Maximising Online Lead Generation for a B2B Technology Audience

In order to develop your B2B lead generation, first you need to identify your customer. With this in mind, here are three things you need to know about the average B2B buyer:

Picture of Alice Robinson Alice Robinson

Published: 19 Feb 2015

5 minutes read

Maximising Online Lead Generation for a B2B Technology Audience

Marketing is constantly evolving, but the power of content marketing has been widely acknowledged for some time now. Not surprising, when Marketing Sherpa claim that content creators successfully convert 29% more organic traffic into high value leads. By producing infographics, blogs and assets, you can educate, instruct and even amuse your audience, and drive online lead generation.

However, there’s one significant snag. You need to share your content with the world in order to actually generate leads. You could have written a masterpiece, but no one is going to know about it unless you work on extending your content’s reach.

Considering the B2B audience

In order to develop your B2B lead generation, first you need to identify your customer. With this in mind, here are three things you need to know about the average B2B buyer:

  • They are independent and inquisitive. Today’s B2B buyer knows how to Google, and will do so at every given opportunity. In fact, in a study by the CMO Council found that 87% of B2B buyers believe that online content impacts their buyer journey.
  • B2B buyers are often in a hurry, and will want the freedom to research products at a time and pace convenient for them.
  • They don’t like an aggressive sales pitch. SiriusDecisions states that 67% of the buyer’s journey is now done digitally, and they probably won’t be impressed if a salesperson rings them up too early.

Successful B2B lead generation relies on your business catering to the needs and wants of your audience. So how can you tap into these buyer characteristics?

The inquisitive buyer

In order to appeal to the inquisitive B2B buyer, you need to get found by them. Optimise content across your website, landing pages, blogs and social media messaging to boost organic search results. Once you start ranking highly for relevant keywords on Google, you should see a spike in lead generation.

Use blogs to draw in website visitors, and try to ward off writer’s block. HubSpot claims that increasing the number of blogs published monthly, from between three to five to between six to eight, can almost double a company’s online lead generation numbers.

Once your audience is interested, you can use an opt-in strategy to tempt buyers into sharing their contact details and receiving email marketing. Whatever you do, avoid spamming strangers and earning your business a bad reputation! Be careful that you place the emphasis of marketing emails on sharing rather than selling. You can even add social media sharing buttons to the email itself, encouraging readers to pass it on to colleagues.

The buyer in a hurry

To please the pressured B2B buyer, you need to make it simple for them to find your content through relevant online platforms. Sharing content through social media is a marketing no-brainer, as many B2B buyers browse multiple platforms as part of their daily routine, and you can use hashtags and keywords to tap into relevant discussions.

You can link directly to blogs and landing pages to drive online lead generation through social media platforms. However, resist the temptation to broadcast too much. Make the effort to communicate with your audience, publications and maybe even your competitors! Two-way interaction is essential if you want to build a valuable social media following.

SAP used social media to gain more than 100,000 fans and followers across Latin America in only one year, and achieved a 17% interaction rate.

Econsultancy cites that SAP’s social content is 20% promotions and 80% engaging material.

The anti-sales buyer

All of this will help to gratify the hard-sell hating B2B buyer, who will naturally feed into your lead generation strategy by choice as they pursue your relevant and valuable content.

Talking to your buyers is a great marketing practice. Even better, learn to mind read! Tailor your content to pre-empt common questions and concerns your B2B buyer might have, and present them with useful and actionable advice to help them solve any problems. The term ‘thought leadership’ has become a marketing cliché, but you can’t escape the fact that an expert knowledge of industry trends and best practices helps to win over reluctant buyers and fuel B2B lead generation.

Cisco coined launched a thought leadership initiative around "the internet of everything", using blogs, videos, white papers and even a Twitter campaign.

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