How To Build a Demand Generation Strategy
If you’re like many business owners, you chafe at the thought of another new marketing trend.
Despite advances in digital marketing, many business owners still feel like their marketing efforts just aren’t converting. Email campaigns are getting filtered into spam folders. Social media pages are virtual ghost towns. Company blogs are ignored. Even pay-per-click campaigns are failing to push traffic to the site.
To put it simply: there’s no demand.
It’s situations like this when some companies wave off marketing and simply lean on their sales teams to make things happen. For businesses that rely exclusively on ecommerce sales, no traffic means zero sales, which equates to the death of the company.
Luring Not Pushing
Demand generation is a process from which sales are born. It drives desire for a service or product and lures leads into the funnel. Without the right strategies and methods, demand generation can be discouraging for you and confusing for the customer.
When creating a successful pipeline for demand generation the following questions are important:
What pain points does your product or service solve for the buyer?
When your buyer is in the market to fix this problem, what do they do?
Who do they seek for help? Where do they research?
What kind of information will raise awareness about your company and draw the buyer into the funnel?
Developing a successful demand generation strategy is difficult without knowledge of how your consumers behave when faced with a purchasing decision. Mapping the buyer journey is a critical step to ensure a successful demand generation strategy.
Bring Your Buyer Into The Funnel
Inbound marketing strategies incorporate content, engagement, and story telling to connect with buyers. If your buyer is searching for a solution to a common pain point, your online content will bring the buyer to your site to learn more.
This strategy has the added benefit of elevating your brand in the mind of the consumer. No longer are you just a product or service company. You are a subject matter expert and thus a potential thought leader. As your buyer explores online options, you now have the opportunity to re-engage them, advertise to them, and/or make a solid impression. On many levels, you’ve already provided value before the sale, to which buyers frequently respond positively.
Let’s not forget that the buyer still lives in the real world. Your online demand generation activities should be consonant with the efforts of your sales team and traditional advertising campaigns. The goal is to continuously align your mission and product with the consumer’s interests, which in turn builds demand.
Distribute, Attract, and Convert
To understand the buyer’s journey, it’s important to recognize the tools marketers use to guide consumers toward conversion. Your content and advertising is served to the public via distribution channels that capture the attention of buyers. Thus social media, search engine marketing, PPC platforms, and display ad networks are methods of attracting buyers and raising awareness about your business.
Each of these methods leads back to a site at which a conversion is made. If the “product” (content, ads, social post) is effectively “distributed” to buyers, it will attract them to the point of action. If that action is a submission form, then hopefully it integrates with a system or analytical tool to track the source and path of the lead. If that action is a purchase, then congratulations! You’ve made a sale.
Pipelines Not Pipe Dreams
The demand generation strategy your business employs should be tailored to your goals and the needs of your buyers. At Divining Point we frequently encounter companies who aren’t familiar with demand generation or who are so busy managing their businesses they’re unable to develop the right pipeline for their company. Rather than haphazardly spamming people with a “spray and pray” campaign to hundreds of thousands of email addresses, you should work with a team who can map your buyer’s journey and lay out a foundation for success. Just like it’s foolish to stand on a street corner and bark at every passerby, it is also fool’s errand to attempt demand generation without a coherent message and well-defined path to success.