How to Attract Prospective Buyers


B2B Lead Generation | How to Attract Prospective Buyers

The President of Find New Customers shares a really brief Sllideshare presentation on Simple Ideas to Attract Buyers to your business - including a YouTube introduction.

What do you think? We love comments and people who share.Read my blog on Kindle

Jeff Ogden is President of the B2B lead generation company Find New CustomersLead Generation Made Simple”  Find New Customers helps companies rapidly grow revenue by transforming how they attract, engage and win new customers. Contact Find New Customers by calling (516) 495-9350 or by emailing sales at findnewcustomers.com

How to Prosper Despite a Bad Economy | Insights from How to Find New Customers


B2B Demand Generation | Insights from How to Find New Customers

Every day I hear how bad the economy is.  The news is filled with layoffs, store closings,rundown house and more and more bad news.  It’s all doom and gloom.

Or is it?  Life goes on.  Business gets done and I’m not known as the Fearless Competitor for nothing.   This is why the white paper, How to Find New Customers from Find New Customers plays such an important role.

Businesses today need to learn how to build trust with skeptical, jaded decision makers.

Nigel Edelshain’s (of Sales 2.0) great e-book entitled “Don’t Cold Call.  Social Call.” which has the very same idea — build trust and earn credibility by doing research first.  In a slumping economy, companies MUST master the art of building trust.

Charlene Begley, President of the Enterprise Services Division of GE said that legendary GE CEO Jack Welch once told her “Go talk to customers, Charlene.  They never lie to you.”  That’s good advice, Jack.

The classic problem between marketing and sales:

  • Marketing says Sales does not follow up on leads.  They drop the ball.
  • Sales says Marketing’s leads suck.   The ball is not worth carrying.

Problem is.. they are both right. Marketing gives sales lousy leads and sales declines to follow up.

The solution to this problem is an agreed definition of a lead and tracking of prospect behavior, so the right content is shared with the right person at the right time.

Let’s examine some critical insights from How to Find New Customers to see how it works.  We start with the single most important factor — the customer buying process - as outlined in this great white paper:

Customer buying process

This is the key principle of How to Find New Customers.   Marketers simply must develop a strong understanding of their target audience buys in order to be effective.

The real purpose of sales is not what you thought it was — it’s not selling refrigerators to Eskimos.  Rather it’s helping the customer solve their problems through buying and implementing your products and/or services.  Thus, the better you know how they buy, the more effective you can be.

Let me share an example of sharing the right information at the right time.

iPropect was declared to be a leader in search marketing by Forrester

Undoubtedly a prestigious award typically leads to well-deserved congratulations and flooding the sales team with copies to hand out to prospects.

But there is a critical question that needs an answer.  When should we use it?

If we go back to the Customer Buying Process, we see where it fits.

  • Does it fit in Untroubled/Unaware?
    If I don’t know I have a problem, why do I care your company won an award?
  • Does it fit in Have Problem?
    If I have a problem, I’m looking for a fix, not a company.
  • Does it fit in Need Solution?
    I’m looking for an answer, so I may be just beginning to consider products and companies.
  • Does it fit in Consideration?
    It certainly does.  Now I’m looking for the best product and company for my needs.
So that great news from Forrester for iProspect should be used only in the Consideration phase of the buying process.

In addition, if you really have a deep understanding and know where they go for information, your marketing can be vastly more effective - as you can use a rifle-shot approach with your marketing dollars (pounds, Euros, etc.)

Now let’s examine another key principle learned by readers of How to Find New Customers —  lead scoring.  But in order to optimally rate leads, we need to understand and measure on-line behavior.

Review this chart from How to Find New Customers.   Sit down with your sales organization and review it carefully.  What do they consider a lead?  Once we assign value, we need to track the behavior. This is where marketing automation products like Marketo, Act-On, and Eloqua come in. (Act-On is a client of Find New Customers.)

I also recommend you not only focus on search but on landing pages to optimize conversions.  A good company/product to consider is ion Interactive and their LiveBall platform.

Here’s some behaviors identified in the white paper, How to Find New Customers, you can use for lead scoring:

Page_22

Finally, let’s look at a final key principal learned in How to Find New Customers — how to write great content. Inside the Mind of the B2B Buyer demonstrated that buyers today look for content at every stage of the buying process.

Content guidelinesWe hope these insights from How to Find New Customers was helpful.  To download the document in its entirety, please click Download How to Find New Customers.

