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Navigating the challenging task of finding the right B2B sales leads amidst a myriad of lead-generation strategies can be daunting.

Lead generation presents a significant challenge in B2B marketing and sales for many organizations. Many organizations face challenges in developing and implementing strategies that effectively reach their potential customers. The outcome is a sales funnel containing leads that do not convert into customers. It's certainly not a task for the faint-hearted or those seeking an effortless solution.

It is important to customize your approach based on the organization, industry, product/service, and target audience. This may involve disregarding self-promotion tactics and experimenting with different methods to generate effective leads.

Are you prepared to explore effective B2B lead generation strategies for your business? We should begin by building a strong base. This article will discuss the definition, importance, types, tools, and strategies for achieving success in B2B lead generation.

Understanding B2B lead generation?

Lead generation is the process of gathering a potential customer's information, such as their name, email, company name, company details, company size, and job title, in order to personalize sales pitches or ad campaigns.

Lead generation is typically considered part of marketing, although it can extend beyond paid channels and tactics. Lead generation encompasses any channel that generates interest in a website or business, whether it be online or offline. The commonly used channels include event marketing, social media, email marketing, pay-per-click marketing, cold calling, and content marketing.

B2B lead generation involves identifying potential customers for your product or service and persuading them to make a purchase. It is a necessary activity for B2B marketing teams and sales teams.

B2B lead generation involves selling products and services directly to other businesses, while B2C involves selling to consumers. B2B and B2C businesses use different strategies to find leads, so it is important to focus on B2B tactics if you want to reach potential B2B customers effectively.

Importance of B2B lead generation

B2B lead generation is important for sales, marketing teams, and the overall success of the business. Lead generation is essential for the flow of leads through the sales pipeline, resulting in conversions, customers, and continued business growth.

B2B lead generation serves as a crucial source of information for marketing representatives, sales representatives, and sales development representatives within a company. Implementing a strong lead generation strategy can benefit your business in the following way.

  • Discovers your TAM

  • Builds brand awareness and visibility

  • Builds a predictable sales pipeline

  • Assists with content creation

  • Implements effective marketing practices and strategies

  • Helps generate greater revenue

Types of B2B leads

In B2B lead generation, B2B leads refer to individuals identified as potential customers for a business. The sales team is only able to engage with B2B leads that have human contact and not bots. It is important to have qualified leads from reputable sources, as simply generating leads is not sufficient. These individuals may benefit from utilizing your product or service.

There are two categories of B2B leads:

Marketing-qualified leads

Marketing-qualified leads (MQLs) are leads that have been identified as having a high interest in exploring the product or service. The qualification is determined by the MQL's level of engagement with your business's marketing initiatives.

  • Frequent visits to a specific page on your company's website

  • Filling forms on your company's website

  • Downloading company-produced content

  • Registering to participate in one of your company's events or webinars

MQLs are leads that are not yet ready for direct sales outreach and may require further nurturing as they move through the lead funnel.

Sales-qualified leads

Sales-qualified leads, also known as SQLs, are marketing-qualified leads that have advanced in the sales process and are considered ready for interaction with the sales team. To qualify as an SQL, the lead must demonstrate an interest in purchasing the company's product or service, which can be indicated through various means such as:

  • In a telephone conversation with a member of your sales team

  • Expressing interest by stating it in an email or LinkedIn message

  • By requesting a demonstration of your product or service

These leads are important for B2B lead generation and should be followed up on. They are considered as high-quality leads. Any inbound lead should be prioritized in the sales funnel if they contact you before you contact them. Prioritize your SQLs(sales-qualified leads) to improve your sales statistics.

Process of lead generation in B2B

Mastering lead generation is just the first step in a broader process. Establishing an effective lead generation process is key to driving sales growth. This process helps to align marketing and sales teams by providing representatives with a proven framework to follow.

For effective sales growth, a strong lead generation strategy is essential.

Generating leads is a process that involves strategic steps carried out by sales and marketing professionals to convert potential customers into paying clients. What do these steps involve, exactly? Let's examine this process to understand the key components that lead to success in B2B sales.

Find B2B sales leads

The initial stage in numerous B2B lead generation strategies involves sourcing the contact details of potential buyers.

