How to Use Content Marketing for Consistent B2B Lead Generation
Ask any modern marketer one of the keys to generating consistent leads, and one thing they’ll say – if not the first – is produce quality and informative material and automate your content marketing. Sending compelling messages at a thoughtful and coordinated cadence, while understanding your audience and where they are in the buyers’ journey, is the most effective way to generate leads without breaking the bank. Content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing and generates about 3-times as many leads (DemandMetric). Furthermore, marketers say the number one benefit of marketing automation is the ability to generate more and better leads (Blender). Add analytics to your marketing automation efforts, and you have a good recipe for generating quality leads consistently – 42% of B2B marketing professionals state that a lack of quality data is their biggest barrier to lead generation (ZoomInfo).
In today’s B2B market, buyers research and engage digitally with content through 67% of the typical B2B buyer’s journey (Lenati) before even considering talking with someone regarding a purchase. In fact, 47% of buyers viewed 3-5 pieces of product information before engaging with a sales rep. (Demand Gen Report). So it’s paramount your content marketing strategy run campaigns with enough material to answer all the questions buyers are looking for including:
- What problem do I have?
- What solution solves my problem?
- How does this solution solve my problem?
- What does this solution do better than the others?
- Is this solution a good fit?
Answering these FAQs with educational information that discusses industry trends, common pains, different ways to approach the solution to industry issues, etc. gives buyers the information they need as they move through the buyers’ journey. Not only does it build trust with the buyer, it promotes your brand and offers prospects insight to help them make an informed decision about solution options.
Align Marketing and Sales to Improve Lead Generation Efforts
With the multiple moving parts involved in the modern sales and marketing machine, both the sales and marketing departments must work together to generate leads, educate them, and move them towards a purchase decision. Marketo finds that companies with an aligned sales and marketing strategy are 67% better at closing deals. Having these two teams aligned with a system that works well for generating leads is critical to any firm’s growth these days. With alignment, both entities understand the target audience, the sales cycle, the appropriate information to send through the proper channels at the right time. The coordination of sales and marketing bridges the communication gaps that otherwise stifle messaging consistency and lead qualification.
“By bringing marketing and sales together and making us more effective as a team, we can build a stronger program to meet advisor needs and achieve business results.” – Mary Rosai, Senior Vice President of Institutional Services Marketing, Charles Schwab (source)
Create Content that Kills and Automate It
If you talk to any modern sales and marketing professional these days about content marketing and how they approach it, you’ll most likely hear four things in common. Think of them as “the four pillars,” of content marketing:
- Tell good, compelling stories
- Be insightful and helpful
- Leverage data to back-up your claims
- Offer sage advice, and lots of it
In this day and age, B2B buyers are squeezed for time, so they’re interested in useful, educational content that is easy to access and digest. Infographics, case studies, white papers and educational blogs help buyers compare their efforts and pains with their peers and/or justify their investment. In fact, 9 out of 10 B2B buyers say online content has a moderate to major effect on their purchasing decisions (Lenati). The most tangible way to link your business to B2B buyers’ needs is to show how you solve problems better than your competition, while showing results similar companies have received when they used your products or services.
Automation allows you to share your educational and thought leadership content along the buyers’ journey to develop trust and stay top of mind with consumers that are not quite ready to buy. Automation tools allow you to score leads according to the value of the content they’re engaging with, allowing your team to predict their readiness to buy based on the content they’ve consumed. As a matter of fact, 80% of automation users saw their number of leads increase, with 77% seeing the number of conversions increase (VB Insight).
B2B lead generation is one of the top sales challenges facing many SMBs that want to grow their sales revenue. Generating a consistent flow of quality leads is critical to be competitive in the market. Framing messages and executing the most current and effective content marketing campaigns using modern sales and marketing operations is essential to any business that wants to grow within today’s buyers driven market. The key is implementing the right strategy, lead generation techniques, and technologies to allow your sales team to focus on selling to qualified leads, while your marketers can focus on sustained and consistent lead generation efforts to improve your sales results and help you meet your revenue targets.
It’s no secret, content marketing moves the needle when done correctly. In fact, 82% of consumers feel more positive about a company after reading custom content (source), while 70% of consumers say content marketing makes them feel closer to the sponsoring company (source). It’s no wonder 88% of marketers in the U.S. and Canada use content marketing as a part of their strategy (HubSpot)
This is where outsourcing your marketing may be able to help. An outsourced marketing company can assist you with creating content that highlights your product’s features and benefits, distribute personalized content to a segmented database and follow-up with those prospects that interact with the content.An outsourced marketing company can set up and run your marketing automation efforts to keep lead volume flowing, while your sales team focuses on those leads that are almost ready to buy. This will allow you to contact more interested leads and reduce your sales cycle/time to close.
With so many possible tactics available right now, your marketing outsourcing team will help you select the best direction for your business. The following lead generation tips are some of the options that will now be at your company’s disposal.
Content marketing is now a requirement for lead generation success. Over 70% of buyers now prefer to learn about new products or solutions with educational information shared through email or social channels (Gartner). You can share this content through social media campaigns, email-marketing campaigns and direct messaging.
Over time, a bonus effect of quality content will enable you to slowly start moving to a higher position in search engine results. An outsourced marketing lead generation company will be able to help you craft educational content that your buyers will enjoy in a short, one to two-day content workshop.
Social Media Marketing
Once you have your quality content, you can share that content on social media. For most companies, we recommend starting slowly and saving your best content for social media. The two most effective tools for B2B campaigns are LinkedIn and Twitter, and for B2C campaigns, Facebook and Instagram. Sharing your content through all these channels in addition to your website will promote your brand, answer buyer questions, highlight your solutions, and help boost your search engine results.
Email Marketing to Generate New B2B Leads
Email marketing is all about communicating through a structured message to generate leads and establish a relationship with potential clients. A marketing outsourcing lead generation company will be able to help you navigate through multiple vendors to target as many as 75,000 potential targets for about the fully loaded costs of one sales development rep for one month. This will typically generate 4,000 to 6,000 early-stage leads that you can nurture and monitor through content interaction and lead scoring. This helps you prioritize your sales engagement by contacting only those prospects and leads that have higher scores (interest), while others continue to consume your content and rack up points. Once you establish a “waterfall” score – a score that typically produces more than a 70% closing rate – your sales team can better use their time contacting the leads that are most likely to buy.
Content marketing is a popular marketing tactic to help boost a company’s brand, while attracting potential buyers – 90% of all organizations use content in their marketing efforts (source). The advantages of content marketing certainly outweigh the cost, time and effort it takes to produce high quality content for your products and brand. Content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing, while generating three-times as many leads for every dollar spent. Content marketing keeps reader attention, improves brand loyalty, generates leads and increases direct sales. If you’re not using content as a marketing tactic, it’s about time you join the more than 90% of companies that are taking advantage of its benefits.
62% of companies outsource their content marketing, so contact us if you’re interested in promoting your brand and products and increasing your sales.
Digital Consulting Services specializes in assisting small, medium-sized, and startup businesses grow and operate with modern marketing and sales strategies and tactics.
Digital Consulting Services fills the gaps in existing marketing and sales strategies and operations, and we help execute full-service campaigns that include:
- Sales and Marketing Strategies
- Database Research and Customer Segmentation
- Marketing Automation and CRM Systems Integration
- Demand and Lead Generation
- Lead Scoring and Qualification
- Deal Closing
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