Admission teams worldwide are under tremendous pressure to fill more seats with limited resources and a shrinking pool of applicants. In this webinar, Dr. Ajay Shukla of Higher Education UAE and Nilesh Patel of LeadSquared share tips & tricks on how you can drastically improve enrollments.
B2B lead generation is easier said than done. Though there has been much talk on the subject, streamlining the process still proves a challenge for most businesses.
At the end of the day, even though you are trying to market to businesses, you are actually talking to individuals who make decisions for the organization. So how do you convert them into leads that you can nurture? Rahul Shrivastava, Business Development Manager at Cyient Limited, talks about 8 effective B2B lead generation strategies, in our webinar.
If you are in a hurry, then we compiled a list of all the questions that were asked during the webinar!
B2B Lead Generation Strategy [Webinar Questions]
1. What is an approximate cost to host a webinar for your prospects?
The cost will depend on the tool. Different tools have different costs. Besides the cost, one must also consider the bandwidth. What is it that you aim to achieve with your webinars? Is it lead generation? If so, are there people in your company who can do the following?
Identify speakers and topics
Send out email invites
Promote on social media
Host the session
Write the Q&A post of the session
Edit the webinar recording
And finally, publish it on your blog or website
(Editor’s note: At LeadSquared, we use GoToWebinar which is a fairly expensive tool but there are several cheaper tools out there.)
2. I am working with a bulk messaging, cloud telephony and digital marketing company. What are the best techniques or media to get leads?
Firstly, you have to decide your target market and build a good database of companies that would fall into this target audience. Do a little market research to find out what your competitors are doing, if they have similar kind of services and who their target audience is. And if you are able to figure this out through your research and then build a quality database, you will know who you should target to get good leads.
You can use tools like Leadfeeder or try media like email marketing, remarketing PPC campaigns, social media marketing etc to perfect your B2B lead generation process.
3. On what parameters do you differentiate between cold, warm, and hot leads?
Over a period of time, I have observed that it is very challenging for a lot of people to differentiate between cold and warm leads. I’ll explain it through an example.
Assume that a lead is interacting with you for the first time, and has signed up for a webinar. This is a cold lead, as he has just entered into your system and might not really know what value you can give him.
But after attending the webinar, if he downloads an e-book or visits your website and spends some significant time on it, then you know that he is interested in you and your business. Now they have become a warm lead.
If after your nurturing and sales efforts, and a couple of meetings, the lead requests for a quotation, then that lead is interested in buying from you. This lead can be called a hot lead.
This is mostly how you can categorize leads based on their behavior. Though this is a general framework and could vary for different business, it is pretty much how it works.
4. Can you help me get some insights for getting leads in the IT services domain, for services like Mobile App Development, Website Development, Digital Marketing etc?
As said before, you need to figure out who your target audience is. If you are developing an app, then look at who would most likely download the app and why and who would most probably need it.
Once the target audience has been identified, you can start building your own database, or get leads by engaging with them on social media. Engage with these leads by sending them relevant emails. Sending emails at the right time also matters.
5. My venture is about Home Decor. I’ve received calls many times where they were selling leads to me. How reliable is that?
These companies generally sell leads to a lot of clients and are not very reliable. But if you still want to go ahead with them, then you can check them out online to see if you can gain any additional insights on them. Or even better, you can ask the people who call you directly to give you some recommendations. If they are able to disclose one or two names for reference, you can always call them up to see how valuable or reliable they are. But if you have any doubts regarding their authenticity, then it’s best to not go ahead with it at all.
6. I am part of an ERP Software company, I would like to know how I can target my market (Natural and Niche)?
A friend of mine who owned a winery also started a small firm that builds ERPs. This was created with the intent of solving a problem within his winery. Soon, he had plans of selling this ERP to other companies, but he wasn’t able to do it so well. That’s when he decided to target wineries like his, who might also have similar problems. As a result, his sales began growing. This was mainly because the ERP could solve specific problems that these wineries had.
The ERP market is currently saturated and there are many companies competing with each other. You either have to differentiate somewhere within your targeting or find some unidentified problem, which your product can help solve.
Once this is done, you can send them relevant content, nurturing emails, webinar invites or anything that you think will push them along the sales funnel and help them convert.
7. What is meant by networking fraternal organization?
Some organizations are established with a mutual understanding between the owners. They either agree to share contacts or profits among themselves. In some cases, the businesses are even run by family members across parallel or complimentary industries. Such organizations are termed as fraternal organizations.
8. You had mentioned that we can speak about customers that we already are catering to, while sending emails. However, I wanted to know if it is important to take the customer’s permission before we mention them in our emails.
Generally, when the size of the company is larger, the risks of a customer complaining about using their name increases. But in smaller companies, it wouldn’t matter as much. But, asking permission from your customers before using their name is a good practice, as this would make them feel that you value their opinion. So irrespective of whether it is a mandate, making a habit of asking people’s permission is always a good idea.
