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Preparing for 2023: B2B Lead Generation Strategies to Consider

preparing-for-2023-b2b-lead-generation-strategies-to-consider

Even though we’re beginning to see more and more light at the end of the tunnel with the sense of some normalcy at our fingertips, we can’t discount that the last few years have been a whirlwind of change as we’ve learned to navigate through the pandemic, and most recently the global supply chain crisis. Lead generation efforts during these trying times have been no small feat, and businesses had no choice but to identify new areas to develop stronger growth opportunities for future success.

Back in 2021, 63% of marketers received an increased budget to spend on new content creation, paid advertising efforts, and automation software. Just in the past year, HubSpot’s 2022 State of Marketing Report found almost half of marketers (48% to be exact) saw an increased budget in 2022; allowing for additional new campaigns and wider reach opportunities, giving teams even more creative freedom to test new channels.

One way marketers can maximize the return on investment is by leveraging tools and resources that increase the efficiency and effectiveness of B2B lead generation strategies. By driving effective lead generation strategies, you have the power to drive more reach and traffic growth for your business, ensuring a full pipeline with qualified leads.

B2B Lead Generation Basics: What are B2B Leads?

B2B leads are categorized as people (or companies) that have been identified as potential customers. There are two traditional categories of leads that get more frequently referenced – Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL) and Sales Qualified Lead (SQL).

  • MQL: a lead that the marketing team has deemed more likely to become a customer compared to others, but isn’t quite ready to talk with a sales representative. This is determined based on criteria such as web pages visited, content downloaded, CTAs clicked, and social post interactions.
  • SQL: a lead that is ready to connect with a sales representative. Typically, this lead has expressed enough interest in your product or service that they’re ready to have a deeper conversation and start the sales process.

You might be asking yourself, “how do I start obtaining leads?”

This is where the creation of a lead generation strategy comes into play. This process isn't the same for every company or industry. It’s actually catered to your unique preferences of leads that you’re trying to reach, making it the ideal customer for your business.

Let’s dive deeper into the B2B lead generation process and the steps that you can consider to make the process work for you.

What is B2B Lead Generation?

B2B lead generation is the process of attracting prospects to your business and increasing their interest through lead nurturing, all with the end goal of converting them into a customer.

This process ensures your sales team is loaded with prospects that they can convert into new customers. Making sure your sales funnel is filled with qualified leads is essential to any company’s success.

B2B Lead Generation Strategies to Kickstart 2023

The New Year will be here before we know it, and it’s time to start thinking about your lead generation strategy for 2023 and beyond. With 63% of marketers ranking lead generation as their number one challenge, marketing teams are rethinking their targeting strategies in order to reach ideal prospects; leaving the door open for creative and innovative lead generation approaches.

The creation of your lead generation strategy is a process... it takes a lot of time and trial and error to get it just right. Every audience, even if it’s within your typical appetite, responds differently to the strategies and messaging that’s getting pushed out.

The key component to finding the right lead generation strategies is to find the ideal mix that will work for your business. Below you’ll find a consolidated list of some top ideas and trends that you can consider adding to your lead generation efforts for a successful 2023 and beyond:

  • Content, content, content
  • First-party data gathering
  • Marketing automation process
  • Integrating marketing and sales departments

Content, Content, Content

The content you curate is the fuel that powers your lead generation strategies and is essential to your approach. In order to have content that gains a competitive advantage, constant optimization is required to find more efficient and effective ways to deploy your content and use the data that’s generated from your efforts to obtain a better understanding of your audience.

It’s lucrative you create content that differentiates you from your competition but also caters to each stage of your audience’s journey or where they fall in your funnel, ensuring your messaging is aligned and relevant to their needs. Understanding your prospects and generating content that gauges their interest will help drive them to make a buying decision – guides, e-books, infographics, white papers, and email content are a few ways you can attract and generate new leads.

According to the 2022 B2B Content Marketing Report conducted by Content Marketing Institute (CMI), B2B marketers say the top three goals content marketing helps them achieve are:

  • Creating brand awareness
  • Building credibility and trust
  • Educating the audience

Most respondents were successful with using content marketing to create brand awareness. However, a much higher percentage of the most successful said they met the following goals in the last 12 months:

  • Build loyalty with existing clients and customers (78% vs. 60%)
  • Nurture subscribers/audiences/leads (64% vs. 49%)
  • Generate sales/revenue (57% vs. 42%)
  • Build credibility and trust (88% vs. 75%)
  • Build a subscribed audience (50% vs. 37%)
  • Drive attendance to one or more in-person or virtual events (60% vs. 47%)
  • Generate demand/leads (72% vs. 60%)

CMI B2B 2022 Content Marketing Results

First-Party Data Gathering

Data tells a story; the data that’s gathered speaks directly to the needs of your audience with the content that’s created. If the content you're pushing out understands a prospect's pain points and resonates with their needs, the data that’s collected and analyzed will be essential to the success of your lead generation strategies moving forward.

The first-party data that’s being collected can be used to improve your marketing campaigns, target new customers, and enhance your overall customer service. As a bonus, the first-party data you collect can help create more customized audiences for your targeted advertising initiatives.

By starting your first-party data collection efforts in 2023, you’ll have the advantage of getting ahead of your competitors that are going after the same audience. A few ways you can capture first-party data are through digital channels such as direct website traffic, lead capture forms, customer service interactions, or even online surveys.

Marketing Automation Process

Technology has become more essential than ever when it comes to providing users with a seamless and personalized experience. Automating this process ensures that the relevant data you want is captured and your content delivery to your audience is timely and doesn’t slip through the cracks.

When your lead generation strategies are driven by comprehensive, accurate, and complete data it allows you to better identify your audience’s persona(s). Concurrently, multi-channel content delivery requires consistent messaging with specific optimizations and seamless timed delivery.

The top three main advantages of marketing automation according to executive members, and sales and marketing professionals are the following:

  • Time savings of repetitive tasks (49%)
  • Personalized communication (49%)
  • Improved efficiency/ROI (45%)

Whether you’re scheduling social media posts to emails or even the first initial contact from sales, marketing automation technology makes it possible for marketing and sales teams to make every prospect and customer feel like you’re their solution to their pain points.

Integrating Marketing & Sales Departments

When all is said and done, the customer experience that’s showcased through your initiatives is the key driver that will determine the success of your lead generation strategies. The first-party data that you've been collecting and utilizing marketing automation processes can help your marketing and sales teams better understand your prospects and be able to respond to their needs. Developing a consistent message from the get-go will help propagate a smooth transition between marketing and sales.

Going back to the importance of content; creating content that differentiates you from your competition but also caters to each stage of your audience’s journey or where they fall in your funnel is vital to creating a positive experience that will make the prospects you’re targeting want to become customers. From there, nurturing those relationships even after a sale takes place is important to creating a lasting partnership that will help your business flourish.

When you implement CRM technology, data analytics software, and other technology it creates a common ground where marketing and sales can work seamlessly and cohesively together to create positive experiences that will nurture your audiences from the beginning of their journey and beyond.

Where Do I Start?

The entire B2B lead generation process can be overwhelming. It can be a challenge to initiate, maintain, and obtain qualified leads all on your own… that’s where we come in!

Concept is one of the nation’s most experienced outsourced B2B lead generation and appointment-setting agencies. We provide multi-channel lead generation solutions to grow our B2B client’s sales pipelines, including outbound sales development, CRM technology, marketing automation, and digital marketing services.

Ready to start the conversation with your lead generation initiatives for 2023 and beyond? Schedule some time with us to get started!

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