When your business sells to businesses, finding the time to generate b2b leads can seem difficult, if not impossible. But it doesn’t mean it can’t be done, especially now in an age when social media platforms and other tools can simplify the process.
If you’re looking to build a productive B2B lead pipeline there are strategies you can employ right now. These six will get you off to a fast start:
1. Get Active On LinkedIn
Chances are you have a personal and a business LinkedIn profile. But when was the last time you actively used LinkedIn as a tool to locate leads? It starts by joining industry groups and seeking out forums where potential customers engage. Contribute, but don’t be overbearing, in fact, the more you treat these forums like a networking mixer, the more successful you’ll be. While there’s a digital barrier between you and your potential leads, behave as though you’re both in the room.
2. Understand Your Target
In the push to get leads, it’s easy to overlook your target market. So before you go all out, take a moment to create your perfect prospect profile. If you sell HVAC equipment to businesses in the midwest, your target may be industrial builders that specialize in mid-sized constructions in that part of the country. With a concrete picture in mind, it’s easier to separate the quality lead from the one who will just waste your time.
3. Mine Your Current Customers
Your current customers are one of the best sources for new business because they network with the prospects you’re trying to attract. If you’re comfortable enough to outright ask for a recommendation, go ahead. Another approach? Try emailing them. Still another method is to hold a networking event, such as hosting a cocktail mixer and invite your best customers – ask them to bring a friend in the business. Financial advising firms often use this successful technique.
4. Make Them Come To You
Your industry knowledge is a tool that you can use to attract prospects. For example, let’s say you’re an IT servicing provider for small businesses. By publishing a white paper on security issues and the cloud, you can gain the attention of business owners who want to protect their systems. Use social media, such as LinkedIn to promote what you publish and keep track of those who respond positively. For tips on writing a white paper, click here.
5. Keep An Eye On Your Industry
Devote some time each day to catching up with industry news online, in social media and in trade publications. Watch for events that could trigger a need for your services and expertise. Reach out to prospective leads when the time is right.
6. Be Patient And Cultivate
Good B2B leads take time to cultivate. While it’s human nature to lose interest or patience, don’t give up. Often, it will take a combination of factors to create a pool of qualified, genuine leads. One way to remain energized and focused is to incorporate lead generation into your overall strategic planning. Whether this means holding a networking lead-generating mixer each quarter or doubling down on your LinkedIn work, develop a plan that works for you.
While cultivating B2B leads can be more complicated than consumer leads, the payoffs can be significantly higher. Let these six tips elevate your chances.