15+ Best B2B Lead Generation Strategies to Grow Sales in 2021
In the past, there used to be a time B2B marketers had to approach the market in traditional way to advertise their products and services. But that time has passed. Today, with the rapid development of technology and the Internet, businesses have a new means to reach customers faster and more broadly. However, one thing that has not changed in B2B marketers’ mindset is creating potential customers - also known as Lead generation.
In a market economy with fierce competition among business rivals, recognizing the importance of potential customers and making long-term plans to take care of this segment best has been a measure for businesses. 5% of experts think lead generation marketing is the most crucial component in the marketing arsenal. However, only 42% of business owners have a plan for a lead generation marketing campaign, following the current market needs, mapping out effective ways to attract customers, helps companies grow faster and doesn’t lag behind other competitors.
Lead generation is the key to developing relationships with customers, thereby helping businesses grow. However, this is not an easy job. For each Marketing or Sale department, there are always two problems: “How to get more leads?” and “How to lead quality?” To do this, you need to model the steps, including creating content, pulling traffic, converting, screening to bring the best quality leads through the sales team. Not only that, but you also have to compete with countless other content and ads to attract the attention of users. It is difficult, right?
Therefore, in this article, I will introduce to you Best B2B lead generation strategies to help you have an overview and apply it in your business strategy. Let’s dive in!
Table of Contents
- What is B2B lead generation?
- What is a lead generation process for B2B businesses?
- 15 Best B2B lead generation strategies for you in 2021
- 1. Content Marketing
- 2. Social Media Marketing
- 3. Pay Per Click
- 4. Get More Social Shares
- 5. Turning “Out of Stock” into an Opportunity
- 6. Build Your Email List with the Godfather-Strategy
- 7. Using FOMO to Increase Your Conversion Rate
- 8. Use Intent Popups or Slide-in, Opt-in on Key Pages
- 9. Asking Questions to Get Conversion Rate
- 10. Gain Trusted Backlinks
- 11. Get Creative with Cold Emails
- 12. Record the Actions of Your Website Visitors
- 13. Encourage Online Reviews
- 14. Expand Your Online Presence
- 15. Use Gmail Ads to Target Your Competitors’ Audience
- Why should you choose the right B2B lead generation strategies?
- Final words
What is B2B lead generation?
Leads are the type of customers who are qualified and have an interest in what your company sells. For B2B businesses, potential customers might be the decision makers in your target company. To identify potential customers, the hardest part is identifying and evaluating the interest level of a contact. Two factors that are fit and your intention will help you screen and classify customers, and from that, you will know which cases to prioritize.
The B2B lead generation stands for lead generation of business to business company. Businesses primarily sell their products and services to customers that are other businesses.
Lead generation is the first and foremost step in the typical sales and marketing process. Lead generation is the process by which marketers will identify, attract, and screen potential buyers of your product or service. This process is directly related to the implementation of activities that promote and attract potential customers’ attention.
You will collect a potential customer’s basic information such as name, email, company name, and job title. This information will be used to personalize communication and sales. After this information is collected, these potential customers will receive support through automatic marketing tools and are transferred to sales once they qualify. The ultimate goal of B2B lead generation is to create a consistent system of prospective buyers.
Creating leads in B2B marketing involves the following steps:
- Find the right companies who need solutions from your company
- Identify relevant decision makers from target companies
- Attract potential customers through various marketing activities and campaigns
- Evaluate their potential based on your ideal customer criteria and the level of interest they show your product.
- How to Create a Winning Lead Generation System?
- 4+ Best Shopify Build Leads Apps
- Top 15 Lead Generation Companies
What is a lead generation process for B2B businesses?
Now that you have an overview of B2B lead generation with current marketing methods let’s take a look at the lead generation process’s steps.
Firstly, when a customer visits to learn about your business through your marketing channels, such as your website, blog, or social media page. That visitor then clicks your call to action (CTA) as an image, button, or message encouraging website visitors to take some action. That CTA will link your visitors to a landing page, which is a website designed to capture potential customer’s information in exchange for an offer.