How to Find New Customers

How to Find New Customers

Please note that, while this white paper was sponsored by Marketo, we no longer share leads with them. So your information will not be shared.
What do you think? We love comments and those who share.

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Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is the President of the B2B lead generation consultancy Find New Customers. Find New Customers helps companies dramatically improve revenue results by transforming the way they attract, engage and win new customers. Contact Find New Customers by calling (516) 495-9350 or sending an email to sales at findnewcustomers.com.

“If more companies listened to (Find New Customers) a lot more would be sold.” Dan McDade, Pointclear.

Top Selling Mistakes According to Buyers (must-watch video)


Do you ever wonder why some of the most innovative businesses in the world FAIL while other mediocre ones succeed?

Think about it for a moment.

Some attribute success to luck or timing. Others think that success depends on who you know or how well connected you are.

But the fact of the matter is business success comes down to one thing: Sales. The reason so many great businesses fail is because they simply never learned how to sell. While others, which may have inferior products and services, do know how to sell and that makes all the difference.

That’s why I’m so excited that Mike Schultz, president of RAIN Group, publisher of RainToday.com, and bestselling author of Rainmaking Conversations has just released a new free video series specifically for entrepreneurs and sellers in entrepreneurships teaching you everything you need to know to succeed in sales and grow your business.

If you’re looking to bring in more revenue, win more deals, and succeed with your business – this video series is a must-watch.

Watch the first video now.

Mike will provide you with useful and actionable tips to help you sell more immediately. Specifically, you’ll learn:

  • The most common sales mistakes entrepreneurs and those selling in an entrepreneurial environment make and how to avoid them
  • The unique challenges of selling in an entrepreneurship and how you can overcome them
  • A step-by-step guide on how to communicate your value
  • How to lead masterful sales conversations that result in new business
  • The simple formula to make millions of dollars in sales

This stuff doesn’t exist anywhere else. And the first video is available for you right now.

Click here watch the first free video in the Entrepreneurial Selling series. You won’t be disappointed.

The video series is for sellers challenged by a limited track record or for anyone selling against larger, branded competitors. Whether you’re an entrepreneur who’s never been formally trained in sales, new to selling in an entrepreneurial environment, or you’re a seasoned sales professional, you’ll find value in these free videos. I know I sure did.

So go sign up to receive the video series, watch the videos, and apply the tips to your selling efforts. If you put into practice only a few of the ideas in these videos, I’m confident you’ll see boosts in your sales and business success.

Here’s to your selling success,

P.S. For those of you who do sign up to watch the series, be sure to pay close attention to video 3 where Mike will teach you how to lead masterful sales conversations. It will change your sales results immediately.

P.P.S. Don’t wait. Sign up to receive this free video series now and get immediate access to video 1.

Full disclosure: This email contains affiliate links and we may receive compensation for anyone that signs up. But we wouldn’t promote anything that we didn’t think was quality and well worth your time to check out.

What do you think? We love comments and those who share.

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Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is the President of the B2B lead generation consultancy Find New Customers. Find New Customers helps companies dramatically improve revenue results by transforming the way they attract, engage and win new customers. Contact Find New Customers by calling (516) 495-9350 or sending an email to sales at findnewcustomers.com.

“If more companies listened to (Find New Customers) a lot more would be sold.” Dan McDade, Pointclear.

The State of Lead Generation Today (with Jim Dickie of CSO Insights)


B2B Lead Generation | The State of Lead Generation Today

(This earlier blog post is mostly updated with current data, but overall, not much has changed. The bottom line: B2B salespeople continue to struggle.)

Jim Dickie

Jim Dickie, CSO Insights

Jim Dickie, Managing Partner of CSO Insights sat down with the Fearless Competitor to share insights and takeaways from their recent Lead Generation Optimization study in which they surveyed 525 companies.   The data were shocking.  Let me summarize it for you here.

CSO Insights has been doing studies for 17 years, so they have great historical information.  What’s going on?

Just a bit more than 1 out of 2 salespeople achieved quota in 2008 — down from 61% in 2007, (6 out of 10 made quota in 2010) but 86%  of companies are raising quotas in 2009. (95% of companies raised quotas in 2011.)

If almost half of salespeople failed to make their numbers last year, how will a higher quota help?

It’s clear that business as usual no longer works. Sales turns to marketing for help.

  • Sales leaders told CSO Insights their most important objective is Optimizing Lead Generation.
  • Marketing leaders told CSO Insights their top priority was New Customer Acquisition.

(Two terms for the same thing.)

The next question CSO Insights asked is “How well is Marketing equipped to do new customer acquisition?”

