B2B Lead Generation And Demand Generation Strategies For 2022:

Recommendations From 20 Industry Experts

Summary

With the lasting impact of the pandemic and the challenges and uncertainty it has created for the B2B industry, to meet changing expectations and remain competitive marketers need to adapt now more than ever.

 

Changes in the B2B Industry

One of the biggest shifts brought about by the pandemic has been the frantic digitizing of entire business elements for companies with face-to-face working models. Lead generation has largely been limited to online strategies, with businesses having to adapt and develop new tactics.

As the decade progresses, it also becomes increasingly clear that for many companies remote and hybrid work environments are more than a necessity. Although remote working is not fool proof and comes with its own downsides, it also has the potential to be incredibly beneficial to both employees and companies alike, with Gartner reporting that 80% of company leaders are planning to allow remote work post-pandemic.

While the move to working from home is not suited to everyone or every business model, if implemented correctly it has been proven to help grow the reach of B2B companies located across the globe.

As a key B2B marketing strategy, content marketing often has to remain fluid and ever-changing depending on rates of consumption. But it too has seen changes from developing trends in terms of the types of content receiving the most engagement on various channels.

Video content, in particular, is on the rise. A study by Wyzowl reported that 68% of consumers are having their consumption of video content impacted by the pandemic, with 96% revealing this consumption has increased.

These three recent changes are only a few examples of how the B2B landscape continues to evolve, both in terms of marketing and how companies have adapted to newfound restrictions.

Recommendations from Industry Experts for 2022

In the face of adversity and uncertainty, listening to collective insights and opinions can be particularly valuable for determining the right course of action. With this in mind, we asked fellow B2B lead generation and demand generation experts for their thoughts on how the industry will continue to evolve in the next several years.

Below is a roundup of predictions, effective features, and future-proof strategies for succeeding in 2022 and beyond.

Recommendations from Industry Experts for 2022

Ryan Foland
Ryan Foland

The pandemic has added extra stress to all of our lives. When life is stressful, business is stressful, creativity drops, innovation lags, and tensions rise. Use this to your advantage and find ways to connect with people about common stresses that you are facing.

I often say people don’t want to do business with businesses, they want to do business with people. When it comes to B2B Lead Generation Tactics for 2022, I encourage you to find, showcase, and connect with the human elements of not only your business but also of your clients, partners, and stakeholders. In 2022 and beyond, don’t look at lead generation as a series of tactics, look at it as a chance to leverage your human-to-human networks. The best business comes from word of mouth and referrals. When was the last time you called to check in with a current client, an account manager, or the sales representative that is responsible for driving profits from your partnerships?

In my book, Ditch the Act, I discuss how sharing your human side is a great way to not only connect with people and relate to them but drive business. Being vulnerable with your B2B business contacts and prospects will let them get to know you a little bit better, and create opportunities for them to reciprocate.

About the author:


Ryan Foland is a high-energy keynote speaker, author, and brand consultant who teaches executives and corporations how to grow influence by being more relatable. His 3-1-3® Method uncovers core brand messaging to guide bespoke communication strategies. Ryan is a four-time TEDx speaker and has been featured in Forbes, Fortune, Inc., Entrepreneur, and more. His award-winning book, Ditch the Act, teaches leaders how to get ahead in business by simply being human.

Theresa Cramer
Theresa Cramer

Don’t ignore content marketing as a lead generation strategy. If you structure your campaigns properly, you can move prospects through the funnel from reading your social media and blog posts to downloading case studies and whitepapers. The key is creating great content that compels people to give you their information, and that means answering their questions and addressing their pain points.

 

About the author:


Theresa Cramer is the co-founder of Quiet Corner Communications, a boutique agency that focuses on creating great content to help companies drive results.

Paige Arnof-Fenn
Paige Arnof-Fenn

I am a big fan of Content Marketing/Thought Leadership which is a great way to build your brand, increase your visibility more broadly, raise your profile and attract more clients. I write about what I know and share my stories and lessons learned. Stories that touch readers emotionally are easier to remember than facts and figures, and they will want to hear more.

