Effective lead generation - Instream Group
Skip to content

Effective lead generation

Each sales department needs a sufficient number of sales leads to achieve its goals. In many companies this task rests on the shoulders of the marketing department. In others, these are sales teams that work on lead generation, and yet some companies do nothing at all in this respect.

Cold Email Campaign, Linkedin Automation, SEO, Adwords, Social Selling, content marketing – these terms cover various methods and techniques to attract potential customers to use services and buy products. Below I have prepared a short guide on different methods of customer acquisition.

Lead generation – marketing and sales activities aimed at building sales potential by acquiring as many future customers as possible. The lead generation activities require using many tools, methods and practices described in this article.

Table of contents

    1. Introduction and planning of lead generation strategies
    2. Types of marketing activities
    3. Definition of a lead
    4. Inbound marketing – pros and cons
    5. Outbound marketing – pros and cons
    6. Lead generation by Inbound Marketing
      1. SEO
      2. Google Ads (formerly Adwords)
      3. Content marketing
      4. Guest Blogging
      5. Social Listening
      6. Video marketing
      7. Influence marketing
      8. Forum and discussion boards
      9. Remarketing
      10. Podcast
      11. Webinars
      12. Social media marketing
      13. Landing page
      14. Web communicators
      15. Push notifications
      16. Newsletter
      17. Media
    7. Lead generation by Outbound Marketing
      1. Cold Mailing
      2. Cold Calling
      3. Social Selling
      4. LinkedIn
      5. Inbound Lead + Cold Emailing
      6. Referral
    8. List of lead generation tools
    9. List of companies offering lead generation assistance
    10. Summary

Introduction and planning of lead generation strategies

Lead generation is handled differently in different companies. Sometimes companies focus only on referrals, some carry on a very aggressive strategy and still others do nothing at all.

Planning a strategy focused on customer acquisition requires experience and should involve not only marketing but also sales resources in the company.

The relationship between marketing and sales is very important in today’s business. In the past, when there was more offline activity, the difference was negligible. But now that many businesses operate entirely online, the scope of work between marketing and sales overlaps greatly. Moreover, companies often forget that it is the sales department that holds the most valuable customer knowledge. The role of marketing is to extract this knowledge from the sales team and transfer it to generate B2B and B2C leads.

Lead Manager positions are increasingly common in the marketing department. These are people who focus on analysing the types of leads that are being acquired, manage campaigns in terms of sales needs and transfer leads to the sales department. They are also the link between the marketing department, which is responsible for generating leads, and the sales department, which converts these leads into customers.

On the other hand, there are Pre-Sales positions in the sales departments. These are held by people who are responsible for activities aimed at generating leads based on the activities directly search for customers such as Cold Email or Linkedin.

When planning the Lead Generation strategy, several important issues should be taken into account:

1. Do you know for sure who the potential client is and what method of lead generation will be the most effective for his profile?

  • Have you, as a company, analyzed the client’s profile and his: challenges, processes he is undertaking, problems, thoughts, feelings, what he does, what kind of actions he is undertaking, what his position is, etc.?
  • Do you already have companies in your client portfolio that meet these criteria? Have you interviewed them on how they got to you? Have you researched their needs properly?

2. Do you have tools to analyse your website traffic, sources, conversions?

  • If you do not measure the results from the very beginning you will not be able to develop because you will not have the right data to analyze whether your campaigns and the current generation of leads give the right results.
  • Add Google Analytics to your website.
  • In order to define your goals check on SimilarWeb what sources the competition uses and what results other companies obtain.
  • Add apps to your website to monitor user behaviour, such as HotJar or User.com

3. Do you have the right CRM system to handle the generated leads?

  • Before you start generating leads, you need to prepare a process that will help you convert them into customers.
  • Every lead costs: the lack of a CRM system and process to support and handle it causes the sales manager to lose many leads, which increases the lead acquisition cost.

If you respond positively to these three points, it means that you are ready to plan your Lead Generation campaign in the company.

