Is your B2B website struggling to drive enquiries? This is one of the most challenging aspects of marketing in B2B, especially where products/services offered are subject to lengthy buyer cycles. In a comprehensive study conducted by HubSpot, 68% of B2B companies were found to use landing pages to gain new sales leads while 80% are believed to gate their most important content on these landing pages. Could your company benefit from adopting a similar lead generation strategy? Discover how adding gated content downloads can help to turn your website into a B2B lead generation machine.

1.Start Conversations

For a prospect to visit your website and proceed to submitting an enquiry online, they’ll need to be very qualified. To drive a more consistent flow of potential leads from your website, you need to offer other routes through which website visitors can “submit” their interest in your product or service.

Gated content downloads can provide a “softer” means of engaging a website visitor into a conversation. Most website visitors are in the research stage or even the discover stage of the B2B buying process when visiting your website. They’ve come across your site through a search, piece of social content or outbound e-mail they’ve received. Give this visitor something to take away and read, share with their colleagues perhaps.

While a potential lead is in the research stage, this is your opportunity to ensure that your company is an actively considered option as they move through the buying process. Offering a website visitor something they can take away and read like downloadable case studies, whitepapers, business cases or eGuides ensures you can stay front of mind.

Most importantly, you’ll now have their details and will be able to kick start a more informed conversation.

b2b marketing journey

Image source: Blogs.forrester.com

2.Qualify Your Leads

Do you find it difficult to wade through the volume of unqualified or spam enquiries filtering through your website forms? Adding gated content downloads to your site enables you to pre-qualify leads before you go to the trouble of crafting an e-mail to send to them or pick up the phone.

If someone has submitted their details to download a case study and an eGuide, its likely that they are pretty interested in your product or service. Their content download behaviour may also tell you about the product or service that they are interested in most.

It may also indicate what their needs or pain points appear to be, enabling you to be better prepared for your call or e-mail to your new lead. You’ll find that your leads are much better educated about your product or solution by the time you speak to them too.

blackline_whitepaper download

Image source: Blackline.com

3. Build Your E-mail Marketing Database

When marketing to B2B customers, lead times can be anything from 1 week to 1 year. Therefore you need to ensure that you can put your brand in front of a potential lead during each step of the buying process.

By capturing prospect details in the research stage, you can then move to execute e-mail campaigns to the lead at each stage of the buying process. They may have downloaded a content piece or submitted an online enquiry but they might not necessarily prepared to buy now.

Capturing lead data via content downloads enables you to build your e-mail marketing database and actively market to these leads, potentially reducing B2B lead time. Be sure to require prospects to submit their industry type as well as their name, company and e-mail address so that you can better target your B2B e-mail marketing campaigns.

b2b marketing e-mail

Image source: Ecommerceinsiders.com

4. Some Content is Too Sacred

Some content is simply too sacred to freely share with website visitors. If you’ve put together a killer case study or a whitepaper or eGuide on a hot topic, you deserve to get something in return for your efforts. Putting together a strong content piece is no mean feat after all.

Collating content, data, quotes and imagery, copywriting and putting it all together in one easy-to read content piece takes a lot of  time and effort. If a website visitor isn’t willing to submit their name and e-mail address to download your valuable content piece, it’s likely they may be more of a tyre kicker than a potential customer.

The stronger, rarer and therefore more valuable your content download is, the more information you can request to download.

b2b marketing case study

Image source: Cashbook.com

Adding even one gated content download could enable your B2B website to work harder to drive leads for your business!

Are you a B2B marketer? What are your experiences with using content downloads to generate leads? Interested to hear feedback in the comments below.

 

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