Figure out how best to tell your story in a way that makes them pay attention, informs, entertains, and breaks through the noise. Focus on sharing the benefits with them, not the features of your product or service. Stories create fans who will help you sell!

The key is to pick platforms that are authentic to you. For professional service businesses like mine, leveraging LinkedIn matters the most. When generating ideas, I focus on timely issues that affect me or my business as they are likely to be topics that impact others too. If I have a unique perspective or advice to share, I use the distribution vehicle that makes the most sense.

One of the best strategies to keep and grow your online audience today is through interactive marketing such as polls, surveys, quizzes, contests, or interactive videos.

For websites, AI-powered chatbots are great at cutting costs and converting visitors into leads by encouraging visitors to spend more time on sites and guiding them to relevant content.

In a mobile-first world, attention spans are shorter than ever. Video will be used even more in 2022 to boost rankings, with show don’t tell content driving engagement, traction, and growth. Adding video to your site and using the right keywords for video descriptions and headlines will ensure you do better in searches too.

Influencer marketing is on the rise, with curated content and ideas from a trusted source beating paid content every time. Partnering and building relationships with the right influencers with content that is co-created helps brands scale and grow faster, and amplify their message.

About the author:


Paige Arnof-Fenn is the founder & CEO of global marketing and branding firm Mavens & Moguls. Her clients include Microsoft, Virgin, The New York Times Company, Colgate, venture-backed startups as well as nonprofit organizations . She graduated from Stanford University and Harvard Business School. Paige serves on several Boards and is a popular speaker and columnist who has written for Entrepreneur and Forbes.

Clement Lim
Clement Lim

In 2022, the B2B landscape will become even more competitive so the need to stand out from the crowd and your competitors is ever more important. One of the most effective ways of accomplishing this is through creating thought leadership content.

Thought leadership content is designed to position your brand as the go-to resource on a topic. When properly executed this will spark meaningful conversations, increase brand awareness and generate leads. Common forms of thought leadership content include eBooks, whitepapers, long-form blog posts, videos, and webinars.

As with everything in marketing, preparation is the key to success. To start with it is important to identify the goals you wish to achieve through measurable KPIs such as brand mentions, web traffic, and web conversions. The next step is to define your target audience with factors like job title, location, purchasing power, and challenges. This will help you understand what pain points you need to address in your content. Finally, conduct an analysis of your competitions’ content and work out how you can make your content even better.

About the author:


Clement Lim is a B2B copywriter and content strategist specializing in SaaS, Tech, and Consulting. His work has been featured in Entrepreneur, Search Engine Journal, and Kissmetrics.

Ahava Leibtag
Ahava Leibtag

Ungate your content. It may sound counterintuitive but giving away your best content for free opens the doors for audience growth. It encourages more social sharing of your content and spreads your brand authority and trustworthiness faster. It’s a brave tactic that can generate long-term results. At Aha Media Group, our publication downloads skyrocketed by 102% in six months after removing forms. Down the road, when those downloaders need a content agency, they may remember how our content helped them and reach out to us, leading to new business.

About the author:


Ahava Leibtag has more than 20 years of experience in writing, messaging and marketing. She is a well-recognized content expert and writes thought leadership about content strategy and content marketing. Ahava is the President and owner of Aha Media Group, a content strategy and content marketing consultancy founded in October 2005. In 2020, Ahava was inducted into the Healthcare Internet Hall of Fame as an Innovative Individual.

Meryl Evans
Meryl Evans

Infuse accessibility throughout your company culture and promote accessibility features in the content you offer. Holding a webinar? Caption it and mention it when you announce it. Posting a video? Caption it and include a transcript. It leads to loyalty from the many accessibility supporters out there. With more than a billion people having a disability, you’re also reaching their friends and families. That’s a huge market!

