Need leads for a B2B Business? Here are some strategies that work, by renewables’ Ruchir Punjabi

By Ruchir Punjabi, co-founder at Distributed Energy and renewables.org. He is a member of Entrepreneurs Organisation' UAE (EO UAE Chapter).

Digital marketing and sales, like everything else in business, are about trial and error. Having said that, here are some ideas that are certain to work.

Before you begin it is important you identify the persona of your audience. This includes modelling demographics and behaviour traits of your buyer and their influencers. Identifying these details will help you in everything you do next. Secondly, ensure you have a CRM setup. Running marketing and sales without CRM is like running a business without your financials – you have no idea how well or badly you’re doing.

Facebook is highly under-rated for B2B advertising. Either use your internal database or purchase a publicly available database with your target persona in mind. You can use this information to set up a lookalike audience or a custom audience on Facebook. Driving targeted traffic to your website should yield at least 10% quality leads. The creatives (ads) you use for this advertising and where the traffic lands is also an important consideration.

LinkedIn organic is much better than LinkedIn paid advertising. While I have seen LinkedIn Inmail work in the past, the cost often is prohibitive relative to the ROI generated. A better use of LinkedIn is to post organic content regularly with your persona/target users in mind. Consistency and quality of content will drive new leads for you.

Search Engine Optimisation is the best long term investment you can make in B2B. Invest in quality content and focus on long-tail keywords. As you see month on monthly increase in traffic, you can start focusing on mainstream keywords. The results over 2 years will be better than most paid campaigns.

Marketing automation i.e. use of tools such as Hubspot, Keap, etc helps keep your target audience engaged. Think of your user’s journey in buying your product or service and which are the various points you can add value to. Focus on adding value rather than selling aggressively. This will ensure you’re top of mind either during their purchase journey or in the future. This is probably the hardest piece to get right but can have meaningful results where you know a big part of your audience.

There is a field called Account-Based Marketing in B2B. This field has a range of ideas on how you can win and retain accounts. One of the ideas includes doing display advertising for companies by targeting the physical location or by title of the buyer in a company. For companies where a contract value can be in hundreds of thousands, these techniques can supplement the sales cycle.

Of course, not all ideas will work for everyone. The best approach is to try and see what works for you with small budgets. Keep the techniques that work, and stop using things that don’t. This way you can build an agile, learning B2B marketing engine.