analyze, synthesize, exploit. A new job …
That’s why we go on this blog, every week throughout the year, to discuss the trends and strategies of marketing, communication, e-commerce, SEO, e-mailing and marketing. B2B sale. These trends should be classified into three categories:
- The techniques and tools: automation marketing and nurturing, retargeting, account-based marketing, predictive marketing, social selling, data-driven marketing, big data, web marketing, community management, mobile marketing, e-CRM, social media, 1to1 real-time marketing …
- Those that focus on good practices like the definition of personas, the production of content, inbound and outbound marketing, the introduction of emotion and storytelling in B2B, the customer experience, the respect of the legislation, segmentation by behavioral scoring or filmography …
- Finally, those concerning the marketing function: these new marketing professions (Chief Data Officer, Customer Experience Advocate, Social Ambassador …), compensation and prospects, marketing-sales alignment, customer relations, loyalty, marketing online, managing partnerships and channels, the relationship with IT …
We will not fail to give you a very subjective point of view on each of these B2B Marketing Trends in 2017. And to draw up a medal table, according to the returns we will have. For there are true and false tendencies; some that are deserved, and others less.
Also, do not hesitate to inform us of your reactions. Now, no one can say: that’s the way things are in B2B marketing. That’s why this blog is a space of exchanges, discussions. Because today more than ever we, marketers, need to get out of our isolation, to share our experiences, to deliver our opinions. ( In the beginning was the Word, and then the light was.)
Here I’m going to share 3 of the most effective ways you can get new B2B leads and B2B Marketing Trends 2017:
1. Set up targeted landing pages fed by SEM
This is one of the easiest and most cost effective ways to get more leads. All that’s needed is a landing page targeted at a particular service that’s fed by search engine marketing like Adwords or Bing Ads.
Target your SEM campaign to your service, like “ Business Accounting Consultant,” and you’ll get tons of traffic looking for someone exactly like you.
This works particularly well in the B2B market, where each lead is usually very valuable so it’s not difficult to create a highly profitable campaign while paying for each click.
The other great thing about this method is its ease. Once the page and SEM campaign is set up and fine tuned, you can just let it run and watch the leads come in. No more work required.
But keep in mind that creating an effective landing page is a skill. I highly recommend hiring a professional or at least reading a guide like this one.
2. Create Content People Actually Want to Read/Watch/Listen to
This is a great way to establish your company as an expert in its field, and if done right, it can generate lots of passive leads. But here’s the thing: Content marketing only works if you create something that’s actually good.
That sounds like a no brainer, but you’d be surprised how many people want to turn their content into nothing more than full blown commercials. Readers can smell overly commercial content from a mile away so this totally defeats the goal of cutting through the clutter.
Always make your content serve the customer first then they’ll be much more receptive to the marketing message you slip in.
Create great content and you have a tool that you can use to drive interest in the company, collect contact info (hint: give away content in exchange for an email address) and build up your site’s SEO juice.
This one’s old school, and chances are you already do a ton of it, but it’s worth reiterating: cold calling works.
The key to not wasting your (and everyone else’s) time is to use a highly targeted list. The more specific you can get the better. Figure out your target market, and call up companies.
The beauty of this approach is that I guarantee, if you call enough companies, you can get leads today.
There’s only one problem: cold calling isn’t fun. It’s time consuming and can be embarrassing, particularly if you’re new to it. If you’re nervous about getting started, I highly recommend you check out this beginner’s guide.
How do you get leads?
D you run a B2B business and have another great way of getting more leads? Share it with the rest of us in the comment section below!
Also published on Medium.