Demand generation is an important part of growing a company’s clientele. It is meant to nurture prospects and get them excited about the company’s products and services. Demand generation requires the alignment of sales and marketing efforts. A comprehensive demand generation campaign can help the sales team target the right buyers and secure a better return on investment. Demand generation is about creating awareness about what the company has to offer and how these offerings are the ultimate solution to the customer’s pain points. Awareness is the first step to constructing long-term customer relationships.
Demand generation is often confused with lead generation. A clear distinction between the two concepts can help companies to develop a more efficient marketing strategy that results in more quality leads for a lower CPL (cost per lead). Demand generation is a proactive approach that companies take to educate their target market and generate demand for their products and services to drive more business. The difference between demand generation and lead generation is that demand generation is the process of creating a buzz around your products to create demand while lead generation is the process of curating and contacting lists of prospects that would likely convert into customers. Lead generation converts awareness and interest generated by demand generation into a tangible result.
Elements of a successful demand generation campaign:
Web insights and inbound marketing
Your website is one of your most important demand generation assets. It is where you can observe the digital fingerprints of people visiting your website, which reveal their interests, pain points, content preferences, and even urgency. Many inbound marketing tactics include content offers, blog posts, and other website resources.
Content marketing is the fuel that powers your demand gen engine. 75 percent of executives interviewed in Demand Gen’s 2014 B2B Buyer Behaviour Survey say they rely more on content to research purchases than they did a year earlier. And 64% say that a vendor’s content had a significant impact on their buying decision. Your content powers the inbound activities that attract and pull prospects into your sales funnel. Content can include anything from blog posts, press releases, case studies, eBooks, white papers, infographics, videos, emails, and so much more. If you can build it, they are likely to come.
Social media marketing
Social networks today aren’t just a B2C marketing tool. According to the 2014 Demand Gen Report content preferences survey, 75 percent of B2B executives get more of their content through social networks or peer connections now than they did a year ago. And according to Forrester’s B2B Social Technographics, fully 100% of business decision-makers use social media for work purposes. Besides impacting lead gen activities, social networks may also influence your prospects’ vendor selection and buying decisions.
To determine a lead’s sales-readiness is where lead scoring comes into play. It’s a way of measuring a prospect’s engagement with your brand and assets and giving higher points for different activities that show more sales-readiness. Lead scoring uses a point system to assign values based on a person’s online and offline behavior. These actions can help us gauge where the buyer is on their journey and their growing sales-readiness. Typically, sales and marketing teams within an organization will work together to determine how many points a prospect will get for different activities.
Measuring and optimization
You need to understand what’s working with your demand generation program and what’s not working, and how to make tweaks to optimize that program. This is a great opportunity for you to reevaluate where your marketing efforts and dollars are going. By measuring the effectiveness of your efforts, you can then focus your attention on the areas of the funnel that aren’t working as smoothly. Depending on your company’s size in the market, there are a variety of metrics that marketers should be focusing on when it comes to demand generation.
Aligning sales and marketing
Demand gen is absolutely a team sport, requiring cooperation between sales and marketing. An integrated marketing workspace plays an important part in building a strong sales and marketing relationship.
Measuring the success of a demand generation campaign:
To track the success of your campaign, first, you need to define your target key performance indicators. The KPIs you choose should always align with your overall business or marketing goals. A few KPIs that may apply to your campaigns are website traffic, lead magnet download, cost per lead, free trial/tool signups, and customer acquisition cost. Once you’ve determined which KPIs are relevant to your business goals, then you can map them across your customer journey. This will help you understand which areas are giving you the highest return on your investment.
Track data over time
Understanding what your leads respond to most will help you shift your demand strategy to attract higher-quality leads from more reliable sources. Examine your conversion rates and how they relate to the strategies you’re using.
The success of a demand generation campaign relies on how well a business can engage its audience on various channels. At Alkye, we help clients to formulate demand generation campaigns that pave the way for securing quality leads which leads to more revenue and profit.