Mapping it Out: Improving Your Lead Generation Strategy

Improving your lead generation strategy requires a multi-faceted approach to your company’s inbound marketing efforts. If you built it well, you will soon see qualified lead numbers rise.

Know Your Target Markets

In 2015, businesses are allocating hundreds of billions of dollars to market online with the goals of increasing website traffic and generating new leads, according to data from the Content Marketing Institute. For your business, all the dollars in your marketing budget might as well end up in the trash without adequate preparation. No lead generation strategy can begin to meet its goals without in-depth research of your company’s target markets. This information forms the bedrock of all your marketing efforts and includes a variety of statistical factors that influence customer behavior and ultimately their buying actions. Analyze the following areas:

  • Demographics: Business demographics range from purchasing power to service areas, customer bases, and market share. Knowing these factors helps focus marketing efforts to areas your potential clients do business.
  • Business Life Cycle and Size: How old are the businesses in your target market? Attracting the interest of more established corporations may need different market tactics than startups or small businesses.
  • Differentiating Markets: How will you speak to businesses in each of your target markets? Segmenting markets by business needs in those areas can help your company develop unique lead gen tactics for each.

Create Business Personas

Buyer personas have great utility in B2C marketing, but they can also boost lead generation and conversion rates for B2B companies. Personas, for your B2B purposes, symbolize different potential clients from your core business audience. Give each fictional company an equally made-up name and think critically about their unique cultures, goals, business philosophies, and primary values. What motivates these companies to buy? What obstacles or challenges do they face? Bring in demographic research from target market areas to help round out their vitals. You want to develop three to five different model companies to give enough market coverage without going too granular.

Creating personas of your potential clients gives insight into their motivations and provides your marketers with opportunities to craft content optimized for lead generation. Your teams can also create content to target these personas at all stages of the buying process, from visitor to qualified lead all the way through nurturing and purchasing. The average B2B uses 13 content marketing tactics to bolster lead generation, says the Content Marketing Institute. When you leverage personas, you can bring each tactic — blogs, case studies, in-person events — to bear more effectively by pointing it at the business most likely to respond.

Make Products and Services Essential

How does your company and its products or services solve problems for potential customers? What do your products or services offer that customers can’t get anywhere else in the their market? Understanding your company’s unique value proposition helps your marketing team create compelling calls to action (CTA) that convert visitors into leads. Research from Content Verve shows a 200 percent increase in lead conversion when CTAs use more relevant copy based on customer need and problem resolution. Run through this checklist as part of your lead generation checklist:

  • Get to the Point: Don’t nibble at the corners when describing your potential leads problems and the solutions your business offers. State your claims upfront in as few words as possible. You can have up to a 90 percent increase in lead conversion by cutting just a single word from lengthy ad copy, says Content Verve.
  • Build Value for Visitors: How does your business drive return on investment (ROI) for your clients? How much money do they save by going with your company? Educate potential leads on your cost-saving benefits to increase value.
  • Make it Irresistible: Making your product or service simply too good to pass up through special offers, free trial periods, and cutting complex sign-up forms can increase conversion by about 300 percent, according to Marketing Wizdom.

Speak the Right Business Language

Even your strongest call to action backed by a compelling offer will fall on deaf ears if your leads think your company doesn’t understand their business niche. Speak to your visitors in business language they both understand, use as part of their everyday vernacular, and value from an investment standpoint. How can you build your business as a thought leader in relevant industries without hampering your conversion factors on popular landing pages? Your company blog.

Blog about industry specific issues every week. Talk about exciting projects and services coming down the pike for your business. Illustrate how you see them improving business life for your customers. Your blog turns into a converting element for your company because it increases brand presence as visitors share your articles, which builds authority in target markets. The majority (42 percent) of B2B companies publish new content on multiple days each week. Develop a schedule that works for your company, though aim to put out at least one new blog post every five business days to keep your content fresh for readers.

Target Specific Channels

Your lead generation strategy needs to focus its efforts on specific channels to increase success. Where do your potential business leads congregate online? Do they live on LinkedIn where 63 percent of B2B companies devote their marketing efforts? The marketing strategy your business might use to generate leads from Twitter is not the strategy you would use to boost leads from Facebook or your business website. Think of each social network and your website as their own lead gen channels.

Identify Your Best Leads

What does your “best” lead look like for your business in terms of return on investment? Is your business focused on single transactions or monthly engaged clients? Your best customer isn’t the one who spends the most, but the one that gives your business its highest return on investment. That means everything from cost per acquisition through nurturing and upkeep. Pay particular attention to referring channel when calculating your best lead. According to Triblio, leads generated from inbound marketing cost, on average, 50 percent less than those generated from outbound marketing.

Lead generation is just one piece of your larger business development strategy, but without its solid foundation, you can’t turn those potential customers into devoted business clients.

Want to learn more about improving your lead generation?  Contact us today!