24 B2B Lead Generation Strategies That Actually Work In 2020

b2b-lead-generation-strategies

25 Mar 2020

24 B2B Lead Generation Strategies That Actually Work In 2020

By Sparsh

Reaching out to your target audience and generating leads for your B2B lead generation campaigns is not as easy as it seems. 

Although there are multitudinous ways you can target or reach to your target audience, but there is no one fix for all. 

The strategies that work for a B2C marketplace may not work for a B2B SAAS software service. 

To have things in your favour the first thing you have to do is to do thorough market research. 

You have to set B2B lead generation goals for your campaigns so that you measure track and develop your strategies as you move along.

Let’s discuss the B2B lead generation strategies that we use to target and acquire leads for our campaigns.

1. Content Marketing

The first contact you can make with the online audience is through content and the content is the only thing today that drives people to their actions. 

So the bottom line is you need to create content that solves the pain point of your audience. 

The question is how should strategize your content delivery?

The first thing you should do is to know your customer well. 

Do thorough research and create buyer personas depending on the content you would be creating.

Let’s us know what buyer personas are so that you can optimize your lead generation campaigns accordingly.

i) Buyer Personas

Buyer personas are fictional and generalized representations of your ideal customers.

These are a documented list of your audience interests, hobbies, demographics from career history to information of their family members. Challenges or pain points, goals and motivations everything around which you can make the drive.

It is the complete customer journey from on how he/she is going to come to you through all his/her struggle in finding the right content that you provide them. 

These will help you discover your customer better and help you to tailor personalized strategies for them.  

There is a concept called AIDA Model which discusses content delivery to your audience.

ii) AIDA Model

Awareness- Grab attention through brand recognization.

Interest- Bringing thoughts and discussion about the brand.

Desire- Increasing desire through social media and email marketing.

Action- Making the audience to take the required action.

This model discusses the phases in your B2B lead generation campaigning and gives you an idea of what content to be delivered in what phase.

iii) Personalized Content

Your content is the backbone of your website. Content is not a thing for a search engine to crawl and rank but it is for your audience to read. 

It must have a purpose to solve a real problem.

Content plays a huge role in a lead generation strategy but the question arises: how it will going to help in converting your audience into your real customers?

Start with the proper competitor research that will help you discover the right content strategy then ask these questions to have more clarity:

What keywords to focus on?

What content to write that aligns with your audiences’ queries?

What type of content satisfies your audience?

What content medium your audience prefer to consume the content in? 

Getting these answered will help you to get a clear picture with your lead generation campaign.

iv) Gate your Content Strategically

Gating your content is a very direct way of collecting your visitors’ data. 

But you have to be very careful while gating your content. If you gate your content before properly nurturing your audience they will not appreciate the value your gated content will be providing.

Your lead has to be properly nurtured before they get to see you gated content so that they will love to share their details in exchange for your gated content.

2. Email Marketing

Email marketing is one of the most used B2B lead generation tactics but is eventually misunderstood and not done correctly which ultimately results in bad conversion rates.

One of the advantages of email marketing is its flexibility to be easily automated. It demands little time and effort in optimization and automation but the result it yields is sweeter.

Some ideas that can help you automate and refine your email marketing strategy are:

i) Lead Segmentation and Lead Scoring

Lead segmentation would be the first process when you have your email list in place. 

The goal of lead segmentation is bringing clarity of each lead in your email list so that you know how each one of them should be treated.

In simple words, lead segmentation involves mapping your leads on the basis of their-

  • Demographic
  • Persona 
  • Behaviour

Lead scoring refers to scoring your leads at a scale that validates of converting them into your customer.

Each marketer uses his/her own benchmark to set its leads in their matrix.

Check this blog on how to nurture B2B leads which explains a simple but effective way of lead scoring that we use in our B2B lead generation campaigns.

Lead scoring is the process that follows your lead segmentation process but rather than making it once, it needs a continuous update over all of your leads.

ii)Email Marketing KPIs

Open Rate- Ratio of emails opened to total emails delivered to your recipients.

Unsubscribe Rate- Similar to open rate unsubscribe rate is also not a reliable KPI.

Click-through Rate- The percentage of email recipients who have clicked (total or unique) through one or more links in the email to total emails delivered.

Email Sharing and Forwarding Rate- The ratio email recipients who clicked on action type: “Share this” or “Forward to a friend to total emails delivered.

Conversion Rate- The percentage of email recipients who have clicked (total or unique) through your email (took the desired action you want to them do in the email) to total emails delivered.

Make sure you track these basic KPIs for your email marketing campaigns. 

