Is B2B Lead Generation really just about the numbers?

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Is B2B Lead Generation really just about the numbersWhen B2B technology marketing executive Holger Schulze released his comprehensive B2B Lead Generation Trends 2013 study, most of the results are not surprising. Generating high- quality leads still remains as the number one challenge for B2Bs. Websites, email and SEO are still the most effective tactics. Lastly, creating compelling content is still the key to B2B lead generation success.

These findings are more or less expected, but one of the strange revelations in the study was regarding the way marketers measure their ROI. The stats reveal that among the B2B respondents,

  • 55% measure the cost per lead
  • 48% measure lead volume
  • 45 % measure lead quality
  • 42% measure the closing rate
  • 35 % measure the cost per customer acquired
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    Isn’t it a bit odd that most marketers measure the cost per lead more than the cost per customer acquired? The logical way to go would be to first measure how much you’ve spent on a new customer, then the closing rate, then the quality of the lead, how many leads were generated, and then the cost for every lead.  If you really want to determine whether or not you should continue the campaign, you should first take a look at new customers, not the cost of every lead.

    This goes to show that most companies just want to generate more leads as possible, thus putting more emphasis on quantity over quality. It could also be caused by giving more attention to fine-tuning their CRMs and even trying their luck with marketing automation software that are getting popular these days.

    It’s the instinctive nature of humans to be overwhelmed with numbers, creating the illusion that “more is always better.” B2B lead generation is  a broadly defined field, and if you are just going to amass as many leads as you can without measuring its success, then the effect in the long run will not be as pleasant as one might think. It’s not supposed to be just a numbers game. Whatever their reasons are, it must be working pretty well for them – for now.

    Measuring quality and success rather than cost and volume warrants a much elaborate process, but the benefits can make future endeavors easier and more promising. Discovering how high-quality leads are extracted will determine the success of a business; besides, isn’t that what lead generation is all about in the first place?