Planning your marketing and sales strategy in this area requires long-term thinking. It is the responsibility of the marketing department to provide the sales team with the right level of fresh sales potential. Unfortunately, each of the lead generation methods described below has its pros and cons. Some of them work immediately but are therefore expensive. Others can be realised organically without investment, but this unfortunately requires a lot of time and often involves more people. Still others are ideal for low-margin services and others only for those with high return on investment (ROI). That is why measuring and testing is so important. What factors contribute to a well-planned marketing campaign? 

  •     Work schedule
  •     KPI (Key performance indicators) and planned targets
  •     Tools designed for performance analysis
  •     Activities planned based on customer profiles and sales department feedback
  •     Team with the competence to perform the entrusted activities

Once you have the above elements, you are ready to go.

Types of marketing activities

In a company, customer acquisition activities are divided into two categories: “Outbound” and “Inbound” Marketing. These terms are linked to the concepts of “Inbound Lead” and “Outbound lead”, i.e. incoming and outgoing lead. 

These terms define how the lead was obtained. However, before I explain it, it is worth indicating what LEAD is to me.

Lead

It is an individual who represents a given business entity and is initially interested in the services/products of your company. This person must have expressed this interest by registering in the online form, calling the company’s number, contacting it through Social Media or directly responding to your communication.

As I mentioned, this Lead can be obtained in an “inbound” and “outbound” way, which is further explained by the respective definitions.

 

lead generation - what is a lead

 

Inbound marketing – pros and cons

Inbound Marketing – marketing activities which aim to acquire a potential customer by attracting their interest in the content through various media and forms of communication. Most often these are activities such as Content Marketing, SEO, Adwords, or social networking.

Pros – wide reach, great creativity, choice of form. Relatively low costs.

Cons – target selection is not possible in 100%, you never have full influence on the recipients of the content, which can translate into wrong leads. A lot of work is required to generate good-quality leads.

 

Inbound marketing lead generation - pros and cons

 

Outbound Marketing – pros and cons

Outbound Marketing – less marketing and more commercial activities aimed at establishing direct contact with a potential customer by means of social media, email or telephone.

Pros – leads can be generated on the same day, perfectly matched to the target and pre-qualified leads.

Cons – high price, limited reach.

 

Outbound marketing lead generation - pros and cons

 

The method of generating leads should be chosen depending on what the company sells/offers. In the case of mass sales, sales of low-priced products, the most important factor is quantity. Therefore, these companies tend to opt for Inbound Marketing activities, as they provide a wide reach and low CPL* rate.

*CPL – cost per lead.

In the case of companies offering more expensive services, Inbound Marketing activities still work, of course, but these companies are also more inclined to outbound marketing activities. The high CPL rate is not a problem here, as the return on investment (ROI) is many times higher.

*ROI – return on investment.

Below you will find a list of simple actions that your company should undertake if you plan to increase the number of generated leads.

B2B lead generation by Inbound Marketing

1. SEO

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a set of actions that makes your website appear higher in search results and are therefore more likely to be clicked then the websites of your competitors. There are currently few industries that can afford to ignore this source of customer acquisition. If you care about high positions, you have to spend a lot of time on your website to make it interesting for the users. Google is a text search engine, so you should focus greatly on this form of information presentation. However, you must not forget that the article in which you have diagrams, photos and illustrations is much easier to read for the users of the site. Google is able to effectively assess whether the user has found useful information on a given page and was satisfied with it. Acquiring leads by SEO is a long-term strategy. It is not uncommon to wait several months for the effects, but if you want your website to appear high in the search results after a user introduces a very common phrase to the search engine, the whole investment may pay off really well.

 

Customer acquisition using Google - organic search results
Organic search result on Google

 

If you need support in SEO optimization, it is worthwhile to contact a professional in this area. We recommend cooperation with SentiOne.

According to Capterra.com the best SEO tools on the market are:

  • RankHacker
  • Keyword RankChecker
  • UnamoSEO
  • SpySerp
  • Salesoar
  • Plerdy

2. Google Ads (formerly Adwords)

Google Ads Google Ads is an advertising platform developed by the giant from California. Unlike SEO activities, the effects of which take months to produce, in the case of Google Ads you can count on the results of lead generation activities on the very same day. Thanks to this platform you can make your website appear in the first place by any searched phrase. Of course, the most popular phrases are already covered by competing websites, and often you have to pay a lot for a single click on the link to your website. Google does not guarantee in any way that a person visiting your website will leave their contact details. For this reason, it is worthwhile to work on converting visitors to leads. This will save a lot of money in the monthly advertising budget.

