7 Steps to Creating a Strong Demand Generation Strategy
Last update: 24 November 2023 at 11:49 am
In recent years, you probably must have come across the term “demand generation” a lot. This data-driven marketing program assists the inbound methodologies in driving interest and awareness throughout the lifecycle of the customers and buyers.
However, in the B2B market, there is a lot of mixed messaging surrounding the terms “lead generation” and “demand generation.” This, of course, gives rise to a variety of questions in marketer’s or business owner’s minds, including –
- Are lead generation and demand generation the same?
- Should I focus on lead generation or demand generation?
- Has demand generation taken the place of lead generation?
- What are the differences between both?
- Is demand generation a better approach? If yes, how should I create an effective strategy? And so on.
What Is Demand Generation vs. Lead Generation?
Both lead generation and demand generation strategies are different sides of the same coin. To be precise, they are different parts of your customer and buyer’s journey.
Before we dive any further into comprehending the similarities and differences between both these Marketing programs, let’s take a quick look at their definition.
- Demand generation – It is a long-term marketing approach that focuses on producing high-quality inbound leads over a stretch of time. It is a process of creating an engaged audience for a brand across varying marketing channels.
- Lead generation – On the other hand, lead generation is a process of building a list of relevant and new prospects for the business.
When compared with lead generation, demand generation deals with the initial stages of the marketing funnel, that is, creating authority and brand awareness.
It also takes care of all the possible touchpoints in a customer’s journey, including brand awareness, nurturing relationships during the purchase stage, and customer loyalty – to create long-term clients.
Lead generation happens almost immediately or in a few days, given these are typically “read-to-buy,” leads. By clicking the link or visiting the website, or a particular, they demonstrate their interest in your products or services.
Crucial Advantages of Demand Generation
Listed below are some benefits you might experience by adopting a demand generation marketing strategy over a conventional lead generation.
Build recognition and trust
Demand-generation strategies work as awareness-generating machines. They help attract relevant traffic to the website.
Not only can a well-executed inbound marketing campaign help differentiate your brand, but it also puts your offerings in view for those who may not have realized the need for your product/services in their life.
Demand generation helps product and service visibility through high-quality content pieces and leadership posts, which eventually helps in building trust and recognition. This results in prospects more likely seeking your brand once they realize how beneficial your offering is.
Demand generation is known for creating waves straight away, bringing interested and engaged traffic to your website. Just ensure that your demand gen strategies aim for both short-and-long-term impacts. This allows the business to develop and maintain the need for services and products.
Generate more leads
Even though demand generation is not similar to lead generation, it should result in a significant uptick in leads. In fact, that should be the aim of your all-rounded demand generation strategy.
When done right, demand generation can fill the top of your sales funnel with a flow of prospective clients. However, lead nurturing can be a time-consuming process, especially if your offerings and industry niche are complex.
Hence, focusing on efficiency and quality is key when developing a demand generation strategy. Find ways to strategically let your prospects know your brand’s indispensability, thereby turning them into leads and, eventually, long-term customers.
The notion behind demand generation is boosting the demand for your brand in the market. When the demand is more, the revenue is greater.
Once your brand’s visibility increases, try making your products and services more critical to the requirements of your targeted demographics. This can help increase the sales volume.
Demand gen can be both a long-term and short-term revenue-generating strategy. However, you can expect the desired outcomes only by maintaining a comfortable, consistent rapport with the target audience.
To make more money, you will require focusing on boosting brand awareness as well as fostering relationships with the prospects.
7 Steps to Boosting Demand Generation
Here are seven essential steps for building a successful B2B demand generation marketing strategy.
Focus on building brand awareness
Brand awareness has become a critical requirement to maintain a consistent stream of high-quality leads, especially in this competitive sales and marketing landscape. But gaining customer attention is never as easy as it might seem.
A lasting brand awareness strategy has the potential to leave a positive and lingering impression of the company on its prospects. Your strategy must make the prospects trust your brand more and showcase your services and products to provide relevant solutions to the challenges and needs of the prospects.
One of the best ways to boost buyers’ credibility and visibility is by focusing on recent and authentic customer reviews. Try prioritizing authentic customer reviews because 92.4% of B2B buyers consider purchasing from sites that feature trusted reviews left by real users.
Reviews also act as candid feedback that is free from all the marketing hype. They provide high-level insights to assist prospects in quickly filtering through the huge pile of available products.
Create a solid content strategy
Besides focusing on boosting brand awareness, building industry expertise is equally important, too. In fact, your focus on increasing brand authority digitally can prove a reliable element of your demand generation strategy.
When we say industry expertise, we mean a brand that is seen as an authoritative figure in the field – one that has answers to all customer queries, needs, and requirements.
A full-fledged brand authority helps build client trust. It lays a base for crucial conversations, including customer pain points, solutions your brand can offer, and more. An excellent way of building expertise in the field is by producing quality content that provides timely and helpful insights at every stage of a customer’s purchase journey.