Contact information can be obtained through in-house sources, third-party "lead gen" companies, or purchased from a lead database, although buying from a lead database is not recommended for B2B lead generation.

Reaching out to leads

After identifying potential leads, the next step is reaching out to them. This can be done through various methods such as cold calls, cold emails, or social media outreach. The goal is to engage with the leads and introduce them to your product or service. This is a crucial step in the sales cycle.

Qualifying leads

Once contact has been made with a lead, it is important to qualify them to determine if they are a good fit for your product or service. This involves the sales reps asking questions to understand their needs and pain points, and assessing whether your offering can address those needs.

Nurturing leads

Not all leads will be ready to make a purchase immediately. It is important to nurture these leads by providing valuable content, keeping in touch regularly, and building a relationship with them over time. This helps move them further down the sales funnel. This makes their purchasing decision easier.

Closing the sale

The ultimate goal of a B2B company is to convert leads into paying customers. Once a lead has been qualified and nurtured, it is time to close the sale. This may involve negotiation, providing demonstrations or trials of your product or service, and overcoming any objections the lead may have.

By following these steps in the B2B lead generation process, businesses can effectively generate high-quality leads and drive sales growth. It is important for sales and marketing teams to work together cohesively throughout this process to ensure success in converting leads into customers.

Effective B2B lead generation strategies for 2024

Tailoring your lead generation strategy to your industry, product, and target audience is key to increasing sales. It is necessary to offer multiple B2B lead generation strategies in order to be effective.

To achieve success, it is important for sales and marketing teams to adopt a mindset of experimentation, continuous learning, and the implementation of new approaches to acquire B2B sales leads. This involves exploring and testing several strategies to find what works best for your individual business.

The strategies shared are intended to encourage innovation and discover new opportunities to increase sales. It's time to explore new opportunities and start a journey of discovery.

1. Conduct A/B tests

It is not necessary to achieve perfection in marketing and outreach on the first attempt. The majority of companies do not. A/B tests are utilized in that scenario. Testing various formats, colors, and messages on your webpage and marketing materials can help determine what attracts the most attention.

B2B contacts may be seeking top products, but they also have individual preferences, even if they are sometimes unconventional. A small change, like replacing a button, can have a significant effect on visitor engagement, ultimately leading to increased B2b lead generation rates. It is necessary to analyze the data and determine which strategies are the most effective.

2. Build credibility with customers by providing social proof

Social proof plays a significant role in many B2B lead-generation strategies.

Buyers often seek testimonials to inform their purchasing decisions, as they may have doubts about product/service claims.

Gathering social proof on your site can help build trust and potentially increase sales.

You can enhance credibility by incorporating social proof on landing pages and the homepage, posting reviews on social media, and developing case studies. Gathering feedback is also effective for building trust. Try gathering positive reviews on G2.

3. Publish more case studies

Case studies are recommended as a valuable component of your content marketing strategy. B2B buyers tend to be analytical, risk-averse, and often seek approval from multiple decision-makers focused on ROI before making a purchase.

Case studies serve as valuable sales enablement content for the middle-to-end stages of the lead generation process, benefiting both buyers and sellers alike.

Ensure that case studies are utilized effectively on your website. Promote them to increase your credibility.

4. Develop impactful lead magnets and incentives

Lead magnets are essential for B2B lead generation.

A lead magnet is a valuable incentive offered to prospects in exchange for their contact information, typically an email address. To create a successful lead magnet, it is important to consider your buyer personas and target a specific challenge that you can help solve.

However, many companies struggle with effectively utilizing lead magnets. They provide basic content that can be found in a standard blog post. That doesn't appear to be magnetic, does it?

Avoid repeating the same mistake.

When sharing content, prioritize personal experiences and practical advice over complex information unless you are certain of its relevance and value. Some examples of lead magnets are :

  • Comprehensive guides

  • In-depth case studies

  • Templates

  • Interactive demo

Interactive demos are a powerful lead magnet for B2B lead generation. They offer potential customers a hands-on experience of your product or service, allowing them to see its features and benefits in action. Creating customized interactive demos is now possible with the help of Fable. With Fable you can create personalized demos according to the needs of different stakeholders in the organization. Start your free trial today!

5. Develop marketing campaigns that target keywords used by competitors

If competitors are focusing on specific websites for backlinks or consistently optimizing certain keywords, it is worth noting.