 

Customer acquisition using Google Ads - paid search result
Paid search result – Google Ads

 

According to Capterra.com the best PPC management tools on the market are:

  • GoogleAnalytics
  • Optymzr
  • Campaign Automator
  • SpyFu
  • AdScale

3. Content Marketing

This is a very general term. Content marketing as a method of customer acquisition is a term describing activities involving the creation of interesting and good quality content to attract potential customers. Nowadays, unfortunately, content creation alone may not be enough. There is too much content on the web. As recipients, we are all saturated with such a form of marketing, which makes it hard for a company like yours to stand out of the crowd.

 

Customer aquisition using content marketing - example of company blog
Example of content marketing – company blog

 

The following points should be taken into account when preparing a Content Marketing strategy:

The purpose of the created content – at InStream Group we divide such content into substantive content and content aimed for SEO. In the case of substantive content, we try to ensure that it contains such information as we would like to read as a recipient. We focus on long texts with specific information, something that will surprise and increase the popularity of the material. When preparing such material, we actually develop a whole strategy for its promotion. We try to create many secondary materials from one article: Slideshare presentations, videos, infographics, webinars, podcasts and many others. This allows for a wider distribution of content.  In the case of content aimed for SEO, we focus on a specific subject matter and that the article is properly visible on the web. Its purpose is to strengthen the position in Google and attract a potential customer through specific keywords.

For this purpose, we use the SimilarWeb platform (which allows us to examine the keywords of our competitors) and Google Adwords (which allows us to examine the popularity of given words in search engines). We create strategies and then develop specific content.

When creating content for the Blog it is worth to differentiate it, create categories and specific topics. It is also important to maintain the regularity of content publication. A newsletter is an ideal complement to this.

 

Content marketing - how to start

 

When creating a platform for the publication of content such as a blog on the website you should make sure that it is readable. Many companies consciously use Blog as a sales platform. For this purpose, it is worth implementing various plugins, such as Sumo.com, to increase conversions on the blog.

By making it easier for the user to comment and share content, you increase the chances of dissemination of your content, which every author should care about. While preparing entries, it is worth to include:

  • entries from various authors (Guest Blogging)
  • rankings
  • quotes
  • data collected in the research under the article
  •  title well suited for SEO

When deciding on Content Marketing as one of the elements of a lead generation strategy, one should be aware that we live in times of an oversupply of content. This means that it is difficult to attract the reader because there is too much content on the web. Therefore, when preparing a quality blog post, you should plan how to promote it. The blog post itself gives you little if it is not read. At InStream Group, when planning to publish content, we are immediately developing other forms of media to promote the subject matter contained in the blog post, which will of course encourage the recipients of the social media strategies to also read the blog. Such material may take the following forms:

  • YouTube video
  • Live streaming on Facebook
  • Slideshare presentation
  • Facebook survey
  • Raising questions on Quora
  • Infographics on Facebook

Content prepared for the blog must engage. Write as if you were the reader yourself. Only good quality content has a chance to be shared online.

4. Guest Blogging

As a method of customer acquisition, Guest Blogging involves cooperation with other people in terms of publishing content, but also your participation in the content of other authors. Why is Guest Blogging so effective? Imagine that you are preparing a cookbook. By promoting it, you decide to write a recipe for your favorite pizza and publish it in the form of an article on a blog to generate leads even before publication. The finished article would probably be published on Facebook, Linkedin or other social media. Its popularity is then directly dependent on the popularity of your profile. In case of Guest Blogging, there is an additional value here. Let’s assume that when creating the aforementioned article about your favorite pizza recipe you invite 10 influencers to it. Each one of them describes your favorite pizza and your favorite pizza restaurant that you recommend in your hometown. At first glance, not much changes, only the content of the entry is a little bit longer. However, the difference appears at the stage of publishing an entry on Social Media. By inviting 10 influencers, your entry will probably appear not only on your Social Media channel, but also on those of the mentioned influencers. This is 10 times the reach of your entry alone. What’s more, thanks to the influencers’ description of your favorite pizzeria, your article will be even more popular.