About the author:


A Texan solo marketing consultant of more than 20 years, Meryl is an author and contributor to books on business and technology. Meryl supports B2B companies on their accessibility and marketing initiatives. Prior to striking out on her own, she worked for two Fortune 500 companies and the FAA. A highly sought-after speaker who happens to be deaf, Meryl is renowned for sharing her personal experiences and passion for accessibility and high-quality captioning.

Josh Steimle
Josh Steimle

The gold rush on LinkedIn is nowhere close to being over, and the network is growing like mad (it will pass 800 million users in 2022). To take advantage of LinkedIn as a B2B lead gen tool, make your customers come to you with this three-step process:

1. Optimize your profile. That means clean it up, get a good photo, update the information, add some content, tell us a great story in your About section (write it in the first person), and make sure your headline pops (don’t just give us your title – tell us what you do, who you do it for, and the results you deliver).

2. Make high-quality connections. The more connections you have, the further your content will travel. However, the connections can’t be any random person, they need to be members of your ideal audience. First, connect with people you already know to bulk up your network, then reach out to others in your industry, and finally reach out to your ideal audience. Don’t sell, just connect.

 

3. Create compelling content. Plain text posts are great. So is native video. Don’t post links in your posts – these kill their reach. Don’t sell, give value. Give away all your secrets. Begin and end your posts with a question that demands an answer to get people commenting, and then respond to comments quickly, in detail, and keep trying to help.

About the author:


Josh Steimle is the author of 60 Days to LinkedIn Mastery. He’s been featured in more than 300 articles in publications like TIME, Fortune, Mashable, TechCrunch, Forbes, and Inc., and is a TEDx speaker.

Vikram Chopra
Vikram Chopra

Leverage your network, such as founders, advisers, investors, LinkedIn connections, former/existing client referrals, to get the most out of your campaigns. Form strategic partnerships with partners, resellers, and distributors.

Find your customer online by using forums, boards, social platforms, email lists. Contrary to what others may say, cold outreach doesn’t need to change. Keep tried and tested strategies and stick to the old-fashioned way of cold outreach. Implement a founder-led content strategy, become the thought leaders in your space by utilizing your executives and their industry knowledge to establish your brand.

About the author:


Vikram Chopra brings 15+ years experience as a founder, business executive, adviser, and go-to-market expert specializing in taking concepts to market. A three-time founder with a track record of working with emerging technologies Cloud, Blockchain, AI, and 5G.

Jonathan Bentz
Jonathan Bentz

Leverage your integrations, partnerships, and alliances for demand gen through SEO and search advertising. Does your company provide a tool or solution (SaaS, IoT, etc.) that can be combined with an existing popular platform (Salesforce)? If yes, create a use case resource, a landing page, and some blog content optimized to rank for searches for partner solutions. You’ll be pleasantly surprised by the quality of the fruit that tree bears.

About the author:


Jonathan Bentz is a Senior Digital Marketing Strategist at Direct Online Marketing. Jonathan is a 15-year SEO veteran and holds a Journalism Degree from West Virginia University. He contributes to Business.com, Business2Community.com, and G2. Jonathan is also a Startup Mentor for Vantage Ventures, an organization building pipelines to mentors, executives, and funding for tech and innovation with roots in West Virginia.

Dennis Yu
Dennis Yu

Make nine one-minute vertical cell phone videos to cross-post to LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and other networks. Three of them on WHY (telling stories of clients, partners, and employees), three of them HOW (sharing knowledge, like tips from your podcast or webinar), and three on WHAT (calls to action to book a 15-minute call, download the guide, come to the webinar).

This is what works like crazy on social media to drive B2B leads, since it’s a human,
relationship-driven approach. You could even do YouTube as one-minute vertical videos, called YouTube shorts.

Boost these each for $1 a day for 7 days ($7 to test on each, which is $63 to test the batch). Then put $100 on the winner from the nine videos.

