How is the lead gen business developing in EMEA? Which target audiences are particularly in demand, and which less? And what does the future look like?
For these questions we have turned to an expert who deals with our EMEA customer campaigns every day. Miriam Sennfelder is Global Head of Global Management and shares with us her insights on B2B lead generation today.
Miriam, 30,000 leads in 2019 alone – wow! Compared to previous years, which lead types were particularly in demand?
That was clearly ABM leads. Account-based marketing is a really big issue in the UK – so there was a lot of demand. We also saw a significant increase in BANT leads. The trend here is increasingly towards highly qualified leads, which are already showing a very strong interest in the company and product.
Marketing Qualified Leads, on the other hand, we have hardly delivered. It seems that the B2B industry has already become too specialised for these entry level leads.
And which industries were particularly active in terms of lead gen?
Traditionally, the IT sector with all its sub-categories is highly active in lead generation. In 2019 this was still the case – but the industry is catching up fast! In EMEA, the advantage that IT had here is therefore shrinking significantly.
Have the demands on leads changed in general?
Basically, the expectations of generated leads have always been high. This is why we meet the highest quality standards, in the EMEA market in particular. What I noticed, however: In the target audiences in demand, the importance of the top job functions has increased. In response to customer requests, we have therefore addressed management and board members particularly frequently.
Interesting. Does this mean that the trend towards the buying center is turning back to a decision from above?
At least in terms of demand, yes. However, it is not always optimal to address only the board level. Many decisions tend to be made at the levels below – the buying center is certainly a reality in many companies. If one prefers to address the highest decision-making level, one’s own enquiry may end up in the wrong place or even come to nothing.
It is also a pity that fewer and fewer companies want to address experts and specialists with their lead generation. Especially when it comes to complex strategic decisions, they have a lot to say – and of course they expand the circle of potential contacts immensely. In addition: Since specialists are currently hardly in demand, they are not yet overloaded with content. It is therefore worthwhile to expand the targeted audience accordingly!
Will these trends continue in 2020? And how is the current crisis affecting lead business in EMEA?
The trend towards more specialisation, both for target audiences and for lead types, continues. Even more so than last year.
Interestingly, the coronavirus has hardly affected lead demand. On the contrary: the crisis has shown many companies where they currently still have gaps. Many companies are now upgrading their IT systems, especially with work from home. Cloud and infrastructure solutions are in high demand. But BANT leads were and are not only in demand in IT – the industry is not stagnating either. These companies are taking the opportunity to implement modernization measures at their production sites.
Overall, the way leads are generated has changed in recent months – no events, but more content – but quality and demand have remained the same. All in all, the future looks quite confident for the lead gen.