B2B Lead Generation Strategies: 13 Tips To Fill Your Pipeline
Generating a consistent stream of new, high-quality leads is rarely easy. But obviously, you’re going to need to have an effective B2B lead generation strategy if your business is going to survive, let alone thrive.
With that in mind, today we’re going to share a few lead generation strategies for supercharging your B2B lead gen game.
We’re going to start off with some obvious ideas, and get a little more abstract and innovative as the post goes on. We’ll discuss methods of getting targeted traffic to your landing pages and lead capture forms, and we’ll talk about a few ways of making your existing B2B lead generation strategies work a little harder for you than they already are.
Let’s get started.
Social Media Marketing
Let’s start off with one of the most obvious lead gen strategies out there - social media marketing.
“Social networks are the biggest source of inspiration for consumer purchases with 37% of consumers finding purchase inspiration through the channel.” - PWC
We’re certain that almost everyone reading this knows how social media platforms can be used to drive traffic and bring leads, so we’re not going to reinvent the wheel or state the obvious here.
We would however suggest that you consider branching out into other social networks that you’re not currently advertising on. For example, brands may make the error of thinking that “their audience” is only on Facebook or Twitter and platforms like Snapchat or Instagram aren’t right for them without doing any research.
Look at the demographic data these networks provide and make data-backed decisions. You might be surprised.
Inbound marketing is another obvious B2B lead generation strategy that many brands feel like they are doing effectively when in reality there’s often a lot of potential for improvement.
One of the most common pieces of “low hanging fruit” in content marketing is the testing and optimization of existing marketing materials. This sounds like a huge commitment (and it can be) but there are several “better than nothing” tools for a/b testing that can provide excellent results.
Are you optimizing every piece of content you put out to funnel your visitors into a lead capture form somewhere? Or are you just going for a “post and hope” approach? Have you tracked and tested different methods of lead capture? Different incentives?
Content cadence is another part of the content marketing puzzle that often gets overlooked. How often are you posting? A weekly posting cadence is recommended at minimum, it sends your visitors, and Google quality signals that have several real-world benefits.
Admittedly writing this much content takes time, so people often let things slow down a little bit, consider working with freelance writers if you need a little help. Again, content marketing and business blogging is a topic that’s worthy of an entire series of posts that we cannot cover here, but it’s something you should certainly be looking into.
Sales Intelligence Tools
Sales intelligence tools like Leadfeeder and Leadberry attempt to track information about visitors to your website. These tools provide you with information about what companies visited, where they came from, and what pages they interacted with. There are issues with these kinds of services, in relation to accuracy and scope (not just the two services mentioned, but services like this in general, it's an inherent issue with tracking data that’s not “supposed” to be tracked).
However, the data they provide is unquestionably valuable, even if it is slightly incomplete.
“In 2020, 54% of enterprises say Cloud BI is either critical or very important to their ongoing and future initiatives.” - Dresner
While they are not as annoying as pop up windows, exit popups can be annoying - however, they work.
Consider using exit pop-up ads that prompt the download of a free whitepaper/case study or some other kind of valuable relevant resource when a user is preparing to exit your website. These can entice customers to return or to stay and request a proposal.
There are programs like OptinMonster that offer “Exit Intent® Technology” to target those customers leaving your website, as well as a pop-up, slide-in, and other ads options.
Encourage viewers of your website or friends and contacts on social networks to share your content. If you have eBooks or exclusive content, you could offer that in exchange for sharing content you've made.
This is the traditional word-of-mouth approach made digital, and it really works. When your customers are satisfied and they share with their friends, those potential leads will find their way to you. Raffles and giveaways on social media networks also promote goodwill, and they cost less too. This is one way to build trust in your industry.
If you run out of a product that a customer came to your page and was ready to purchase, you've lost out on an opportunity. That is unless you install a form on your page giving the customer an option to receive an email once the item is back in stock. This function benefits your business for marketing to that person. Once you've captured their email, you can send them your newsletter and other offers.
Create a Community
Whether you call your followers and newsletter recipients your family, tribe, or friends, using inclusive language benefits you from a marketing standpoint. Creating a community where you engage with users regularly is a necessary part of social media marketing. This is especially true on platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn, where users are looking for value but also entertainment.
“An online community can help organizations improve engagement by up to 21%.” - Vanilla Forums
If you engage with users on these platforms and spread goodwill, that'll become associated with your brand. Hopefully, they'll remember their impression of you when they see your PPC ads. Wistia encourages making “just-for-fun” videos, including posts that disappear on your Instagram or Facebook Story.
You can use this as an opportunity to show off your corporate culture, show behind-the-scenes and candid moments, thus showing authenticity to your users. Experimenting with video adds additional promotional tools to your toolbox as you become more familiar with the editing software available on Facebook and Instagram, as well as tools like Canva for video and photo editing.
The best way to engage with your community is to ask them questions. Whether it's opinion polls about your products or personality quizzes, asking questions creates a give and take exchange with your potential customer. It's also entertaining, lending your brand a fun and approachable quality.
In “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie, he says people love hearing their own name more than anything else. Use this to your advantage by recording yourself pitching to specific individuals and then sending them the video. Creating custom videos like this impresses the customer and lets you show off your people skills better than just over a cold call. Following up after a personalized video is easy and lets you build on a positive first impression.
Since you're making videos, you should consider delivery strategies wherein you capture e-mails. Don't keep all your videos gated, but having premium content only available to those who give e-mail information is an effective lead-capturing tactic
You've captured all these emails from your gated videos and other exclusive content. Now what? Cold emailing makes many new business owners nervous, but B2B marketers should remember that other professionals don't mind emails as long as there's value to them.
Entertain your prospect with straight-to-the-chase product messaging and entertainment. Use custom animated GIFs to keep their attention, and send follow-up messages to firm up the connection.
Whether it's Live Chat, Live Streaming on Twitch, or Facebook, going live is a great way to get attention. Be creative and funny, and you'll stand out from the crowd. Don't use marketing lingo! Nothing turns off customers faster, even if you're talking to fellow marketers.
You can also use live video as an opportunity to create FOMO, or Fear of Missing Out, a psychological phenomenon where you as a business can create the appearance of scarcity. Whether through live videos or limited run products or offers, using FOMO increases demand unless your offer is transparently a cash grab.
Guest blogging for your peers. Sharing your content on industry websites and infographics for other professionals to use gets your brand in front of potential customers. This also creates a subconscious connection between your business and the site hosting your content in the reader’s mind, so make sure the content is high-quality and adds value.
The Final Word
From the days of a Rolodex being the most important piece of tech in the office to the present reality of advanced neural networks and A.I - filling your pipeline has always been key to a healthy, thriving business.
By using some of the techniques above you’ll hopefully be able to keep your pipeline fuller, your sales department busier, and your company’s shareholders happier.
Scott Stevens is the founder and CEO of The Content Panel. He loves writing, reading, and talking about himself in the third person. Check us out on Facebook & Twitter.