Generating b2b leads is hard especially in this COVID era when the sentiments of the market are haywire.
Spending is less, people are more likely to hold on to their purchase decisions, thus it's more important to spend your time and efforts wisely in identifying various ways to generate b2b leads.
I will be sharing 15 ways using which you can become an expert in sales or to say at least improve your lead generation efforts.
I don't think so one becomes an expert in sales, one becomes an expert in the process of SALES.
Let's dig right into it then.
Follow the signals
Your potential customer's release signals in various forms, all you need to do is listen to those signals and strike out at the right time.
What are those signals?
Let’s say a company has raised funding today, the next thing the company will do is to invest that amount of money into technology, product, marketing, hiring more people, expanding into new markets etc.
So if you are looking for such companies that have both a budget and need, this is the signal you need to listen.
By either checking recently funded startups on EasyLeadz or downloading Mr. E b2b contact data finder app, you can track such companies for free and reach out to them instantly.
When nothing works, try outbound
You are reading this it means either you have been impacted by the COVID and your sales are down or you are lucky but still want to work upon your sales and generate more b2b leads.
In both cases, outbound sales work.
Outbound is when you reach out to other companies or potential customers and identify their needs.
Inbound leads are the reverse of outbound where the customer is reaching out to you on your website or your contact us page and asking for more information about your products or services.
A simple message on Linkedin to a potential customer works wonders if done right and a simple cold email to a potential customer with the right follow-up can lead to a sale.
All you need to do is to figure out the right set of customers who are more likely to buy what you offer and make a list and start reaching out to them.
No point waiting for Corona to get over. It's the new normal, act upon it.
I have written an article on how to set up cold email and generate potential leads.
Cold calling is the key
I did a survey of over 831 sales and marketing professionals and over 39% of them said they prefer cold calling over anything else.
And this was before CORONA kicked in, imagine what options people will have now and how the preference will have shifted towards cold calling, now that people cannot do walk-in sales anymore.
Voice gives a human touch to the conversation and leads to more sales.
So if you are not into cold calling, step up your game and try it at least for a few months and see for yourself.
You can use Mr. E b2b contact data finder app or chrome extension for a quick free trial to get direct mobile numbers of potential decision-makers.
Social selling is the future
If you are into social media you will love this term of social selling even more.
It means creating engagement with prospects on social media. I am not talking about the ads that keep following you on Facebook.
I am talking about someone writing content on any of their social channels and that drives engagement which further leads to qualified leads.
So I write content on Linkedin on my profile which drives over millions of views, hundreds of comments and profile views which further lead to people reaching out to me asking for more about our business and services.
What did it cost me?
Nothing in monetary terms but I had to write content almost every day that gives value to my community.
Automated anything yet?
I honestly dislike people who want to spend time doing the same thing repeatedly instead of finding ways to automate it.
You can’t buy time, period.
If you could find ways or know a way to automate your business processes or any part of your job, do it. No robot is going to invade your job.
When you save time, you could invest that saved time in doing meaningful things and focus more on real sales and customers.
One example is when I use our own B2B contact finder tool, Mr. E, I use zapier to integrate it with our CRM which is Hubspot.
As soon as I fetch a new contact through the tool it saves it in Hubspot for the sales team to follow up.
In Hubspot, we have further created a task that automatically sends them a follow-up email after a few days with a set template.
It doesn't just save me time but improves productivity and efficiency and conversions.
Growth hacking is the new mindset
We have always heard hacking in negative connotation but what if it can help your company grow in a positive way?
In simple terms, growth hacking is when you find ways to grow one metric say user signups using non-conventional methods.
How dropbox grew their user signups via referrals or how AIRBNB created a program that created listings directly on Craigslist leading to thousands of users to their website, for free.
Especially in a tech company you could experiment fast and do multiple experiments at the same time. All you need is one WIN.
All I am asking from you is to be OPEN and explorative in your experiments.
I am not just saying for the heck of it, we do it all the time at our own company EasyLeadz.
Search on Google - Recently funded startups in India
You will see our website result in 2 or 3 positions. When you open it you will see the complete list.
Look at the intent of the searcher, it directly leads them to a list and over there they see a button that says download the list for free?
That's where growth hacking happens.
When they click to download it asks them to share it on Linkedin, they get a free list. We get visibility on Linkedin where our users are and that's how we get more visitors to our website and the cycle continues.
Understand the pulse of the market
Asking your product team to build features is one thing but knowing the market is another.
There are various tools in place that will help you understand what your customers really want.
We did a survey where we asked our customers what they hate the most about our contact finder tool.
Lot of them said, they hate the fact that we don't provide a mobile app.
So we made one for them.
Make something people want
We made various products in the past, almost all of them failed but what we learned along the way is what people want.
So when we finally launched Mr. E tool which is the contact finder tool, it had all the elements of product-market fit that one hopes for.
We grew from 30000 users in just 10 months to over 30,000 USD MRR in just 10 months without a single investment in ads or marketing.
Sales are about similar experiments, keep doing it, until you get one WIN.
Don’t hesitate to experiment with pricing
Every day your customers will tell you, you are expensive or your competitor is giving them at less price or things that customers tell us to get what they want.
Listen to the customers and keep experimenting with your pricing.
Even companies with 100 years of existence still do it, because the market changes everyday, its dynamic.
A new competition will emerge out of nowhere and that will push you to experiment with pricing.
We recently introduced an unlimited number of credit plans on our contact finder tool, no one bought it, and everytime we talk to customers they ask for an unlimited plan. That’s the irony.
But we still keep doing it and come up with new pricing options.
Remember, when it comes to sales and marketing, out of the 4P one of the P is pricing.
No one knows everything
Don’t expect to know everything in the beginning, but don’t keep yourself from knowing everything.
Generating leads demands cross-linking between various inputs.
What market wants, what competition is offering, where customers are, who are the customers, you might have to know a lot about it.
If you don't know it all, that's okay, but sales start in steps.
That's where experimentation comes into play.
If you believe customers who have more than 50 employees are the right fit, reach out to them, see if your hypothesis is right, if not, start over and try a different segmentation.
But still, know your CAC
Over the period, expect to know your customer's acquisition cost.
If you invest 1 USD to acquire a customer and that customer pays you 3 USD over their lifetime, it's a WIN.
Now you can invest 100 USD to earn 300 USD on similar customers.
But if you are not even aware of this ratio you don't know what you are investing into and what your returns are going to be.