Preparations have been made and your IT company is ready for a merger/acquisition. All you need to do now is find an interested partner that’s right for your business goals. It may seem like a simple task on the surface, but this is the step that many IT organizations find themselves struggling with. Fortunately, there’s a solution that can help in this situation—business-to-business (B2B) lead generation.
The experience and reputation of your IT company has allowed it to carve out a space and grow successfully within a very competitive industry. While that should be enough to attract potential buyers to your front door, that’s often not the case. The IT sector is one of the most active industries for mergers/acquisitions, so it’s important to remember you’re not the only player on the field. There are plenty of other technology businesses that are all vying for the attention of potential leads.
A lead refers to an individual or organization that’s interested in what you’re selling—in this case, it’s your IT business. This interest is often expressed through an exchange of contact information, like an email address, phone number, and so on. Finding leads plays a crucial role in creating a marketing strategy that can convince an interested party to purchase your company. The marketing strategy that attracts prospects and converts them into leads is called B2B lead generation.
Lead generation is a powerful tool your business can use to help you accomplish your mission sooner than later. It works by enabling you to market your business to potential leads. Essentially, your sales team nurtures the lead by helping them understand your company and why they should want to purchase it. This goes a long way in securing a deal that’s mutually beneficial.
Many businesses are heavily dependent on lead generation for B2B sales these days. It has the power to enhance the effectiveness of marketing campaigns by attracting the best individuals or organizations to sell to. As a result, it makes life easier for the company trying to sell.
Speaking specifically to how it can help you, lead generation can be leveraged to help you identify leads. It can also help you prioritize the leads you have based on their estimated intent. The more and better leads you have available, the likelier you are to close on a deal.
Merger and acquisition (M&A) deals are complex and can vary in the amount of time it takes to close. The bigger the merger or acquisition is, the longer the process is likely to take. If you’re entertaining multiple leads, that can have an effect on the timeline as well. One way to expedite the process is through B2B appointment setting.
An often overlooked, but important part of lead generation is B2B appointment setting. This is a sales development technique your IT business can use to make the process of M&A deals more efficient. It involves using sales development representatives (SDRs) to cold call, follow up on, and nurture promising leads. In a way, the SDRs soften up the prospects so the leads are more receptive to hearing out your full, detailed sales pitch.
It’s necessary to realize that not every buyer that expresses interest in your company is a legitimate lead. If you’re not careful, you could wind up spending a fair amount of time trying to convert an individual or company only to find yourself at a dead end. Before investing your time and effort on a lead, wouldn’t it be great if you could determine the lead’s interest level?
That’s exactly what B2B appointment setting is for. When used in conjunction with lead generation, appointment setting gives you the power to cut through the noise. This operation allows your team to get your message in front of the right people. As a result, you spend less time trying to find a lead and more time finalizing an agreement.
Many IT businesses tend to run into trouble when they try to use lead generation to advertise to anyone even remotely looking in their direction. While it’s never a bad thing to have a large number of leads, you don’t want to waste your valuable time on leads that can’t be converted. Rather, you should focus your attention on high-intending leads that can be transformed into qualified leads.
A qualified lead is a prospect that has been vetted by the people managing the merger or acquisition deal. This is done through the B2B appointment that gauges the entity’s interest and their capability to purchase. After vetting, the prospect is identified as a buyer that not only has a legitimate interest in a merger or acquisition, but also is a good fit for the company.
Contrary to how it may sound, lead generation isn’t meant to be used to generate as many leads as possible. It’s meant to be used in a way that allows you to precisely target qualified leads. Think of it in terms of fishing in a lake filled with guppies and only a few large fish. Sure, casting a wide net could get you the catch you wanted, but the dozens of guppies are likely to get in the way. When lead generation is used properly, it’s more like fishing with a spear that allows you to directly target the highest-quality catch.
Just because a company is interested in what you’re offering, that doesn’t automatically make them a qualified lead. To be a qualified lead, the company has to be a candidate that’s highly likely to be converted into a partner. It’s always a good idea to qualify your leads first before pursuing any of them. The process of qualifying starts with gauging the interest of the company.
When it comes to gauging interest, there are a variety of ways it can be done. An example of a common way interest is measured is by sending a coupon. If you’re trying to sell your managed IT services to another business, you can offer a coupon to see if they’re looking for that service. If that manages to get them in the door, it shows they have a certain level of interest and you have the opportunity to upsell your services. This plays an important role in the next step.
Once an organization’s interest is gauged, it’s time to score your leads. Lead scoring is a practice where you assign numerical values to your leads based on their level of interest. Where they fall on your scale of “interested” to “ready to sell” determines the order of priority. With this information, you know who your top leads are and you can go after them right away.
Did you know there is more than one type of qualified lead? In fact, there are two types of leads you should know about: marketing qualified leads and sales qualified leads. When dealing with qualified leads, it’s important to know what kind of lead you have on your hands. Having this knowledge can inform you on the appropriate approach to take with that lead.
- Marketing qualified lead (MQL): An MQL is someone or a company that qualifies as a lead after you’ve performed thorough research. They are deemed as “ready to be marketed to,” despite not expressing interest previously. What this means is this is a lead that doesn’t know much about your company prior to contact, but they’re highly likely to make a purchase after contact.
- Sales qualified lead (SQL): An SQL is similar to an MQL in that it is an interested party that qualifies as a lead. Where the two differ is their level of knowledge and interest in your company. This type of lead has already indicated interest in your company before being contacted.
At the end of the day, it all comes down to the lead’s readiness to buy. An SQL likely doesn’t need to be convinced before investing in your IT business, while an MQL is a potential partner that’s steadily growing interest in what you have to offer.
As an IT business, your focus is concentrated on all matters related to technology. Your customers turn to you for your in-depth knowledge and skills in this field. By leveraging your expertise, you can provide solutions that quickly remedy IT problems. When it comes to marketing your business, it only makes sense to count on an expert in the field of B2B marketing. In addition to simplifying the process of generating leads, it can also help you avoid the cost of hiring an in-house marketing team.
As one of the most recognized B2B lead generation companies in the nation, Abstrakt Marketing Group can help you find the buyer you’re looking for. Our team uses a tried and true sales process that’s designed to drive lead generation. We also work hard to nurture the leads you have so they’re ready for you to close the deal. Get the marketing you deserve with Abstrakt Marketing Group.
Contact us today to learn more.
Did you like this blog? Share on social media and be sure to follow us for more content like this!