No matter how sophisticated the tools have gotten or how rich the data, I find it funny how much of marketing and sales still rely on blunt force, one-size-fits-all lead generation tactics like these.
This scattershot approach is often described as “spray and pray” — broadcasting generic messages to large groups in hopes that a small percentage will magically convert.
I heard somewhere that instead of “spray and pray”, B2B marketers should “learn and earn” — “learn” as much about the needs of target customers as possible and “earn” the right to communicate with them.
Account-Based Marketing (ABM) is a step in the right direction, with outreach and tailored communication based on a deeper understanding of customer needs. Yet, beyond even finding the right potential customers, we also have to be aware of context and the buyers’ intent and reach them at the right time when they might be in the market.
Last year, Ehrenberg-Bass found that 95% of target B2B buyers are not even in the market for products or services in any particular quarter. Yet, according to LinkedIn, 92% of B2B budgets are spent on short-term, bottom-funnel objectives like lead generation and only 8% on long-term brand awareness.
This mismatch creates an opportunity to better match marketing and sales outreach with what buyers are actually looking for.
We can’t break through the clutter by adding to it.
Here are a few related cartoons I’ve drawn over the years:
“If marketing kept a diary, this would be it.”
– Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer of MarketingProfs