Check this blog on B2B lead generation KPIs that every marketing and sales team should track. 

3. Intent Pop-Ups>

Pop-ups are generally annoying for a customer, but if implemented properly it can act as a great lead magnet for your B2B lead generation process.

Exit-intent detection technology, behaviour tracking predictions and machine learning algorithms are fancy terms most modern marketers use to help you make millions.

There are several ways you can use pop-ups. The types of pops-ups marketers use are scroll, entry, exit, click, and timed pop-ups. 

Unlike entry and timed pop-ups intent exit pop-ups are considered to be the best performing since it is based on user action.

Intent exit pop-ups have been proven to significantly decrease bounce rates and increase time-on-site of a customer. 

The things that you should take care of while implementing pop-ups are:

i) Make them Intentional

Your pop-ups should be intentional or user action-based. A pop-up should align with the context of the page it has been popped off. 

When you get this thing right you are basically doing a kind of retargeting. You are targetting the audience who have already visited your page. 

It will help to increase the conversion rate as well as lower down your bounce rate. 

ii) Popup Timing is Critical

You know this very well, timing matters. Approach a customer too soon and you will scare them off. Approach them too late and the decision of leaving has already been made.

When a visitor comes to your blog post or any page he/she might need an appropriate amount of time to absorb what they are seeing on the page before you offer them your pitch otherwise they would not be able to digest your offer.

40 seconds for a timed popup or 30% of the page with a scroll popup are considered to be effective by marketing pros. It is an optimum amount of time a person needs to get an idea of your webpage is all about. 

iii) CTA 

You should have a clear exit strategy for your pop-up. A clear and properly optimized CTA can save a ton of traffic outflow from your website and help to decrease the bounce rate.

A very special technique that most people use is what is called a negative CTA. For example-

A pop-up with actionable CTA like- I want daily tips on making muffins should also have a negative CTA saying I don’t want to learn how to make muffins.

This is an incredible tactic in the way it makes your customer realize what they are going to miss when they don’t be a part of it.

4. Webinars

Holding a webinar doesn’t need expensive cameras and a dedicated studio. All you need is a niche topic to discuss and a laptop.

A little marketing on social media and onto your website will help you get a couple of audience for your webinar.

Your webinar doesn’t only help to get pre-qualified leads but also help to set expectations and generate interest in your product or service.

And lastly, you will be able to have collect email addresses of all the attendees of the webinar to which you can start nurturing those leads.

5. Social Media

i) LinkedIn

LinkedIn provides a tool called Sales Navigator which provides an ease to find prospect B2B leads for your business. Sales Navigator is one of the best tools for B2B lead generation for businesses.  

Use this tool to extract emails and start email outreaching campaigns.

You can also acquire B2B leads organically by providing value through case studies and examples of projects that you have done successfully. People on LinkedIn respect valuable content like these.

ii) Facebook

Organically through finding leads from different Facebook niched pages or inorganically through Facebook ads. 

Facebook ads are the best to reach to your targeted audience through Facebook custom audiences. 

iii) Twitter

Twitter is also considered to be a great source but you have to know how to use Twitter for B2B lead generation. 

The form of content that works on twitter is micro snippets of your long-form content, short live videos of online events that you attend, and posting trending content etc.

If you keep posting valuable content on Twitter you will continuously be building yourself a brand and will help in connecting with people and hence generating B2B leads for your business.

6. Email Newsletters

Email newsletters is one of the most common tactics that every marketer uses on the web today. 

But most of the time the very audience that subscribed to your newsletter doesn’t even bother to open your mail and consider reading it.

So something needs to be changed.

With every second marketer using email newsletter as their tactic to retain customers and to generate more leads, the attention span of people is declining.

So how would you win in such a scenario?

Below are some of the things you need to take care of while implementing an email newsletter for your B2B lead generation campaign: 

i) Personalize the Content

Personalizing content for your audience doesn’t mean to deliver mails reciting names of your subscribers. 

You need to understand what content acted as gated content for every person who has subscribed your newslettee gated content will decide the complete persona of that person. You have to deliver your content aligning to those personas.

ii)Schedule for Weekly

The less you send the more they notice. You don’t have to just engage with your audience, you need to be disciplined with quality personalized content. 

In that case, a weekly newsletter is a weekly newsletter. You need to be punctual and regular to deliver newsletter every week and don’t bloat loads of content to your customer,

iii) Keep it Short and Simple 

The role of an email newsletter is not to deliver the whole piece of content but just the idea of it.

When you have content created you need to express the idea of it. Since you have addressed the best thing of that content, all you need to do is to put a clear CTA to redirect your customers to the content page.

