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How to Generate B-to-B Leads in the Digital Age

When it comes to lead generation, the tools of the trade – and your role in the process – are evolving rapidly in the digital age. You can no longer rely on pricey print ads and trade show booths to generate the B-to-B leads your company needs to succeed. Today, working closely with sales, creating valuable content and delivering it via online venues have become key components of lead generation success.B-to-B Leads

In its Lead Generation: A Fundamental Flourishes in The Digital Age white paper, B-to-B states “The lead-gen process relies on multiple factors and, ideally, many channels. Like never before, marketing integration – using ever-more sophisticated tools and metrics along with sales/marketing alignment – is helping perfect lead-gen efforts.”

B-to-B also notes “By creating a marketing environment that incorporates all channels, from Web and social to direct mail, call centers and webcasts – and on to such exciting new opportunities as virtual trade shows and virtual environments – lead-gen efforts perform better as marketers tie every aspect of a campaign back to a single overarching strategy.”

Here are three key findings from the white paper, which is based upon a 2012 survey of 605 B-to-B marketing professionals.

  • Sales/Marketing Alignment: According to B-to-B, 66% of marketers said that their sales and marketing teams work closely together to develop lead generation processes. In addition, 80% of highly effective marketers reported that they collaborate with sales during the lead generation process, while only 57% of less effective marketers said that they work with sales to create lead generation programs.
  • Lead Nurturing: 49% of survey respondents said that they nurture leads; however, the type of lead nurturing they performed ranged from simply tracking leads on a spreadsheet to using sophisticated CRM and marketing automation systems. Lead nurturing also correlates to marketing success – 74% of the most effective marketers reported that they used lead nurturing compared to only 26% of low-effectiveness marketers.
  • Quality Content Drives Lead-Gen: Marketers agreed that five tactics are tops when it comes to lead nurturing: Sales calls, webcasts, newsletters, thought leadership and white papers. However, high achieving marketers focused on providing educational content such as white papers and webcasts to nurture leads, while low achieving marketers used more direct tactics such as telemarketing and sales calls.

Still not sure what will work for you? You can learn more about B-to-B lead generation in the Lead Generation: A Fundamental Flourishes in The Digital Age. Download this white paper from our friends at B-to-B.