  1. How well do you do web based marketing programs? — 2 out of 3 said “Needs Improvement”
  2. How well do you do direct marketing? — 3 out of 5  said “Needs improvement”
  3. How well do you leverage media? — Better than 1 out 2 % said “Needs Improvement.”
  4. How well do you do telemarketing? — 2 out of 3 % said “Needs Improvement”

“How does your marketing budget compare to last year?” 2 out of 3 said same as last year or lower.

“With fewer dollars, how well can you leverage that limited budget?”

Marketing data quality was a massive problem.  Only just over 1 out 3 companies said customer data was 90% accurate or better.  (9 out of ten customer records)  And only 1 of 10 companies said prospect data was 90% accurate or better.

We need to build trust, but we don’t do a good job of talking to them and we don’t even know them very well.

Lead scoring also separates the successful and less successful organizations.  7  of 10 companies have no lead scoring or just an informal process.

Lead nurturing — keeping in touch with those not yet ready to buy:

  • 42% said Sales does it.
  • 21% said Marketing has an informal process
  • 20% said Marketing has a formal process
  • 10% no one does it

Bottom line: Only 20% - 1 out of 5 companies - does lead nurturing the right way - with a formal process.  8 out of 10 do it wrong.

Companies that take a scientific approach to lead scoring and nurturing are vastly more successful. (Check out the lead nurturing and scoring services offered by Find New Customers.)

Jim said “Companies are missing a huge opportunity.  Companies that do this right enjoy a much higher return on marketing investment.

Jim also said that companies need to invest in technology — both for marketing and sales. Good lead generation and management software out there today.  But great content and process are needed too.

The Fearless Competitor asked Jim about customer buying processes and matching content.  Jim agreed and said customer buying processes are very poorly understood. (Please note that Find New Customers has partnered with the Buyer Persona Institute to bring you a series of free educational videos.)

He emphasized that we live in a self-service world today.    The buying process starts long before they talk to a salesperson.

If a salesperson talks about products or features — the customer says “Yes, I know.”  The conversation needs to evolve into a problem/solution discussion.  This is why fixing the website is so important — it must focus on giving the prospect the information he or she needs to solve critical business issues.

What should people do, Jim?

Marketing and sales should sit down and agree on what is a lead. Get answers to questions like:

  • Who are our best customers?  (And find more like that.)
  • Where is the customer coming from?
  • What is having the biggest impact?

Track progress and get feedback.

What do you think? We love your comments and appreciate it when you share our content on social networks.
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Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is the President of the B2B lead generation consultancy Find New Customers. Find New Customers helps companies dramatically improve revenue results by transforming the way they attract, engage and win new customers. Contact Find New Customers by calling (516) 495-9350 or sending an email to sales at findnewcustomers.com.

“If more companies listened to (Find New Customers) a lot more would be sold.” Dan McDade, Pointclear.

Buying software is easy. Fixing Lead Generation is hard.


B2B Lead Generation | Buying stuff is easy - fixing problems is hard.

If you want to make sales quota in 2012, get started today! Right now! Immediately!

SaaS marketing automation products like Marketo, Hubspot, Eloqua and the like are very, very easy to buy. Give them a credit card, they give you a login. Done. The transaction can be completed in minutes.

It’s actually way too easy, I believe.Lose weight fast Too many companies believe purchasing software fixes B2B lead generation. It does not.

Fixing your B2B lead generation challenges is a lot like losing weight. Most everyone wants to do it but promises don’t match reality.

Look at this image. “Scientists discover rare weight loss ‘Wonder Herb.‘” That sounds like the sales pitch of software vendors, promising all that ROI the comes from their software. (That ROI is possible - just like weight loss is possible - if done right.)

I’m sure you don’t buy that. You know full well that there’s no “Wonder Herb” in dieting. BiggestLoserDieting is hard and arduous. Watch “The Biggest Loser” to see how hard it is.

Unfortunately, there’s no “Wonder Herb” in B2B lead generation and marketing either.

Want to hear what it’s really like to buy marketing automation? Read an actual user story in Marketing automation—lower your expectations.

The author, Liz McCellan writes “Don’t get me wrong. I think marketing automation is a smart tool to invest in, but I want to give some candid advice about setting the right expectations.” She goes to compare marketing automation to becoming a parent - everyone congratulates you, but you are in for hard work. One recommendation: She urges you to set realistic dates - and then add at least 6 more months.

