In the world of B2B marketing, lead generation is crucial for driving sales and revenue growth. With so much noise and competition, cutting through the clutter to connect with high-quality prospects can be a major challenge.
That’s why having an effective strategy in lead gen needs to be a top priority. The good news is there are proven tactics and channels you can leverage right now to boost your pipeline and get more prospects into your sales funnel. So let’s dive into the proven B2B lead generation methods to boost your B2B businesses.
Key Takeaways– With the right mix of content, social, outreach, and conversion optimization, you can significantly boost the B2B lead generation process without breaking the bank.
– Pay close attention to which tactics deliver results and double down on those high performers document results across channels and continually test new strategies.
– Above all, ensure your leads get value from their interactions with your brand through optimized touchpoints and helpful follow-up. The more you nurture leads, the more likely they are to convert to sales.
Table of Contents
Proven B2B Lead Generation Methods
From content marketing to email outreach and everything in between, there are proven lead gen strategies that fuel growth when executed effectively. Let’s dive into 11 of the top-performing and proven B2B lead generation methods.
1. Content Marketing
Content marketing is one of the most effective approaches to B2B lead generation campaign today. By publishing valuable, relevant content consistently, you attract and engage your target audience. This helps establish your brand as a trusted leader in your space.
The great thing about content marketing strategies is that it nurtures leads over time through the different stages of their buyer’s journey. From blog posts and ebooks at the awareness phase to webinars and free trials for leads further down the funnel, content offers a scalable way to generate and qualify prospects.
- Create a content calendar to map out topics and promote content on a consistent schedule.Aim for at least one new piece every week, whether a blog, video, or other format.
- Optimize content for SEO by using target relevant keywords in titles, headers, meta descriptions, alt text, and content. This helps you rank higher in search and gets your content in front of the right people.
- Promote your content across social media, email, PPC ads, and other marketing channels to extend reach.
- Make content targeted, valuable, and relevant to your audience’s needs and interests. Practical how-tos, thought leadership pieces, and list posts tend to perform well.
- Include clear calls-to-action in your content to convert readers into leads. Free trials, quizzes, downloads, and contact forms help capture information.
2. Social Media Marketing
Social platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook are go-to channels for B2B lead generation efforts today. Nearly 80% of B2B marketers use social media for lead gen.
The main benefit of social media marketing is that it allows you to directly engage your prospects where they’re already spending time online. From joining relevant groups and communities to running ads, social platforms make it easy to get your brand and content in front of key decision-makers.
Tips for success:
- Focus your efforts on one or two key social platforms rather than spreading yourself too thin. LinkedIn tends to be most effective for B2B companies.
- Build relationships by engaging with prospects – share their content, comment on updates, and respond to questions. Don’t always pitch.
- Run LinkedIn Sponsored Updates and other social ad campaigns to promote content and offers to targeted audiences.
- Participate actively in relevant social groups and communities to connect with prospects.
- Use social media management tools like Hootsuite to save time, schedule posts, and track performance.
3. Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising
Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising lets you show up right when prospects are searching for solutions like yours. With PPC, you create targeted text ads and only pay when someone clicks.
Powerful PPC platforms like Google Ads make it fast and easy to promote your brand to laser-targeted audiences. Retargeting ads help you engage recent site visitors to convert leads as well.
- Focus your PPC campaigns on high-converting long tail keywords prospects search when they’re actively looking for solutions.
- Create highly targeted ads speaking directly to your prospective customers and also ideal customers’ needs and pains.
- Use negative keywords to exclude irrelevant searches from your ad campaigns.
- A/B test different ad copy, landing pages, and calls-to-action to optimize conversion rates.
- Set up conversion tracking to see which campaigns and ads give you the most leads and sales.
- Retarget recent site visitors through platforms like Google AdWords and Facebook to turn them into leads.
4. Increasing Social Shares
Getting your content shared organically on social media platforms is a powerful lead generation driver. Social shares extend your reach and establish your brand as an authority.
The key is creating content that’s highly shareable – entertaining, surprising, practical, or emotionally resonant. Optimization and promotion also play a big role.
- Produce engaging content formats like videos, quizzes, and infographics that get widely shared.
- Write compelling headlines that spark interest and encourage social shares.
- Promote your content across your social channels to get shares rolling. This will increase socuial proofs to the potential leads.
- Run social contests for social proof and link giveaways to incentivize users to share your content.
- Insert share buttons prominently on your blog posts, landing pages, and site to make it easy to share.
- Monitor trending topics related to your niche and weigh in with your expertise to earn shares.
- Follow influencers in your space and share their content to build relationships.