The term Guest Blogging also includes activities involving your participation in someone’s content. The aim of such activities is, of course, to build awareness of your personal brand and your company’s brand as well as to attract customers. Thanks to frequent appearances in guest content you increase your visibility.

 

Customer aquisition using guest blogging
Example of InStream and Callpage Guest Blogging

 

5. Social Listening

Put simply, social listening is monitoring how your brand performs online. It seems obvious, but are you sure you’re doing it right?

Let’s go back to the year 2000. You’re in the artificial fur business. A dissatisfied customer leaves your premises. In the worst case scenario, they will be able to discourage passers-by from visiting your shop or tell their nearest and dearest relatives about their disappointment. You, of course, will have no influence on whether or not to correct the situation. And now imagine that it is the year 2019. The same customer is leaving your premises. In a space of a few seconds, he will probably express his discontent online.

On the other hand, monitoring a brand in the network is not only about customer feedback. It is, above all, about listening to what the market says about the issues you are interested in. Imagine 2 people talking about artificial fur on Social Media. How much would you give to join such a conversation and encourage them to visit your store? Yes, Social Listening tools are great for generating leads!

If you are looking for a good tool to monitor your brand online and acquire customers through these channels, we recommend one of 2 Polish solutions: Brand24 and SentiOne.

More and more often sales departments, within their strategies focused on generating leads, decide to hire a person for the Pre-Sales position. Such a person, using tools like Brand24, attracts customers via Internet monitoring and relationship building.

Social Selling activities are not only about monitoring what customers say about your brand. As part of Social Selling activities aimed at generating leads, you can:

  • be active on Quora, answer questions and build relationships
  • run social and thematic groups and engage people
  • be active on Linkedin and interact with potential customers

The latter activity is related to the Linkedin platform itself, which is probably the first that comes to mind when you think of Social Selling. Linkedin, due to its reach, data quality and easy networking, is perfect for this method of customer acquisition.

You can read more about the activities on Linkedin in the following post How to sell effectively on the Linkedin platform – 7 tricks you probably haven’t heard of. 

6. Video marketing

As a tool designed to generate leads, it is a form that is currently being developed on many national markets. In Eastern Europe you don’t get as many industry-oriented Youtubers as there are in other western countries. We resort to video blogs less often than we do to classical forms of marketing. And that’s a shame. Marketing trends show, however, that everything is changing and the content is more and more often communicated through videos rather than in written form.

Youtube is the second largest search engine after Google. And it’s not surprising. The ability not only to see, but also to hear something in video format offers a huge advantage. But what can you publish in video format ? Actually, anything. For starters, consider these types of Youtube content:

  • Tutorials and tips on specific topics
  • Interviews with customers, industry specialists
  • QA – a type of interview based on questions from listeners or clients
  • Training courses and webinars

The video content perfectly complements the blog entries. When preparing a content marketing strategy, it is worthwhile to use both forms and cleverly intertwine them. Video Marketing is not only about Youtube. If your brand fits in with other channels, it is also worth becoming active on Instagram, Snapchat or TikTok. You are most likely to acquire customers where they tend to spend most of their time on the web.

7. Influence Marketing

In other words, building brand awareness based on recognizable people or specialists in a given industry. Influencer marketing can be purely commercial. In this case you pay directly for the promotion of your products. It can also be organic, which means that you get valuable guests for your posts, video content, which increases the reach of your content.

In both cases, it is a very effective method to attract both B2C and B2B customers.

If you decide for commercial activities you can use platforms such as LifeTube.

However, if you decide to use organic influencer marketing strategies, remember that there is nothing for free. Asking the influencers directly to support your product/service will unfortunately not give you much. Look for other ways. Think about how you can engage them creatively.

8. Forum and discussion boards

Thematic forums are a very good way to build brand awareness, especially among specialists. They can act as representatives to your brand if you convince them to do so.

However, taking part in the forums is a long-term enterprise. You have to be patient. Excessive promotion of your brand in general threads is also undesirable. Therefore, you must do it slowly. Try to smuggle your brand topic cleverly into your statements.Above all, however, you must take the time to build a professional image and engage in substantive discussions.

