How B2B businesses can successfully grow their sales with effective lead generation
The world of business is a competitive place, only the best succeed. If you don’t effectively grow your business, you will eventually die out. Many small and medium-sized businesses, after their initial period of growth, tend to become stagnant and no longer generate leads. After a while, they lose customers, shrink, and disappear. So, how do you prevent this from happening to you? How do you make your business a sustainable, long-term success?
Don’t rely on your current customers
If you rely on the customers you already have and don’t grow, you will eventually go out of business. Customers can be fickle. They can change their wants and needs, reorganise, even find a cheaper option. For many different reasons, customers tend to come and go. Even to just stay in the same position, you need a strategy to replace customers when they go. To grow your business and become successful, you need to generate more customers alongside your existing ones.
A lot of small business owners are very busy people and have to juggle a number of different jobs. With not a lot of spare time, small business owners tend to rely on referrals and networking – which is simply not enough. Networking is very time consuming and has no guarantee of success. Referrals are a waiting game and can’t be relied upon. It takes time to build up a good network and gain a mass number of referrals, and even then, this will only work to sustain, not grow, your business.
B2B Lead Generation
Effective lead generation for B2B businesses requires planning, effort and a lot of time, dedication, and investment. To market yourself effectively so you can create leads, you first need to do these things:
Define your key/unique selling points (USPs)
Decide what your key selling points or USPs are that are of value to your customers. What can you offer them that they want, need, or will solve their problems? Look at your products and services critically and make sure they solve real-world problems for your customers, that they want to solve and will in turn pay good money for.
Define your target market
You cannot target everybody, it’s just not plausible. If you do this, you’ll end up selling to nobody. You need to define a niche market of individuals who will want your product. Remember, people, pay good money for specialists, not generalists. By defining a target market, it’s much easier to market yourselves and your services effectively and actually get noticed. Don’t worry about excluding certain people when you develop a niche market, as you were unlikely to sell to them anyway.
Come up with a convincing message
Now you have identified your key selling points and your target market, you need to come up with a compelling message and convincing argument for why these customers should buy from you. You need to explain clearly why customers need your services, why they should purchase them today, and why they should buy from you in particular – what makes you different from others?
Customers need answers to these questions; otherwise, why would they buy from you? So many businesses don’t properly explain what they do and use vague taglines that mean nothing. Be specific and concise and spell out exactly why your what your customer needs. Once you’ve developed this convincing message, put it out everywhere, on your website, brochures, advertisements, presentations, etc.
Implement an effective lead generation strategy
Now you’ve got everything you need to be able to sell effectively – key selling points, a clear target market and a compelling message – you need to generate leads and convert them into sales. This step is so important. You need to tell people about these products and services you’ve spent so much time and money developing. Be careful how you spend your budget, we have come across so many companies who have poured money into the wrong things and ignored all other channels.
With lead generation, there is no one single route you should focus on. You need to use multiple channels to create leads and come up with an effective lead generation strategy to get the sales you want. This strategy then needs to be continuously monitored and fine-tuned to ensure it is delivering the best results.
Lead generation strategies
First of all, you need to create an effective lead generation strategy. This takes time and a lot of effort, but it can pay off massively. Use multiple different channels, test them out, learn the best way to implement them and fine-tune the way you use them. Using multiple channels can help you capture your whole target market but to do this you need to find out where your potential customers are going. Below is a list of different channels you can use to create leads.
Build a great website
Building a website for your business is so important. Most people nowadays search for things online or at least check out a website before they choose a company. Your website needs to have a clear and concise message, highlighting why a customer should buy from you. It also needs to be user-friendly and easy to navigate, otherwise, customers will give up and go elsewhere. You only really have a few seconds to entice a customer and draw their attention before they ‘bounce’. If your website has a high bounce rate, then you likely have no clear message or clear target market, or it’s not user-friendly.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
This is incredibly important but takes some time. To rank in search engine results pages, like Google, your website needs to be search engine optimised. The aim is to get to page one of Google, which can take a long time, but it’s worth it in the long run. If you rank organically in search engines results pages, you can get a lot of leads that have cost you nothing.
Clear Calls to Action (CTAs)
You should have clear CTAs, with contact details including a phone number, email address, website address or location which clearly tells your customers how to get in touch with you. They should make it easy for customers to be able to contact you or buy from you. Put them all over your website, on any adverts, published content, emails, brochures, etc.
This is important when promoting your website through content. Find out what customers are searching for and then use these keywords in your content.
Pay Per Click (PPC)
After doing thorough keyword and negative keyword research, you should implement PPC through Google Ads. This will put your website at the top of Google when people are searching for specific words and phrases, meaning you can target people who are already looking for what you’re offering.
In this day and age, social media is key. Having thriving social media channels is good for brand awareness and reaching a wider audience. The social media channels you should have will depend on your target market and services. LinkedIn is pretty much a must for most B2B businesses.
Another great way to reach a wider audience and generate a lot of leads. You can put out social media advertisements on the channels that best target your audience. These change depending on your business, they could be on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc.
Engage with your audience and keep updated
This applies to your social media and your website to an extent. You need to engage with your audience on social media to stay relevant and catch their attention. This includes posting regular, engaging content, commenting on other people’s posts, replying to questions and messages, joining groups and linking with other people and influencers in your sector. You must develop the right connections; 50 relevant connections will be of more use than 500 people who have nothing to do with your sector and no intention of buying your products.
Create a mailing list of people you can send out marketing campaigns via email. The bigger the list the better with this really, but you need to beware of GDPR.
Retargeting advertisements can be very effective, as they allow you to continue to promote to someone who has already shown an interest in your services. These ads follow individuals across different channels after they might have viewed your website but ‘bounced’.
Turning those leads in sales
Once you have an effective lead generation strategy in place and you are generating leads, you can focus on converting these leads into sales. You need to make sure you’re closing the deal effectively. You could be creating thousands of leads but if your conversion strategy is unsuccessful, then this could all be for nothing.
Outsourcing your lead generation and conversion strategies
You have probably gathered by now that to be successful in generating leads and growing your business, involves a lot of hard work, skill and dedication. This can be incredibly time consuming and a lot of businesses don’t have the spare time, or knowledge, to dedicate to this. This is where outsourcing can become an incredibly valuable tool. By outsourcing your marketing to a company that specialises in this, you can free up your own time, save money on employing a dedicated team in your business, and get much more effective results.
When choosing a marketing company to outsource to, you should look for one who specialises in these lead generation techniques that are going to work for your business. Look at their track record to see if they’ve had success doing this before for other companies, and with what results.
If you want to increase your leads and conversions and need help implementing an effective lead generation and conversion strategy for your business, Castle can help. We are marketing experts and have years of experience and huge success in implementing a wide variety of lead generation strategies, for all kinds of different businesses. We don’t tie in our clients with long-term contracts, we offer 30-day retainers, so if you’re not seeing the results you want after a month, you can leave – no strings attached. Contact us today to find out more or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.