Top 3 essential strategies for a successful B2B Demand Generation process
In B2B Sales, demand generation, simply put, is the function or the task of generating leads for a company. It is a methodical process that involves creating brand awareness to attract prospects, converting interested prospects into qualified leads and eventually turning leads into buyers.
Demand generation is a typical sales activity that focuses on implementing various marketing strategies and techniques to accomplish lead generation.There are several ways to implement demand generation in B2B sales like Inbound Marketing, Outbound Marketing, Social Media Marketing, Account Based Marketing etc.
In this blog today, we will specifically address,
- Inbound Marketing
- Outbound Marketing
- Account Based Marketing
Let’s go through each of them, one by one.
B2B Demand Generation using Inbound Marketing
Interestingly, demand generation and inbound marketing are two terms in the B2B sales and marketing world that are often used interchangeably; therefore creating a mix-up; implying that they both are the same. Arguably so, while the two are used to describe fairly similar concepts, there is a very distinct difference between them.
If demand generation is the activity of generating leads for a company then inbound marketing is the strategy which is chosen by the company to execute that task of demand generation. Inbound Marketing, as the name suggests, is a marketing strategy while demand generation is more of a sales activity. Inbound marketing is one of the mediums by which a company implements demand generation.
Inbound marketing involves,
- Creating relevant, useful content for the target audience/prospects and making available educational resources for their consumption using blogging, youtube tutorials etc - to create awareness about the brand
- Initiating communication with the prospects to discuss how the product addresses their problem areas and provides a solution - to bring them to a ‘consideration’ stage
- Nurturing the relationship from prospect to lead to the buyer stage
The main objective of Inbound Marketing is to drive organic traffic to company websites and their products via engaging and informational content. This type of marketing is less expensive, highly targeted and has more chances of customer acquisition as interested users themselves approach the company as an inbound lead.
B2B Demand Generation using Outbound Marketing
Outbound marketing strategy involves businesses proactively taking the initiative of establishing communication with customers to create their brand awareness by various digital mediums like Cold Calling, Email Marketing, LinkedIn Outreach as well as physical methods like advertisements, billboards, flyers etc.
Although Outbound Marketing is assumed to be less targeted in its approach than Inbound Marketing, using prospecting and contact discovery techniques helps sales teams generate a list of targeted potential prospects to a great extent. In fact, off late, targeted lead generation has been one of the most successful and effective strategies of Outbound Marketing.
With the help of the right implementation tools and techniques, Outbound Marketing not only streamlines the B2B Sales process but also increases sales and revenue. A sales acceleration tool, Zebrista, is an end-to-end Sales automation tool that automates your entire Outbound sales cycle by implementing prospecting automation, contact discovery, lead generation, email marketing, appointment generation and much more.
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B2B Demand Generation using Account Based Marketing (ABM)
Another demand generation technique, Account Based Marketing(ABM) is a form of marketing where businesses identify and target high-value and befitting accounts having good revenue potential, from their already existing customer database, engage with their decision makers on a personal, one-to-one basis to create personalized buying and customized experiences.
Also known as Key Account Marketing since it targets key accounts which are already high fits, marketing activities begin almost immediately in this technique thereby increasing the chances of converting the prospect into a customer, once again.
Account Based Marketing is the exact opposite of inbound marketing - where a blanket marketing strategy is picked to eventually convert one or two customers - whereas ABM first identifies best-fit and valuable accounts and directly begins the sales process.
B2B Demand Generation - Takeaway
Demand Generation for a B2B business can be achieved using multiple techniques and methodologies. But choosing the correct demand generation strategy for your business should be determined by keeping in mind a number of parameters like the nature of your business, your business objective, your product essence, your target audience, your budget and resources - to name a few.
Inbound Marketing is the most popular, affordable and a well-targeted demand generation technique for customer acquisition, but it is a time consuming process. On the other hand, Outbound Marketing’s accelerated and streamlined approach in a B2B sales cycle has proved its effectiveness in driving growth in business sales in the last few years, but it requires more budget. Account Based Marketing (ABM) has its own advantages and disadvantages as well.
Based on deep research and analysis, it has been concluded that a combination of these strategies is what helps achieve a successful B2B demand generation process.