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B2B Lead Generation: What it takes to succeed

August 26th, 2019 Linus Gregoriadis

Online lead generation is a thriving marketing discipline which more and more B2B-focused companies are investing in.

Earlier this year, in partnership with ON24, London Research published the 2019 State of B2B Lead Generation report, focused on what it takes to succeed.

According to the research, too many companies are missing a trick by failing to adopt best practices in terms of strategy, content, data, and execution.

At Webinar World in London this year I’m delighted to have the opportunity to present some of the key findings from this research … to help shine a torch on what companies can do to get the most out of their webinars and other lead generation activities.

What’s in store for you at Webinar World London? Click here to check out the agenda and save your spot.

The effort is worth it. The research shows that for the most successful companies (defined as ‘leaders’ in the research), almost half of their total sales (47%) are generated from leads generated online, compared to only 22% for their mainstream counterparts.

This is proof that companies can reap significant gains if they direct investment into the right areas and follow best practices.

The market is buoyant … but ROI remains a challenge

The research, based on global survey of marketers, shows that half of companies (50%) are planning to increase lead gen budgets over the next 12 months.

Despite an increase in budgets, companies are struggling to measure the return on investment they get from this channel. Fewer than half of companies surveyed (47%) say they have a clear understanding of ROI based on sales data.

One of the defining characteristics of a lead generation leader is the ability to measure ROI based on sales. The ability to measure success is crucial to ensure that efforts in this area are being properly credited, and to help ring-fence investment in the future.

My Webinar World presentation will explore how companies can measure the success of their campaigns effectively by making sure they have the right processes and platforms in place. Alignment of marketing and sales is a key theme.

The role of webinars

The year’s State of B2B Lead Generation research explores the use of webinars as a channel for generating high-quality leads. The presentation will look at how many companies are still taking a very basic approach to webinars, and therefore missing opportunities to engage with potentially highly responsive audiences.

According to our study, online lead generation leaders are more than twice as likely as their peers to say they get high-quality leads from webinars than from other types of asset (60% vs. 26%).

To help extract maximum value, marketers need to take a methodical approach to running their webinar programmes. For example, leaders are much more likely to review attendee feedback, with 84% reporting they have feedback processes in place for webinars, compared to only 54% of mainstream organisations.

Having a review process is crucial for utilising webinars effectively as a channel. Almost three-quarters (72%) of leaders report they review registration, attendance and engagement data, compared to only 57% of mainstream companies.

Be human

While there are various processes and technical aspects that need to be in place for successful online lead generation, the most important ingredient for success in this discipline is to be engaging, whether through your webinars or other content assets.

The last word in this articles goes to ON24 CMO Joe Hyland who makes a great point in the foreword to a report.  “If you act like a human, you can gain and keep consent. If you make your content interactive, thoughtfully engage your prospects and customers throughout the funnel, you’ll not only gain consent — you’ll earn their trust and business.”

My presentation at Webinar World London will cover how B2B leaders are ensuring they optimise the webinar channel at every stage of the process to extract maximum value, including matching topics and content with their audience, promoting on-demand webinars to maximise engagement, and learning from feedback to improve content and delivery.