Make more batches of nine videos in the 3×3 grid and find more winners, as you build your collection of ‘Greatest Hits’. Put $1,000 against the best videos at each stage of the funnel.

Of course, integrate your Salesforce, Hubspot, Google Analytics, and other marketing automation tools via Google Tag Manager and email addresses, as part of your Digital Plumbing. Now you can remarket cross-channel and track lead performance.

About the author:


Dennis Yu’s mission is to create a million jobs via digital marketing training programs with partners. He is the host of the CoachYu show. He is a former search engine engineer and is featured on major media channels.

Pamela Wilson
Pamela Wilson

Video! It’s a bummer, but I think we’re all coming to the realization that more of our connections may happen online moving forward. How can we make those connections more engaging and personal?

Make them video-based!

I’m building up my YouTube channel, welcoming new customers with personalized video, meeting with my Offer Accelerator members by video every week, creating personalized video reviews for their projects, and filming video tutorials for my team members.

Video helps people feel they know me, even if we’ve never met. I waited until my late 50s to embrace video. If I can do it, you can too.

About the author:


Pamela Wilson coaches people in mid-career to build profitable online businesses. She’s an online educator, author of the Master Content series, keynote speaker, and business coach at PamelaWilson.com.

Larry Kim
Larry Kim

B2B demand gen strategies always lag behind what’s happening in B2C. For example, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, content marketing – they all started in B2C then migrated over to B2B years later. Right now, the hottest lead generation channel that we’re seeing is Omni-Chat marketing, messaging directly to people using various messaging platforms including Instagram Direct Messaging, Facebook Messenger Marketing, SMS Marketing, WhatsApp, Web Chat, etc., and using platforms like MobileMonkey. The engagement rates are through the roof and it’s only a matter of time until the B2B marketers catch on!

About the author:


Larry is the founder of MobileMonkey, the World’s first omni chat platform for connecting with customers on Instagram Messenger, Facebook Messenger, SMS, and Website chat. He’s also the founder of WordStream, a PPC marketing software acquired by Gannett in 2018. Larry is ranked the #8 most popular author on Medium and won marketer of the year awards from Search Engine Land, The US Search Awards, and PPC Hero. He also received special commendations from the United States Senate and US House of Representatives for creating thousands of high-tech jobs as an immigrant to the United States of America.

Michael Houlihan
Michael Houlihan

When I asked the Founder of Uggs Boots what the most important thing was that he did to create new leads and increase demand for his boots, his answer surprised me but made so much sense because he was growing his business by turning customers into advocates. He said: “I just serviced the hell out of my existing customers”.

He was certainly on to something because those customers introduced him to more customers. Sure, it’s great to have third-party endorsements, but what about third parties that you know have your best interests at heart, and are putting their own personal reputation with you on the line? Now that’s a powerful lead/demand strategy!

We used this strategy at Barefoot Wine and built the brand with customers/advocates across the world! The beauty of this strategy is that it is relatively easy and efficient. Service them until they thank you or acknowledge it, then ask: “Who do you know who can benefit from my products or services?” Offer a discount against future purchases for every referral that buys!

About the author:


Founder of Barefoot Wine and Business Audio Theatre, New York Times Bestselling Business Author, Regular Contributor to Business Journals, Advisor, and Avid Hiker.

Mandy McEwen
Mandy McEwen

B2B demand generation is evolving and for the better. In 2022, brands will need to decrease their reliance on impersonalized automated outreach efforts and instead focus on meaningful relationship building, via personalized messaging. LinkedIn is the best place to start meaningful relationships with targeted prospects. Engage, provide value and send personalized messages. Start helping. Stop selling. Teams need to focus on being the first to provide value and insights. Technology is great, but only when you can add a personalized element. Teams will need to focus on applying personalization to everything they do.