Liz makes a great point in her article. What does your software purchase do toward fixing your company’s problems with generating quality sales leads? Absolutely nothing! (This is not a knock on products from companies such as Marketo, Eloqua, Silverpop, Neolane, Aprimo, and Pardot. They are all fine products from solid companies.)

The only way to REALLY fix your lead generation challenges is to do a LOT of hard work - the diet and exercise, if you will - which we summarize in these 10 steps.

Are you ready to do what it takes? Then complete these ten steps.

  1. Craft deep buyer personas - a deep understanding of prospective buyers and concerns.
  2. Define your keywords - the words buyers use to search for solutions.
  3. Agree on the common definition of a lead and identify key trigger events which drive decisions. (So sales will get fewer, better leads.)
  4. Map content to the buyer personas and buyer variables (using keywords) (So you can take buyers on a journey and you do well in search)
  5. Fill in the gaps with new content (using keywords) (No gaps in the journey.)
  6. Optimize the website, blog and social media based on keywords (so you rank well in search.)
  7. Design lead nurturing campaigns in a Problem to Solution story-telling format using your content. (Earn trust till they are ready to buy.)
  8. Using the agreed lead definition, agree on the behaviors and demographics that indicate buying propensity (lead scoring). (Remember, we need fewer and better leads for sales.)
  9. Create metrics to measure the effectiveness of your programs. (So we can refine it over time.)
  10. Deploy everything in your new marketing automation software.

Notice that the real use for the software you bought first appears in Step 10?

Unless you are ready to invest in those 10 steps using internal and/or resources like Find New Customers, you will never really fix your problem with sales lead quality.

We invite you to check out the Lead Nurturing and Scoring service from Find New Customers.

What do you think? Is buying software a panacea for fixing real problems in most companies? We love your comments and sharing.

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Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is the President of the B2B lead generation consultancy Find New Customers. Find New Customers helps companies dramatically improve revenue results by transforming the way they attract, engage and win new customers. Contact Find New Customers by calling (516) 495-9350 or sending an email to sales at findnewcustomers.com.

“If more companies listened to (Find New Customers) a lot more would be sold.” Dan McDade, Pointclear.

Why Sales needs Content Marketing and Marketing Automation


B2B Demand Generation | The Benefit to Sales

If you’re in BtoB Sales, you may be thinking that this great content stuff and demand generation talk belongs in marketing. After all, you need to close deals! “This mumbo-jumbo’s not for Sales On Phoneme. I need to be out there talking to prospective customers.”

I think the problem is us. We’ve been talking about the marketing point of view for a long time. Now let’s talk about your world in Sales.

Let’s examine a Sales scenario to illustrate the power of content marketing and marketing automation software. The point we want to make clear is this:

The primary beneficiary of content marketing and marketing automation is Sales.

Sales Scenario 1: Without content marketing and marketing automation

Sally Smith, a Sales rep for us, calls target customer and leaves a message. Sally waits a few days and leaves another voice-mail message. Sally sends an email. After a few weeks, after more voice-mails and e-mails - with no response, Sally gives up.

Sales Scenario 2: With content marketing and marketing automation

Sally calls prospect and leaves a message. Prospect visits website and checks out the company. Though he did not fill out a form, Sally knows who it is and edits the anonymous visitor record with the contact name and company.

Seeing what the prospect did, Sally calls again and leaves a personalized message. Prospect visits again and downloads a white paper - completing a form. (And since she edited the record, both visits are captured. The prospect is automatically added into lead nurturing - and valuable information is shared over time. Because we’ve implemented lead scoring we’re able us to see exactly when they are sales-ready - ready to talk to Sales.

45 days later, Sally is notified that she has a new lead. She calls the prospect and the prospect answers. “Sally, great to hear from you. I’ve been getting so much great information from your company and I’m convinced you can help me. I look forward to meeting you.”

I hope you can now see how content marketing and marketing automation actually benefits Sales.

If you’re in B2B Sales and you feel you’re not getting the quality leads you really need, please share this post with your Vice President of Sales.

What do you think? We love comments and those who share. And we’re proud to be syndicated by many services like CustomerCollective, B2C, and many others.

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Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is the President of the B2B lead generation consultancy Find New Customers. Find New Customers helps companies dramatically improve revenue results by transforming the way they attract, engage and win new customers. Contact Find New Customers by calling (516) 495-9350 or sending an email to sales at findnewcustomers.com.

“If more companies listened to (Find New Customers) a lot more would be sold.” Dan McDade, Pointclear.

