12 B2B lead generation strategies that actually work

Lead Generation

Generating B2B leads is no walk in the park, and finding a straight answer on which strategies are most effective can be almost impossible.

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The reality is there’s no one-size-fits-all solution to the problem of B2B lead generation – if there was, we’d all be doing it.

The most effective overall approach will vary based on what you’re selling, who you’re selling to, what your competitors are doing, and a huge range of other factors. The best way to get your answer is to test, test and test again – and see what sticks…

B2B Lead Generation - see what sticks

Having said that, some strategies are more likely to deliver results for you if executed well – and we’ve picked out 12 of the essential ones that are worth focusing on…

Content marketing

Around 70% of users on the internet learn via content before purchasing a product versus traditional advertisements. That’s where content marketing comes in. It aligns with this behavior by offering high-quality valuable content that educates prospects on a relevant topic. This, when done correctly, gets them sucked into your B2B lead generation funnel as well.

Ensure that you’re creating content at every stage of the buying cycle – this means having blogs posts or case studies available even if they aren’t specifically targeting keywords related to your product or service; these pieces of content are great for attracting visibility, SEO traffic, social media engagement (i.e., social sharing), and qualified leads.

B2B Lead generation - attract leads

On-page SEO

Even though Google has released over 200 ranking factors, there’s one that trumps them all: content. By positioning your website as a thought leader in its field and optimizing it to rank high for certain keywords, you’ll be able to capture the attention of qualified leads that are actively searching for what you’re offering.

B2B Lead generation - capture attention

At its most fundamental level, on-page SEO refers to those elements you can control on your own website, including page titles, meta descriptions, URLs, images, and headings.

In order to rank how you want to on search engine results pages (SERPs), you need a strong understanding of how these elements come together on the page to affect the overall ranking process. Here’s a breakdown of some key areas:

 

Blog Post Headlines

You can’t have great content without a great headline. And just as your blog post headlines are important to the success of your content, page titles are equally important for success within on-page SEO. The more specific you can be with your titles, the better they will serve you in ranking higher on SERPs — especially if your title targets popular search terms.

 

Page URLs

Page URLs also play a big role in on-page SEO for B2B lead generation, as they can help you rank or completely tank your chances of ranking. The decision you make when choosing the URL slug for a given blog post will serve as the foundation for everything else built on top of it, so you should aim to use specific keywords that will play a role in your ranking.

 

Meta Descriptions

If you want people to click on your search result above the countless others listed, then you need a meta description that captures their attention within the first few lines. It’s also important for informing Google exactly what it is that your page is about, so it’s recommended that you address your target keywords within this section.

 

Headings and images

Google rewards well-organized content structures, so headings and images can also play a role in what you choose to put where. For example, if the heading for your blog post serves one purpose and the heading for your page serves another, then Google will penalize you for not properly organizing your content.

Website visitor identification

Using Lead Forensics, you can see who is visiting your website and what content they’re looking at on the site. You can collect data including company name, size, location, and contact details for key decision makers within the business.

This allows you to reach out to new leads with relevant, timely information about how your services can help them.

Lead Forensics perfect timing

To find out more about Lead Forensics, book your demonstration of Lead Forensics here.

Referral marketing

Gaining new business opportunities that are high-quality and likely to sell is no easy feat. When 9 out of 10 purchasing decisions are based on peer recommendations, referrals are like gold dust.

The problem is, many of us are too scared to ask, worried we’ll place our newly found clients in an awkward position, it might put them off our brand and damage retention – right?

Wrong

Apparently not – in fact, a whopping 91% of B2B buyers said they would be happy to provide referrals for a product they think is good and have gained ROI from.

This is a great sign, yet only 11% of salespeople ask for referrals, making it a highly underrated B2B sales technique.

I’m sure you’ve already got a happy customer or two in mind, so give them a call, talk about how they’re enjoying their new solution and ask if they would refer anyone – the worst they can do is say no!

You can also tap into your customer base and discover who has left you 5-star reviews, or sent communications of praise and thanks. They obviously believe in your product and have no reason not to share it with others – especially if you offer them an excellent incentive to sweeten the deal!

Make the most of online communities

Identify online communities where your ideal customers are spending their time; this could include LinkedIn groups, forums, Facebook groups, etc. Connecting with these users by providing helpful content and answering their questions is a great way to earn trust and develop relationships – it’s likely that some of these people will start doing business with your company or refer others who do.

Sell paper for printers? Engage with forum posts about printing problems, or LinkedIn groups for companies that print posters, manuals, etc.

Sell software to small businesses? Engage in Facebook groups where small business owners are asking for recommendations on products/services they should buy.

Lead nurturing

Don’t stop once you’ve generated leads! Once you have an interested lead, it’s important to move the relationship forward by nurturing them through the funnel. This process often involves drip marketing – sending relevant content at consistent intervals using email or other communication channels designed specifically for marketers (i.e., HubSpot). Lead nurturing is an excellent way to build brand awareness and trust, which is invaluable when attempting to convert leads into sales. For this reason, more companies are putting lead nurturing strategies in place on a regular basis.

B2B lead generation - hi it's me again

In general, lead nurturing is the process of continuing to engage with potential customers over time. In a home-based business environment, this could manifest through ongoing contact via phone or email.

When nurturing leads through B2B email marketing, try to automate your lead-nurturing efforts as much as possible. Automated processes allow you to save time and keep a consistent message going out to leads, even if no one is actively managing the campaign.

