05th Feb, 2021
Marcom, , Designation
- There are digital lead generation several challenges which restrain the sales & marketing teams
- These challenges prevent sales & marketing teams & digital marketing agencies from making the most out of their outreach programs
- How enterprises can climb these B2B lead generation challenges with a long-range strategy
Upper management’s rising interest in outreach program and virtual events or Digital Demand generation techniques raises the stakes for digital marketers as they contend with reduced customer facetime and evolving channels. Covid-19 has complicated the fundamental challenges associated with the outreach programs and database marketers are struggling to align their outreach programs with changing customer behaviours and purchase decisions. Without the right tooling and expertise, prospects look like a moving target digital lead generation becomes daunting.
Currently, there is a bewildering range of channels that can aid businesses in engaging with prospective buyers. However, connecting with the target audience isn’t as easy as it seems. Moreover, there are agile and giant players competing against each other. Therefore, businesses that want to win should have the mad audacity, the insane desire, and the grit for bringing their A-game on.
A synopsis of the outreach or digital demand generation challenges and best practices to climb them
B2B consumers receive truckloads of messages every day. Therefore, achieving a high reply rate on sales pitches seems unrealistic for organizations that want to stand apart from the noise and convey their brand message. Enterprises should chase down and eliminate some common outreach hurdles for driving sales engagement. Here are some ways to do this smoothly!
Challenge#1 Who is the Next New Customer?
Most businesses face challenges with finding the right prospects from a sea of unstructured corporate B2B data. Industry experts believe that more than half of sales time goes into the abyss, whereas 98% of cold calls fail to set an appointment because of unproductive prospecting. The B2B marketing database fails to answer several imponderable questions like:
- Who is the right prospect?
- What is his designation?
- How to contact potential prospects within the demographic boundaries?
- Does the company fit in the ideal target segment size?
Database marketers fail to distinguish whom to sell and why to. They fail to gather intent data that is necessary to identify the right prospects and avoid the overproduction of wrong leads. The vision of achieving sales target becomes blurry as the marketing campaign lands at the wrong place. Moreover, wasted lead nurturing costs a huge fortune from the overall company budget and negatively impacts the B2B lead generation process.
Solution: Clean the corporate database to find the potential prospects
Businesses should refine their database with whitespace discovery techniques for extracting sales intelligence. Smart database marketers use automated depth profiling to get actionable insights on interest points that takes them closer to the ideal prospects. Their corporate database clearly outlines prospects preferences like technographic, demographic, firmographic, and purchase propensity. Similarly, organizations must establish and deploy a Data segmenting mechanism that ranks active buyers as per their engagement level. The segmenting mechanism enables an intelligent mesh to segregate customers into the following categories in the buying cycle:
This is the strata of confirmed prospects that are already in the pipeline and are ready to close deals.
Leads are those prospects that have engaged with the content and are active on a business network. Sellers need to work with leads based on the prospect behaviours to convert them into customers and bring them to the sales pipeline.
Active prospects do not engage with the content directly but actively analyze and compare competitors.
Suspects are mainly influencers that research related topics for educational or marketing purposes.
Doing so can eradicate the waste of dealing with non-active accounts fasten the path to success by finding net new customers. This can save a lot of time for the marketers and help them to focus their limited resources on the right audience.
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Challenge #2 The problem to raise a pitch
Many organizations struggle to make the right sales pitch. When sellers find the right prospect, the next part of the sales cycle is to communicate the brand value.
Pitching becomes difficult because sellers don’t have the buyer data to offer tailor-made solutions. Customers lose their interest within a snap and sellers struggle to close a deal.
Solution: Intent data and lead scoring
Real intent data in customer or corporate database can provide insights to sharpen the sales pitch. It can help marketers to extend conversations, earn consumer time, and make more appointments. Real purchase intent data provides sellers and marketers a comprehensive view of the deals that they might otherwise miss.
To make the right pitch, sales teams should turn proactive and expand their research horizons. This can happen in 2 ways:
- Researching what the prospect needs and raising the pitch around his interests
- Calling prospects, advertising the product or service and trying to find what might interest them.
Data-driven sales intelligence can make digital demand generation & sales less tricky. Sellers collect clues and connect the dots between those clues of the potential prospects. Sales intelligence enables sales team to deliver a consistent sales message on the touchpoints, and an intent-driven database can suggest how this is possible.
