Why Traditional Lead Generation is Leading You Astray

Here at Demandbase, we spend a lot of our time talking to B2B marketers. One thing we hear time and time again is “How can I get more leads?” Each time we hear this statement, it sheds light on a pervasive problem that’s been haunting B2B marketers for quite some time now: the quest for more leads.

As marketers have been under more pressure to prove ROI on their efforts, leads have been an easy KPI to measure. Unfortunately, leads don’t always lead to revenue, which is of course the most important KPI for any business. It’s easy to lose sight of this fact, especially when Sales is always asking for more. But given the shape of the funnel, marketers contribute high lead volume at the top to get to the small percentage that convert to SQLs. This is counterintuitive because when Sales has to spend hours going through stacks of leads, it’s often wasted time and they end up complaining about lead quality. So Marketing responds by delivering more leads.

They expend time and money into running top-of-funnel display advertising, blanket campaigns that target a wide audience and catch-all retargeting tools that generate lots of leads. Marketing calls it a success, but when none of the leads convert, Sales is still unhappy.

To break out of this pattern, Sales and Marketing need to align their strategy to accommodate today’s B2B buying behavior. One way to do this is through the adoption of Account-Based Marketing. ABM allows Marketing and Sales to collaborate on a list of target accounts, rather than working in silos to generate lead volume or frantically cold call every company in the phone book. With ABM, marketers can focus on attracting, engaging, converting and then measuring against a specific, targeted group of accounts.

Before ABM, Sales complains that leads are low quality.
After ABM, the leads that come in have already been vetted.

Before ABM, marketers are scrambling to run top-of-the-funnel campaigns that target a wide audience.
After ABM, marketers run hyper-targeted campaigns to a set of pre-determined accounts.

Before ABM, the customer journey is fragmented.
After ABM, stakeholders at specific companies get the attention they need to move through the funnel.

With ABM, lead generation isn’t an end goal. It’s merely one component of the process we use to move prospects into paying customers. Account-Based Marketing levels the playing field for Sales and Marketing and ensures that all efforts are targeted to one common goal: increasing and retaining your thriving customer base.

If you’re ready to move beyond lead generation, check out our resource library for additional insight on how to get started with ABM.