If you’re part of a small startup without dedicated B2B marketing resources, it may seem like there’s not enough time in the day to nurture leads. However, with the right tools and bandwidth, nurturing leads can be an efficient process that creates larger conversion rates down the line.

Use automation

A Marketing Automation Platform can help any company save time by automating daily tasks.

B2B lead generation - i'll show you automation

Most platforms available provide users with pre-designed B2B marketing workflows, saving countless hours of unnecessary work for their users – allowing them to spend more time focusing on revenue-generating activities.

Many companies are still unsure about whether these platforms are worth it or not, so here’s why they should consider implementing them in their strategy:

Marketing Automation Platforms allow marketers to increase the number of leads coming through the door by creating custom lead scoring rules that automatically determine when someone is ready to be contacted.

Marketing Automation Platforms also allow marketers to automatically gather key insights that are gathered into a B2B marketing database, which allows marketers to track everything from lead score and revenue generated by each customer, to the exact time of day they’re most likely to buy.

The ability for companies to have all this information available in one place allows them to personalize the content in their campaigns, making companies more likely to see a return on investment from lead generation.

Use social media authentically

If you ask prospects what they value most about social media, most will say authenticity; because of this, it’s important for companies to approach social media channels as more than just a platform to promote their product – otherwise, they’ll come off as disingenuous and will lose trust almost instantly.

the best brand is being yourself - b2b lead generation

In order to have credibility with your prospects, it’s important that they know that the content is coming from an authoritative source. A blog can serve as an incredible B2B marketing tool with the right strategy. It allows you to build links, which is one of Google’s most important ranking factors, and it also establishes your brand as a thought leader in the industry.

Make sure that all of your content is relevant, insightful, and valuable to your audience; this will go a long way towards establishing trust with prospects. On top of writing posts that are actually useful to your prospects, you’ll also want to be active on social media channels because this builds an online relationship with prospects who may eventually turn into customers.

Great ways to engage your prospects on social media are by asking questions, answering the questions that they post on your wall, and sharing their content with your followers.

Prioritize lead qualification

When done well, lead qualification can distinguish between those who need you vs. those who simply want you; by finding people that are actually ready/willing to buy, you’ll avoid wasting time on leads that don’t require your attention or resources.

b2b lead generation - i don't like having my time wasted

In other words, lead qualification is a critical step in your B2B marketing and sales funnel because it allows you to cut from the bottom of the barrel—those who aren’t ready or willing to buy.

By incorporating a proper lead qualification process during the marketing and sales stages, you’ll be able to improve productivity by focusing on leads that matter most. Lead qualification should ultimately help your team separate the ‘wheat from the chaff’ and focus their efforts on opportunities that are most likely to convert to customers.

When done well, lead qualification can distinguish between those who need you vs. those who simply want you; by finding people that are actually ready/willing to buy, you’ll avoid wasting time on leads that don’t require your attention or resources.

Focus on value not features

Instead of offering ten different features, try focusing on one benefit – this strategy will create more demand in the market because you’ll be fully focused on solving one specific problem. When a buyer is looking for a solution, they won’t be overwhelmed by different features – this will give them the opportunity to realize that there’s only one right choice.

b2b lead generation - it's a tremendous value

When it comes to B2B lead generation for your product, you should always keep this strategy in mind – instead of focusing on tons of features, try offering value first because people don’t care about the product itself; they care about what it can do for them and how it can improve their business.

You need to understand that people aren’t getting excited about your product – they get excited about results, not features.

Use a live chat

Live chat leads to increased B2B lead generation. The most common reason is that it takes the conversation offline, where the potential customer can ask more questions in depth and come to an informed decision about their purchase.

Another benefit is that it’s easy to measure the success of live chat through conversion tracking. It’s simple to set up goals in the chat software, which will show you at what point in the conversation leads are getting interested.

Live chat helps make your website more mobile-friendly. Since it takes the conversation offline, customers are able to visit your website on their phone while they’re talking with a sales representative. Since they’re already engaged, the customer will be more likely to respond to your call-to-action when they get off of live chat.

b2b lead generation live chat

Live chat gets people talking fast! Since you’ll have a competent representative available for your potential customers at all hours of the day, there’s no reason to leave it till later. Live chat speeds up the process of connecting with a live person and taking the conversation off of your website.

Use video

Videos can help your website stand out from the competition, and they’re unique in that you can offer your prospects valuable information without asking them for anything in return. Video lead generation is a great tool to use on social media platforms, send your prospects a personalized video message!

By investing time into creating high-quality videos, you can tell your brand story in a compelling way that generates more leads.

b2b lead generation - use video

With the use of video, companies are able to create trust with their customers, letting them know that they are behind the product. The use of video gives potential customers the opportunity to visualize how the product will work for them when they might not be able to do so just by a video.

By using videos on your website, you can help guide your customers through their buying journey by providing valuable content that is easy to digest and demonstrates the benefits of working with you. In turn, this could increase engagement and decrease cart abandonment. This helps with B2B lead generation and stops visitors from leaving the site before taking any further actions such as contacting you for more information.

Thank you

Thank you for reading our latest best practice guide on our B2B Marketing Blog – “12 B2B lead generation strategies that work” We publish new blogs every week, so please subscribe for alerts, or head back here for more.

You may also be interested to read “B2B Lead Generation: The Complete Guide

And, if you’re interested in knowing who is visiting your B2B website, you can request a demonstration of Lead Forensics here.

About Lead Forensics

Lead Forensics is a multi award-winning B2B website visitor identification software that eliminates the need for on-site inquiries and instantly increases website conversion.

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