5. Turning “Out of Stock” Into an Opportunity
Running out of stock on a popular product presents a prime lead gen opportunity. By capturing contact details info from disappointed visitors looking to buy, you build a list of hot leads to re-engage once inventory is replenished.
Exit-intent popups, emails, and back-in-stock notifications are great ways to turn out-of-stock visitors into subscribers and future potential buyers.
Pro Tips for capitalizing on out of stock situations:
- Use exit-intent popups to offer email signup for back in stock updates.
- Show related products or bundles in stock to provide other purchase options.
- Offer a coupon code or discount to incentivize joining your list to be notified.
- Send “back in stock” email alerts to subscribed leads as soon as inventory is replenished.
- Capture lead contact and purchase info upfront to make re-engagement seamless.
- Follow up regularly with exclusive offers and content to nurture leads.
- Prioritize replenishing inventory on your most popular and highest converting products.
6. Building Your Email List
Give prospects plenty of opportunities to join your list with opt-in forms on your site, content offers, and popups. Offer irresistible lead magnets in exchange for their email address to grow your subscriber base.
Email List Building Pro Tips:
- Offer compelling gated content like ebooks, tip sheets, and email courses in exchange for opt-ins.
- Send new blog posts and new content email alerts to drive repeat traffic.
- Use popups and slide-ins to collect emails from site visitors before they leave.
- Promote your email subscription options across channels – social media, PPC ads, etc.
- Make it clear the value prospects get by joining your list in opt-in copy.
- Use email collection widgets and subscription boxes prominently on your site.
- Offer a discount code or exclusive resource to incentivize signups.
7. Using FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)
FOMO or “fear of missing out” is a powerful psychological motivator. When prospects feel they’ll miss out on something exclusive, they’re much more likely to take action and convert.
Limited-time offers, expiring discounts, and webinars with limited seats all leverage FOMO. countdown clocks, progress bars, and scarcity messaging help drive urgency.
Ways to Tap into FOMO for Lead Gen:
- Offer an exclusive discount, special access, or bonus for signing up before a deadline.
- Use countdown timers to show prospects exactly when an offer will expire.
- Limit webinars and events to a set number of seats to create exclusivity.
- Notify site visitors when limited inventory is running low or selling out fast.
- Share success stories and testimonials showcasing your solution’s popularity.
- Promote the progress you’re making helping potential customers achieve results.
- Remind prospects they’re missing out on your solution’s benefits the longer they wait.
8. Pop ups and Slide-in Opt-Ins
Exit-intent popups and slide-in opt-in forms are effective ways to capture more emails before visitors leave your site.
These come in handy when prospects are browsing your content but haven’t yet opted into your list. A well-timed popup gives you a second chance to convert them into subscribers.
Pro Tips for Pop up and Slide-in Success:
- Offer an irresistible opt-in offer like a discount, checklist, or free trial access.
- Use exit-intent triggers to activate pop ups when someone is clearly about to leave.
- Test different popup variations – static content, headlines, CTAs – to improve conversions.
- Make popups mobile-responsive for seamless visibility across devices.
- Limit pop ups to once per visitor per session to avoid overuse.
- Insert slide-in forms on blog posts after a prospect has spent time reading.
- Keep popup design clean and simple – too many graphics or text can distract.
9. Quizzes and Surveys
Interactive content strategy like online quizzes, surveys, and assessments make for powerful lead gen tools. They engage your audience while capturing contact info and data.
You also get content that can be promoted across channels to attract viral interest. Add opt-ins and lead nurturing follow-up for maximum impact.
Tips for Effective Online Quizzes:
- Target quizzes to strategic buyer personas and topics to attract your ideal leads.
- Promote your quizzes heavily on social media channels, PPC ads, email, and your site.
- Gate quiz results behind an email opt-in to generate subscriber leads.
- Include a compelling call to action at the end of the quiz to drive conversions.
- Collect key data like company, role, needs through the quiz to inform follow up.
- Send customized email drip campaigns based on quiz results and interests.
- Promote gated quizzes as lead magnets in exchange for opt-ins.
10. Link Building
Link building remains a top SEO strategy and lead generation strategy. Securing links from authority websites signals trust and authority, earning you higher rankings and referral traffic.
Relevant guest posting and contributor outreach are effective tactics. Promoting your best content to earn natural links also helps.
Link Building Tips for Lead Gen:
- Identify authority websites and publishers related to your niche to pitch guest posts.
- Produce guides, case studies, and data-rich content worth linking to.
- Promote your best performing content on social media, outreach emails, and PR to drive links.
- Become an active, helpful member of online communities to build relationships and links.
- Update old blog posts with fresh info and new links to regain lost links.