About the author:


Mandy McEwen is the Founder & CEO of Mod Girl Marketing, an award-winning digital marketing agency. As a renowned content creator, speaker, and mentor, Mandy has been named a Top 24 B2B Marketer by LinkedIn, listed in Search Engine Journal as a Top 12 SEO Expert, and named a Top 20 Female Marketer by G2. She’s the creator of 8+ marketing courses and founder of an Inc. rated Facebook group. Mandy and her team at Mod Girl® partner with ambitious companies to increase brand exposure and revenue through the power of LinkedIn and humanized content marketing.

Ted Rubin
Ted Rubin

Always focus on truly adding value and be sure to do whatever you can to form a human connection – people do not want to be treated as a number. Yes, you can measure and track numbers, and bang people relentlessly over the head… and make sales. But! Your brand/business is what you do; your reputation is what people remember and share. If you take the relentless route, you will most probably be doing long-term damage to your brand equity that will not necessarily be evident in the short-term numbers, but most definitely will be evident over time. Be genuine! Be consistent! Be human.

An email marketing list, and the marketing that follows, is not simply about numbers. It’s about adding value to both your brand and the consumer. Unfortunately, too many are simply banging away at the numbers.

Consumers do not owe you their attention, and they certainly do not owe you their ‘permission’. We need to earn it. Permission is earned through quality content that offers genuine interest in and deep understanding of consumer preferences/needs, and a consistent track record that builds trust. Keep the trust, keep the permission, keep the customer.

It’s not just the volume or brilliance of content that matters, it’s how that content relates to them. If content is not relevant, it’s nothing more than a waste of your time and a reason for the consumer to take away permission for ongoing interaction with you.

People must come first – in your growth strategies, in your marketing plans, and in every interaction that you have. Brands are running headlong into brand equity destruction through incessant overuse of their email list and ‘permission’, and incessant digital spamming. The rise of retargeting and digital yield techniques is killing brands, and brand equity for the long term. It makes me wonder how many brand managers, and more importantly CMOs, bother signing up for their own email distribution lists, or shop their brands from an anonymous browser to experience what their customers are being subjected to. Customer experience is no longer simply about product, delivery, and service, but about how the customer experiences our marketing.

Permission is your ROR, #RonR (Return on Relationship).

As you proceed through this critical year of 2021 and into 2022, remember that permission is a two-way street, and the traffic signals are controlled by your followers. Be their green light, not their stop sign!

Old marketing was dictation. New marketing is communication. Change from convince and convert, to converse and convert!

About the author:


Ted Rubin is a leading social marketing strategist, international keynote speaker, business advisor, author, connector, and provocateur. In March 2009 he started using and evangelizing the term ROR (Return on Relationship, #RonR). Ted was chief social marketing officer (a new title he created in 2011) of content and influencer marketing pioneer Collective Bias and a principal shareholder until the November 2016 acquisition by Inmar. Many people in the social media world know Ted for his enthusiastic, energetic, and undeniably personal connection to people.

Virginia Zacharaki
Virginia Zacharaki

Use automated, personalized landing pages.

Personalization is not only for B2C industries. You can easily collect data through an email marketing and marketing automation tool, create user personas, and use similar data to “fill in the blanks” for users who have decided to not give you any information. After that, you can create a tailor-made landing page that will engage your users and further boost your conversion, visibility, and all the KPIs you’re tracking.

Just make sure to create a landing page that will be interactive as well as personalized – in the form of a quiz, for example, or a mini-game – and automated. Automation will allow you to duplicate, save, and show the right landing page combined with the right personalized email marketing campaign at just the right time.

About the author:


SEO Project Manager at Moosend, a highly competitive Email Marketing, and Marketing Automation platform. Passionate about knowledge, learning, teaching, and creating. Tend to live as a ballerina bookworm.

Justine Beauregard
Justine Beauregard

B2B demand gen strategies are shifting to a more relationship-oriented approach. Leveraging strategic partnerships on platforms like Clubhouse to attract and serve hundreds of people and cross-pollinate audiences are proving to be extremely successful for many. There’s also a massive uptick in live video and social media takeovers on platforms like IG and TikTok, especially with mashups and collaborative events.

