Blogging as part of a successful B2B lead generation strategy
Is your B2B blog fulfilling its potential or underperforming? Find out how to maximise B2B lead generation opportunities with something as simple as a blog
Published: 22 Jun 2017
5 minutes read
OK, so your B2B blog is up and running (if it isn't, start here). You've published a few entries, gained some readers and started to share your posts via social media channels. The difficult part is already out of the way - you've successfully launched your B2B blog and created a solid foundation on which to build. Now it's time to maximise the opportunities your blog provides, which means it's time to think about how to turn it into a B2B lead generation machine.
'Be All You Can Be' was the recruiting slogan of the US Army between 1980 and 2001. Created by influential ad copywriter ENJ Carter, it's since been co-opted by countless psychologists, life coaches and self-help books. This famous five-word phrase is so powerful because it encapsulates the idea of personal fulfilment, completeness and realised potential.
Think about applying the slogan to your blog. You may have started blogging with a single objective in mind (improve SEO, position your company as a thought leader, please your boss), but the truth is that a good B2B blog should do all of these things, plus many more.
As well as demonstrating expertise and boosting your visibility online, your blog has the potential to be an outstanding B2B lead generation tool. And if you're using the blog as part of an B2B inbound marketing strategy, lead generation should be one of its most important objectives.
Unfortunately, many firms still neglect this aspect of their blogging activity. As a result, their blogs are not performing in every possible area and remain a long way off reaching their potential.
Lead generation basics
The idea is to direct your blog readers to other parts of the website, such as landing pages, where they will become leads by submitting their contact details in exchange for further information. After all, high page views on a blog post won't mean much if none of those visitors go on to engage directly with your products and services.
Of course, retaining a focus on high-quality content as your starting point is still important. People won't find your blog in the first place, let alone stay on your site and click through to other pages, if the content you provide isn't genuinely useful and engaging.
If you want your blog to Be All It Can Be, combine the three lead generation ideas we explore below with outstanding, well-optimised blog content.
1. Create free, downloadable content
Free content is a great lead generator. Provide something your blog readers will find useful and insightful - a guide or an ebook, perhaps - and many will be happy to provide their contact details in exchange for the download link.
However, you need to make sure your downloadable content is relevant to the topics you're discussing on your blog. Visitors won't be interested in additional content that doesn't relate to the issues they're already reading about.
2. Insert calls-to-action and experiment
Including calls-to-action (CTAs) within your blog posts is how you promote your free content offers and entice readers to become leads. You'll see one at the bottom of this post - it's simply a button that readers can click on to fill in a few details and receive their free download.
The use of CTAs isn't an exact science, so it's worth experimenting once your blog is up and running. Find out what works for you by testing various designs and positioning them in different places - you can add CTAs to the sidebar and the top or bottom banner of your blog, as well as within individual posts.
However, try not to disrupt the reader's experience too much, and make sure you emphasise the educational value of the content on offer.
3. Include anchor text links to landing pages
CTA buttons aren't the only way to send readers to your lead-generating landing pages. You can also incorporate links to relevant content offers in the actual copy of your blog posts (see what we did there?). It's a subtle way to boost your blog's lead generation opportunities and avoid overwhelming your readers with multiple CTAs at the same time.
This blog was originally published in December 2013 and has been updated where possible for accuracy and comprehensiveness in June 2017.