Generating more leads means you should be qualifying more prospects; more prospects means you have more opportunities for demand generation. Ultimately, lead generation is the first important step. Increase the quality of your leads and everything else follows.
Unfortunately, lead generation is where a number of companies fall short. They do not generate high-quality leads because their entire lead generation approach is flawed. They want the traffic. They want the leads, but they make simple mistakes that inhibit their ability to generate the opportunities they desperately need. If this situation sounds all too familiar to you, here are five ways to optimize your B2B lead generation.
1. Leveraging Big Data Marketing to Improve Paid Search
Pay-per-click (PPC), text link and banner advertising are all excellent paid traffic sources. The mistake companies make is to choose the least expensive keyword in the hopes of saving money. The idea is that less expensive keywords and keyword-phrases will reduce expenditures. However, this strategy does not work often.
The problem with this approach is twofold. First, your digital marketing budget is wasted on low-cost keywords. You generate so many clicks on these inexpensive keywords that your budget is quickly exceeded. Second, you generate high volumes of low quality traffic because your keywords are too generic. The keywords do not generate leads because there are minimal conversions.
Avoiding this outcome is simple. Use solid SEO research and choose a keyword and keyword-phrase that best suits your offering. Second, use your big data marketing sources to raise the bar on the keywords you choose. Review your click-through-rates (CTR) on incoming traffic and rely upon your analytics to help you determine whether you are generating the kinds of leads that become qualified prospects.
2. Simplified Lead Capture Forms
Making conversion an easy process has to be part of your overall lead generation strategy. Asking a potential lead to fill out an elongated lead capture form will not generate more leads. Yes, you may want all the upfront information you can gather, but asking your customer to provide that as a first introduction to your website or landing page can be a turnoff to your customer.
Your lead capture form should only ask for the bare minimum. That includes getting the contact’s name, email address, phone number. and company name. No more is required. In fact, your lead capture form should pull the rest of the information from your landing page, CRM, or marketing database software. Do not ask potential customers to fill out too much information. They will get frustrated and leave. Conversions should be easy. Your prospect has gotten this far. Do not blow it with a form that is too long.
3. Retarget Marketing
Operating in a B2B marketplace means you are well aware of sales cycles. After all, there is a sales cycle time from initial contact to getting that new customer to place their first order. It is no different with lead generation. Sometimes those leads are immediate and other times they take longer to convert.
Retarget marketing is one solution that keeps your company on your prospect’s mind by retargeting them with digital advertising. Here is an example. Suppose you may have a prospect who is searching for a product online. However, his search is interrupted and he goes offline. Retarget marketing re-engages the customer with your digital advertisements once he gets back online. Your product is back in the fold and the customer is reminded of his previous search.
4. Social Media
The right type of content on social media for a business audience can immediately improve lead generation. However, in order to make sure those leads are quality leads, it is always a good idea to use gated content. That content can only be accessed by those users willing to provide their contact details. It may limit your content exposure, but it guarantees you will receive instant contact information from those prospects most interested in your solutions.
Gated content is not the only means of social media lead generation. It ultimately comes down to a proactive content marketing strategy aimed specifically at the interests of your social media followers. Focus on professional social sites like LinkedIn. You can create a free company page and use it to generate leads with your content, product information, and company updates.
Your social media strategy has to be part of an overall lead generation strategy that relies upon big data marketing and data enrichment. Connecting with an audience online is not done by chance. It requires a solid SEO approach where your content marketing strategy is aligned with your buyer personas.
5. Lead Scoring
The best way to identify your top leads is by lead scoring. Assigning a value or priority on leads is not only essential for capitalizing on opportunities, but ultimately critical if you want to improve the quality of your lead generation approaches. You can apply a higher grade for a given lead based on the position that buyer persona holds, their decision making ability, what they do or how much time they spend on your website. For instance, a business owner or high-level executive that peruses your landing page and is eventually converted should score higher than a mid-level manager or office assistant.
Lead scoring is vital to prioritizing your team's efforts. It is also an important part of understanding which digital strategy is best at producing high-quality leads. When you score your leads, you are able to improve all the lead generation strategies you employ by identifying which strategies are working and which ones need refinement.
Each of these lead generation approaches relies upon some form of data enrichment. You need to make sense of your data before, during, and after lead generation. Part of that comes from having a marketing database software that compiles and cleans the data, and the other part comes from you doing the necessary research into how each lead generation strategy should be employed.