Lead generation is the lifeblood of a business, for new projects and new revenues. Where would we be without it? Yet it remains a difficult process and task for many businesses. Successful lead generation requires a deep understanding of the needs of the customer and your ability to relate to their concerns and issues. Following a customer-focused approach can help you secure new business and expand relationships with current customers. Below we explore the Trellist approach to lead generation.
While lead generation is typically used for gaining new customers, expanding relationships with current customers is one of the greatest avenues of revenue generation. A customer that views you as a trusted partner is more likely to trust you with new, critical work. They’re also likely to refer you to other teams internally and to people they are connected with at other companies. The ultimate goal is to become a preferred partner and go with them when they move between companies. Never overlook generating leads among your current customers.
Lead generation for new customers requires a different approach to understand the needs of the prospect and to create a relevant message. Many businesses still use cold calls and emails as the first introduction to unqualified prospects. Although these prospects may be in the targeted industry or role, they may not have a problem at that time that can be solved with the services offered. Also, prospects are not interested in that type of contact. Studies have shown that more than 90% of B2B buyers will not respond to an unsolicited inquiry, and 88% will have nothing to do with cold callers1.
A more successful approach is to focus on individuals via persona-based targeting. Using this strategy allows your team to create and deliver the right message to the right audience at the right time. Customizing messages for each persona that address their different needs will return the greatest results.
Don't assume you know your customers well enough to develop their persona. Collect insights to understand their common problems, their typical methods for solving them, and the related results. This will help you understand what has or hasn’t worked in the past. It takes a lot of work, but the results are worth it. For example, at the next trade show or conference you attend, ask prospects what they need in the solution, what the ideal result looks like, and how they typically look for someone who can help. Or, work with your sales team to schedule time to speak with key customers. Better yet, work with a research group that knows how to collect information and analyze it to get valuable results faster. This qualitative information will yield the information you need to create an accurate and usable persona.
A persona-based approach will enable development of strategies and programs that address the needs of the buyer and demonstrate that you can meet and exceed their business goals.
Want to learn more? Contact us today to talk about how you can improve your lead generation.
1Joanne Black, NoMoreColdCalling.com