We all know that B2B marketing has changed a lot in recent years. This change is clearly a threat to many businesses but it also presents a great opportunity for businesses that are able to adapt.
For example, buyers spend more time researching potential solutions on the internet and as a result B2B businesses are creating more content to respond to the demand for information. This isn’t new news for most businesses.
Is New better than Old?
The market is swamped with marketing tools, channels and mechanisms to deliver marketing campaigns. For many business owners or marketing professionals the sheer weight of new products and services can be confusing and challenging to keep up with. And that’s before the task of trying to evaluate which new marketing products or services might work and where to invest with a limited budget.
79% of B2B businesses say that Lead Generation is one of their top 3 priorities. With such importance placed on it, a common knee-jerk reaction to a downturn in lead generation is to dismiss a channel, tactic, supplier or even an employee as ineffective.
This may provide short term gratification, but this doesn’t solve the underlying issue; do you need to simply adapt your existing marketing channels, suppliers or tactics, or disregard them altogether?
There isn’t a one-size fits all answer to this quandary. But a growing number of B2B companies are starting to re-adopt some of the more traditional lead generation solutions they’ve previously used; as they’ve found (to their cost) that new and shiny solutions often haven’t lived up to the hype.
A different approach
One area of that has unquestionably driven-up marketing effectiveness is integration; this is probably the key to successful lead generation for many SME businesses, who have limited time, budget or internal resources.
There are many elements that influence the perception a prospect has of your business. Content – as highlighted in the opening paragraph – is now commonly recognised as important, and an area that many businesses have already invested in. But content alone is not enough. It needs to be personalised and delivered to the right prospects at the right time through a variety of channels.
The same is to be said with exhibitions, telemarketing, direct mail, email marketing etc. These traditional marketing and lead generation techniques are still yielding excellent returns for many businesses; but almost universally when they are part of a wider marketing strategy that integrates multiple elements.
Marketing technology has a role to play, particularly in digital marketing. But a cohesive approach that includes both the best of old and the best of new is where the smart money is at.