A buying journey goes through three overarching stages.
First, a buyer becomes aware of a problem or challenge they want to solve. This stage is called Awareness. Their goal is to learn more about the problem. For example, if you're reading this, you may have a challenge which is "how do I generate more leads in my B2B industry?" and you want to learn more about that.
In the next step, the buyer wants to find a solution. This stage is called Consideration because they are considering different types of solutions. What sets this stage apart is that the buyer is considering what type of solution may work best for them, not specific vendors. In your case, you may for example be considering if you should buy lists or if you should invest time and money in a marketing automation system and generate leads yourself.
And in the final stage, the buyer has narrowed in on a type of solution, and is looking at specific vendors. This stage is called Decision. For example, you may have decided to go with a content marketing strategy and that you'll therefore invest in a marketing automation system, and you may have shortlisted us and some other vendors.
What does this have to do with content?
Different content fits different stages. So a good B2B lead generation strategy is to produce content for different buyers in different situations and in different stages in this buying journey. Produce content for people with a certain challenge in each of the phases Awareness, Consideration and Decision. In the Awareness phase, produce content that will frame the problems they're likely facing. In Consideration, produce content that compares different types of alternative solutions. And in decision, compare your specific products and services with those of other competing vendors.
We know from experience that almost any company has enough material to share within their company. It's just a matter of digging it out, packaging it, and sharing it. You have unique insights that leads would easily find worthy of sharing their email address for. So get to it and produce some great content now!
There are sales reps out there who don't follow up on inbound leads. Can you believe it!
In fact, it's not so strange when you think about it. Time is of extreme importance for sales reps. The little time they have needs to be spent on the best qualified prospects, otherwise the best opportunities might be lost.
That's why a rep typically should not follow up on any random lead they get. Rather, build lead nurturing sequences that educate and qualify your leads for you. Then, use a lead scoring model to follow up on the best leads.
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