OpGen Media: Marketing Ops & Demand Generation Insights

How to Create a Successful Demand Generation Strategy

May 21, 2020 11:53:48 AM / by Brandon Pindulic

Having a comprehensive Demand Generation strategy helps companies cultivate awareness of and interest in their brand. When successful, demand generation increases your brand awareness, improves the quality of your leads, and ultimately helps you close more sales and win more customers. 

That said, demand generation relies on many independent components, and can be difficult for new customers to understand and execute. Accordingly, it’s easier to digest and begin planning by looking at its discrete components. 

Goal Setting and Due Diligence

One of the first things you’ll do is set goals and do research for your company. Your high-level vision will dictate not only which strategies you incorporate into your demand generation strategy, but also how you define and consider success. 

  • Abstract goals. You’ll start with forming abstract goals about what you want to achieve. Demand Generation is a strategy that allows you to increase brand visibility, improve customer relationships, boost your reputation, and close more sales all at once. Which of these priorities is most important to you? Which stages of the buying process do you feel warrant the most attention? There are no right or wrong answers here; it’s about determining what’s important for your business. 
  • Target numbers. Once you start to flesh out the structure of your demand generation strategy, you can start setting target numbers. What’s the lifetime value of a customer for your brand? What would be an acceptable cost of customer acquisition? How can you orchestrate your campaign to turn a favorable ratio here? 
  • Customer personas. Demand Generation is all about finding the best possible leads for your brand. To succeed, you’ll need to develop detailed customer personas. Which types of people will be most likely to purchase your products and services? Who are these people like? What communication channels will be most effective to reach them?

Content Creation and Distribution 

One of the best ways to generate demand is with the help of content, for several reasons: 

  • Inexpensiveness. Even if you hire exceptional content creators, content is a relatively inexpensive marketing strategy. It has a much higher ROI than conventional advertising (though advertising also has its place in demand generation). 
  • Versatility. Content is incredibly versatile. There are dozens of mediums to choose from, including blog articles, whitepapers, infographics, and videos, and they can be used to target almost any demographic you can imagine. On top of that, you can use content to increase brand visibility, close sales (Sales Enablement), or even collect more customer information with the help of premium gated content
  • Connections to other tactics. Even better, content can be used as a complementary component with other tactics. For example, content is a necessary element for any search engine optimization (SEO) campaign, which can help your business rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). 

You can also control how your content works by controlling its distribution. You can choose where to publish it, how to syndicate it, and how it funnels traffic.

Social Media and Email Nurturing

Long-term nurturing is a characteristic of demand generation; rather than trying to generate as many leads as possible as quickly as possible, demand generation has you gradually introducing people to your brand, and building their trust over time, with many touchpoints. 

Two of the best platforms for nurturing are social media and email. Both have some way to gradually recruit new people (with social media follows or email subscriptions). Both can be used as vessels to distribute content in a predictable pattern. And both can be customized to target specific types of people. 

It’s also worth noting that both social media and email campaigns can be designed and executed with very little money, making them high ROI additions to your campaign. 

Advertising 

Pay per click (PPC) advertising (and other forms of traditional advertising) serve as a great complement to other inbound approaches in demand generation. With paid advertising, you’ll practically guarantee some volume of traffic, and you’ll more reliably convert the people who are already familiar with your brand. 

Additionally, advertising allows you to target audience segments at a more granular level. For a successful B2B Demand Generation strategy, we recommend creating Personas around job roles, job level, industry, company size, and more. The only downside is that advertising activities tend to be costlier to initiate, at least when compared to strategies like content creation, social media marketing, and email marketing. 

Partnerships 

You can also use partnerships to leverage your demand generation strategy. You can work with companies that sell a complimentary product or service to the audience(s) you are looking to reach to produce amazing content that both of you can use to improve brand visibility. You can work with businesses and organizations in other niches to expand your range. Remain open to collaboration, and utilize the power of partner marketing to boost your campaign even further. 

Experimentation and Refinement 

Data is one of your biggest keys to success in demand generation, but it’s only helpful if you make it actionable. In other words, how are the components of your strategy performing, and how can you use this information to make improvements? 

The most straightforward approach here is an ongoing cycle of experimentation and refinement. You’ll experiment with new strategies, launch A and B versions of your work, and distribute many variations of the same core idea; then, you’ll use the data to determine which of your experiments were successful, and which ones weren’t. You can then adjust, and experiment again, gradually getting closer to perfection. 

No companies have access to perfect information, and even the best-planned demand generation strategy will be flawed at the beginning of its execution. Accordingly, businesses need to gather more information and use it to cultivate better results over time; demand generation should be treated as an ongoing process in this way. 

Demand generation is intimidating to take on by yourself, especially when you’re trying to scale. If you’re interested in getting help from an experienced demand generation agency, contact OpGen Media today to learn more and get your free consultation.

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Topics: B2B, Demand Generation, Lead Generation, Marketing Automation

Brandon Pindulic

Written by Brandon Pindulic