B2B Lead Gen Strategies for 2018

Any company today faces the all-important question of how do we generate high quality leads to fill our business pipeline? To answer this question, we can take a variety of approaches. There are strong Inbound and Outbound marketing strategies but today, I’d like to highlight one effective Outbound marketing strategy: account-based marketing (ABM).

What is ABM?

The act of targeting specific accounts or business that fall into the category of your “ideal customer” allows you to focus your efforts on engaging prospects who are likely to become customers. ABM uses a sequence of outbound personalized communications to generate qualified leads. You can grow leads through outbound mail, programmatic and retargeted ads, sales calls, and even social media outreach.

In addition, the closer you align your sales and marketing teams, the more successful your ABM program is likely to be. And you can even enhance it further using marketing automation software. This type of software allows you to track easily which ABM strategies generate the best return on investment.

How Does ABM Generate Leads?

ABM allows you to leverage different channels to generate top quality leads:

  • Email Marketing. Reaching out to warm and cold prospects through emails is a staple of ABM. You can offer helpful, educational content that nurtures relationships with decision-makers.
  • Paid Advertising. Personalized online display and retargeting ads can deliver the right content at the right time. Social media sites like Google AdWords, Programmatic sites, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter let you target ads with pinpoint accuracy.
  • Direct Mail. Creative direct mail pieces persuade people to buy a service or product. Offering discounts, coupons, or free trials through the mail is an effective way to attract new business.
  • Sales Outreach. This includes cold calling by inside sales teams to reach out to prospects at accounts to schedule appointments for your sales team.

Keep in mind that when establishing a relationship with your prospects and customers, it typically takes between seven and 16 touches to move individuals to the next stage in the buying journey. This delay is due to the fact that on a daily basis, Americans are bombarded with as many as 5000 marketing messages. It takes a sustained account-based outreach effort to get your marketing to stand out from the crowd.

How Does ABM Grow Your Pipeline?

ABM puts your company’s messaging in front of key decision makers at businesses that would make ideal customers. When you coordinate and sequence your outbound campaigns, you can build rapport with decision makers and position your company as trusted advisors.

These campaigns also use automation to scale your “touches” to prospects on a personal level. Personalized, consistent messaging helps you break through the “noise” generated by marketing messages from other companies.

What Factors Affect ABM?

Here are five factors that influence your company’s ABM campaigns:

  • Market Variations. Different marketing messages and techniques are necessary to appeal to different markets.
  • Accessibility. Some markets are harder to reach than others and need specific channels.
  • Innovations. New products or services require more explanation and promotion to educate audiences.
  • Competition. When competition is tight, you need better campaigns.
  • Budget. Your company’s marketing budget also determines the strategies and techniques used.

Leverage outbound marketing strategies like ABM to keep your company’s messages top of mind and generate high-quality business leads. ABM helps you grow your prospect list and funnel leads to your sales team for them to convert into new business. This is good news for business owners who want the highest possible return on investment. An effective account-based marketing campaign generates the greatest ROI and keeps your sales pipeline filled.

Struggling to generate leads for your business and want to learn more about account-based marketing? Contact us. We’d be happy to help.

Author: Sheila Kloefkorn

With more than 25 years of hands on marketing strategy and operations experience, Sheila Kloefkorn is dedicated to developing marketing strategies and plans that help clients succeed. Some of the world's largest brands have depended on Sheila for marketing programs that delivered tangible and substantial results. Specialties: B2B marketing, lead generation, lead nurturing, sales strategy, marketing strategy, competitive marketing strategy, social media, search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), mobile marketing, email marketing, website design, marketing plans.