It indicates that they have identified successful keywords that attract potential customers.

By utilizing SEO (search engine optimization) research tools such as Ahrefs and SEMrush, you can target the same websites and keywords to increase traffic to your site, potentially leading to more sales opportunities.

One tip to consider is running a small paid ads campaign before investing time and money in optimizing for a specific keyword to determine if it effectively attracts and converts your ideal B2B leads.

6. Optimize for long-tail keywords to get more qualified leads

A long-tail keyword consists of three or more words and is highly specific. It typically receives a low search volume.

However, targeting the right long-tail keyword may result in sacrificing search volume in exchange for high purchase intent, ultimately leading to increased sales with minimal SEO effort.

7. Host webinars to generate new leads

One effective lead generation strategy is to host webinars to capture leads. A webinar is an online presentation designed to engage, educate customers about products or services, address pain points, build trust, and increase brand awareness. It is an effective method to engage with potential clients and establish connections with them prior to their product sign-up.

Webinars can serve as a means of both engaging with potential clients and generating new leads. One method to increase sales leads without advertising costs is to host a live webinar featuring a special offer or discount code for your product.

When using webinars as part of your marketing strategy, it is crucial to provide valuable content to your target audience and ideal customers.

8. Interpret survey results

Surveys serve as a method to assess customer satisfaction and are valuable tools for B2B lead generation in many companies. If customers are experiencing long wait times to reach a representative, it is important to address this issue beyond the customer service department.

Explore other avenues to improve communication and ensure leads are not left waiting. There are several options for improvement, such as installing a chatbot, increasing email automation, or expanding personnel. Taking a holistic approach to your company allows you to address issues for both current and future clients simultaneously.

9. Leverage social media for selling

Social media is used by a variety of companies targeting different consumer groups. With the increasing presence of businesses on social selling platforms, B2B lead generation now includes connections on various platforms.

Many decision-makers use LinkedIn to evaluate other companies, making it a valuable platform for networking and interactions. But don't just stop there. Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook offer various B2B lead generation and interaction opportunities for your team. Creating a strong social media presence for your company not only engages casual users but also attracts other businesses who recognize your marketing abilities.

10. Customize your website content for your B2B lead personas

B2B sales and marketing must now focus on being more specific and targeted. Mass emails and marketing automation are effective tactics, but personalization can be a powerful tool as well. B2B lead generation tactics are constantly changing, and in 2024, ABM (account-based marketing) is a prominent strategy. ABMs allow for customization of website and marketing materials to target specific leads or segments that show potential.

Also read : An Introductory Guide to Account-Based Marketing (ABM)

Website coding allows for the customization of content based on a visitor's location using their IP address, allowing for targeted content based on geographical demographics.

Personalization requires effort, but with over 70 percent of B2B marketers utilizing it, it has become a necessary strategy.

11. Answer relevant questions on Q&A websites

Websites like Quora can provide valuable sources of potential sales leads. Connecting with potential customers involves identifying relevant inquiries and offering solutions. Customers should aim to address the specific issue that your service can resolve. Begin by conducting research on relevant questions related to your business.

12. Utilize interviews with decision-makers and influencers for your blog

One effective way to generate B2B leads is by reaching out to decision-makers in your industry and interviewing them for a blog, eBook, or guest post. This not only allows you to tap into their knowledge and expertise but also helps you build valuable connections and credibility within your industry.

When approaching decision-makers for an interview, be sure to ask unique and insightful questions that will allow them to share.

13. Utilize existing customers to generate referrals

Developing and continuously building trust with your current customers is essential for B2B lead generation. When your customers trust you and are satisfied with your products or services, they are more likely to provide valuable introductions to other potential clients.

One effective way to build trust with your current customers is by consistently delivering exceptional service and exceeding their expectations. By going above and beyond to meet their needs and provide solutions.

14. Attend industry events

Attending industry events can provide opportunities to connect with potential customers.

Consider signing up to speak at events where you have a booth. This opportunity allows you to establish yourself and your business as knowledgeable professionals in the industry. It is important to collect lead contact information, such as emails or phone numbers once you have interacted with them. Various events and trade shows also provide the option to rent lead capture equipment. Utilize existing customer networks to facilitate introductions to new customers at such events.

