B2B Lead Generation: Six “Ah-Ha’s” to Get to the Most “Cha Ching”

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May 11, 2010

Off. On. Off. On. If only lead generation were a faucet under my control. I am certainly seeing more need in our business and in our clients’ businesses for more leads, but only at specific times. Like most Business-to-Business (B2B) marketers today, my budget is still tight, but loosening up a bit, and I am always focused on the “Cha Ching,” or the ability of lead sources to produce profitable business.

This has made me rethink NextPage’s lead generation process and I thought I would share my “Ah-ha” moments from the past several weeks:

1) Fake Leads Love Online Forms

Landing page forms only work if people give you real information. It’s really hard to communicate with someone named “No Name” at abc@abcdef.com. And, there’s no quicker way to turn off your sales team than to funnel them bogus leads. Make sure you have an automated or human filter in place to weed out invalid leads before they make it into your pipeline.

2) Always. Be. Testing.

Lead generation tactics can become ineffective quickly. Always think in terms of what worked before, what is working now, and how many tests need to be in progress to be able to generate leads in the future.

3) Generating a Lead Is Just the First Step

It’s about so much more than just generating leads. Lead generation, lead scoring, lead nurturing and the all-important “close” are really one big progression. One break in the process and good leads fall through the cracks and your ROMI (Return on Marketing Investment) declines.

4) Install A Lead Flow Lever

Having the right amount of lead flow is very important to adequately utilize inside sales teams. Unfortunately, the amount of leads needed is constantly changing. There must be many levers to push and pull to keep everyone productive.

5) Email Lead Generation Is So 2004

Email marketing is a fantastic lead nurturing tool, but it is worthless today as a lead generation tool. Need proof? Just try to remember the last time you used your spam folder as a shopping cart.

6) Get Access to Decision Makers With Lumpy Mail Pieces

Packages or lumpy direct mail get past the gatekeeper. Sounds expensive, right? Yes, and that’s why it works. The administrative assistant can’t throw it away, so it ends up on the boss’ desk. For example, a new “heavy” prospecting tool that we created for NextPage has already returned $10 for every $1 invested and we’ve only sent out 10% of what we have already paid for. Cha ching!

If you would like to see a sample of our “sneak it past the gatekeeper” direct mail piece, contact us.  I’d be happy to share our latest innovation in variable data printing that seems to be confusing the heck out of gatekeepers and connecting us to senior and executive level management.

B2B lead generation is a work in process, literally. Working on both the tactics and the overall process is vital to finding the Cha Ching.

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