7. Quora

Quora is of the most authoritative Q&A websites on the internet. Not using it might be a big miss for your lead generation campaigns. 

You can leverage it in your advantage but it is not at all similar to other platforms. You can not just add random content and expect true engagement from your audience.

i) Provide True Value

The ideology behind Quora working as your lead magnet for your lead generation business is-

“Provide True Value”.

But the real question is- how can it be done every single time?

Well, you don’t have to focus to come as a winner everytime, all you have to do is create a content that actually helps people get their best answers for their questions.

ii)Use Your Competition to Your Advantage

This is the best strategy so far that works on most of the social platforms present online.

When you know your niche, you just have to go onto Quora and search related competitors or queries and curate their content. 

Next step would be to create content better than any answers available. 

The audience on Quora knows how to respect a good content. When you continue providing such value, people will try to connect to you and that how you will get organic leads for your lead generation campaign. 

And being a good content on Quora will also help in SEO and Search engine rankings unless you don’t spam by forcefully linking to your website.

8. Ebook Marketing 

Ebook is a proven lead magnet leveraged by millions of marketers today.  

i) Keep the Target Audience in Mind

Before doing anything beforehand, the first to do is to make buyer personas pertaining to content you have created and shared with your audience.

Don’t ever think of starting your ebook marketing campaign until you have detailed information regarding buyer demographics based on your research.

Remember that best results come when you put yourself in the customer’s shoes.

ii)Relevant, Valuable, Unique & Detailed

The best way to get really good and genuine engagement of your audience is to provide them with the highest quality of information that they can’t expect from anywhere else.

Optimize your ebook from the customer point of view which aligns with their expectations and more importantly provide them with the content which is relevant, valuable and so detailed that they can’t even imagine.

iii)Use Social Media

Social media when done right is the biggest source of customers for your ebook. 

But the question arises how you are going to do it?

The best tactic that gave me the best response for my ebook marketing campaigns is posting short snippets of my ebook on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest etc. 

The reason why it works is when people see valuable content they tend to visit and share it to their community. And the first thing they do is they want to connect with you and can easily share their details as they believe in you.

And as a matter of fact, they are connections now you can market them any number of times. But be wise and don’t make them feel you a scam.

iv) Use a Simple Landing Page and a Form to Capture Lead Details 

Make your landing page and your gated form simple and interactive.

Believe me or not, the landing page plays a great role in your conversions. 

And if your landing page doesn’t deliver the right message to your reader, then it doesn’t matter how good your ebook is you will not get the desired results. 

Check this blog on how to optimize your landing page for B2B lead generation.

9. Podcast

Podcasts are the most trending way to share content today. 

The reason why it is so popular in the industry since it is more communicative and more interactive than any source of content delivery and allows brands to communicate easily to their target audience.

Set up regular podcasts with quality content and put those on various podcast channels available on Google play store and Apple App Store.

Podcasts are an evergreen source of lead generation, once recorded they will continue to drive leads for your business.

10. HARO

HARO is used by journalists around the world who are looking for people to interview for upcoming news articles. 

When you subscribe to it you will be getting two to three emails from reporters who are looking to interview.

You have a choice to respond to whichever requests you feel you are qualified to answer, and if you are chosen, you will be interviewed via telephone or email.

And if have given valuable information, the reporter will most probably link back to your website from the same news article.

There are two benefits of this: it helps you build a brand in the industry and on the other hand and also helps in your SEO.

11. Trade Ad Space with Non-Competitor

Always keep looking for businesses who are selling complementary services, but are not a direct competitor to you.

Then reach out to them asking to exchange banner ads for free. In short, you will run their banner ads on your website and they will run yours.

NOTE:

This will only work if you have a similar kind of website traffic they have on theirs. You can also trade with those businesses that are actively engaging in online advertising since that will finally contribute to their website traffic which is totally worth it.

12. Media Buys

This lead generation tactic is the most widely used by the fortune 500 companies. Media buying refers to buying ad space on someone else’s website, radio, or TV program.

You conversion would depend on the channel, type of audience, and time of ad delivery and placement.

There are certain companies who buy a block of ad space and then resell into chunks for a cost.

Choosing an ad-buying company can be tricky you have to do your due diligence before you choose to work with one of them.

13. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is when someone promotes your products or services in exchange for a commission. 

Running your own affiliate system is a winner move but there are third-party sites like ShareASale, Linkshare and Commission Junction, where you can find similar sites who can promote your products or services on a commission basis.

Every affiliate website generates an affiliate link for your product and when someone comes by clicking on it, it gets tracked and at the end of the month, you owe the owner of the referring website a commission which is a fraction of the sale.