Industry experts recommend segmenting leads and creating different sales pitches for different B2B leads. More qualified B2B leads mean a higher priority of outreach. Lead scoring ranks MQLs and prioritizing leads saves countless frustrating hours. Sellers should identify different sales triggers to act on different buying signals and focus on low-hanging fruits or prospects with a higher lead score in the B2B database.
Challenge#3 positioning the digital lead generation and outreach programs
Engaging and retaining the customer base is as tough as keeping sand enclosed in a tight fist. The more you tighten your grip, the more sand flows down. The same is the case with the prospect pipeline. Businesses need to exert just the precise amount of pressure to keep their customers in the loop. The most pressing problem selecting & positioning the outreach programs and digital lead generation events for maximum value. Generally, businesses have 2-3 minutes to capture the audience’s attention, and if they fail to do so, then the game is over!
Many enterprises undermine the outreach campaigns, and it is actually a more collaborative discipline than they think. They approach it like an isolated, technically obscure discipline, with marketers and database experts working in silos. On the contrary, outreach campaigns demand widespread collaboration across business and IT domains.
These types of problems can be incredibly hard to track down, as enterprises miss out on at outlining a customer outreach plan and embracing the campaign-driven approach.
Solution: Think ahead of time with a flawless lead generation or outreach strategy
Enterprises planning to build a funnel of new prospects or focusing on new markets/ segments need to outline the demand generation strategy at the first place. They should have a coherent integration to unify online and offline marketing channel for resource allocation.
Moreover, enterprises should have a long-range vision for getting the maximum yield out of their digital outreach campaigns. Without a vision or goal and a campaign-driven approach, the programs end up spinning a broken record. Here are some steps towards building an effective outreach strategy
- Step 1: Building a pool of right audience in absence of face-to-face communication
- Step 2: Scaling the ability to maximize your reach – across geographies
- Step 3: Creating a mix of right prospects, right pitch, right messaging, interest qualification, and closing the gap of availability and mindshare
- Step 4: Enabling intelligent integration between digital engagement and prospect connect
- Step 5: Reconnecting with customers
- Step 6: Enabling multiple campaign formats– be it fireside chats, one-on-one conversations, chat show, webinars, virtual events and more
- Step 7: Defining campaign propensity with a quarterly half yearly plan
- Step 8 Measuring the post outreach impact and focussing on post outreach engagement and generating more awareness.
Enterprises should decide that what outcome they want to achieve from the lead generation or outreach programs. There needs to be the right method, periodicity and approach defined to achieve that outcome.
Enterprises should also determine a B2B content strategy that aligns with their outreach program or lead generation goals. Industry experts say that online content has a moderate to influential effect on most B2B buyers. That’s why they should create data-backed content pieces and widen their horizons of expertise to generate leads.
Organizations should aim at making their buyer journeys easier. Sales and marketing teams should work together to personalize content based on a potential prospect’s most recent actions. They must craft content that reflects segments, buyer-roles, questions for interactive insights, and relevant solutions. Also, marketers need to trade persona-based research for activity-based lead generation.
Challenge#4 Lack of Metrics
One of the most common mistakes that every organization makes is losing track of the defining parameters of the B2B demand generation or outreach campaign. KPIs are essential because they define how a sales team is closing opportunities. The result is staggering growth or sunken profit graphs.
Solution: Identity defining metrics
Organizations should audit their demand generation techniques by defining metrics for the outreach capabilities:
- Data integrity
- Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) coverage
- Content effectiveness
- Buyer’s journey
By analysing the loopholes, success metrics, and failure parameters, marketers and sellers can understand the industry interests more precisely. This can make their pitch more consumer-oriented and less service-specific.
The bottom line
B2B customers won’t fall for cheap selling tactics because they have become more sophisticated, discriminating, and informed. Therefore, B2B sales reps and vendors should follow action-based segmentation based on the behaviour of their recipients and match their customers’ level of maturity with greater competence and agility. Savvy marketers assert that targeted personalization increases customer engagement and bolsters support for Digital Demand generation. Outreach campaigns or digital lead generation campaigns with personalized subject lines get more traction and takes enterprises on step closer towards their ideal prospects.
Savvy marketers have already folded their sleeves for recognizing the need for change. Thus, organizations that seek better ROI in digital demand generation must start making measured and incremental changes towards beating B2B outreach challenges in the shifting business landscape.
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