"A Push to Get to the Source"
A key topic Kevin and Freya discussed is the increased push by B2B marketers to get to the source of their leads when running lead generation campaigns.
In the last year or so we've seen a big shift in the lead generation industry and one that we welcome with open arms. B2B marketers are asking more questions to their lead generation suppliers to understand who their audiences are, where their content is being hosted (within content syndication campaigns), and ultimately, how their leads are being generated.
Kevin and Freya discuss that although there is room for many types of lead generation depending on your needs as a marketer, you need to know what you're buying.
"The Industry Is Ripe for Disruption"
In 2023 (and beyond) Kevin talks about how marketers will find it a necessity to fully align their goals and operations to achieve business outcomes. That means not settling for just hitting their marketing goals in a silo (like the number of MQLs generated, the number of site visits, etc.).
Kevin and Freya both believe there will be a much bigger focus on showing a clear return on investment (ROI) from your marketing projects, at risk of losing your marketing budget during these tougher economic times if you don't.
With that shift comes a need for better quality lead generation, and a move away from a “checking the box” mentality. When marketers become too focused on their activity rather than the true business outcomes of what they are doing, it's a bigger struggle to get the right people on board internally, for example, the C-Suite, Finance, and Sales.
The Decision-Making Unit Is Expanding
Another key trend Kevin and Freya discuss is the ever-growing buying committee and the role of key departments.
In 2023, it's essential for B2B Marketers to engage with their own Sales and Finance departments. You need to gain buy-in for your marketing campaigns, whilst also aligning on your objectives and managing key stakeholders' expectations.
This point goes hand in hand with the need for B2B marketers to showcase their ROI from their campaigns as that's what Sales teams, Finance departments, and the board really want to know.
On the flip side, the B2B buyers you're trying to reach as a marketer are experiencing the exact same trend.
For example, our technology clients at Headley Media are using a greater variety of our brands to reach the multiple B2B decision-makers involved in technology purchasing.
The Role of Sales In B2B Lead Generation
Although every business operates differently, at Headley Media, we've definitely noticed some key trends with our technology clients. As Freya discusses, we're seeing more Sales team members getting involved in discussions earlier, and the positive impact this is having on the lead generation campaigns we are able to deliver.
Sales and Marketing alignment has been a hot topic over the last few years and for good reason. However, it can be difficult to implement in reality. People are busy, stuck in their ways, or don't know how to collaborate most effectively.
When running lead generation campaigns, a great way to align sales and marketing is to bring members of your Sales team into the conversation with your lead generation suppliers and agencies.
Alternatively, you should look to create strategies together before reaching out to potential suppliers. After all, you need to know what your Sales team needs, and they need to know what you are able to deliver i.e. setting realistic expectations.
Lead Nurturing Is More Important Than Ever
Often we see marketers running campaigns with an expectation from their Sales team that the new prospects generated are sales-ready. It's important for your Sales team to understand not only the journey your new prospects have taken before they are considered leads but what your follow-up marketing plan is.
Depending on the type of lead generation campaigns you run will determine what you need to do next as a marketer.
Either way, you will need to implement some kind of lead nurturing strategy to help warm up your leads further before they are passed on to your Sales team.
It's important to start the lead nurturing process as soon as you receive your leads but what you send them, and how often is, completely unique to your business.
However, a reputable and knowledgeable lead gen supplier will be able to help you shape your lead nurturing strategy to get the most out of your lead gen campaigns.
As Kevin and Freya discussed, there is a lot of change happening within the B2B marketing space right now.
When looking at lead generation in particular, we see this as only a good thing.
There are a lot of lead gen vendors in the market offering services that on the surface appear very similar. However, savvy B2B marketers are now going deeper by asking more questions than ever before to fully understand the process.
For example, at Headley Media, we are completely transparent about our lead generation process and our 1st party technology audiences.
We encourage you to get to the source of your lead generation and to feel confident that your suppliers are trustworthy and transparent.
To help you find a lead generation specialist that's right for you take a look at our ungated Quality Lead Generation Checklist. The Checklist contains all the questions potential suppliers should be able to answer.