When B2B organizations begin thinking about lead generation from multiple aspects, they start seeing how complex it can become. One of the biggest challenges facing today's marketers is creating campaigns that are aligned in terms of message, design and tone across multiple channels. For instance, there's search engine optimization, display advertising, social media, paid search and other digital tactics that work to create a complicated marketing and lead generation environment.
To understand which channels work best for lead generation, it's first necessary to look at some hard facts:
Organic search has been one of the most effective ways for companies to connect with buyers. In 2014, this continues to be the case as this channel has generated the greatest amount of traffic in a wide variety of industries (1). Not only that, but organic search through SEO is also the largest driver of revenue.
Why is SEO such an effective way to generate traffic and leads? Buyers have adjusted to the realities in researching information about products and services that may be applied to their organizations. The basic idea is that Google is now a fundamental part of the discovery phase in the sales cycle. SEO is inextricable in helping customers find their way to a specific website. For instance, B2B businesses now depend on keyword research to find out the most common or accurate search terms that buyers will use when entering a query into a search engine.
At the same time, this tends to align with today's realities of content marketing. Since 83 percent of B2B marketers use content to generate leads, they also need to make sure their content is discoverable. While the blog posts and infographics must be written with the buyer in mind, it's also necessary to efficiently use keywords to help a website show up and rank more highly in SERPs.
An equally important part of lead generation is optimizing Web design for specific functions. Considering the average American spends 2.5 hours on his or her mobile device on a daily basis, lead generation campaigns have to keep on-the-go buyers in mind (2). What's more, nearly half of all mobile owners said a company that didn't have a website that rendered well on a smartphone gave the impression that it didn't care about their business.
When attracting customers, companies need to engage buyers on all platforms. At the same time, it's important for businesses to show customers that their user experience is a key part of interacting with the brand. One of the ways B2B marketers have optimized design to attract buyers is using parallax scrolling. This design technique creates a 3-D effect in the eyes of visitors. It also creates a visual pathway that leads interested buyers to a call to action that the business can use to generate leads.
At its most basic level, lead generation is about appealing to buyers through both emotional and rational means (3). Before knowing how to address both of these aspects of decision-making, it's critical for B2B organizations to understand their customers and how their brains work. For instance, the emotional part of the brain is also tied to the feelings, memories and value judgments.
On the other hand, rationality is tied to organization, critical thinking and problem solving. Accordingly, B2B buyers use both of these systems to respond to lead generation offers, especially as they're contextualized in different places, such as social networks, search engines and landing pages. It's up to marketers to use language and visuals that express value, while also appealing to the pragmatism, when creating offers for lead generation campaigns.