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Lead generation for the digital age: Mastering the latest tools and trends for B2B and B2C in 2023

In today’s highly competitive business environment, lead generation is more important than ever.

As a B2B or B2C marketer, it’s crucial to stay ahead of the game and constantly adapt your lead generation strategies to meet the evolving needs of your target audience.

In today’s episode of Let’s Talk, we’ll explore the top lead generation hacks for 2023, including proven tactics and strategies for both B2B and B2C businesses. Whether you’re looking to increase sales, expand your customer base, or boost brand awareness, these hacks will help you achieve your goals and drive real results in 2023.

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Daniel Ng, APAC VP of Marketing, Neo4j

Daniel Ng
Daniel Ng, APAC VP of Marketing, Neo4j

“In 2023, connected, data-driven marketing will be critical for both B2B and B2C businesses. This means using relationships of connected data points, not just data, to derive knowledge from the behaviour of prospects and customers. This goes beyond basic insights to deliver a laser focus targeting and dynamic profiling of target audiences.

“Businesses will then need to translate this into creating actionable, experiential journeys for each of their target cohorts.

“Above all, it’s about humanising the delivery and execution. To do this, organisations need to know and understand their customers in a much deeper and richer way. The context of why a customer made a particular purchase or how they found a specific product is more useful for driving future purchases than the mere fact they bought something. By doing this, organisations can establish meaningful connections with their audience and better cultivate their brand’s personality and values.”

Alice Williams, Founder, Ovira

Alice Williams
Alice Williams, Founder, Ovira

“When it comes to attracting, directing and converting leads to our period pain relief device at Ovira we know that TikTok is a B2C lead gen platform that works. Content marketing at volume to a global audience via video has been essential to scoring our strong brand reputation and digital presence.

“Positioning ourselves at the forefront of the consumer’s mind through engaging, thumb-stopping and bold educational content has sparked an interest in what we do and who we are like no other strategy. In particular, our widely shared Ovira__ account featuring device try on videos and interviews about reproductive health with strangers, has enabled us to tap into new markets and retarget prospective consumers efficiently.

“Our unapologetic and loud online voice has drawn us to the target customers seeking to consume content from authentic businesses who speak to their desires; whether that’s entertainment or education. As a result of our viral TikTok success, Ovira has repeated the benefits of shares, comments and increased website traffic from new and existing leads. A major referral source, TikTok generates Ovira leads 24/7 thanks to the algorithm’s matchmaking work and FYP landing our product into the hands and minds that matter.”

Ellis Mitchell, Business Development Teams Manager APAC, Aircall

Ellis Mitchell
Ellis Mitchell, Business Development Teams Manager APAC, Aircall

“We are fortunate as modern sales teams to have diverse communication channels to deliver our messages to prospects – from traditional calls and emails to social networks, SMS, video, chat and more. In 2023 it will be sales teams who master omnichannel communication and are more data-driven that will win.

“Each organisation should understand the channels that most efficiently help them engage with prospects, implementing and using solutions that collect data about the team’s communication across channels. Data forms an effective pool of information that (ideally synced with your CRM) allows sales to adjust its communication mix for the best results. For example, an outbound team optimising lead generation from calls should monitor the best time of day to call prospects, monitoring data such as pick-up rates and talk time.

“Once sales teams have the right tools in place to collect useful data and efficiently leverage the primary channels to engage their ideal customers (often LinkedIn for B2B brands, and other social media for consumer brands), they can become more creative and optimise the mix of touches, quantity, timing and messaging for each customer or prospect. My final tip is to be a first mover to test new channels or communication methods. For example, LinkedIn Voice Notes prove efficient for us to cut through the noise as it’s different and personal.”

Dan Bognar, Group VP and GM APAJ, DocuSign

Dan Bognar
Dan Bognar, Group VP and GM APAJ, DocuSign

“It can be challenging for small businesses to generate new leads – regardless of whether they are B2B or B2C. Doing so requires an investment of both time and money, something that small businesses are in short supply of. It can be a lengthy process to source new customers, and then a costly one to have a sales team nurture the relationship through to acquisition.

“At DocuSign, we estimate that up to 50 per cent of a sales representative’s time is spent on just the administrative tasks associated with selling. When sellers are already juggling multiple tasks at any one time, this amount quickly snowballs. Imagine the increase in leads that could be generated by freeing up even only a modest percentage of that unproductive time.

