BtoB

Making lead gen work in b-to-b

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In Media Business and our sibling publication, BtoB, lead-generation marketing programs are a constant topic of conversation. In fact, you probably read our recent BtoB Lead Generation Guide 2009 (May 27). In it, you see story after story on lead/demand gen, lead valuation and lead nurturing. What we as media companies need to do is get better at selling lead programs, as well as enhancing the leads we deliver. That means full integration of all channels in the sales process, including Web site ads, virtual events, in-person events, e-mail newsletters, white papers, micro-sites, print ads, vendor directories and list rentals. When we tie all these channels together, they support each other. Some provide more leads; some, better leads. And some help the others get leads. One thing that's especially important: We need to be able to segment, with actionable data, in more ways. I don't think many of our sales-people have been trained to sell all of these lead-gen tools. I don't think many of our audience development people have been trained to help with this process. Even most of our Web managers don't understand what's needed. And I don't think many of our publishers understand what the full offering really means to a marketer and what the lead itself is worth. In coming months, Media Business, as well as BtoB, will continue to focus on lead generation. I hope we can help you and your company understand what marketers need from a true, viable, profitable, lead-gen program. Bob Felsenthal can be reached at bfelsenthal@crain.com.
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