Interesting places to build brand awareness include Quora or Redit.

9. Remarketing

Remarketing is one of the most effective sources of lead acquisition in the world of marketing. It allows you to reach people who have already had some contact with your brand. Depending on the medium, it could have been a visit to a website or to a Facebook or Instragram profile. Properly planned marketing campaign can transform an ordinary website visitor into a regular customer. This type of campaign is most often encountered in Google Ads and Facabook Ads, where you have the opportunity to display your ads to people who have seen your website.Remarketing means low advertising costs and high effectiveness. It also limits the size of people to whom the campaign is directed.

10. Podcast

Podcasts are a fairly new form of communication as a marketing activity and customer acquisition. It is also a great opportunity to blaze a trail in its field. Podcasts are nothing more than audio content that is made available on various platforms. Podcasts, just like video format, perfectly complement the substantive content of the blog entry. Podcasts can take a form of either a monologue or of an interview with an influencer or an industry specialist.

Are you looking for inspiration through some well-made podcasts? Check out Gary Vaynerchuk channel.

11. Webinars

Webinars are an ideal form for knowledge dissemination or product training. This form is most often used by SaaS producers or service companies that focus on building the position of an expert in a given field. Webinars are also great tools for generating leads.

A well-prepared webinar requires appropriate technical support. Apps for webinar hosting can be expensive and clumsy. At InStream Group we recommend WebinarJam or QlickView. Before setting up a Webinar, it is important to have a previously prepared list of participants. For this purpose it is necessary to develop a marketing campaign that will promote your webinar. Oftentimes a LandingPage (a simple website) is prepared in advance, e.g. through Landingi, in order to gather people willing to participate in a webinar. Such Landing Page is linked to the Newsletter, which will allow you to send reminders on the day of the planned Webinar. The most frequently conducted webinars concern:

  • skills development and knowledge sharing
  • technical product knowledge
  • development of one’s passions
  • topics related to technology, politics, media


It is also wise to ensure that the webinar can be viewed also in the future. Therefore, it is best to either create a channel on Youtube or provide such an option on your website.

12. Social Media Marketing

Social Media Marketing is actually a very general term. The use of Social Media in brand promotion requires very good knowledge of a given platform. The times when it was enough to post content and be active are long gone. What matters today is technical knowledge of a given platform, ability to analyze data and creativity.

The most popular social media platforms are: Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram, TikTok. Each of these platforms can help you to attract customers, but it is worthwhile to broaden your knowledge about them. Each of these platforms will be described in the next posts.

If you plan to build your brand’s position in Social media, you should definitely expand your knowledge about the current possibilities of these platforms. These are huge resources of the community and data, so it is very important to be able to precisely allocate the budget for the activities on these platforms.

It is also important to monitor the conversion on your website. The activity on a given platform should entail an appropriate conversion rate for your website, otherwise it is rather brand promotion than B2B lead generation.

Some examples of apps supporting work on Social media in the field of generating B2B leads are:

  • Brand24
  • Hotsuite
  • ZohoSocial
  • Buffer
  • TweedDeck
  • Loomly
  • Planable

More tools in this category can be found on Capterra.com.

 

social media usage statistics 2019

Source: We Are Social, 2019

13. Landing Page

If you have ever had the opportunity to create a website from scratch you probably know how difficult and time-consuming it is. Are you planning to launch a dedicated service, a webinar or want to reach a small group of customers?

In this respect, the so-called Landing Page is an ideal solution. These are simple single web pages which can be built from ready-made blocks without coding. Thanks to them you can easily design a website dedicated to a specific group, suitable for webinar registration or promoting a new service.

Wix and Landingi.pl are platforms for building fast and simple LandingPage type websites.

How to design a good website?

  1. Analysis of the website recipient – target group. You need to analyze who the website is dedicated to. Think about what your recipients are doing and what processes they are carrying out in the company. Then think about what problems they may have with these processes and how you can solve them. Based on this information you are able to design content that will generate B2B leads according to your expectations.
  2. Drafting content and mock-ups. Before you spend money on design you should design the layout of your website and content according to your client profile. A good website both converts clients and is visible to Google search engines. This requires the implementation of good SEO practices but also to think about the benefits offered on the website which will effectively encourage the customer to contact and thus generate a Lead.
  3. Implementation and testing. The website should be tested from the very beginning. For this purpose I suggest tools such as HotJar, which analyses traffic on the website, and Google Analytics, which monitors many important customer behaviors. You should check where customers are most often, whether they are converting from there and whether they leave contact details/register on your website.