Use Marketing to Build Your Business for Less


B2B Demand Generation | Driving Leads for Less

  • Want to truly understand the values of the lead generation company Find New Customers? Then watch last Friday’s Laugh and Learn show!
  • Our Lead Nurturing and Scoring Service goes up from $24,995 to $29,995 on September 1, so book today!

We recently had a guest post here from Mac McIntosh of AcquireB2B (B2B Demand

Mac McIntosh

Mac McIntosh

Generation Expert Mac McIntosh interviewed by Find New Customers.) He had a post in a recently newsletter about how marketing can generate sales opportunities at considerably lower cost than sales that we liked. Frankly, if you are looking to develop marketing strategies for your company, listen to Mac.

It has been my belief for sometime that having salespeople work the phones and emails to generate leads was a massive waste of money. It seems that Mac agrees. For a related post see 4 Steps to Convince Your CEO That Demand Generation is a Marketing, not Sales Function. in addition, in the latest version of Inside the Mind of the B2B Buyer, it was found that only 6% of deals came from cold calls. Bottom line: If your company is relying on sales cold calls to generate leads, you’ve got a serious problem.

I’m not going to share all of Mac’s great article - just enough to give you the gist.

Most of the profitable, fast-growing companies I know don’t rely solely on the folks in sales to generate new business. Instead, these successful companies use a marketing-driven sales approach to get more sales for less.

They leverage lower cost-per-touch, one-to-many marketing tactics to address the front end of the sales pipeline: prospecting and nurturing their prospects until they are qualified as sales-ready leads. 

Then they focus their more costly one-to-one touches by salespeople on the later steps of the prospects’ buying process: the heavy lifting of doing demos, crafting proposals and closing sales.

A marketing-driven approach to B2B sales makes dollars and sense.  

So instead of adding more salespeople to knock on more doors, use marketing to cost-effectively contact your prospects and fill the sales pipeline with qualified leads. Doing so will result in more sales-ready opportunities that your salespeople can turn into new business, meaning more sales, revenue and profits for your company.

Mac’s point is that Marketing has the ability to generate high quality leads at far lower cost, resulting in more profits for you. Not only does marketing generate leads for 32% lower costs (his numbers) but freeing up sales to have more high quality meetings with prospects is invaluable.

Thanks Mac. I wanted to post the permalink to your article, but I could not find it.

What do you think? Do you agree that more companies need to move the bulk of B2B demand generation back to Marketing?

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Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is President of the B2B lead generation consultancy, Find New Customers. Find New Customers helps companies dramatically improve revenue results by transforming the ways they attract and earn the trust of prospective customers. Contact Find New Customers by calling (516) 495-9350 or sending an email to sales at findnewcustomers.com.

Find New Customers helps companies (with between 150 and 5,000 employees who sell complex products to businesses) to implement world-class lead generation programs. As companies struggle to create quality sales opportunities, they turn to lead generation companies like Find New Customers.

“If more companies listened to (Find New Customers) a lot more would be sold.” Dan McDade, Pointclear.

B2B Demand Generation expert Mac McIntosh - Interviewed by Find New Customers


Find New Customers is pleased to present our interview with one of the top experts in B2B demand generation today, Mac McIntosh. Mac is also publisher of Sales Lead Report® and B2BMarketing Technology Insights™

We’re deeply honored to interview this expert, who was recently voted #1 of the Sales Lead

Mac McIntosh

Mac McIntosh

Management Association’s “Top 50” Thank you Mac for sharing your considerable wisdom with our readers.

  1. What is the single most common mistake you see companies make in B2B demand generation today?

In my opinion, the biggest mistake B2B companies make in demand generation is focusing on selling their products or services instead of focusing on helping their prospective customers buy.

The next biggest mistake they make is not taking advantage of the cost efficiencies of marketing-driven sales.  If you use lower cost per touch marketing to handle most of the prospecting, nurturing and qualifying, and have your salespeople invest their precious time one-to-one with qualified prospects, demoing, proposing and closing, you’ll reduce your cost per sale and increase your sales results.  Here’s an article about the cost efficiencies of marketing-driven sales.

  1. I’ve heard estimates that up to 8 out of 10 marketing automation deployments only do email blasts and landing pages. Since you help companies with marketing automation, what have you seen about how companies struggle with software?

I’m not sure of the percentage, but it seems that the majority of marketing automation users never get beyond doing “batch and blast” emails.  They fully intend to develop multi-touch lead nurturing campaigns, but are pressured to generate leads now, promote this webinar now, announce this new product now, and never seem to be able to get their nurturing campaigns started.  That’s a shame as research shows that only one in four sales come from leads with short-term needs. The other three out of four sales come from the longer-term leads that are not yet qualified (sales ready) and need to be nurtured until they are.

