Many people in the B2B world are confused about the role that digital and social channels play in today’s marketing world. If in the past, digital marketing was considered a B2C tool, today digital and social channels can be used to reach your target audiences, and you can even leverage specific tools created for the B2B market.
In the B2B world, the process of deciding to purchase a product or a service is more involved and complex than its B2C equivalent. The process usually involves (sometimes multiple) decision-makers engaging in preliminary research and bidding on prices. And while traditional sales and marketing methods continue to reign supreme, the understanding that everyone is using digital and social media tools, and that consumer decision-making can be influenced by presenting target audience members with carefully crafted marketing messages and information has permeated the B2B world. As a result, we are seeing more and more companies increase their digital and social activities.
Harnessing digital and social channels for B2C lead generation is one of today’s most powerful tools. But in the B2B world, very few companies have adopted lead generation as a practice. The B2B companies that market through these channels enjoy the low competition and a huge advantage over their competitors.
We’ve all come across those registration forms that appear on websites, like pop-ups and elsewhere on the internet. They implore us to buy an apartment, receive an insurance offer, register for a membership club, etc. These forms are designed to collect our details for commercial use and turn us into actionable leads. Every day we are exposed to countless proposals, but in practice, only a few people will notice them, and even less will fill in their details and register, leaving their personal phone number or email.
Lead generation is a funnel process, at the end of which we hope our potential client will leave his or her details in the form we created. These forms can appear in LinkedIn or Facebook ads that lead to a landing page or website, or, they can crop up at the end of any form of content, article, or blog post.
The more complex and expensive your product or service is, and the larger your customers’ involvement in the purchase process must be, the longer and more complicated the funnel will necessarily become and the more money you’ll often find yourself spending on generating quality leads. But when it comes to products and services that cost tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars, companies are willing to pay large sums for high-quality leads – the question is, should they have to? In a world of digital and social lead generation, the answer to these questions is most definitively, NO.
In the B2B world, a good, high-quality conversion funnel begins with the creation and/or curation of interesting content designed to reel your target audience. Tools such as Outbrain and Taboola allow us to incorporate content into popular sites and portals and, in essence, prep audiences we will later target with ads. For this purpose, it is very important to match the content to the target audience and to be as specific as possible. The more accurate we are with our content, the more relevant the audience will be and the lower our conversion costs will reach.
In conclusion, if you are a B2B company and have yet to initiate digital activity in general and lead generation in particular, it is time to take a deep dive into the wonderful world of digital marketing.