Currently, Google engines also take into account, among other factors, the speed of the site, which means that you should ensure the site is loading quickly and that there is not too much multimedia content on it which may slow it down.

Creating a simple Landing Page based on the above proposed tools sometimes does not require coding, which means that the marketing department itself is able to design such a page. This is a great comfort and reduces costs. Such Landing Pages are often used in conferences, events and webinars organized for registration purposes.

14. Web communicators

If you have already reached a certain amount of traffic on the website, you should ensure smooth communication with the users. The most common way to do this is by means of web chat, but this is far from the only possible solution.

It is also worthwhile to implement tools for establishing telephone contact such as Callpage or LiveCall. They will allow you to strengthen the contact with the customer and have a positive impact on the conversion of visitors into satisfied customers.

When implementing a web chat interface on your website you should consider whether you want it to work in 24h mode or only at the specified hours except for the contact details, which the customers could indicate for further communication at all times.  Customers who will count on the contact after web chat operating hours may feel annoyed and resigned.

Many modern web chat interfaces include communication automation functions – so-called chatbots. They allow you to automatically answer common questions, which makes it easier for the customer to navigate and often solve his doubts without your activity. Chatbots are currently gaining a lot of popularity in the field of B2B lead generation and customer service.

15. Push notifications

Web Push tools are ideal for online shops. If you want to improve the purchasing process, keep products in the shopping cart, correct your orders or simply promote the products in store, a Web Push tool is the ideal solution.

The most popular solutions that we recommend are PushPushGo, PushAd.

Such tools allow you to generate leads especially in the e-commerce industry. In this sector, a common problem is that potential customers leave a full shopping cart. Web Push apps help to convert such customers. They also help in site navigation and increase overall conversion.

16. Newsletter

The use of the newsletter helps to build better relations with readers. It allows you to establish a permanent contact and ensures greater reach of your content.

The newsletter can also be used in lead generation. If you introduce new products, new prices or BlackFriday is approaching, you can easily and quickly inform your readers and customers about the upcoming promotions.

When creating a newsletter form, you should remember to comply with relevant legal regulations, including GDPR.

17. Media

Publishing in well-known newspapers and web portals is very important. It builds the brand, allows to strengthen its credibility in the eyes of a potential customer and raises awareness among people who have not heard about you before.

In this respect, it is worthwhile to build a list of media companies that interest you and whose topics coincide with your activity.

Acting as an industry specialist creates a very good image of the company and generates a lot of sales leads.

There are also platforms where you can apply to publish interesting content yourself. Thanks to this, you can provide content to the journalist, making their work easier and gaining a new platform to express yourself.

Generating B2B leads through Outbound Marketing

Outbound Marketing activities are usually carried out by Pre-Sales teams. It is a process aimed at generating leads through outbound activities which aim at establishing a direct relationship with a potential customer. The main advantage of Outbound Marketing activities is the ability to select a precise target based on current data sources. In contrast to traditional marketing, you can decide for yourself who you want to contact.

1. Cold Mailling

The Cold Mailing method involves sending short text emails to the decision makers. 

A well-prepared Cold Email campaign requires:

  • target group (base) selected according to the services/product of your company
  • content that not only encourages contact but also complies with the law
  • compliance with GDPR and all the provisions of the laws of the respective country

Due to the GDPR, the way the database is built requires legal knowledge. It is not allowed to process personal data without the owner’s consent. Therefore, if you decide on Cold Email activities and intend to build a database of email addresses, find out the basic requirements imposed by the GDPR. Databases for Cold Email campaigns can be built using data obtained from

  • Linkedin
  • Kompass
  • Bisnode
  • CrunchBase
  • AngelList

These are just a few examples. It all depends on the target group you want to reach.

The cold email method is a great alternative to the classic cold calling in terms of customer acquisition. However, it requires preparation, and if it is carried out incorrectly, it is likely to be counterproductive.