  1. Content marketing is so important today, but companies struggle to create compelling content. What do you recommend for them to create compelling content?

Marketers should start by inventorying their existing content, determine which aligns best with their customers buying processes, then refresh, repackage and re-use the materials that. Refreshing may include re-titling, updating the copy or giving it a graphic facelift. Repackaging may include bundling materials into “Decision maker Kits” turning white papers into webinars, podcasts, checklists or how-to guides.  Re-using means offering it to your prospects again as it might be better timing for them than the last time you offered it.

  1. One of the biggest questions I hear from CEOs is “How do we attract the right prospects” to our website? What do you recommend?

Not only do I recommend optimizing your web pages to be found at the top of the search engine results pages (SERPs), I also recommend getting listed in online industry directories, advertising in e-newsletters being sent by others to your kinds of prospects, sending marketing-automation-driven email marketing campaigns to a well-targeted database of the right people at the right companies, and providing content to other sites or social media venues where your prospective customer are.

  1. Social media is huge and growing. What role does social media play in B2B demand generation today?
Mac McIntosh

Mac McIntosh

Some B2B marketers, especially those with more time than money, have had success generating leads with social media. However, I view it as more of a branding (thought leadership) tool and an additional channel for cross-promoting your content (white papers, webinars, blog posts, etc.) and driving traffic to your website.  Our enewsletters (pushed out by email to opt-in subscribers) generate far more leads and sales than my tweets and blog posts. LinkedIn has proven effective for one-to-one sale activity, and the groups are another channel to use to share your content.

  1. If a CMO were to ask you “What are the 3-4 things we should be doing right now?” What would you answer?

First, refocus your marketing on helping your prospects buy.  This includes making sure your messaging is relevant, your offers are compelling, and your marketing and sales teams are aligned.

Second, make sure you have the content needed to help your prospective customers buy: Content you can use as compelling “offers” or “calls to action.” Content mapped to the various stages of the prospects’ buying cycles. Content modified for specific buying or influencing personas.

Third, focus on implementing or improving marketing automation-driven lead generation, lead nurturing and lead qualification programs.

Fourth, as email is now one of the primary business communications channels, focus on getting more of your emails delivered, read, and acted upon.

“Thanks Mac, for this great interview. We appreciate it.” Jeff Ogden, Find New Customers

M.H. (Mac) McIntosh, recently  voted #1 of the Sales Lead Management Association’s “Top 50,” is president and senior consultant of Mac McIntosh Incorporated, a marketing consulting and training firm, founding partner of AcquireB2B, a B2B marketing automation and lead generation agency. Mac is also publisher of Sales Lead Report® and B2BMarketing Technology Insights™ e-newsletters with more than 20,000 B2B marketing, lead generation and sales professionals as subscribers, and Sales Lead Insights®, an award-winning blog.

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Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is President of the B2B lead generation consultancy, Find New Customers. Find New Customers helps companies rapidly grow revenue by dramatically improving the ways they attract and earn trust with prospective customers. Contact Find New Customers at (516) 495-9350 or email sales at findnewcustomers.com.
Find New Customers helps companies (with between 150 and 5,000 employees who sell complex products to businesses) to implement world-class lead generation programs. As companies struggle to create quality sales opportunities, they turn to lead generation companies like Find New Customers.

“Find New Customers can certainly help your business dramatically improve the flow of sales-ready leads to salespeople.” Paul Dunay, Buzz Marketing for Technology.

B2B Demand Generation expert Mac McIntosh - Interviewed by Find New Customers


Find New Customers is pleased to present our interview with one of the top experts in B2B demand generation today, Mac McIntosh. Mac is also publisher of Sales Lead Report® and B2BMarketing Technology Insights™

We’re deeply honored to interview this expert, who was recently voted #1 of the Sales Lead

Mac McIntosh

Mac McIntosh

Management Association’s “Top 50” Thank you Mac for sharing your considerable wisdom with our readers.

  1. What is the single most common mistake you see companies make in B2B demand generation today?

In my opinion, the biggest mistake B2B companies make in demand generation is focusing on selling their products or services instead of focusing on helping their prospective customers buy.