There will be a lot more of this in 2022. If you desire to scale quickly and build authority, there’s tremendous value in the endorsement of a peer or someone complementary to your business. 94% of people are more likely to buy from someone they hear about through a friend or online review. There is power in testimonials and social proof. Do this well, and you’ll be hitting your B2B demand and lead gen goals in no time!

About the author:


Justine Beauregard is a marketing strategist and coach for compassionate entrepreneurs worldwide. Since 2008, she’s helped hundreds of entrepreneurs maximize their impact and income using her marketing process proven to help businesses grow up to 6x revenue in as little as 30 days.

David Leonhardt
David Leonhardt

More and more, people are seeking proof. This might be the result of so much fake news and manipulated videos. People are asking to see samples, especially for big-ticket projects. They want to be sure we are credible before they commit. Having testimonials right on our sales pages, rather than tucked away on a testimonials page, is one way we do this. Writing blog posts about the work we’ve done for clients – with their permission! – also helps establish our legitimacy. The more proof you can provide at the top of the funnel, the more likely you’ll have the chance to offer tangible proof and build a relationship at the bottom of the funnel.

About the author:


As the president of The Happy Guy Marketing Writers and a social media marketing expert, David Leonhardt helps professionals and entrepreneurs promote themselves better. THGM also produces screenplays, press releases, speeches, novels, biographies, as well as creates and promotes websites.

Victoria Albert
Victoria Albert

B2B marketers are coming to an honest realization that building a relationship with only one key stakeholder will not bring tremendous or long-lasting value, and may not even result in a single sale. Instead, in our increasingly remote but hyper-connected world, buying committees hold more power than ever before. For every final decision maker, there is a supporting cast of stakeholders and influencers, each of whom plays an important role in the purchase journey.

It is therefore incredibly important to connect with and nurture relationships with these stakeholders. Those who do it right will benefit from accelerated engagement. Move over, demographics and firmographics are becoming a key component of a B2B marketer’s strategy.

About the author:


Victoria is a visionary marketing executive with a proven track record of driving revenue growth for some of North America’s most prominent brands. With decades of wide-ranging vertical and cross-function expertise, she leads INFUSEmedia’s marketing initiatives to enhance the company’s brand and market position.

Christoph Trappe
Christoph Trappe

At the end of the day, you want to provide value for your customer and of course your company. Every touchpoint should add value to the prospect. Share content that is useful to them and that helps you deepen the relationship. Don’t just be annoying and keep checking in without adding any value.

About the author:


Christoph is a content strategist, podcaster, and the author of Going Live. Dedicated to creating experiences useful to people interested in understanding their customers, Christoph Trappe is a Top 100 CX thought leader who regularly shares content marketing insights with his audience.

Final Thoughts

With our B2B Expert Roundup, we have explored a variety of empowering strategies for both demand and lead generation for the end of 2021 leading into 2022.

Key points covered:

  • Personalize outreach and messaging.
  • Establish thought leadership and create content that provides value for prospects over the hard sell.
  • Integrate short videos into strategies across multiple channels to take advantage of its growing popularity.
  • Invest in improving SEO and organic rankings of content, alongside paid advertising, to improve content performance.
  • Don’t be afraid to show your human side and develop a person-first approach to building connections. Be relatable and relationship-first.
  • Leverage testimonials and nurture connections with satisfied customers to build your network by creating advocates for your brand.

 

We’d like to take this opportunity to thank all the experts who contributed and wish all a very prosperous 2022 and beyond.

For more on how to create successful lead generation and demand generation campaigns, view our latest content by demand generation experts on account-based marketing, buyer intent data, content syndication, and more.

Inc. magazine ranked INFUSEmedia #1337 on its annual Inc. 5000 list, the most prestigious ranking of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies.
The list represents a unique look at the most successful companies within the American economy’s most dynamic segment—its independent small businesses.