A Focus on Lead Generation

The purpose of lead generation is to start your sales process, not to finish it. Yet despite that, most lead generation tactics focus on late-stage/buy issues.

As a B2B selling organization, there are two clear hurdles you must clear to successfully sell.
  • The first hurdle is, "Why should I (the prospect) talk with you?"  
  • The second hurdle is, "Why should I (the prospect) buy from you?" 

The Cause For LeadGen Failure

There are 3 primary reasons that lead generation efforts fail to deliver the results needed to drive desired business results:

1. Focus on Quantity

Most lead generation efforts focus on “response rate,” rather than “quality rate.” Small and mid-market B2B (SME) companies need to be far more concerned with who’s responding, not how many.

Improving the quality of your lead generation is a very valuable leverage point when looking to accelerate your growth.

A focus on quantity over quality not only fails to deliver the desired number of target prospects, worse, it eats up critical sales development time as salespeople spend their time with people with whom they shouldn't be talking.

2. Lack of a Lead Cultivation Process

The B2B purchase is fraught with complexity and risk.  As such, it is a very different buy/sell process than B2C.  In B2C, the focus on lead generation efforts is creating awareness over all else.  It is designed to get to, or through, the sales process as quickly as possible.  Many B2C programs don’t even involve a true sales process.

The B2B process requires a much higher level of cultivation and engagement.  With multiple buyers, conflicting priorities and complex decision making-processes, focusing on awareness is not enough.  

This is the cause of the Sales vs. Marketing war.  Salespeople are at odds with Marketing because they feel the leads that they provide are useless, while Marketing gets mad at Sales because they don’t stay on message or develop the need with the prospect.

3. Message Fails to Resonate

There are two causes for this: 1) the wrong audience or 2) the wrong focus.  A common problem we encounter with selling organizations is they focus their messaging on the people within their prospects list that care about the salesperson’s solutions rather than on the people who are the decision-makers within a company.  It is critical that the lead generation effort be geared to those “who can!”

The second issue relates to ineffective messaging.  The focus of your message needs to be on the results you create, and it must challenge and provoke the curiosity of your desired target.    

How We Solve The Lead Generation Problem

Permanently solving your lead generation issues, and building a consistent, predictable lead generation machine requires a holistic approach that ensures your strategy, sales and marketing processes are all aligned towards a clear objective.

Imagine has several programs to support these efforts:

The_Demand_Generator   The_Demand_Cultivator   Demand_Creation_Blueprint

Additional Resources:

  • Check out The Imagine Lead Generation Channel
  • Read our article: How to Fill Your Pipeline
  • Review Lead Generation Insights from The Demand Creator Blog