Consumer behavior is constantly evolving. Driven by emerging technologies and new insights, marketers have to work hard to be on top of the latest consumer behavior, and recalibrate their strategies. It is important to note that consumers are increasingly more and more educated about what they are buying, and the experience they want. The daily use of technology in our lives has also heightened the customers’ expectations. As a matter of fact, studies have shown that the customer experience will soon surpass price and product as key brand differentiators.
It’s clear that businesses need to fine tune their strategies for bringing in customers. Emerging trends can give you some valuable insights on which B2B lead generation strategies are the most effective. Let’s look at some.
Pretty much the oldest trick in the book, email marketing is one of the only online marketing channels that has survived the onslaught of newer strategies. Email is still the top spot on many B2B marketers’ lists of lead generation channels. But email marketing has also evolved too, and one of its biggest trends is marketing automation. But what is that? In a nutshell, marketing automation tools are hybrid email marketing tools, connecting with your CRM and allowing you to automatically send emails that are personalized specifically for your leads. Not convinced it works? Thomson Reuters upgraded to a marketing automation solution and found that their revenue increased by 172%. Email marketing, especially automated, is definitely worth your while.
You already know that content is king. Creating quality content more frequently brings in more leads. According to a Hubspot study, companies publishing 16 or more blog posts a month generate 4.5 times as many leads as those companies who only publish 1 to 4 blogs a month. Another finding of the study was that nearly 50% of B2B buyers rely on content published for research and making their purchasing decisions. Furthermore, these buyers usually consume at least 3 to 5 pieces of related content before contacting a sales person. Blogging is not the only way to go, however. Consider a microsite. Xerox created a microsite, which offered relevant tips to business owners. The result was 70% of the companies targeted interacted with Xerox, leading to $1.3 billion in pipeline revenue. Publishing quality content shows your target audience your commitment to go to great lengths to provide them with valuable content that addresses their concerns.
Optimize Your Website for Mobile
There has been a noticeable shift in how online queries are made, from computers to smartphones. Google says that 50% of B2B queries are made on cell phones, and that number is expected to increase to 70% by 2020. Reports have also shown that 60% of B2B buyers stated that mobile played an important role in their recent purchases. So how is mobile important? Optimizing your website for mobile means accelerated time to purchase by 20%, thus increasing efficiency. When your website is also mobile, it will not only prove to be beneficial to your B2B marketing goals, but will also allow your buyers to make their decisions efficiently, leading to a better customer experience for them.
Have you considered retargeting your prospective customers? Prospects usually browse several websites and comb through dozens of articles to guide their purchase decisions. The number of buyers that make a purchase on their first visit is only 2%. Retargeting aims to reel back the 98% and give them a nudge towards your brand. As a strategy, retargeting is still underutilized by B2B marketers, but it’s growing in popularity. If you haven’t already considered it, start retargeting your website visitors, and you will significantly increase the chances that they will choose your products and services over your competitors.
You’ll have seen chatbots on numerous websites. The artificial intelligence messaging based bots can autonomously engage the visitors to your websites and automate your business transactions. Adopting chatbots sends a strong message to your prospects such that you want them to have a seamless interaction. Additionally, integrating AI into your lead generation strategy creates new avenues for process efficiency and optimization. It will also minimize your dependency on human customer support and lead generation, thus reducing operational costs.
Video content has proven to be a major driver in influencing purchasing behavior. 64% of consumers make a purchase after watching branded social video content. A good video on a landing page can increase conversions by 80% or more. Due to these high numbers, more and more marketers are already planning to include YouTube in their marketing strategy. Video is a safe bet and a highly effective way to attract leads.
Exceptional lead generation results come from a willingness to experiment with different tactics, and to combine tactics across multiple channels. That’s the only way to truly find out what works for your business and concentrate on those strategies to generate higher returns on investment and better lead generation results.