Not only does such content build purchase confidence, but the brand’s credibility, too. These customers will start considering your brand as a navigator of the marketplace and look up to your brand as a subject-matter expert for future requirements.
If you have adequate marketing resources, focus on producing personalized content to tackle the needs of high-value leads in a particular area. Make use of segment-specific information to produce content and CTAs (call-to-actions) that guide the high-value leads through purchase, raising questions and concerns.
Create content that covers a wide range of topics, including –
- First-time visitor’s guide
- Product know-hows
- Product purchasing information
- Benefits of products
- Why purchase from you and so on.
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Focus on nurturing high-quality leads
Demand gen is not just limited to creating lead details and handing them over to the sales team. It involves a relevant lead nurturing strategy, too.
The marketing team must work with the sales team throughout the customer’s purchase journey. They should interact with high-quality leads using their robust resources to assist them in making relevant purchase decisions.
For instance, if the sales team determines that there is a knowledge gap, perhaps the customers aren’t aware of how to purchase the products or services or lack details about the benefits the products and services offer.
The marketing team must focus on producing various types of content that prospective clients might need. The team must use the most appropriate channels for sharing these details.
The goal here is to reach the customers with the right content when they actually need it the most.
Ensure that you monitor the lead feedback closely, review the lead nurture track performance data and even note down stages that obtain better engagement or boost unsubscribe rates regularly. The data gathered through these tasks can help track the message and make necessary tweaks to maximize the results.
Integrate account-based marketing
Once you notice a reliable flow of leads resulting from your demand generation strategies, it is time to focus on fast-tracking those high-value leads. Incorporating an account-based marketing strategy here can prove a boon.
To create an impactful account-based marketing strategy, having a deep and reliable understanding of the audience and accounts is crucial. The marketing and sales team will require selecting accounts strategically to target and nurture the leads through personalized support and engagement.
Sales and marketing teams can design target company personas on the basis of high-value clients with better conversion and growth value. Then evaluate the business values and objectives these target prospects are more likely to share along with the stages in their purchase journey that leads to purchase.
You can use the target personas to showcase how you market to these leads, thereby providing them with personalized content that directly addresses the unique pain points and queries.
Work on partner marketing
There is an increased focus on digital marketing due to the rapid to virtual business interactions from in-person ones. And even after the businesses have returned back to normal, the increase in virtual interactions seems to be going nowhere.
You need to focus on sharing your brand messages online. But, it isn’t simple to handle pay-per-click campaigns alone. Partnering with a third-party provider can help your business reach a prescreened and curated audience group.
Many brands tend to start online marketing on some or other social media platforms but then struggle to narrow down their messaging. Instead, focus on partnering with an expert that has already curated an audience group that you might benefit from.
No matter what type of product or services you deal with, a base of potential customers may be out there waiting. A third-party company can help you find these customers and help you keep your offerings right in front of them.
Incorporate sales enablement initiatives
For the success of your business, you need to align both marketing and sales. Thankfully, sales enablement initiatives that are a result of your comprehensive demand generation marketing strategy can help promote unification across sales and marketing, resulting in more conversions.
Here are some foundational sales enablement tactics, methods, and examples that your marketing and sales teams can execute to bridge the gap between marketing and sales.
- Estimates and discounts calculators – Conversions typically depend upon the benefit the customers obtain from partnering with you. Keeping that in mind, help your sales team and the end users visualize an outline of benefits they might receive by agreeing to your deal. Estimates and discount calculators can prove helpful here.
- Facts sheets and FAQs – Both facts sheets and FAQs are internal tools. The former provides information about the products and services along with elements that might arise during the sales call. The latter are the queries your potential prospect might have made during the sales conversation. Ensure that you equip your sales reps with the best possible answers, so they are ready with answers when required the most.
- Testimonies and case studies – Both case studies and testimonies act like trust marks. They let prospective buyers know that your products and services can be trusted. They build trust and confidence in the prospects.
Expand your reach with omnichannel strategies
When it comes to digital marketing, you cannot rely on one single channel to target your audience. Why? Well, the internet offers customers access to a wide range of platforms. Using only a single channel can prevent you from targeting prospective users strategically.
Hence, it is imperative to expand your brand’s reach through omnichannel strategies. This way, you can reach more channels and perhaps places where your target audience spends most of their time.
Omnichannel applications make it possible to schedule posts on various platforms at once. Just make sure that the posts you create are customized for all the channels and have consistent messaging across.
Also, keep in mind that omnichannel is nowhere similar to multi-channel. Multi-channel makes your brand connected with the customers through different platforms, but these platforms aren’t integrated. Omnichannel, on the other hand, ensures that all the channels are available to the prospects and are internally connected, too.
In today’s highly competitive market landscape, having a robust demand generation strategy is imperative. It can help build awareness, generate and nurture opportunities and promote engagement, thereby laying a strong foundation for revenue operations. In fact, it is an essential step towards optimizing the marketing funnel to boost lead generation efforts.