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Regardless of your organization’s size, increasing your customer base and brand awareness is essential for continuous success. 

And for a small to medium-sized business (SMB) to maintain that success, they need to focus attention on growth strategies, including lead generation. Lead generation is the practice of capturing interest from potential buyers to purchase your product or service.

Let’s take a look at why SMBs need a lead generation strategy and how to build one for consistent business growth.


Why is Lead Generation Important for SMBs?

You want to be on top in your market, but it’s more difficult when you’re pitted against enterprises. 

Lead generation is effective because not every audience member you attract is going to invest in your product or service — but it’s worth trying to take their eyes away from larger-sized competition.

Some of the easiest methods of lead generation include increasing traffic to your social media channels and website. In fact, 48% of consumers leave a business’s website and make a purchase on another site simply because it was poorly curated.

And what are one of the most difficult methods of lead generation? Cold calling — or really any form of cold outreach.

But that doesn’t mean cold outreach isn’t worth looking into. There are several lead generation tactics, and each should be considered for your strategy depending on your company budget, employee size, and team specialty.

11 Steps to Build an SMB Lead Generation Strategy

Lead generation is the process of advertising, optimizing brand reach, engaging with nurture campaigns, and maximizing digital channels.

Follow these steps to create an effective lead generation strategy for your SMB:

  1. Identify your target audience – Think about who’s in your market and if they’re interested in your product or service.
  2. Create an ideal customer profile (ICP) and buyer personas – Your ICP is exactly the type of lead to become one of your clients, and your buyer personas describe the personalities of those potential customers.
  3. Identify the decision makers and stakeholders of target accounts – Finding contacts who make the purchasing decisions can expedite the sales process.
  4. Develop email marketing campaigns – A one-size-fits-all approach to emailing leads is inefficient. Email marketing campaigns require more thought into the different personas and audiences your team is targeting.
  5. Construct a lead scoring and qualification system – Filtering unfit leads saves time later in the sales process, and consider that 79% of B2B marketers have not established a system for lead scoring.
  6. Build a lead nurture campaign – Not every lead that shows up on your radar will engage with your sales and marketing teams. A lead nurture campaign sends them reminders and content to gain more of their interest.
  7. Expand your content by channel and medium – There are many mediums of content, such as blogs, eBooks, and case studies, which can reach more audiences when expanded into different channels.
  8. Increase search engine optimization (SEO) for your website – Getting your webpage closer to the first of a search engine result attracts more visitors, and possibly more business. 
  9. Host webinars and events – In a recent study conducted, 42% of respondents said tradeshows and events were the biggest sources of marketing and sales leads.
  10. Collect referrals from current customers  – Referrals serve as great sources for social proof.
  11. Track analytics from all campaigns and strategy efforts – For your lead generation strategy to be successful, you have to know exactly what’s working by seeing it in numbers and analytics.

When building your lead generation strategy, don’t forget to add personalization in every step.

Your strategy will require a lot of trial and error to see successful results. But this back and forth is made easier when you invest in solutions like ReachOut so you can collect and organize target account data with just one integrative tool.


Create Your Own Leads with a Solid Strategy

Lead generation strategies are crucial to your organization’s success, but it’s equally as important to tailor it to your business’ operations.

The leads you bring in can eventually become long-time customers, and form lucrative business relationships.

So don’t waste your time and resources on half-baked campaigns — take your marketing to the next level with a solid lead generation strategy.

About the author

Rayana Barnes

Rayana Barnes is the Creative Content Specialist at ZoomInfo, the leading B2B contact database and sales intelligence solution for go-to-market teams.

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B2B marketing, growth, sales and more.


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