9. What kind of techniques can we apply to social media to increase followers in order to generate leads?
For B2B business, the best social media platform is LinkedIn. You can build connections with your target audience, join groups that are talking about the industry you are in, and add value to the discussions. Go premium to make use of LinkedIn’s wide database. Sending inMail on the platform has also worked at times, just make sure that you don’t come across as creepy or spammy. LinkedIn ads provide you with many targeting options to reach your desired audience.
Facebook and Twitter are also equally relevant for B2B. Create a Facebook page for your business and keep sharing engaging content regularly. Run targeted Facebook ads to improve traffic, conversions as well as to generate leads.
(Editor’s plug: Find out how to generate leads through Facebook ads in this guide)
Engage with people on Twitter, use relevant hashtags along with your content to make it easier to find you. Twitter search is a wonderful way to find leads. Search for keywords related to your business to find who is talking what about your business, competitors or industry.
10. According to you, who is the best database provider in India and what is the accuracy level ofthese databases?
There are many database providers all over the world who guarantee that they will give you what you want, but most of the time, they are not as reliable as you would like. If you think about it, LinkedIn has a huge database in itself, from which you can collect data about your leads or your target audience. There are also other good providers such as Xing.com, OneSource, Hoovers, ZoomInfo, and Jigsaw. I have personally used OneSource and have found it very useful in terms of email, name and even numbers. Additionally, it also gave me insights about the employee profile and research articles on the company.
But these are only short term and not that high in terms of reliability. The best bet would be either LinkedIn, opt-in email lists or even market research through your own efforts.
11. What are the criteria followed by companies to define junk leads? And how can we control the high volume inflow of junk leads?
A junk lead can be someone for whom your business is irrelevant or someone who does not have a current requirement for your product/service. But that does not mean that these are not going to convert in the future.
The inflow of junk leads is something that cannot be predicted. There may be many reasons for this, such as not qualifying the leads before sending it over to sales, not having the right communication with your customers, or having a mismatch in your branding message. But by proper communication and qualification, you can control the number of junk leads that enter your system.
12. I am from a web and mobile application development company and we attend the trade shows like Gitex and more. But there are already many competitors present here. How do we get more leads through trade shows?
Competitors are always going to be present no matter what, and you cannot run away from them. Unless and until you have a monopoly in your target market, you cannot seek to eliminate your competition. All you can try to do is to stand out from your competition. Usually, bigger companies command attention through their brand name and loyal customer following. They also allocate big budgets for these shows and use campaign management tools to increase their visibility.If you are a relatively smaller organization who cannot afford to spend so much on trade shows, there are still ways in which you can collect leads.
Before you attend the show, make sure you gather data on the audience that is going to be coming to the trade show, and what they would be looking for. Only go if your business is in line with the audience’s expectations. You can contact the organizer of the show to take a look at your options. Most of these trade shows allow businesses to set up stalls. You can set one up if it makes sense and is within your budget. Print colorful brochures and interact with the people coming to your stall. Make conversations and have a registration service in place.
If you are not planning on setting up a stall, and are looking only to network at these trade shows, then make sure you carry your visiting card along. Exchange cards with people and make connections. Make note of those who seem really interested in your product. After the show is over, always ensure you send an email. This could be an email with a synopsis of your business, or a quote or even a simple exchange of pleasantries, based on the context of your interaction with that lead.
13. Does cold calling work anymore, in terms of B2B lead generation?
Cold calling has reduced drastically over the years, but still, it hasn’t become completely irrelevant. Today, consumers prefer communications that are personal and to the point. Even if you are planning to make a cold call, make sure you have done thorough research on the person/company. If you know how to convince people to spend some time talking to you, then cold calls are still relevant to you. Just ensure that you provide some value to those you call.
14. Can you show any good email that we can have as an inspiration while designing the emailers?
LeadSquared has written the book on email marketing (quite literally). You can take a look at these Email Marketing best practices that our expert learned after over sending over 2 million emails. You can also take a look at this email marketing guide that she wrote.
15. How to get more organic traffic for the home repair and maintenance sector?
When it comes to services, especially the home repair and maintenance sector, it is very important to build trust and credibility among your user base. In order to do this, you need to get people to talk about/recommend your services.
These are some things you could do:
Run targeted PPC campaigns
Increase engagement on social media
Offer complimentary/ additional services
Run referral campaigns
Publish customer reviews on your website.
Get listed on public listing forums like Justdial, Sulekha etc.
Write blog posts related to the industry and optimize them for relevant keywords
Once people know about you and your business, they will start actively searching for you.
16. While selling IT services what kind of CTA can we add in emails? If you could give some examples, it would be really helpful.
The CTA would vary depending on the goal of your email. Before selecting your CTA, you need to make sure that the message in the email and what you are asking the customer to do make sense. These are the different kinds of CTA you can use for IT services.
When you send over educational content, you can use words like ‘Read more’, ‘Find out why’, ‘Learn more’.
When you want them to sign up for something like a webinar, use ‘Sign up now’, ‘Join now’, ‘Book a seat’.
