B2B Lead Generation Campaign Yields 2X More Leads, YOY
A case study that reveals “a return of over 1,000 times what we invested” on a lead generation campaign is one worth reading for any marketer — especially marketers who are in the long-sales-cycle B2B space. Enter Aggreko, a temporary power generation and temperature control equipment supplier that created a winning digital content marketing campaign with just that ROI.
Carolina Alves, Marketing Specialist, Rental Solutions at Aggreko, says the ROI came about after she hired NetLine, B2B-specific content syndication lead generation network, because she saw its presentation in September 2018 at Content Marketing World by David Fortino, NetLine’s SVP of audience and product. Then and there, Alves decided NetLine was the answer to her company’s problem.
“We were producing a lot of content in 2018,” Alves tells Target Marketing, “more and more specialized to the different industries that we serve (Oil and Gas, Utilities, Manufacturing, Petrochemicals and Refineries, Mining, Events, Construction). In order for us to position ourselves as the experts within each market segment, we started creating more in-depth types of content, such as whitepapers and eBooks, and we gated these contents on our website (people need to fill up a form in order to download them).
“We were using paid ads on social media (LinkedIn and Facebook) to promote them,” she continues, “but the leads we were getting were not as good and qualified as we expected. That’s why syndication seemed like the answer (and it was!).”
By syndicating its content, Aggreko generated two times more leads in 2019 vs. 2018, Alves says. This in September 2019, despite Aggreko waiting until January 2019 to hire NetLine to reach its target audience and generate new qualified leads with gated content.
“We already got two deals out of leads that came from NetLine, which represents a return of over 1,000 times what we invested,” she says.
And that’s why Alves, a 2018 attendee of Fortino’s lunch and learn session, became a 2019 presenter in September at a breakout session at Content Marketing World. This time, Alves was standing at the front of a session room with Fortino, explaining “How Buyer Engagement Data Can Help Maximize ROI of Lead-Generating Content.”
Preparing for Content Syndication
Before syndicating its content, Alves says Aggreko prepared by:
- Having a good amount of content to promote
- Using Salesforce as the CRM system, in order to track leads and opportunities
- Creating sales alignment, so the sales team could follow up with the leads
“We are now starting to look into integrating MailChimp, our e-blast platform, with NetLine,” Alves adds, “so we can follow up with bottom-of-the-funnel content from marketing, as well.”
Picking a Target Audience
At Content Marketing World, Fortino said a lot of marketers make the mistake of targeting the C-suite, but those aren’t the buyers.
His slide reads:
“86% of all content consumption occurs below the C-suite.”
But Alves says the C-suite still interests her, so they’re part of her audience, as well as VPs, directors, managers, supervisors, senior employees, and owners, “and we are able to reach out to all of them.”
B2B Content Syndication Principles
Per Alves and Fortino’s presentation, B2B content marketing involves the following:
- Social media marketing, paid search, and blogs are top-of-the-funnel channels, where marketers are creating brand awareness, employee advocacy, and high-level content.
- Content syndication is for the buyer’s evaluation stage, and involves gated white papers, eBooks, eGuides, and webinars.
- Conversion necessitates newsletters and email chains that include case studies, demos, testimonials, and spec sheets.
The Content That Resonated With Aggreko’s Audience
Alves used NetLine’s real-time reporting tools to see which pieces of content received the most engagement with her B2B audience — and which ones didn’t.
Analytics showed her buyers loved long-form content, even in separate industries.
Aggreko’s most-downloaded item was a 26-page eBook titled “Contingency Planning 101.”
The company’s highest digital content marketing ROI resulted from a five-page white paper titled “New Business Practices Drive Down Pharmaceutical Costs.” On the white paper landing page, the soft sell for Aggreko’s rentals doesn’t come until the sixth paragraph:
“In this white paper, you’ll learn how temporary power, cooling, chilling, and dehumidification systems can overcome humidity challenges, assure worker’s comfort, comply production guidelines, improve efficiency, and reduce capital expenditure outlays.”
The form for the free white paper download requires first and last name, company, job title, email, and phone number.
Aggreko’s B2B Digital Content Marketing, Going Forward
“As mentioned,” Alves says, “NetLine, as a syndication platform, is key to distribute and promote our [middle-of-the-funnel] content (where we focus on in-depth, gated types of content). Right now, the follow up is being done by the sales team. But we want to start adding [bottom-of-the-funnel] content from marketing.
“So we’ll have email chains to follow up with the leads that downloaded our content,” she continues, “promoting other pieces of content, and then case studies, and eventually a CTA to a product or service page.
“These communications will follow a process and depend on how each lead respond[s] — if they’ve opened and clicked or not, there would be a different next step,” Alves concludes.
What do you think, marketers?
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