- Reach out personally to website owners and influencers to pitch relevant guest posts.
- Include calls-to-action in guest posts to drive traffic to your site and offers.
11. Cold Email Outreach
While manual outreach takes time, cold email outreach remains one of the most direct ways to connect with prospective leads. Segmented outreach helps you cut through the noise to engage the right prospects.
Focus on personalization, relevance and adding value vs. blasting generic sales pitches. Nurture new contacts through helpful follow up to turn prospects into potential leads.
Tips to Boost Conversion Rates from Cold Email:
- Research prospects beforehand to segment and personalize your outreach.
- Highlight common connections, interests or affiliations in your initial email.
- Keep emails concise and focused on the prospect’s potential needs and pains.
- Add value by sharing relevant content, insights, or offers suited to them.
- Use follow-up emails to nurture new prospects with helpful content.
- Test different subject lines, offers, and calls-to-action to optimize response rate.
- Use tracking tools to see open and click rates and improve outreach.
- Offer limited-time discounts or exclusives to incentivize responses.
How is B2B Lead Generation Done?
Successful lead generation requires a systematic methodology to maximize results. Here is an overview of the key steps:
Define Your Ideal Buyer Personas
Start by researching your current ideal customer profile and identifying common traits like role, seniority, company size, pain points, etc. Build detailed buyer personas that represent your ideal leads to target.
Map Out the Buyer’s Journey
Analyze the typical stages and needs of prospects as they move from awareness to consideration and finally conversion. Tailor messaging and offers to where they are in the journey.
Produce Engaging Content
Create content like blogs, ebooks, case studies, and video content that align to each stage of the buyer’s journey to attract and nurture prospects.
Promote Content Across Channels
Amplify your content reach through social media posts, email, SEO, PPC, and any other avenues to put it in front of your personas. Insert conversion opportunities like gated offers.
Develop Conversion Paths
Optimize your website pages with clear calls-to-action, frictionless lead capture forms, and follow-up flows to convert interested prospects into qualified leads.
Track Leads and Refine Efforts
Use marketing automation, CRM, and analytics to track the performance of campaigns. Double down on top-performing lead sources and continuously improve.
Which B2B Lead Generation Methods Work Best?
With the array of lead generation tactics available today, it can be challenging to know where to focus your efforts and budget. Based on data and real-world results, these approaches consistently perform well for B2B organizations:
- Content Marketing – Well-optimized, educational piece of content that aligns to each stage of the buyer’s journey can continually attract and nurture new leads over time.
- Paid Search (PPC) – Pay-per-click ads allow precision targeting of your personas down to job titles, interests, company sizes, and more making PPC one of the most efficient sources of high-quality leads.
- Social Media – Both organic traffic and paid social activities like paid ads, sponsorships, community engagement, and more provide expansive reach to capture leads.
- Email Marketing – Building a quality email list provides the foundation for scalable lead nurturing through valuable content and personalized messaging.
- SEO – Search engine optimization means ranking high in organic search results that earns qualified visitors who have signaled an intent for solutions like yours.
- Live Events – Industry conferences, workshops, and virtual events provide direct access to engaged prospects.
The best approach is to test a mix of strategies and double down on those that prove most effective for your unique business. Continually refine and optimize tactics over time.
- What are the most cost-effective B2B lead generation strategies?
Some of the most budget-friendly and effective B2B lead generation tactics include content marketing, social media engagement, email list building, SEO optimization, and leveraging FOMO with offers and messaging.
- How can I generate leads for a new product launch?
Promote your launch through a “coming soon” landing page to capture emails for early access. Offer sneak peeks, run giveaways and incentivize social shares to build buzz pre-launch. Identify and reach out to influencers and fans of similar products.
- What lead gen tactics work best for ecommerce businesses?
Product reviews and comparisons, online quizzes, email collection popups, exit offers, refer-a-friend programs, social contests, and post-purchase follow-up are great ecommerce lead gen tactics. Retargeting recent site visitors through ads is highly effective too.
- How do I generate leads from my existing customer base?
Surveys, refer-a-friend programs, social sharing incentives, customer appreciation giveaways, and exclusive “VIP access” offers are great ways to generate leads from existing B2B buyers and B2B customers. Just make sure to respect their inbox frequency preferences.
Lead generation is the lifeblood of successful B2B marketing. Following proven strategies your marketing team and sales teams will help you fill your funnel and power revenue growth.
Just remember – tactics are important but delivering value to your prospects is paramount. Optimize their experience, solve their problems, and build trust through helpful interactions and content.
Test different channels, get analytics in place, and double down on what moves the revenue needle. With persistence and optimization, you’ll be attracting more of your ideal prospects in no time.