You should remember that your offer must be valuable content being provided on the landing page, such as ebooks, courses, or product samples, ect. The offer must be of sufficient value so that visitors are willing to provide their personal information in exchange for access to it. When on the landing page, your visitors fill in a form in exchange for an offer. And so, you have a new prospect.
In short, the process of generating leads is the process by which a visitor who clicks on CTA will be taken to the landing page where they fill in the form to receive the offer. At that time, they will become potential customers of your business.
The process of lead generation helps you start the process of attracting customers properly. Having a good lead plan is the first step to attracting potential customers both in quantity and quality. Without this process, it would challenging for your business to target the customers you want.
15 Best B2B lead generation strategies for you in 2021
1. Content Marketing
If your company is always full of quality and interesting content, content marketing is not a bad choice. For your content to work effectively, you should conduct thorough research to know what language you should use, what content your customers will like, etc. Learn more about the 5 w’s and the H in content marketing to create content that engages and converts customers.
Get to know your target audience and give them a high-quality copy. This will help you optimize the search engine (SEO) for your website. SEO helps increase your page views through the search engines, thereby increasing the number of potential customers.
Search engines can be one of the best marketing tools. If you succeed with SEO, you will attract new customers quickly and for free. Therefore, you should have a strong content marketing strategy that provides the information that your target audience desires. Ensure your strategy is best for your customers and best suited to what your company can keep up.
Once you have your tools, plans, and strategies in place, make sure you stay consistent in your marketing campaigns. This is something that many companies have been unable to do.
Social media allows you to simplify the process of creating your leads as it helps you reach your goals faster. 62% of marketers believe that social networks like LinkedIn and Facebook are effective in generating leads. These social networks provide businesses with a platform where they can engage with potential customers.
Moreover, today, it is rare to meet someone who does not have a Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram account. So advertising on social networks is very useful. When placing ads on these platforms, you can set the location, age, gender, and interests of many others. This way, you can reach more potential customers.
You can generate more leads through social media; however, it also requires a thorough strategy.
3. Pay Per Click
SEO and content marketing are relatively useful ways of marketing, but it also has the disadvantage of making sure you take time. PPC is the simplest way of marketing for fast results. This method is especially effective if you know who your target audience is. However, it also has a very expensive drawback, depending on your business sector.
You can make the most of PPC by posting ads online. The most frequently used tool is Google Adwords - the platform that allows you to post ads on the Google network. This strategy will consist of three main parts:
Search Network: Ads appear when you Google something in the form of search results and are usually located at the top of the page. The biggest advantage of the search network is that users often have a purpose when searching. If customers are looking for something, they are most likely researching or about to buy.
Display Network: These ads appear on sites that have agreed to let Google run ads. These ads are usually intuitive and can be created using Google’s automated ad builder. You can save money when you don’t need to create multiple ads for different sizes.
Remarketing: You can make remarketing in Google AdWords or use a third-party platform. You will need to build a list of relevant elements of people who have visited your website. This will be done thanks to a pixel you place on your site.
4. Get More Social Shares
Posts of popular celebrities or KOLs show real-world examples of viral marketing tactics using social sharing to increase new leads.You can use sharing to grow your audience and make your content more widely available.
This is a great strategy to use for B2B marketing. This strategy helps your company get more conversions without having to pay extra for marketing.
Viral marketing is an essential factor after you’ve created great content. We can create viral content by asking existing customers to share with their friends about promotions or company products.
By using bonuses and additional offers as gifts, your customers will share your offer with their friends. It’s another form of word of mouth introduction without the need for additional advertising.
5. Turning “Out of Stock” into an Opportunity
When an item is out of stock, your customers will leave. However, you absolutely can turn that into an opportunity for yourself. Instead of just displaying a red text that says this item is sold out as most online retailers do, add a form below the product’s text with the plan notice and Time this item will be produced further.
