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The Evolution of B2B Marketing: Why Generating Leads Isn't Enough Anymore

by Michelle Boockoff-Bajdek  |  
November 9, 2011

In this article, you'll learn...

  • Four steps you must take to ensure your B2B strategy evolves to maximize sales
  • The important role of customer data, content marketing, and multichannel marketing

If you're like most B2B marketers, you diligently plan and execute campaigns to drive new opportunities and, ultimately, increase revenue. But unless you're ready to rethink marketing's role, you may be throwing precious budget dollars out the window and missing opportunities to drive real customer value.

Customer buying behavior is evolving, and demand management is evolving along with it. Today's B2B marketers can't focus only on generating leads and turning them over to Sales. They need a new process for creating effective, targeted programs that hit the right people at the right time via the appropriate channel.

Here are four key steps to ensure your B2B marketing evolves to meet today's challenges.

1. Develop a lead-management process

Marketing and Sales must work together to design a more integrated—and collaborative—process that addresses goals, metrics, and activities at crucial lead stages.

That process includes...

  • Identifying key business drivers to optimize demand generation
  • Mapping out the customer lifecycle (from suspect to prospect, lead, and customer)
  • Building marketing programs for nurturing and qualification
  • Defining a Sales-ready lead
  • Determining how leads should be passed to Sales and tracked

2. Master your customer data

Organizations might have thousands, or even millions, of contacts from tradeshows, partner events, and old website leads. And data from social media monitoring and capture have added to the volume of data that organizations have to sift through. Developing marketing initiatives for an unwieldy database results in wasted budget and resources—and, more important, missed revenue opportunities.

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Michelle Boockoff-Bajdek is executive director of client acquisition and marketing at Quaero, a leading marketing services provider.

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  • by Steve Lubahn Wed Nov 9, 2011 via web

    Excellent article Michelle! The marketing scene is changing rapidly and demanding different approaches and skill sets for today's marketer.

    Your note regarding keeping a strong database, house list and clean data are key to success, especially for effective email and inbound marketing campaigns.

  • by David Ewart Wed Nov 9, 2011 via web

    This is a great foundation to build from, thanks for sharing

    As you test and target content across channels, never lose sight of what your customer is seeking-- the "what and the why".

    Mapping your offers in their desired mediums will produce tremendous lift. When building content for social keep three things in mind.
    1) Make it rich and rewarding -- for retweets and shares
    2) Lighten up your registration forms -- ask only what you need to identify the user
    3) Have a plan -- build a multi-touch strategy to engage from first click to conversation.

    Leverage a full toolbox to help with data clean up ( , appending for targeting ( and of course automation to deliver sales-ready leads (SFDC/Marketo).

  • by vivek Mon Nov 14, 2011 via web

    good stuff..!!

  • by Pam Alvord Wed Nov 30, 2011 via web

    So true. So many marketers skip #2 and fail to really know their customer -- something that makes me (when I'm the prospect) end up feeling like a bitch, this blog shares

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