B2B Lead Generation - Why a Shorter Cold List is Hotter Commodity

2 minute read

The slow liquid drip of morning coffee. This liquid black gold is the first focus of the morning. The signature scent of hot coffee is the morning perfume of any workplace. From the indulgent caramel macchiato to the short sharp espresso, coffee is king. It warms up our hands, our hearts, and our brains. But sadly, it cannot warm up your prospects for you.

B2B Lead Generation is fundamental. Lead scoring, lead qualification, and lead nurturing are all significant parts of that top of the sales funnel optimization. The eternal grind of turning cold leads into hot prospects is the core work of a salesman. With more and more automated lead generation, it has become a confusing landscape. What used to be a practice of literally knocking on doors or asking to speak to managers has become a minefield of social media marketing mires and auto-generation of email marketing. The critical assets have shifted from a slick suit and honest smile into a Customer Relationship Management (CRM), top-notch database, and idealized email marketing templates, or has it? The cold lead prospecting seems inevitable, but is it?

The proverbial 2-5% response rate feels like a lot of wasted effort. At Plena, we believe that your cold leads should be ‘preheated’ so that you don’t have to strike out 98% of the time and can instead use AI lead qualification and filtering to drop that by 45%.

A cold cup of forgotten coffee with that flat, stale taste is like a salesperson grinding through only the coldest leads. It is a disappointing waste of resources. Take the shortlist of hot prospects over the phone book of cold calling. But a short hot list burns out after conversion, and as a B2B salesperson, you're always on the hunt for great leads that convert into clients. For those times top-of-the-funnel lead generation searches, the careful filtering of your data will yield your best chances.

Plena provides powerful tools such as hyper-targeting that can help quickly refine your list of potential customers, easing the burden of B2B lead generation – enabling you to focus on those who are more likely to become paying clients in the near future rather than investing effort into warming up prospects who may not be ready yet.

Highly targeted prospects can be a powerful tool within Account-Based Marketing (ABM) and beyond. Using Plena will also help improve domain scores by preventing bad emailing. In this blog post, we'll discuss how to produce a shorter list focused on high-quality leads, with or without Plena.

Find the Decision Maker

As a professional in the business world, it is crucial to identify the decision maker when conducting a sales pitch or trying to establish a relationship with potential clients. Sales prospecting your way through a new company is a challenge. An organization's leadership and management structure can often be mind-boggling, with various layers of decision-makers.

Knowing the best B2B lead generation choice for ideal sales outreach can be challenging. However, finding the right person with the power to make a purchasing decision can make all the difference in closing a deal. Whether it be a manager, director, or buyer, it is essential to do your research and understand the hierarchy of the company you are targeting. By pinpointing the decision maker, you can tailor your pitch or communication to meet their needs and preferences, ultimately increasing your chances of success.

Take Aways

  • Learn what you can about the structure of the company
  • Learn the names of positions in the business field you are targeting
  • Using Plena can help you pull those titles and positions from LinkedIn quickly

Be Human: How Automated Outreach Often Bounces or Backfires

In today's digital age, remembering to be human is becoming increasingly important, even in our technological interactions. Turning B2B lead generations directly over to a linked automated outreach without a human filter can be very tempting. But automated outreach can often be impersonal and unengaging. Other humans hate spammers just as much as you do. 

Those automated mass-generated emails increase your likelihood of ending up in the spam folder or being blocklisted as a domain. It's vital to take extra steps to avoid both spam filters and email bots alike. While this includes utilizing an ESP (email service provider) with a high deliverability rate, it also means carefully checking your templates and word choice. Adding touches of personalization and customization can make all the difference in avoiding spam filters and how customers respond. 

Newsletter marketing has its place, but a genuine, personal short note may be more effective than a snappy visual poster with all the bells and whistles. Remembering to be human can create meaningful and impactful connections with the audience.

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Know What You Can

With LinkedIn being the go-to platform for professionals, you must utilize its power to the fullest. One of the challenges that professionals face is knowing when a B2B lead has moved positions or companies. Sales engagement metrics can easily tank when there is consistent turnover. Turnover has reached record levels in the past few years.  

With filters and other tools available on LinkedIn, it's easier than ever to manage your connections on a personal level. However, you must dig deeper to harness the platform's potential for your work. Where does Plena come in? Plena provides 26 or more points of data on each lead. Depth of data is vital when it comes to identifying potential opportunities and developing clean, consistent B2B lead generation. Knowledge is power; with Plena, you can take your sales prospecting on LinkedIn to the next level.

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What Not to Do: Common Mistakes

Some formerly standard practices in sales need to be updated. These ineffective tactics utterly fail to warm up cold B2B leads and don't help with relevant B2B Lead generation. One of the most common mistakes is using a generic approach, failing to consider potential customers' unique needs and preferences in favor of mass emailing. Another mistake is neglecting to follow up with the leads in a world demanding more follow-up while simultaneously being less forgiving of being forgotten.

Additionally, some businesses focus on selling their products or services without first building relationships with the leads. Having too extensive a target list is often to blame. Not only will a mammoth to-be-contacted Rollodex get you nowhere, but it will hurt your open and response rate to the hot leads and even existing customers! By avoiding these mistakes, businesses can keep and build loyal customers.

Action Items

Quick takeaways from us on B2B Lead Generation

  • Lead Nurturing: Provide value to your leads at every stage of the buyer's journey. Create targeted content marketing for each stage. This means understanding where your leads are in the buying process and providing them with content and resources that are relevant to their needs and interests.
  • Lead Scoring
    1. Craft your ideal customer profile 
    2. Find factors that show buying intent.
    3. Assign point values to traits and behaviors. 
    4. Set up a 'starting line' what is the minimum score for reaching out. 
    5. Calculate, Evaluate, and Adjust. This is not a static thing, the weighting of the point values needs to shift with behavioral trends and market factors.
  • Sales Prospecting: Follow up persistently but tactfully. You should use multiple channels like phone calls, email, social media, and events. This maximizes your chances of connecting with the lead.
  • Email Marketing: Even with an open rate of only 8.5% on average, the tiny cost per email means that cold email marketing should absolutely be part of your game plan. Plena is a great tool to filter your lead list and spike that response rate way up.
  • Social Media Marketing: Social media marketing is about brand building and consumer confidence. If you don't exist on LinkedIn or Facebook, does your company even really exist? 68% of US-based adults use social media

Conclusion on B2B Lead Generation's Shorter but Better List

Just as waiting for that first drop of coffee to filter through to your cup, filtering a list of qualified leads may take far longer than seems reasonable to an overtired brain. B2B lead generation and lead qualifying can be demanding.

However, doing initial research and lead scoring helps both parties enjoy a positive experience in the long run. When you know who you are targeting and that they are still employed, it is easier to craft an ideal strategy, optimizing sales engagement. Taking the effort up front to make sure that these cold leads have responded positively will leave those B2B cold lead prospects converting into hot prospects.

Plena can help marketers streamline their outreach process and validate that their list is full of active buyers who are interested in what they are offering. Consider Plena to help you validate and filter your contacts quickly and efficiently so that you can focus on staying human and warm when reaching out. Let us help ensure your leads stay hot; sadly, we cannot help you keep the coffee warm.

Each day without Plena = Lost Sales

With Plena — list building, contact enrichment and scalable multi-channel outreach is a breeze.