14. Remarketing or Retargeting

The visitors that visit onto your website already have an idea of your product or service to some extent even if they don’t buy or avail it.

Both Google AdWords and Facebook ads have the ability to remarket to your website visitors. This is called ad remarketing.

The browser uses “cookies” which is a small piece of code which is automatically placed in the user system browser and track when they browse. This is how Google Adwords work.

Facebook ads on the other way use Facebook Pixel to track visitors activity and has the ability to target those who have already visited your website. You can escalate your retargeting through the Facebook Custom Audience which targets only people which aligns with your buyer personas.

Though you might be re-investing in your organic traffic but this investment is totally worth it since it will cost you pennies to remarket your prospective audience to make them your customers. 

15. Forum Sponsorships

Forums are a great platform of people with niched interest. There are discussion forums for all kind of audience in the world. 

The best way to find your niche forum is to type your niche keyword on Google search box following with the word “forum”. 

Collaborate with the webmaster of the forum trade their ad space for a certain amount of price. You can grab leads since the forum you choose caters the audience satisfying your buyer’s persona.

16. Run Contests, Polls or Discounts

Running contests or polls is a great way to acquire some leads. You can run a simple poll or a contest offering a discount or a coupon code which your audience can enjoy.

A simple coupon code like 50% off on first 10 subscribers would let you grab contact info of so many people in your niche that you can remarket later.

17. Run Referral Programs

You can set up a referral program by picking up your services or products you would like to promote and then offer a commission you think would work say 10% to whoever promotes it.

You can also use your email list for promoting your products or services through email marketing by yourself or outsource to someone.

18. Free Consultations to Businesses

Offering free consultation is one of the best strategies that work most of the time. All our campaigns for our clients strategically run around the idea of free consultations. 

And if we successfully deliver our consultation, most of the time we successfully convert the client since they have developed a trust in us.

This strategy works all the time since you are providing value to your customer for free in exchange for any favour. 

19. Free Courses

Who doesn’t love free stuff? 

Offering free courses is a good way to grab customers, one of the best ways to implement this is to create short online courses. This will act as a great lead magnet.

And when you create mini-courses for different niches or topics you can have different leads with different buyer personas which can retarget later.

20. Case Studies

Case studies is the most effective way of getting traffic to your website.

Since case studies feel genuine and real examples of your portfolio or work they build a sense of trust in your customer. 

This is a great way of building a relationship with your customer. 

Even if they don’t buy anything from you, you have built a relationship with them which will help you to get the business in future since they know you and your expertise.

21. Build an App

If you are in the service industry, it is far easier today to have an app or a SAAS software which you can provide to your audience.

Mos B2C businesses use a mobile application to track and remarket their products to people.

Well, an can be equally profitable when it comes to B2B lead generation. You just have to be unique and precise in your service.

An app or a SAAS software can be a great tool of new leads and also help in nurturing them.

22. Youtube and Vimeo Videos 

Every website is a search engine in itself. And video streaming channels like Youtube and Vimeo are great platforms and have an audience for every niche.

The best part is you don’t need to find your audience. You just have to upload your content and people will find you automatically. 

The content that works on these video streaming channels are “how-tos” and informational content. 

Most of the marketers use youtube to post valuable content with important page links in the description. When people love their content they tend to connect with them. 

23. Live Chatbot

Chatbots are good in the way they act as a great automation tool. They help you reach and engage to a wider audience by automatically starting conversations and qualify as warm leads.

Chatbots include internet-based software that are smart enough to respond to your visitors based on their behaviours. 

There are many chatbot services available like Mobile Monkey, TARS, FlowXo, and Botsify which allow customizing your own chatbot for your website or social media. With short, clear and effective copywriting this may be a great tool which will drive leads to your B2B lead generation funnel.

24. Hire a B2B Lead Generation Company

Instead of trying everything by yourself you can hire a B2B lead generation company.

Outsourcing B2B lead generation to a company is worth it since those companies are doing it for a long time and they understand the needs of businesses since they have already worked for companies from diverse backgrounds.

They have preset procedures and teams delegated for each task. Hiring a B2B lead generation company is another way you can generate leads for your business hassle-free and help you focus on your core business.

Wrapping Up

Generating leads is one thing and building a stream of B2B lead generation is another. 

Most of the marketers face difficulty in creating a continuous flow of B2B leads for their businesses. Moreover, this is not an overnight task. You have to keep doing your A/B testing as complementary to your lead generation strategies. 

And the most important thing to keep up with is proper tracking of your results. Unless you don’t keep measuring your results you would not be knowing what improvements your practices demand.