The next biggest mistake they make is not taking advantage of the cost efficiencies of marketing-driven sales.  If you use lower cost per touch marketing to handle most of the prospecting, nurturing and qualifying, and have your salespeople invest their precious time one-to-one with qualified prospects, demoing, proposing and closing, you’ll reduce your cost per sale and increase your sales results.  Here’s an article about the cost efficiencies of marketing-driven sales.

  1. I’ve heard estimates that up to 8 out of 10 marketing automation deployments only do email blasts and landing pages. Since you help companies with marketing automation, what have you seen about how companies struggle with software?

I’m not sure of the percentage, but it seems that the majority of marketing automation users never get beyond doing “batch and blast” emails.  They fully intend to develop multi-touch lead nurturing campaigns, but are pressured to generate leads now, promote this webinar now, announce this new product now, and never seem to be able to get their nurturing campaigns started.  That’s a shame as research shows that only one in four sales come from leads with short-term needs. The other three out of four sales come from the longer-term leads that are not yet qualified (sales ready) and need to be nurtured until they are.

  1. Content marketing is so important today, but companies struggle to create compelling content. What do you recommend for them to create compelling content?

Marketers should start by inventorying their existing content, determine which aligns best with their customers buying processes, then refresh, repackage and re-use the materials that. Refreshing may include re-titling, updating the copy or giving it a graphic facelift. Repackaging may include bundling materials into “Decision maker Kits” turning white papers into webinars, podcasts, checklists or how-to guides.  Re-using means offering it to your prospects again as it might be better timing for them than the last time you offered it.

  1. One of the biggest questions I hear from CEOs is “How do we attract the right prospects” to our website? What do you recommend?

Not only do I recommend optimizing your web pages to be found at the top of the search engine results pages (SERPs), I also recommend getting listed in online industry directories, advertising in e-newsletters being sent by others to your kinds of prospects, sending marketing-automation-driven email marketing campaigns to a well-targeted database of the right people at the right companies, and providing content to other sites or social media venues where your prospective customer are.

  1. Social media is huge and growing. What role does social media play in B2B demand generation today?
Mac McIntosh

Mac McIntosh

Some B2B marketers, especially those with more time than money, have had success generating leads with social media. However, I view it as more of a branding (thought leadership) tool and an additional channel for cross-promoting your content (white papers, webinars, blog posts, etc.) and driving traffic to your website.  Our enewsletters (pushed out by email to opt-in subscribers) generate far more leads and sales than my tweets and blog posts. LinkedIn has proven effective for one-to-one sale activity, and the groups are another channel to use to share your content.

  1. If a CMO were to ask you “What are the 3-4 things we should be doing right now?” What would you answer?

First, refocus your marketing on helping your prospects buy.  This includes making sure your messaging is relevant, your offers are compelling, and your marketing and sales teams are aligned.

Second, make sure you have the content needed to help your prospective customers buy: Content you can use as compelling “offers” or “calls to action.” Content mapped to the various stages of the prospects’ buying cycles. Content modified for specific buying or influencing personas.

Third, focus on implementing or improving marketing automation-driven lead generation, lead nurturing and lead qualification programs.

Fourth, as email is now one of the primary business communications channels, focus on getting more of your emails delivered, read, and acted upon.

“Thanks Mac, for this great interview. We appreciate it.” Jeff Ogden, Find New Customers

M.H. (Mac) McIntosh, recently  voted #1 of the Sales Lead Management Association’s “Top 50,” is president and senior consultant of Mac McIntosh Incorporated, a marketing consulting and training firm, founding partner of AcquireB2B, a B2B marketing automation and lead generation agency. Mac is also publisher of Sales Lead Report® and B2BMarketing Technology Insights™ e-newsletters with more than 20,000 B2B marketing, lead generation and sales professionals as subscribers, and Sales Lead Insights®, an award-winning blog.

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Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is President of the B2B lead generation consultancy, Find New Customers. Find New Customers helps companies rapidly grow revenue by transforming how they attract, engage and win new customers. Contact Find New Customers by calling (516) 495-9350 or send an email to sales at findnewcustomers.com.

Find New Customers helps companies (with between 150 and 5,000 employees who sell complex products to businesses) to implement world-class lead generation programs. As companies struggle to create quality sales opportunities, they turn to lead generation companies like Find New Customers.

What Sales Really Needs from Marketing


B2B Demand Generation | What Sales Really Needs

Sales is generating over 1/2 of their own leads, as per the 2011 Lead Management AttentionOptimization study by CSO Insights. But salespeople are not good at this. And 4 out of 10 salespeople missed quota last year.

