When it comes to Effective Lead Generation


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Remember the maze puzzles we did as kids? Or why go so far back – most of us use a GPS to navigate these days. I find the experience somewhat similar to cracking a maze. You know your starting point and you have a destination in mind. But getting there can be as simple or as complicated as you choose.

It’s the same with lead generation. In a lot of instances we add several project components to lead generation, often resulting in complicating things and slowing down the whole process. I have seen many instances of complexity being added over time.

In my opinion, there are three major components to demand generation in our world:

  1. Lead Generation
  2. Lead Progression (Nurturing)
  3. Lead Distribution

The problem is companies are trying to find a plain vanilla approach to handle all three with the same process and tool. The transient nature of Corporate America’s workforce does not help in this process — directions are changed based on the new person running the show. The CRM and sales automation vendors want you to believe that a structural tool (their software and/or automation tool) can tackle all three components. The only guaranteed result is for these vendors; they benefit from a steady revenue stream from your company. Once you pick their lead generation “solutions” you are tied by a contract for a few years.

The nature of our business at ALEA gives us exposure to what really works in lead generation. Here are some key observations:

  • We find that companies with a solid process, defined objectives and goals aligned with overall business vision are effective at lead generation. They are better lead generators than those relying on complicated flowcharts and expensive structural solutions.
  • The main issues inhibiting front line marketing staff for larger organizations are legacy issues – they have no say as to what tool and approach they can take. They are “married” to a vision. This is a tough nut to crack as an admittance of failure typically means you are out of a job. So they keep adding features to the tool hoping that sooner or later they will attain Nirvana. This constant tweaking and assumed “value-addition” further exacerbates and complicates the process.
  • For smaller organizations, the issue is more of able leadership (or the lack of it). The level of expertise and available resources is not (theoretically) as high as what their counterparts in the blue chip corporate world have access to. They tend to implement solutions based on what they hear or what their lead generation consultant tells them to do. A few of these consultants come from the corporate world believing that a plain vanilla approach to demand generation will work.

So what should one do? Keep lead generation simple!

  • We all need qualified leads and we ought to be using common sense to define what should be a lead. Why bother with some complicated and convoluted “scoring” models?
  • We need good people aided by the right technology to help us progress the leads; not the other way round.
  • We need to review how we distribute the leads. We need to make sure there is synergy and alignment in how the sales force is being compensated on working the provided leads.

Do you agree that “Less is More” in lead generation? Have you had experiences to validate your belief? Or have you had instances that go against this idea? Leave me a comment.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Louis Foong
Louis Foong is the founder and CEO of The ALEA Group Inc., one of North America's most innovative B2B demand generation specialists. With more than three decades of experience in the field, Louis is a thought leader on trends, best practices and issues concerning marketing and lead generation. Louis' astute sense of marketing and sales along with a clear vision of the evolving lead generation landscape has proved beneficial to numerous organizations, both small and large.


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