April 2, 2024

How We Approach B2B Demand Generation in 2024

In this blog, we will cover the 2024 marketing landscape and explain that demand generation for B2B companies needs to be a cornerstone in their marketing efforts.

Ian Binek

CEO & Advertising Lead

The 2024 marketing landscape

97% of your market is not ready to buy.

So how do you sell to someone who isn't ready to buy?

Strategic placement of media - otherwise known as branding.

Demand gen in the B2B space is all about getting the 97% of your market aware of problem aware, solution aware, and then finally ready to buy.

Unlike demand capture which is focused on the 3% of the market that is ready to buy, demand gen is taking users all the way through the marketing funnel.

What's the marketing funnel?

In short, the marketing funnel is a hypothetical way of measuring where your prospect's are in their buying journey.

The funnel usually has 3 layers that can be described by the part of the funnel they are a part of.

Top of funnel (TOF) refers to the prospects that are not yet problem aware.

Middle of funnel (MOF) refers to the prospects that are problem-aware, but not yet solution aware.

Bottom of funnel (BOF) refers to the prospects that are aware of your solution.

This tiered approach allows for proper segmentation of campaign messaging and creative that aligns with what the prospect needs to read, see, or listen to.

What successful demand gen looks like in 2024

Demand generation is an investment - especially when you are just starting out.

Building demand takes time - and thank goodness it does.

Imagine every ad you saw from a company you have never heard of before, and it causes you to crave their product.

Yeah, no thank you.

So what does success look like in terms of timeline?

When we work with clients, we aim to drive our first qualified BOF lead in the first 120 days (90 days from when ad campaigns start).

This is very dependent on the marketing budget, the lower the budget, the longer the timeline, and vice versa.

Once the first qualified lead is driven, we now have a benchmark to base our metrics off of moving forward.

The 3 steps to building your B2B demand gen strategy

Every B2B strategy needs to start with a list of your ideal customer profile (ICP).

This email list is either personas (contacts) or accounts (companies) you think would love to do business with.

Once created, it's time to create a long form piece of content.

Simply put, this is a helpful piece of content that your ICP would want.

We recommend Ebooks, Industry Whitepapers, or Guides.

Last, we want to start your demand gen strategy with campaigns and proper tracking (attribution) setup.

Tips on B2B List Building

In 2024, there are 10s of platforms you can use to find your dream customers.

With the increasing segmenation abilities available today - we recommend choosing the channel that has the most data on your ICP you are trying to target.

For example, if your ICP is startups, then Crunchbase is a great lead repository to use due to it's primary function being news & analytics on startups.

A good catch all list builder can be Apollo.io, as well.

When building your list, it's best to keep it relatively small.

We recommend keeping contact lists below 5,000-10,000 and company lists below 1000.

Once created, be sure to vet this list with your sales leader in your org to confirm these are the right prospects to be investing time and capital in.

How to create guides people want

A great way to get people's attention in the social media feed is by talking about trending topics.

For example, AI was, and in some ways, still is the hottest topic to talk about.

Pair hot topics with fear/problem-oriented messaging & creative to capture attention.

People are more likely to react to problem oriented content than solution oriented content in this stage - however this can always be AB tested early on.

The guide itself must be robust with images, videos and hyperlinks to accredited outlets.

By doing this, you are associating your brand as a thought leader, as well as associating yourself next to other accredited brands.

Last but certainly the most important tip here is to not try and sell your brand.

At the very most, include your logo in the bottom corner and 1 CTA at the end of the piece.

The best demand gen marketing channels in 2024

The best channels to run ads to in 2024 are the channels where your prospects are engaged.

For most brands, this will be either LinkedIn, Reddit, or Meta.

LinkedIn has the most B2B workplace related data compared to any other channel.

Reddit is slowly becoming more prevalent in terms of advertising for select niches, primarily highly technical crowds.

Meta is a great catchall for retargeting ad air cover.

Tips for creating effective digital campaigns

The TOF performs best with eBooks, guides, and whitepapers that identify and position research surrounding the problem your product solves.

The marketing funnel comes into play here because the MOF only targets users that have interacted with the brand via the TOF campaigns.

This retargeting ad content comes in the form of case studies, testimonials, and product messaging to help highlight solutions to the problems introduced in the TOF campaigns.

Last, but not least, the BOF comes in the form of display & feed ads.

These ads only show to users who have already engaged with MOF content which helps ensure that the messaging is clear and the user is qualified.

To overdrive the MOF & BOF pieces of the funnel, we like to use website deanonymization tools like Clearbit and Warmly.

These tools help find contact info for people who visit your website, but don't fill out a form.

By capturing this, you can allow sales to send a warm reachout to these folks and see if they have any questions.

What does effective tracking look like?

Tracking is captured with pixels & scripts that are both placed on your website.

There are different metrics we like to measure at different stages of the funnel.

Generally speaking, TOF & MOF are both measured primarily on ad click through rate (CTR), cost per lead (CPL), and cost per click (CPC) while BOF is measured on marketing qualified leads (MQLs) and marketing pipeline (revenue from deals in your CRM).

We incorporate CRM data back into our ad campaigns to confirm if we are effectively reaching your ICP and profitably spending ad budget.

What all amazing demand gen campaigns have in common?

When the company's leaders consistently create organic content then we always see more successful demand gen campaigns.

Company's that want to run ads and never post organic content are severely limiting their campaign's and company's performance.

Wrapping up: Playing the long game

Building demand is the heart of advertising.

It takes time - and for good reason.

As Google mentions in their 7/11/4 Rule - your ICP needs to engage with your content for 7 hours, have at least 11 touchpoints, on 4 different channels before they are completely convinced to work with you.

Start building demand today. Reach out to us if you have any questions.

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