Audio interview with Jim Dickie of CSO Insights
http://player.wizzard.tv/player/o/i/x/131205721690/config/k-917fdd681fef7c9d/uuid/root/episode/k-33ebfdec079334ca.m4v
Why are salespeople poor at lead generation? And why do so many miss quota? Here are a few reasons:

  • Corporations are in a state of continuous change. Mergers and acquisitions increase complexity. This makes it harder and harder for salespeople to find and connect with the right decision-makers.
  • The economic downturn and financial crisis means companies are leaner than ever. People are bombarded by emails, phone calls and meetings. The last thing they want is another interruption.
  • Executives don’t like surprises. They are content to stick with the status quo as long as they possibly can.
  • Who even needs to talk to a salesperson? With fast connections and robust websites, executives can get answers without talking to anyone.

The result: It takes many, many touches to get a meeting. Sales is poorly equipped to deal with this reality. And when they finally do connect, they don’t have the tools to succeed.

If sales is ill-equipped for lead generation, and winning deals, this begs two question:

  1. Are Sales Getting What They Need to Be Truly Effective?
  2. What does Sales really need to be effective?

To answer that question, I refer you to one of the most highly regarded sales experts out there - Jill Konrath of Selling to Big Companies and SNAP Selling fame. As a top Sales expert, she knows better than most how to makes sales effective. She wrote an eBook recently on this very topic, which I summarize here.

Why does sales need help from marketing?

Here are the 7 Strategies to Get More and Better Prospects into your Sales Pipeline:

  1. High quality, well nurtured leads
    It’s harder and harder to get in the door. Prospects have grown expert at blocking contact. In addition, due to the economic downturn, companies are more shorthanded than ever. Besides, with super fast internet connections, who needs to talk to a salesperson? Marketing needs to engage prospective buyers, gently nurture them and hand over fully qualified opportunities.
  2. Strong value propositions
    Prospects require a clear and unambiguous description of business outcomes using your product or service. The lack of a clear, concise statement of value hurts many businesses. Marketing and Sales should work together to create a highly customer focused value proposition.
  3.  Understanding of the As-Is environment
    Because the default approach is to keep what you have, salespeople need a clear understanding the need to change, the business issues driving the change and how companies make decisions.
  4. Trigger event awareness
    A recent study found that 8 out of 10 buyers say they found the seller. Chances are most deals happen because of nothing that the salesperson did. Most likely an event, such a change in leadership or earnings announcement drove the need for change. It’s important to have awareness to key trigger events so they can call at the optimal time.
  5. Enticing voice-mail strategies
    Hi Tom. This is Sally Sales calling. I’m the account executive from ABC Technology. We’re the leading vendor of marketing automation software and we offer a wide range of services too. I’d like to set up a time for us to meet.
    That is the typical voice-mail left by sales and it is highly ineffective. This is why it is so important for Marketing to help design and plan the voice-mail strategy. Marketing can help tie the message to their business challenges and desired outcomes.
  6. Objection handling
    Chances are the callers will hear lots of objections

    • We don’t need anything like that.
    • We’re already working with a vendor on that.
    • We do that in-house
    • We’re too busy. Can you call back in 3 months?

    The best way to handle objections is to plan for them in advance. Marketing is best equipped to plan and teach sales.

  7. Sales tools
    Great content is so important today. Marketing needs to provide sales with content to use in sales situations, such as

    • Letter templates
    • Email outlines
    • White papers
    • Case studies
    • Articles
    • Presentation templates
    • Self analysis questions

    Sales needs the ability to not only get the right content for the right situation, but they need to customize is for the need at hand. Marketing is best equipped to help.

Perhaps you want to download a document to share internally. We suggest you download Jill’s ebook from Selling to Big Companies by clicking the link below.

What Sales Really Needs from Marketing

What do you think? We love your comments and when you share our content. We also thank Jill for this great eBook.

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Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is President of the B2B lead generation consultancy, Find New Customers and is considered by many to be one of the top experts in Lead Nurturing. He’s appeared on radio shows to discuss lead nurturing and scoring and wrote 7 Keys to Successful Lead Nurturing.
To learn about Jeff, please click Who is the Fearless Competitor?

Find New Customers helps companies (with between 150 and 5,000 employees who sell complex products to businesses) to implement world-class lead generation programs. As companies struggle to create quality sales opportunities, they turn to lead generation companies like Find New Customers.

 

“If more people listened to Jeff (President of Find New Customers) a lot more would be sold.” Dan McDade, CEO, Pointclear.