Is an inflated sense of self to blame for B2B lead generation failure?

B2B lead generation campaigns can
fail without proper segmentation
B2B lead generation can be a significant source of frustration for marketers. Part of the problem for many organizations is that marketing teams try to go after everyone, but their products may only apply to a niche target audience.

B2B firms that specialize in technology may experience more difficulty in lead generation activities, customer segmentation and email marketing campaigns because of misdirected or irrelevant content, according to a study from BtoB.

Unlike non-tech organizations, tech marketers struggle with the effectiveness of their customer databases because there is a greater need for segmentation. More people are involved in purchase decisions, and inaccurate customer segments can detract from the effectiveness of any campaign. Many organizations have suffered from lead generation efforts falling flat, and marketers may be at a loss as to why their initiatives weren't effective.

Big data causing big problems for executives

The majority of business professionals
don't have the right tools
to make any sense of big data
Many companies are racing to implement big data solutions because of the benefits in decision-making. But many executives trying to glean insights from data end up with a big mess on their hands. In fact, big data was found to be the leading cause of frustration for executives and business leaders, according to a recent study from Domo and BusinessIntelligence.com.

The majority of business professionals don't have the right tools to make any sense of big data and they are significantly slowed down by their lack of capabilities to gain real-time insights. Domo and BusinessIntelligence.com surveyed 300 business leaders, including 197 CEOs, and only 25 percent of CEOs said their reports contained the information they needed. A mere 13 percent said their reports were up to date.

The biggest pain points were too much information and not enough analysis, inability to visualize details in reports and being unable to manipulate data.

How marketers are coping with lead generation challenges

Lead generation quality has decreased
over time, and marketers need to adapt
Many B2B marketers are shifting to online lead generation techniques, but they may struggle with quality rather than quantity. In the past few years, there has been a marked decline in the number of quality leads companies capture, according to an article in Mobile Marketing Watch.

Business is becoming increasingly complex with a higher number of people involved in the decision-making process. This has made B2B lead generation more complicated because some leads end up getting recycled, which causes the value of lead gen to decrease.

How B2B lead generation is changing

Web analytics help marketers measure success of social media campaigns

Analytics can help marketers
improve social media campaigns
In social media marketing, small adjustments can make campaign performance soar or cause efforts to fall flat. Web analytics can help marketers make these miniscule adjustments that can make or break a campaign.

For example, during major events, Twitter users may not be unified on which hashtag they are using in tweets. Many people may be following a more evergreen tag, rather than the one specific to the year, according to Click Z.

Companies that leverage advertising campaigns through Twitter can use analytics to determine how certain hashtags are performing during a day, hour or longer period of time. Marketers can reach prospects more easily by entering the conversation in a natural way, but this interaction is impossible without analytics.

3 tools to measure B2B lead generation

Web analytics can help marketers measure
the effectiveness of their campaigns
Marketers know they need to measure the effectiveness of their campaigns, but there are several other factors that can influence conversion. B2B lead generation is more complex than B2C because of the longer buying cycle, and if a website has a poor user experience, it can sway prospects in the wrong direction.

Because it usually takes more than one visit to the website for the user to convert, marketers need to make sure the site is functioning properly, according to Search Engine Land.

Here are a list of tools B2B companies need to make website improvements and boost online lead generation:

Data improves sales and marketing integration

Data can create better alignment
between sales and marketing
Sales and marketing teams are both needed for the success of a B2B organization, but they don't always play nice. Marketers strive to maximize their lead generation techniques to turn a high number of quality prospects to the sales team, but when marketing and sales aren't aligned, there is a lot of room for inefficiency, according to an article in Business 2 Community. Sales teams don't really care about receiving leads unless they are qualified so they don't waste time calling cold prospects.

Without integration, marketing managers can feel like they are tossing leads to sales representatives with no idea of what happens to prospects. They don't know if the leads are high quality or the sales team is following up with each potential client. The sales team may feel like they are being flooded with leads with no context, so reps don't know how to make the first contact. Tools like campaign analytics allow sales and marketing to achieve integration so companies know what strategies are working and what needs to be adjusted.

Email marketing is still important for lead generation

Email marketing is still an
effective source of lead generation
B2B companies have greater access to lead generation techniques, but which are working the best? Content marketing has quickly emerged as a significant source of lead generation, according to a report from Business.com.

The study revealed 50 percent of B2B companies are interested in white paper leads. This source of content is relevant to decision-makers who are in the middle of the buying phase and looking for more information. Lead scoring was becoming a higher priority for marketers as well.

Email marketing was still a major source of B2B lead generation. While sources of content like white papers are growing in popularity, marketers may need to adjust their email campaigns because it is still a significant contributor to the growth of qualified leads.