When you want them to download content such as e-books and guides, you can say ‘Download now’, ‘Get your copy’.
When you want them to take a trial of your product/service,’Try it for free’, ‘Take your free trial’.
When you want to let them know that their trial is over you can use, ‘Upgrade your account’.
Initially, when Facebook entered the market as a social media platform, very few knew that it would use all of its data to run its business. Allowing people to engage with their social group was the only agenda social media seemingly had. But, no matter how convincing they tried to be, there was always a business aspect to it. But should we be worried? No. Because this exact data can prove helpful to us businesses. Social media allows us to broaden our reach, find the right audience and ultimately grow our buyer list. Which is why designing the perfect social media marketing plan is imperative to every business.
To enable you to achieve this, I am going to help you with 10 steps to create the perfect social media strategy.
1. Define your journey
To start with, you should define why you want to use social media for your business. The reasons can be to increase brand awareness, generate new leads, or to get more traffic to your website.
If you have already defined your goals, then your next step should be your budget. But remember, it is important to be realistic! You should have ‘SMART’ – specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-sensitive goals. Make a list of the steps that you need to achieve said goals. This will help you stay focused and consistent.
An example of a realistic goal would be to increase your traffic by 15%. So, you can estimate that to reach this goal, you need to optimize your post in such a way that it reaches at least 2000 people. Reverse calculating your goals and determining your budget accordingly just makes it easier to measure the outcome.
2. Define your target audience
Every niche is going to have a different set of target audience based on what product or service they are selling. You must create a buyer persona in order to define your target audience.
It can be defined using the following questions:
What is the cost of your product or service?
Which income class would find your products affordable?
Is your service for small or big businesses?
What would be their revenue? Where are they located physically?
3. Know your competition
If you want your business to thrive, then you have to outsmart your competitors to win more deals than them. You can learn a lot from your competitors’ mistakes. You can find (ahem, another term for stalk ;) ) all your competitors by using hashtags relevant to your business.
Additionally, you need to find out which social media platforms are your audience using to search for and discuss the products that you have to offer. Once you find them, get active on these platforms. The best way to do this is to create appropriate content for these platforms.
If you are using YouTube, you will have to produce videos. But for Instagram, you can use images only. If you want to share links to your website articles, you will have to use Twitter or Facebook. You can always try new content formats while using social media for lead generation.
4. Delegate work
One good way of making your social media strategy work is realizing that sometimes work should be shared. Instead of burdening one person with the humungous task of handling social media, you can instead share the work. For instance, one person can create the content and another can handle posting, optimizing and measuring the performance of these posts on your social media.
5. Consistent Branding
If you have made the choice to use multiple social media platforms for your brand, then remember to keep it consistent. Use the same logo, colors or fonts in every platform that you use. This ensures that your customers do not get confused and that their brand recall is high.
6. Constantly engage your audience
Once your audience starts responding to your posts, make them feel special and heard. This could be done by liking their comments and writing posts on their requests, but all of this should be done professionally so that your brand vision is not altered or compromised on. Some other ways of keeping them engaged are using polls, questions, images with questions, surveys, quizzes, etc.
7. Nurturing/promotional content ratio
The best proportion is 70/30. 70% content should be designed to engage followers and 30% for promotional purposes.
Everything that your audience is interested in should form engaging content. You should aim to strike a conversation so that the audience doesn’t shut away because of promotional content. Once you keep your audience engaged in liking your posts, interacting with you, it is likely that in time they receive your product sales info very well.
8. Track your growth
Google analytics can provide you with information such as the content which worked best for you and the one that didn’t. You can utilize this information to decide and guide your social media strategy for lead generation. Evaluating your previous performances can help you do better next time.
9. Stay alert and updated
As a growing business, you should be aware of all the recent market trends and utilities. This helps you give your audience an elevated experience. No matter how swamped you are with your workload, never ignore educating yourself on the happenings of your industry. Because this is the way you are going to increase the organic growth of your business. You can join groups related to your niche on Facebook and LinkedIn, Twitter Lists, G+ Communities. Be agile and flexible in your plans.
10. Review, revise, and improve your work
Though it helps to go in traditional ways and methods, it is always a good idea to keep experimenting with new things and new social media platforms. Just because you are getting good results on Facebook and Twitter does not mean you should ignore LinkedIn and Pinterest. Keep experimenting, learning and upgrading your strategy.
These are just some of the hacks that you should follow to make social media work for you. Hope you found them useful! Do you have any more hacks from your own experience? I’d love to hear them. Just leave a comment below.
(Editor’s plug: Looking for a CRM to help manage your social media leads? Check LeadSquared)
https://www.leadsquared.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/Picture1-10.png5111062Ankur Aggarwalhttps://www.leadsquared.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/04/340-x-156-300x138.pngAnkur Aggarwal2018-09-14 06:24:432021-07-07 10:43:0310 Steps to Creating the Perfect Social Media Marketing Plan