A little tip for you is that if you know when your item will be back in stock, add a countdown timer to the expected date next to your product or build a feature—reservation for customers who want to buy the product.
6. Build Your Email List with the Godfather-Strategy
Compared to sending a bland newsletter that says “Sign up for the newsletter”, headlines like “Join our tribe with over 2500 world-class marketers and salespeople” will attract much more customer attention. They are basically the same proposal, but the second proposal adds some social proof. From there, the customers will feel excited and new.
Customers will be interested in content that is personalized for them. And that certainly proves true even to this day with social media advertising, content marketing, and conversion-based copy.
If you already have an email thread to send to your customers, you can rewrite it a bit and turn it into a 3-day, 5-day, or 10-day cycle.
7. Using FOMO to Increase Your Conversion Rate
Applying scarcity or FOMO is one of the few tactics that can almost instantly increase your conversion rate. Products sold out quickly, or items with limited quantities always stimulate the curiosity of customers. This makes them feel like they have to buy this item before it runs out.
However, you should think twice before applying this strategy to all your pages. Your visitors are not stupid. They will detect fake offers pretty quickly. So your customers will feel cheated if they find out your offer continues to run after they have purchased.
So make sure you use FOMO in a limited way and some instances. Some situations where you can use the FOMO strategy are:
- When you have a limited offer
- when there are only a few positions left on your web
- when a product is out of stock
- when your products are purchased
8. Use Intent Popups or Slide-in, Opt-in on Key Pages
Whether you like it or not, pop-ups or slide-in, opt-in ads always catch website visitors’ attention. However, you should remember where your customers want to be redirected, and the more they are not blocked from reading your content. Whether accidentally or intentionally, blocking the page content that users are reading will cause discomfort and it is difficult to help you attract loyal customers.
Imagine, a popup has your name in it and tells you which products they think you should register. This will really stimulate you to click on it. When a business can build a deep relationship with their customers, they will see an increase in the number of subscriptions, but most importantly, their conversion rate and sales rate will also increase.
9. Asking Questions to Get Conversion Rate
Currently, questions are the latest fad in leads generation strategies. While it is not an orthodox marketing strategy, it does produce incredible results. Online surveys today do not cost too much for businesses. You have the flexibility to ask your clients questions and anonymously if they ask. You can totally get good conversion rates from such surveys.
Nowadays, the most commonly used survey tool is Google Forms. It can easily be embedded into your WordPress site, contact form plugin or sent via email.
Just remember to make the survey fun, engaging and most importantly easy to use. You should use multiple choice questions, which not only help customers easily fill in but also help you make conjectures from the equation.
10. Gain Trusted Backlinks
We all know that word of mouth is the simplest and cheapest marketing. When someone introduces your business, your business will gain instant trust and trust. A second good referral is a trustworthy website that sends their users their customers with your company’s information. This is called backlink. Backlink is when a reliable website is introducing customers back to your site.
You can build strong backlinks and gain trust from other websites in many ways:
- Logging for other companies
- Have other sites sharing your content
- Get on a site resource page
- Provide infographics that other businesses will share
- Get free backlinks if someone copies your images.
Write great content that others really want to link to, Backlinks will start to appear naturally every day with higher quality content than you have. There are many ways to create backlinks, but you absolutely should not buy them. Do your research carefully before sharing your content or article on another site. Your website could be negatively affected if you receive backlinks from followers from unreliable sources.
11. Get Creative with Cold Emails
Sending a cold email is a very difficult strategy because you have absolutely no previous relationship with the company or person you’re sending it to. Therefore, you must make a good impression right from the first email to get good results.
To successfully implement the cold email method, be creative to stand out from the crowd. You can add things like animated GIFs or memes to your email to grab the recipient’s attention.
Please send at least two tracking emails. Just like sending messages to social networking sites, people tend to ignore strange messages or emails. Sending two or three emails will make your email more visible. However, you need to pay attention to avoid sending too many emails and too continuously to make the customer feel that you are spam.
