How Data-Driven ICP Boosts Demand Generation

It’s hard to argue that B2B demand-gen marketers have it tough this year. They often have to tackle tasks with unrealistic goals while having fewer resources. To still deliver results under these constraints, they must have as granular ICP (ideal customer profile) as possible.

Read this article to learn what benefits you can derive from data-driven ICP prospecting and what crucial steps you can take to build an actionable b2b demand generation strategy.

What Does B2B Demand Gen Actually Imply?

Broadly speaking, demand generation encompasses a range of ICP marketing activities that grow the target audience’s interest and evoke a demand for your product/service.

Since the b2b buying cycle initially starts with the Awareness stage, it’s possible to say that demand gen primarily zeros in on it. That said, demand gen strategies raise awareness across various customer touchpoints and might target particular customer segments. So it might be difficult to name some marketing functions strictly lead gen related.

Demand Generation vs. Lead Generation

Demand generation builds up your brand’s image and promotes you as an industry thought leader. It’s essential to make potential customers interact with your messages so they further enter the purchase funnel.

But lead generation works differently. It shifts focus from engagement to last-click conversion. Of course, to get a lead converted into a prospect, you equally need to invest in demand and lead generation.

Demand Generation vs. Growth Marketing

Demand generation puts awareness and engagement first. But once you’ve understood how to communicate and deliver immediate value, you’ll need to determine how to maximize revenue from these qualified audiences.

That’s when growth marketing steps in. It prioritizes quality over quantity by focusing marketing efforts on high-quality prospects. To increase their lifetime value growth, marketers practice customer retention tactics that imply an above-average level of personalization, special offers, and loyalty programs.

How ICP Empowers Efficient Demand Generation

An ICP profile lays down a data-driven foundation for your demand gen campaigns. As with any other go-to-market campaign, b2b demand generation needs definite targeting criteria. It is what a well-defined ICP can help you with. But there’s more to it.

A Clear View of the Target Market Segment

If you target several segments of the total available market, you’ll benefit from more than one ICP. Each can guide you on what case-specific approaches to use and what messages to communicate within your demand generation campaigns.

Focus on the Highest-Value Customers

Since ICP is a generalized vision primarily based on the history of closed-won deals, it helps to identify what customers can bring you the highest revenue. So when you build your demand strategy upon such a dataset, it guarantees that you will bring in prospects with the shortest buying cycle and highest lifetime value.

Measurable Attributes

The great thing about ICP is that it’s built from measurable attributes (company headcount, annual revenue, number of social media subscriptions). Therefore, you can source customer data from b2b providers that perfectly match ICP. Then, import these custom audience lists into email automation tools or paid ad platforms to run campaigns.

3 Best Practices for the Winning Demand Generation Strategy

These are no “secret ingredients” but tried and tested components for a robust b2b demand gen strategy.

1. Devise an ICP Shared Across the Teams

To build an actionable ICP, you must pull together Product, Marketing, and Sales insights. For demand generation efforts, ICP mostly pinpoints targeting criteria, but it also significantly impacts product/service positioning and sales proposals.

So take time to gather inputs from other specialists besides marketers. Specify the following:

  • Draw up ICP from your best customers’ data
  • Analyze what makes those high-value customers stick with you
  • Define the crucial firmographics
  • Refine pain points using post-sales pools and interviews
  • Outline your unique selling proposition
  • Finalize ICP creation.

2. Build a Content Strategy

The demand-gen content shouldn’t be salesy. It might feed customers’ interest in your brand and encourage them to learn more about your products or services. But its primary purpose is to educate people and help them with their questions. Let them see you as an industry expert they can trust.

Clarify the following points before going to content creation:

  • Who’s your reader?
  • What unique insights and ideas should your content represent?
  • What thought-provoking ideas or problems can you cover with your content?
  • Which format or marketing channel will suit certain content types?
  • Who can be your outreach partners?

3. Capitalize the Existing Demand

You’ll get a massive boost from a demand-gen campaign if you capitalize on the demand that already exists out there. You can achieve that by launching content marketing campaigns across multiple digital channels.

Ok, but how to make paid social generate sustainable lead pipelines? Most decision-makers on Facebook and LinkedIn don’t use corporate emails or phone numbers when registering. So even if you source ICP-relevant data from third-party providers like ZoomInfo, Apollo, or others, their records won’t be matched by ad platforms with actual social network members.

Luckily you can leverage b2b data orchestration platforms like Primer. Primer merges together company and people-level data from 10+ b2b data providers. As a result, your list-based audiences will meet match rates of up to 60-90% on Facebook and LinkedIn.

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