Lead generation is incredibly important, but even in 2021, there are so many people who have no clue what it is, why it is important, or how they can accomplish their goals. For B2B companies, it is especially important to understand lead generation and learn about some trends that are changing the way companies generate their leads in 2021.
What Is Lead Generation?
Before delving into the possibilities of a lead generation program, it is important individuals first understand what lead generation is in its entirety. Lead generation is the process of attracting strangers to the point they become interested in the goods or services being provided by a company. The stranger becomes someone who is then interested in the company so they are now a prospect. Any B2B company that wants to see success needs to work towards implementing better lead generation strategies.
5 Lead Generation Trends Everyone Needs to Learn About in 2021
A lot of trends come and go, but it looks like these five have staying power for at least the remainder of 2021. Understanding the following options will help B2B businesses improve their lead generation and their eventual business success. Adopting any of the following trends could dramatically change the way a company pursues lead generation.
1. Use Buyer Intent Data
More personalized outreach is key to lead generation. If business owners are not accessing user intent data, they are missing out on a piece of the puzzle that is essential for their outreach approach to customers. A business owner needs to know where their customers are at in the buying cycle.
Without this information, a company could be approaching a customer with the wrong message. Knowing where the customer is at should entirely determine how the company approaches the customer. For instance, if a company knows the customer is ready to buy but has not committed, the company will have detailed information on what the customer is looking for so it can supply this information and seal the deal.
There is software available that will give company owners information on who has visited the site and what actions they have taken while there. By using this data, the sales department will create a powerful and persuading outreach plan that overcomes any misgivings the customer may have.
2. Sales and Marketing Must Align
When the sales and marketing departments are not communicating effectively, problems are going to arise with lead generation. When the two work synergistically, effective lead generation is possible. Not only will sales go up, but a company’s customers are going to be much happier and satisfied with the information they are being supplied in marketing approaches.
If the sales and marketing departments are not working together, marketing approaches are going to be out of sync because the information is not being shared among the departments. Get the two together and on the same page and see increases in revenue.
3. Customer-Centric Marketing Works
When it comes to customer-centric marketing, companies place the full focus of their marketing on their customers’ needs and wants. Nothing else matters. Period.
It is important to realize people are inundated with online ads all day long. They have grown so jaded, these ads are often ignored. A company that focuses on what its customers need is going to successfully gain their attention.
With customer-centric marketing, lead qualification becomes the sole focus. It is not about throwing out a vast net to catch any and every customer. It is about targeting the customers that will convert.
4. Video Reigns Supreme
Video marketing has proven to be successful at garnering the attention of potential customers. Imagine scrolling through the Internet and coming across a video ad. Even if you do not want to look, there is something that compels you to stop and watch.
While videos definitely get attention, this is not enough. If the video cannot hold the attention of a potential customer, it will be a waste of time. Videos can be used in a variety of ways for lead generation. They can be used to build a company’s brand and send personalized follow-ups and sales follow-ups.
Experts have stated around 82% of all Internet traffic will be pursuing videos by 2022. Companies that are not getting in on the action with video representation are going to miss out on lead generation options that can bring in great amounts of revenue in the long run.
5. Automation Remains Viable
Many of the day-to-day tasks involved in lead generation can still be successfully automated. Automation allows companies to focus on more important tasks that require more manpower.
Sales teams that automate much of their lead generation tasks can then place their full focus on listening to their customers intently. The sales team should be focusing on their customer’s problems and offering a sound solution to meet the need.
Automation does not have to be a clunky, awkward initiative. Instead, it can work like a well-oiled machine. The following offers some instances of companies using automation effectively.
- Companies can use automation to protect and grow their leads. A company can use an automation strategy like email drip campaigns or retarget.
- Chatbots are a beneficial method of automation. They can be used to respond to commonly asked questions, qualify leads, and share important information. Chatbots have greatly improved over the years, as AI technology has experienced vast changes.
- Automation can also be used in tool integration. With integration tools, companies no longer have to manually enter information into their CRM. With this automation, leads are sent right to the CRM, where a salesperson will be given a direct assignment and can focus on closing the sale with ease.
With the automation industry growing by leaps and bounds, it is clear that many companies will be taking advantage of this new technology in the near future. Companies need to get on board with automation as soon as possible so they can begin to experience better lead generation success.
Helpful Steps for Improving Lead Generation
The above ideas consist of the future of a lead generation. Taking the following steps will help companies get started on creating a workable solution for their lead generation efforts. As they progress in their understanding of mastering the concepts of lead generation, they can begin to implement the latest strategies and see major improvements in revenue. The following are some of the key foundational methods of lead generation.
Content is used to provide customers with free information that is useful and dynamic. The content should include many calls to action that are engaging and help a customer decide to click through and commit. More than anything else, content always seems to remain an important aspect of lead generation.
Email lead generation helps to reach people that are already informed about a company. Emails allow companies to further engage those who are already interested, which often leads to a greater level of conversion. With a compelling copy and engaging design, emails can greatly help to garner a subscriber’s attention and keep it.
A company must use ads to grab the attention of potential customers. As mentioned above, people are inundated with hundreds of ads during the time they spend surfing the Internet. When producing an ad, companies must make sure the target page is offering precisely what the ad promised or the company will lose the trust of the potential customer right away. Once this happens, there is rarely any way to overcome the distrust.
Every company should have a blog and they should keep it filled with fresh and beneficial content that speaks to their audience by addressing their problems and offering solutions. Blogs are heavily underutilized. Blog posts can be highly tailored to meet goals and are very effective at engaging audiences.
Companies must not forget social media when it comes to lead generation. On social media platforms, companies will find it much easier to get their potential customers to act. It is important to include a call to action on social media posts, to seal the deal and create a commitment. Do not be afraid to promote on social media because it is effective.
Another important lead generation option is product trials. Most people are highly willing to try a product with no strings attached. This breaks down many of the barriers that prevent sales completion. As a bonus, it also helps to include branding as a part of the free product trial because it can be used to gather interest from other potential customers.
Companies that are not utilizing the latest lead generation strategies are missing out on the great potential for increased revenue. The longer a company goes without using these strategies, the longer they are wasting time.
Now is the time to start implementing new ideas and creating interest. Lead generation takes a concerted effort and is constantly evolving to meet the changes in consumer behavior.
If your revenue is weakening and potential customers are bouncing rather than committing, it is time to start investing in your business by implementing the strategies above, It will not happen overnight, but with a concerted effort, improvements will be experienced.