12. Record the Actions of Your Website Visitors
A great way to figure out why your site visitors aren’t converting is to analyze your site’s actions. Today, many tools analyze user behavior that can allow you to record user sessions and draw heatmaps on your website’s most clicked buttons.
Many CRO experts have stated that this step is one of the fastest ways you can uncover individual customer behavior in your process. You can completely research why they don’t convert, why they don’t fill out the registration form, why they like this site.
From here, you can draw on your own experiences, overcome weaknesses, or apply other strategies to your other sites.
13. Encourage Online Reviews
A recent study found that 92% of consumers read online reviews when considering buying a product or service. If your website does not have an authentication page or a review feature, it can cause you to lose the opportunity of being contacted by customers. Give your customers the opportunity to add a review and post it on your website.
Reviews help build customer confidence and improve your product’s search rankings on search engines and ultimately improve conversions. The study also shows that customers tend to spend 31% more for businesses with excellent reviews.
14. Expand Your Online Presence
The aspects and styles of your brand are not just limited to your website and social channels. Your brand appears on other websites to increase your reputation, such as customer blog posts, interviewed or answered Quora.com questions.
Quora can help you get thousands of potential customers if you answer relevant questions in your industry. Position your brand as an expert in that field to help increase brand awareness. It also helps first-time newcomers to trust your brand for the first time.
15. Use Gmail Ads to Target Your Competitors’ Audience
Email marketing is still the most popular method of generating leads. According to the latest report on email marketing, 77% of B2B marketers use email marketing to attract potential customers.
In B2B, it is important to attract the attention of customers from your competitors. Gmail ads let you determine the goals of your Google Advertising campaign to people who have received emails from your competitors. It provides you direct access to people who are familiar with your service.
Use this opportunity to show something different from your competitors and make customers realize your company’s strengths. You should use familiar language, optimize your email marketing layout and give them an offer they can hardly refuse.
Why should you choose the right B2B lead generation strategies?
So why should you choose the right strategy to attract B2B potential customers to you? The answer to this question depends on each person asked.
In terms of the best sources of B2B leads, SEO can be considered the best lead generation channel. On the other hand, when it comes to using the data of the main market, email marketing is the most effective channel to generate leads. In addition, there have been surveys that report that social media and content marketing are also the most effective form of B2B creation.
So why are there a lot of variations in the way that leads are made? That is because to satisfy the individual requirements of each customer. A survey conducted by an email marketing service provider will certainly have different results than those conducted by the PPC management tool. This is simply because their target customers have different thoughts and needs that lead to discrepancies in the results of individual company surveys.
Therefore, what we need to do is not to combine all the best strategies or choose only one strategy to generate leads. You should rank specifically the different strategies in these studies. Then depending on the purpose and type of customers you want to target to choose the most appropriate marketing strategy.
Over the years, there are a number of strategies that have always been favored by businesses when creating potential customers:
- Email marketing
- SEO marketing
- Social media marketing
- Content marketing
- Optimize conversion rates
These methods will be considered for appropriate use, but keep in mind that the way you use leads is more important than the channel you choose. While the channel and strategy you choose will play a big part in generating leads, the way you run your campaign will play an even bigger role.
The strategy of generating leads must vary flexibly according to the target audience. Factors such as trends, behavior changes, opinions, etc also influence the creation of leads in marketing. Therefore, you need A/B testing to see which CTA gives the best results, which landing page will convert the most and which content will attract the most users. Constantly experimenting with the layout design, UX, content, different advertising channels to determine which is the most optimal version.
What has been shared in the article above is just the basic knowledge in the lead generation process. There are many things that you still need to do. Do not forget to work closely with team sales to ensure the highest quality lead. Finally, always experience new methods. Changing and testing every step of the lead generation process through it will help improve lead quality and increase business profits. Hopefully, with the 15 B2B lead generation strategies I mentioned above, it will help you attract more potential customers and grow your business strongly.