Article

Jaakko Paalanen
Jaakko Paalanen 15 June 2022
Categories B2B, Innovation & Trends

5 Lead Generation Trends for B2B Companies in 2022

Lead generation tactics are continuously evolving as more and more B2B brands channel resources into finding and converting quality leads. But with such a competitive market, brands need to keep up to date with the latest tools, trends and technologies or risk losing out to competitors. With this in mind, here is a detailed list of this year’s top lead generation trends that should be on any B2B business’s radar. 

Getting Smarter with Data 

Despite 85 percent of sales reps admitting having data insights into a prospect’s readiness to buy would make their job more efficient, less than half have access to this data. 

Capturing buyer intent data can reveal all about prospective customers’ online behaviour, such as what content they consume or engage with, and will indicate where potential customers are in the marketing funnel – whether they are in the awareness, consideration, or decision stage. 

Leveraging lead generation tools to collect first-hand buyer intent data straight from your website can help businesses capture high-quality leads and strategize to close deals. Key markers include how long a customer has spent on a particular page, knowing exactly which companies are visiting your website and how they found you.

By providing detailed information about what prospects are looking for, businesses can proactively personalize outreach efforts, making campaigns more relevant and more likely to result in a conversion.

Studies have found that 83 percent of businesses that employ a data-driven approach can expect more than five times the ROI on marketing spend compared to those that don’t. So, not only does using analytics for strategic decision-making increase efficiency and drive greater conversions, but it also boosts revenue. 

Automation is King 

Customers want exceptional service at all times, with 82 percent rating an immediate response to questions as being very important. But being available 24/7 typically isn’t possible for most SMEs. This is where chatbots can help. 

Advances in AI technology have made chatbots smarter than ever, with today’s bots having a greater understanding of nuanced language, going beyond answering simple questions. Now, chatbots can take orders and payments, and collect survey data. 

In addition to providing a great customer experience, chatbots assist businesses with efficiently qualifying leads, providing sales teams with valuable information while saving time and resources. 

And it’s not just chatbots that provide businesses with an automated solution. Email marketing is still a top priority for B2B marketers, with 81 percent saying email newsletters are their most used form of content marketing. Automating email marketing efforts enables businesses to create complex campaigns without neglecting personalisation, building long-term brand engagement and saving time.

However, marketing automation will only free up time if you already have a robust marketing campaign in place. Automating marketing channels without proven success could be detrimental to marketing efforts and will only fast-track you to spending more time and money. 

So, if email marketing hasn’t proved fruitful for your business, avoid sinking money into automating this and only invest where appropriate. 

Customer-Centric Marketing 

In today’s fiercely competitive market, businesses need to embrace a personalized approach to lead generation to stand out from the crowd.

Account-based marketing (ABM) essentially challenges traditional inbound marketing tactics of targeting a large number of prospects by only focusing on a small niche of ideal candidates. 

Businesses can then create personalised content and campaigns to target this small group of people, working outwards to focus on other candidates once this list has been exhausted. 

In adopting an ABM approach, businesses can generate higher quality leads more efficiently by only using time and resources to target the most relevant prospects at a decision-making level.

Additionally, this approach can create a better alignment between sales and marketing teams. Not only does this create a smoother line of communication for both the customer and internal teams, but businesses can also expect to enjoy a significant increase in revenue. For example, SuperOffice saw a 34 percent increase in revenue just from merging sales and marketing. 

Using Video to Drive Leads 

During the Covid-19 pandemic, video became a huge asset to sales teams for building relationships and educating prospects. 

Today, video remains one of the most important tools for generating leads, with experts predicting video will be the top investment for B2B brands this year.  

Video can be used in place of cold calling to help introduce brands in a way that is personal, engaging and unlikely to put off prospective clients. Additionally, videos may be used to re-engage unresponsive customers by sending personalized follow-ups or may help to overcome the final obstacles to closing deals.  

So, how should businesses approach video for B2B marketing

The first thing to consider is tone and how to subtly (or not so subtly) inject a brand’s personality into video marketing. But remember, B2B video marketing doesn’t have to be dry – there are plenty of examples of brands tapping into comedy to create engaging and thoughtful campaigns that simultaneously appeal to B2B customers. 

Take Adobe’s ‘Click, Baby, Click’ campaign for example, which highlights the importance of brands paying attention to analytics in a humorous way all while promoting Adobe Marketing Cloud as a way to gain better business insights. 

Voice Search is on the Horizon for B2B

With digital voice assistance users predicted to reach 8 billion worldwide by 2023, it’s no secret that voice search is on the rise. But as current voice search predictions primarily support B2C business models, many B2B brands may wonder how they can tap into this growing trend. 

Currently, over a quarter of the global population is using voice search on mobile devices, with this figure only expected to rise. With such a high proportion of searches using voice assistance tools, this is having a strong impact on SEO and how websites rank, meaning even B2B businesses will soon need to optimise content for voice search or risk getting left behind by competitors.

Additionally, it’s worth bearing in mind that B2B decision-makers are becoming younger as ‘digital natives’ reach positions of power within companies. Their reliance on convenience could reshape expectations for B2B brands’ use of voice search optimization. 

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