“That’s why it is imperative that businesses implement digital tools to streamline their sales process. Tools like DocuSign eSignature and DocuSign CLM (Contract LIfecycle Management) can be significant time savers by automating time-consuming, often manual tasks. You can even turbocharge this by integrating DocuSign with CRM applications from Salesforce or Microsoft. Doing so frees up administrative time, allowing sellers to focus on generating new leads.”

Jamie Hoey, Country Manager AU, Wunderkind

Jamie Hoey
Jamie Hoey, Country Manager AU, Wunderkind

“As we approach 2023, marketers need to be prepared for major shifts in the digital ad landscape. Traditional third-party customer acquisition channels are becoming less effective, and it’s going to be increasingly challenging to retarget potential leads with the impending demise of third-party cookies in 2024 and evolving privacy regulations. Instead, success will rely on consumer loyalty and more robust customer experience strategies.

“A crucial step will be implementing sustainable first-party and zero-party data practices. This means collecting data directly from customers and prioritising one-to-one, rather than generic, communications with them. Personalised messaging consistently performs better than generic communications because as consumers, we like to hear about products and offers that are relevant to us. If eCommerce businesses get their messaging right, it can generate conversion rate uplifts of between 2-5%, on average – with the added benefit of making customers feel genuinely seen and valued.

“Additionally, it’s important to keep pace with evolving consumer needs, for example, reCommerce. reCommerce involves reselling previously owned products on resale platforms, helping businesses stand out as an eco-friendly brand, but also offers those looking to save money an opportunity to still buy from the brand at more affordable prices.

“2023 will be a year of significant disruption; strategies that focus on the customer experience and tapping into emerging trends will help brands maximise the value of their existing customer base and capitalise on future opportunities.”

Liz Ward, Co-Founder and CEO, Navii

Liz Ward
Liz Ward, Co-Founder and CEO, Navii

“January is a great time to reassess your digital health and plan the steps required to meet your long-term goals. 2023 will see some big changes for SMEs in the lead generation space, some of which may require investment.

“Navii’s recent Digital Engagement Health Check™ data shows that SMEs scored an average of just 32.2% on a test of overall digital health, which tracks website, SEO, and social media best practices; all of which contribute to successful lead generation.

“It is crucial in 2023 that SMEs are improving the basics, such as optimising their websites. SMEs scored just 42.8% on website basics such as a clickable phone number, having opening hours and contact information displayed, and including a business address.

“The data also showed that SMEs are avoiding 70% of SEO best practices, such as prioritising local search to improve online findability.

“2023 will see all sorts of tech innovation such as AI lead scoring, machine learning chatbots and the use of VR and AR; all of which are very exciting but will be futile if the digital foundations are not optimised.”

Ricky Blacker, WordPress Evangelist, WP Engine

Ricky Blacker, WordPress Evangelist, WP Engine

“The key to lead generation is to have a well-designed website that engages users and moves them seamlessly through the customer journey. When consumers are met with over-complicated, slow sites they are less engaged and more likely to leave. Most users won’t spend time digging through details on your website – they are there to solve a problem. Rather than packing paragraphs full of information, take advantage of white space to highlight content most relevant to users, such as the benefits of your product or service. Any call to action should also be clear, with large and visible buttons.

“Speed is crucial for any website. The optimal load time for webpages is 2 seconds or less. However, global research revealed an average load time of 3.47 seconds. A slow website can lead to frustrated customers, which can result in lost sales and potentially damage brand’s reputation. Fortunately, there are many ways to improve website speed, such as removing unnecessary plug-ins or code, using a lightweight theme and choosing a website host that prioritises site speed. Working with a trusted agency can help ensure your website is maximising lead conversions with ongoing performance optimisation.”

Nick Hudson, Founder and CEO, The Push-Up Challenge

Nick Hudson
Nick Hudson, Founder and CEO, The Push-Up Challenge

“When it comes to B2B leads, nothing works quite as well as being genuine in your approach. Take time to research and discover the places – both online and offline – where your target market spends time. Find common ground, be kind and be subtle with your sales pitch. While a slow burn, it will pay off in spades in the long run.

“For B2C leads, my tip is to create a sense of urgency in your marketing collateral. Nothing stops a potential customer faster than something they have a limited time to access.”

Shannon Karaka, Head of Expansion ANZ, Deel

Shannon Karaka
Shannon Karaka, Head of Expansion ANZ, Deel

“The biggest challenges for business leaders in 2023 are around their people – recruiting, retaining and upskilling their teams (KPMG). And with rising inflation and talks of recession, business leaders are looking for ways to simplify the HR tech stack so they can focus on finding talent in a tight labour market. This is why many Australian businesses are adopting a global hiring approach. In fact, Deel’s H2 Global Hiring Report found Australia is the APAC country with the most organisations hiring overseas remote workers.

