*Autumn Leads – As summer becomes fall, generating and nurturing B2B leads becomes more important. The effort now pays off when buyers have budget surpluses in the winter and begin making purchases for the New Year. In this blog series, we look at how to generate and nurture B2B leads, with special consideration for the longer B2B sales cycle.
More! We all want more leads. Quantity matters. And the good news is that you can’t get lead poisoning by having too many leads. But just as important as lead quantity is lead quality. The best use of time for your B2B sales team is spent on genuine opportunities that convert leads into sales.
Unfortunately, not every lead amounts to a rich opportunity. Higher quality leads means more opportunity. In order to increase your opportunities and increase your B2B sales, here are three great tips to assess and improve your lead quality:
1. Identify your target market. You probably already have a good idea of who your ideal customer is, but try to dig deeper if you want better quality leads. Think about what your buyers’ pain points are. Put yourself in their shoes.
Consider a variety of different B2B buyer personas. Who are your various customer types? What interests them most about your solution? What type of content engages them? What are the perceived challenges they have, both before and after a purchase?
To answer these deceptively tough questions, gather your sales team and your marketing team for a discussion. (Luring people with a nice dessert tray is one such way to get everyone in the same room.) You want to answer these questions before spending extra time and money towards improving your lead quality.
2. Content marketing. Once you’ve identified what your ideal prospect looks, feels, and smells like, you want to take action to attract that person to your website. What attracts visitors is unique, compelling online content. Because that content is tailored towards your target market, an inbound marketing strategy attracts the attention and engagement of the higher quality prospects and leads.
There are B2B buyers out there right this second who are searching Google and reading social networks, and they’re interested in what you have to sell. But unless your content appears in front of them on search engines, social networks, etc., those potential customers may never know you exist. And they may never find your solution. Content is all about the power of attraction.
Content is also useful in converting prospects to leads. By gating whitepapers, webinars, and other valued content behind lead forms, you offer website visitors a fair exchange for their contact information. And again, this practice boosts the quality of your leads because these leads have already shown a deep interest in your business.
3. Lead scoring. As you attract higher-quality leads to your website, you want a way to determine which are the most valuable, where they are in the buying cycle, and when your sales team should reach out. A lead scoring tool uses the data you gather about your leads and provides analysis for these questions. The higher the score, the more likely a lead is to buy your B2B solution.
You might choose to assess leads by how often you are contacted, where the leads came from, or even a detailed statistical analysis based on data from previous conversions. A lead tool also gives you information on leads who may not be as far along in the buying cycle. In that case, you want to personalize their experience on your website and present these leads with content and offers that push them closer towards a sale.
Higher-quality leads begets higher-quality opportunities. Identify your target market and buyer personas. Create and leverage content to attract that type of buyer. Score those leads and act on the data. If you follow those three tips, you have a much better chance to capture great leads and convert them into great sales.