15. Identify customers who are dissatisfied with your competitors

When it comes to B2B lead generation, one effective strategy is to look for competitors who are offering a similar product or solution. Take the time to research and analyze their offerings - are they priced higher than yours? Is their solution less performant or lacking in certain features that your product excels in?

If you find that your product offers better value or performance compared to your competitors, reach out to them directly.

Best B2B lead generation tools

1. HubSpot Marketing Hub

Overview: HubSpot Marketing Hub is a suite of tools designed to assist marketers in guiding leads through the attract, engage, and delight stages of the marketing flywheel.

Marketing Hub offers a range of features such as content creation, lead capture, and automated workflows to help engage and nurture contacts through various channels like email and social media.

Features: HubSpot Marketing Hub offers various features for lead generation, such as a lead capture tool. The website also includes features such as forms, popup forms, live chat, and a chatbot.

What we like: Lead generation tools, such as an email builder, are available for your use. HubSpot Marketing Hub integrates with HubSpot CRM.

Pricing: The pricing for paid tiers ranges from $45 to $3,600 per month based on company size.

2. LinkedIn Sales Navigator

Overview: LinkedIn is a popular platform for connecting with B2B audiences. Sales Navigator Professional and Team tools are beneficial for businesses looking to focus on specific prospects, monitor leads, and interact with potential buyers.

Features: The tools include lead and company search, automated lead recommendations, and CRM integration.

What we like: Custom lead and account lists can be built and automated.

Pricing: The monthly price is $65 or more, with a one-month free trial and an annual commitment. There are two options which are available: Sales Navigator Professional and Sales Navigator Team.

3. MailChimp

Overview: MailChimp is an email marketing tool that offers integration with landing page tools and CRMs.

Features: Email automation tools, lead capture forms with exit-intent technology, and shareable newsletter URLs are commonly used in digital marketing.

What we like: MailChimp offers a variety of email tools for creating on-brand emails and tracking campaign performance.

Pricing: Mailchimp offers a free version with a limit of 1,000 sends. The Essentials version is priced at $13 per month, the Standard at $20 per month, and the Premium at $350 per month.

4. SEMrush

Overview: Driving qualified site leads can be challenging without effective SEO. SEMrush is an SEO tool that can be used for performing website audits and analyzing areas for potential improvement in driving search traffic to lead-gen content.

Features: This platform offers the ability to run technical SEO audits, track SERP positions, integrate with data tools like Google Analytics, and build, execute, and monitor PPC(pay per click) ad campaigns. SEMrush provides social media post scheduling for various major channels.

What we like: SEMrush integrates with Google Analytics to enhance the depth of insights.

Pricing: After the 7-day free trial, plans are priced at either $99 or $199 per month based on features and user size.

5. Fable

Overview: Fable is an interactive demo platform which is built for GTM teams. It helps you create stunning customized interactive demos within 5 minutes.

Features: Fable provides a robust no code editor for easier and quicker customization of demos. Fable's demo capture technique accurately replicates transitions and animations in your product. There is no noticeable difference between interactive demos of your product and the real thing for your buyers.

What we like: Fable is the easiest interactive demo platform to use. Making interactive demos with Fable is a piece of cake.

Pricing: Fable has a free plan where you can create and share an interactive demo anywhere you want. Paid plans start from as low as $40/user/month. Higher plans with all the advanced features is available at $100/user/month.

Read full article : 20 Best B2B Lead Generation Tools

Strategy for improving B2B lead generation compared to competitors

It is important to take into account the target audience and their requirements. Next, you can improve your lead-generation strategy by targeting the most effective channels to reach them, such as email marketing, content marketing, or social media. Providing education to your audience and equipping your sales team with the necessary knowledge is essential for your marketing strategy.

In addition to filling your pipeline, a strong interactive product demo is essential for closing more deals. It educates your audience on the benefits of your product and enables them to grasp the value it can bring to their business. The demo should show your prospective customers the complete value of your product.

With Fable, you can create highly personalized interactive demos according to the needs of each stakeholder in the organization. You can embed this demo anywhere you want, either on your website or on social media. Product-led growth does not get better than this. Create your kickass interactive demo today with the help of Fable.

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