“The idea is that instead of taking people to where the work is, you can take work to where the people are. This opens us a global pool of talent that can be deployed immediately thanks to platforms like Deel that handle compliance and payroll for international remote workers. Employees win, too, as businesses are empowered to offer unparalleled flexibility for workers who want to work from different locations and more easily integrate priorities like family into their daily activities.”

Kate Brown, Head of Marketing, KeyPay

Kate Brown
Kate Brown, Head of Marketing, KeyPay

“During economic uncertainty, digital marketers may expect to work with leaner budgets and decide whether to invest more into shorter-term sales activations or long-term brand building. Focusing on building brand equity is critical, especially during these challenging times. Marketers should identify how they can empower customers to engage with them on a deeper and more emotional level. To achieve this, it is best to avoid the temptation of only focusing on shorter-term gains which could degrade brand integrity in the long run.

“Businesses must go the extra mile and implement a more customer-focused strategy. Consider implementing thoughtful strategies to make the most impact, such as providing informative content that can attract and nurture potential leads and drive conversions while positioning your business as a thought leader among peers in the industry.

“By becoming customer-centric and less sales-driven, marketers can provide enhanced value-added education, content, and support to prospects and customers. Shifting advertising messaging from a sales-led focus to communicating the longer-term value, ROI, and time and cost savings for businesses is key to driving demand in this climate.”

Merlin Luck, Regional Vice President of Small and Medium Business, Salesforce

Merlin Luck
Merlin Luck, Regional Vice President of Small and Medium Business, Salesforce

“Trust is critical for effective lead generation but is increasingly difficult to maintain. Salesforce research shows 71% of customers report losing trust when there are inconsistencies across multiple touchpoints in an organisation, and 48% lose trust when they receive communications from brands that don’t match their interests.

“To build long-term trust with customers, businesses need to centralise data across the customer journey to create a seamless and connected experience – no matter where a consumer chooses to interact with a brand. The benefits of having a single view of a customer’s interactions extend beyond a seamless customer experience. When you have a unified view of a customer, sales teams can also create personalised experiences that show they understand the unique preferences of their customers.

“This was the case for Bunnik Travel Group, which is using Salesforce Marketing Cloud to create more compelling campaigns for its customers, including emails tailored to destinations that they’ve researched previously. Its new brand, Small Group Touring Co, is also benefiting from the group’s marketing transformation and is using Marketing Cloud to tailor its communication and build trust with new markets.”

Jodie Baker, Founder and Managing Director, Homepeel

Jodie Baker
Jodie Baker, Founder and Managing Director, Homepeel

“When it comes to lead generation, here at Homepeel we’ve found two approaches to be extraordinarily effective:

  1. Focus on high value content
    Moving to a video-first approach across all our socials (Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and Youtube) in 2022 completely revolutionised the way Homepeel interacts with its audience. But first I had to overcome my reluctance to “put myself out there”, which I’m sure many small business founders can identify with. I thought that I needed to be perfect and the videos slickly produced to be taken seriously. But the only way to do it is to do it! And not to worry about making mistakes. We now upload videos twice a week to Homepeel’s socials, in which I share my in-depth product knowledge and useful skincare tips. I record these videos without makeup, an authentic approach which has been key to driving engagement.

2. Outsource email marketing to a specialist
When it comes to email marketing, it’s less about the platform and more about having someone with in-depth knowledge to maximise the functionality of the platform. We had always done our email marketing in-house and were disappointed in the results. As soon as we outsourced to a specialist, sales went through the roof to the point where email marketing now accounts for 30% of our revenue.”

Marco Zande, Head of Marketing, WLTH

Marco Zande
Marco Zande, Head of Marketing, WLTH

“Brand awareness at the top of the marketing funnel yields the majority of lead generation for a company. It is the start of the journey for potential customers, and a pivotal strategy for any business.

“There is a reason why Meta and Google are worth billions of dollars, and a large part of their offering is dedicated to targeted advertising. Marketers should consider leveraging their wide yet specified reach to generate leads if they aren’t doing so already.

“Next, ensure your website and any front-facing landing pages have clear calls to action for contact. Make it as easy as possible for prospects, as any friction, such as slow loading times, can cause them to fall off.

“Finally, don’t be afraid to ask for referrals from existing customers. These leads tend to be warmer and have a higher conversion rate.”

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Yajush Gupta

Yajush Gupta

Yajush is a journalist at Dynamic Business. He previously worked with Reuters as a business correspondent and holds a postgrad degree in print journalism.

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