Preparing the content of cold email campaign can be based on models and templates found on the web, but be careful. These templates are reproduced by hundreds of companies, which reduces the value of the content, and such messages most probably land in SPAM. It’s worth getting inspired, but the content must be original and relevant.

Try to make the content as personal as possible. Some tips may include:

  • personal greetings;
  • reference to the company, its profile and personal description;
  • reference to the addressee, their publications, things in common.

When establishing a contact database, the source and form of the data should be considered. Within the EU, remember to comply with the GDPR which requires to include appropriate information in the email content and a perfectly compliant data processing.

Cold Email campaigns as a form of generating B2B leads are very effective. Good campaigns can generate up to 15% of hot leads. If the companies are perfectly matched with your target, you may see the sales potential of your company skyrocket.

 

Customer aquisition using Cold Email - good practices

2. Cold Calling

This is one of the most classic methods of direct customer acquisition. Unfortunately, it can be quite frustrating and requires a lot of consistency and persistence.

Cold Calling – is the process of calling potential customers most often on corporate phone numbers. Once you reach the decision maker in the company, it gives you a great commercial value, but it’s not that simple.

The process of cold calling requires a lot of determination. In order to increase the chances of a high conversion result you should:

  • prepare various scenarios for the conversation – always try to make an appointment, do not let the conversation end without specifying next step;
  • read about the company, get to know its activities and the details of the person you want to contact;
  • prepare for contacting the same company 4 to 5 times;
  • implement a CRM system that will allow you to supervise the entire call process.


Cold Calling is common in the financial and credit, telecommunications and insurance industries. Unfortunately, in the B2B sector this method is not very effective. We suggest investing human resources in Cold Email, Social Selling or extensive Inbound Marketing activities. Another alternative is to use Call Center services.

3. Social Selling

These activities in terms of customer acquisition mean engaging in social networking in order to establish business relationships and discussion panels to gain direct contact with a potential customer.

The most common platforms used for this purpose are Linkedin and Facebook. To support these activities it is worthwhile to use the services of Brand24 and SentiOne described earlier. These websites make it possible to search for specific discussions on topics related to your business.

You will find a lot of interesting material on Social Selling on Brand24 Blog, and following its Sales Director, Mick Griffin.

Social Selling activities must be genuine, with a focus on building value, not advertising the company. Sharing knowledge, answering questions, direct contact. By using this method, you can reach hundreds of potential customers who clearly indicate their needs and are aware of your brand.

4. LinkedIn

Activities on this platform are part of the Social Selling lead generation method, but due to the wide range of possibilities on Linkedin it is worth to describe this topic separately.

The Linkedin platform is not only an ideal source of information about a potential customer, but also a great communication channel. Linkedin allows you to reach the right decision-maker, provided that your network of contacts allows it. The most effective activities that can be performed via Linkedin are:

  • Intro – a request to introduce you to someone worthwhile from the perspective of your business using current contacts.
  • Reference – request for references/recommendations.
  • Inmail – internal business message.
  • Direct invitation to friends – networking and relationship building.
  • Linkedin Alumni – access to professional profiles based on acquired education and university relations.
  • Publication of substantive content.


Thanks to Linkedin you are able to systematically acquire customers and arrange meetings with them. The platform provides access to millions of potential customers.

 

Linkedin - How to obtain the leads effectively?

 

5. Inbound Lead + Cold Emailing

This is quite a new method made possible by the latest tools that are being developed on the market. This method involves connecting an app such as Albacross to your website. It allows you to monitor which companies visited your website at a given time.

With this information, you can plan a Cold Email campaign every week, reaching out to people from these companies, referring to the fact that one of these persons’ colleagues was probably looking for a solution on your website.

6. Referral

The method which is definitely worth using at the very beginning of the process of acquiring new B2B and B2C customers are recommendations. The referral system in a company may assume various forms. Customers may receive discounts, a wider range or additional services or direct remuneration for a referral. The model is strongly dependent on the company’s type of business.

A customer may not always receive something for a referral. Many brands assume that if the customer is satisfied, it is worth taking advantage of this fact and ask for recommendations to subsequent customers without providing any benefits in return.

