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B2B Marketing: 5 top tips to power up your lead generation

What’s the situation with lead generation in your company right now?

Are you bringing in a healthy flow of inbound leads to fill your pipeline with opportunities to convert, or is there a noticeable and frustrating shortage of high-quality leads to nurture and turn into lucrative sales? As you already know, a quality lead is the lifeblood of a business. Yet, they can be challenging to generate, especially in a world still finding its way out of a global pandemic and addressing the significant economic fallout. It can seem like everyone else knows the secret formula to successful lead generation, but the truth is there isn’t one magic solution.

Here are five of our go-to tips that can be used to ‘power up’ your lead gen efforts this year.

1# CRM Investment for necessary tracking

Using the old-school approach of endless spreadsheets to keep track of your leads manually is not an efficient or effective use of time.

To maximise opportunities and achieve results, a defined lead management process must be supported by a purpose-built system that everyone in your organisation utilises. Using a suitable CRM system will help break down departmental silos and provide a holistic view of prospects and customers, clearly signposting where they are in their journey through the sales funnel.

There is no escaping that implementing a CRM comes at a cost. However, the return on initial investment will undoubtedly prove invaluable by providing your business with a competitive edge. If you don’t have the technology in place, it’s time to take action and find a platform that fits your current and long-term business needs – avoid additional costs by planning for the future by choosing a scalable CRM system.

Bear in mind that a CRM platform is only as powerful as the information it’s fed. While an abundance of detail can be input, key information to capture is the source, the nature of the first interaction, and any initial intel gained. To optimise the capabilities of your CRM software, there should also be an ongoing programme to train everyone who uses it, with a particular focus on their role-specific user requirements.

2# Dig your data

Leveraging data insights can support faster and more effective decision-making so ensuring data can be captured and analysed should be prioritised for all businesses striving for competitive advantage.

Statistics suggest that 80% of marketers say they are data-driven, 1 in 3 teams find it challenging to measure lead generation performance. With restricted insight, it becomes more difficult to assess the effectiveness of processes and enhance lead generation strategies.

Understanding and analysing the metrics associated with lead generation activity can be a sure-fire way to increase success and make informed data-backed decisions.

Whether you’re just starting on your lead generation adventure or a seasoned professional, four metrics are essential to have in place. You might already be familiar with these terms, but here’s a quick refresh:

1. Click-Through Rate (CTR): This measurement is for digital lead generation strategies to determine how many people have clicked on a CTA (Call to Action) from within a website, email, social post or PPC advert. The CTR indicates what messages in which channels resonate most with your audiences and influences them to take the desired action (a click through).

2. Lead Conversion Rate: As you might have already guessed, this metric looks at the number of prospects who have responded to a given CTA, become a qualified lead and then converted into an enquiry or buying customer. Tracked with the correct lead source attributed, this insight can help your business understand which campaigns and channels have generated the best converting leads.

3. Time to Conversion: This metric is self-explanatory; it calculates the time to convert a lead into an active inquiry or sale. This need-to-know insight illustrates how long it takes for a lead to move through the sales pipeline to conversion. Teams can analyse this data to highlight which lead funnels are working to generate results faster and identify where lead nurture process improvements can be made.

4. Cost per Lead (CPL): A critical metric to have a handle on is Cost per Lead. As you’d imagine, this KPI highlights how much was spent by marketing to generate a lead. This data is crucial as it determines whether the return on investment (ROI) is enough to justify the initial spend.

A low CPL is great, provided the leads acquired are also quality converters. In some cases, it could be that a higher CPL can be justified due to a stronger conversion rate and positive return being achieved.

Understanding CPL can help determine how sales should prioritise and manage the leads passed over by marketing. If CPL is high, it’s even more vital that sales effectively work the lead to return a healthy revenue.

Ascertaining CPL is also helpful in reviewing lead generation approaches and identifying if the best value solutions are utilised to deliver against objectives. Applying this metric in combination with others enables teams to make these decisions with confidence.

#3 Don’t let opportunities go; use them to grow

Go on… be honest, as a business, how many potential customers have your sales teams let go to the wayside as there was no immediate demand ascertained from an initial conversation? Or worst of all, how many opportunities have received no follow-up after a preliminary discussion and have been forgotten?

Many businesses are guilty of this, and shockingly it happens more than you’d think. These situations have often occurred because of gaps in existing processes and manual lead tracking systems (those spreadsheets again!).

Allowing any leads to fall into a dark hole due to poor lead management is not ideal. It can hurt your bottom line and your reputation. Take time to establish or refine an effective and streamlined lead flow process. Remember, every lead has cost your business money to obtain and should be treated like gold dust.

#4 It’s not a case of in with the new and out with the old
Another source of opportunity comes from past customers. Leads don’t always have to be net-new and can come from repeat purchases in an existing customer base. Generating sales from those companies that have already done business with you is not only easier – providing they’ve had good past experiences – but it’s also a strategic way to increase Customer Lifetime Value; another key metric that seeks to highlight the monetary value of a customer over the period they interact with your business, relative to the investment made to acquire them.

Your business's products or services will determine the retargeting approach and timeframes. Harnessing marketing automation technology that leverages CRM integration can help support and execute these types of campaigns – not to mention other lead generation activities – and help realise ongoing opportunities that will grow your business and its profits.

#5 Relationships are still no.1

Despite sophisticated lead generation strategies and technology, building and nurturing relationships are supreme in getting deals over the line and making money in the land of B2B.

Don’t allow your sales teams to become too dependent on or hide behind the sales tools at their disposal; make sure they proactively maximise lead generation efforts to move prospects through the sales pipeline with a one-to-one, personal approach. The relationships and the rapport fostered between leads and organisations can be the difference between winning business over one of your competitors.

Got lead generation ambitions but finding it tricky to realise them? Need a fresh approach that delivers measurable results? We’re here for you.

Let’s talk.

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