Each model is good, it is important to start using these activities at an early stage of the development of the company as it is right at that moment when they generate very good quality leads.

List of lead generation tools

  1. Albacross  – identify the people who visit your website and personalize your website based on firmographic data.
  2. Orka – find key decision makers, launch personalised engagement campaigns and more.
  3. AnyLeads – install a chatbot or social proof widget, get keyword content, generate a list of employees based on a specific domain or increase B2B reach.
  4. Growbots – automate your sales by using the platform’s functions: target search, email personalisation, campaign planning and optimisation of results.
  5. Prospect.io – search for emails on specific web pages, carry out message sending and analyze the effectiveness of your campaign.
  6. Woodpecker.co – send personalized emails automatically, select recipient responses and keep track of your campaign’s statistics.
  7. PhantomBuster – extract data from websites and automate social media activities, e.g. automatically track profiles, send personalized messages.
  8. Landingi – create websites easily and quickly and optimize them with A/B testing.
  9. Callpage – generate more sales calls with personalized pop-ups and optimize your work by analyzing data available in CallPage statistics interface.
  10. We-Connect.io – automate sending of messages and invitations on Linkedin, encourage people to return to your profile and manage your messages and responses on the platform.
  11. Brand24 –  monitor your brand in the web and social media, react in real time to the comments about your company, build customer relations and control negative posts.
  12. LeadFeeder – find out which companies have visited your website and automatically link data to the CRM system or receive contact details of potential customers by e-mail.
  13. Snitcher – acquire customers with a tool that will provide you with information about the companies visiting your website, their activity type and the possibility of integrating data with the CRM system.
  14. OptinMonster – detect users’ behavior and encourage them to use your services or buy products when they are about to leave the site, use multiple types of forms to capture potential customers, perform A/B testing
  15. Hunter – reach out to new business contacts with an email search engine.
  16. AeroLeads – search for email addresses and phone numbers to potential customers from the selected site, add them to the target group or export in a CSV file.
  17. AdEspresso – create and analyze marketing campaigns conducted on Facebook, Instagram and Google Ads on one simple platform.
  18. Zapier – automatically transfer information between web apps.
  19. RefferalCandy – create easy campaigns that encourage web users to work on your marketing for you.

List of companies offering lead generation assistance

  1. InStream Group – we acquire B2B customers in more than 40 countries in a wide variety of sectors. Together with our clients, we have successfully completed more than 500 personalized lead generation campaigns, divided into Cold Email and Linkedin Automation methods. In addition, we have developed an innovative CRM system for commercial communication management.
  2. Casbeg – a consulting company, which focuses on 3 support aspects: B2B sales, marketing and B2B customer service. it organizes marketing and sales processes, increases sales effectiveness and predictability, helps to build a marketing strategy, implements customer satisfaction surveys and many others.
  3. Walk – an award-winning marketing agency for which a long-term relationship with customers is important. It offers communication solutions, specializing in such areas as: ATL, BTL, digital, field and shopper marketing, event marketing, public relations and social media.
  4. Markplan – a company that supports customers in developing their marketing strategy by working with both small and large companies. In its portfolio can be found giants like Mars, Unilever or British American Tobacco.
  5. Ladder – agency engaged in marketing and service development. Its portfolio includes cooperation with over 100 clients in New York and London. The company’s scope of activities includes testing and scaling of marketing tactics that increase ROI on each channel.
  6. Performante – an interactive agency, which is part of the team both in small start-ups and global brands. It creates integrated marketing communication in order to achieve the goals of its Clients. The agency performs analyses and quality control of website apps, builds strategy, creates brand identity and many other marketing communication activities.

Summary

There are many methods of generating B2B leads. Each of them is unique in terms of cost, time and type of generated Lead. In the process of generating B2B leads, the most important is to monitor and measure the effects of work in order to see what brings the best results for your company.

A good marketing department is one that improves its results every month.

Choosing the right marketing strategy allows you to design a lead generation process that suits your company’s resources, customer type and services. You should not test all solutions immediately. It is worth checking, step by step, which of them provides you with best conversion rates and which ones allow you to acquire good quality sales leads.

At InStream Group, we have developed our own method of planning marketing activities, which we will soon describe step by step.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *