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The most challenging obstacles facing lead generation success
and how SMB and enterprise marketers plan to overcome them in
the year ahead.
2014 Lead Generation
Benchmark Survey:
Trends by Company Size
Research provided by Marketing Advocate in partnership with Ascend2
Lead Generation Benchmark Survey: Trends by Company Size
Research conducted by Marketing Advocate in partnership with Ascend2.
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.
You may adapt, copy, distribute and transmit this work. However, you must attribute the work as produced by Ascend2 and its
Research Partners but not in any way that suggests that they endorse you or your use of the work. You may not use this work for
commercial purposes.
2
Table of Contents
Nothing pumps new life into sales like lead generation 4
Resources used for lead generation campaigns 5
Most important lead generation objectives 6
Rating the success of your lead generation strategy 7
Lead generation’s most challenging obstacles 8
Most effective lead generation tactics used 9
Most difficult lead generation tactics to execute 10
Types of sales cycles and number of decision-makers 11
Marketing software usage for lead generation purposes 12
Lead segmentation fields in marketing databases 13
Research methodologies and survey demographics 15
About Marketing Advocate 17
About Ascend2 18
3
Nothing pumps new life into sales
like lead generation
Lead generation may be the lifeblood of sales, but this research report reveals a serious problem; only 8% of respondents rated
their lead generation strategy as “very successful” in achieving their important objectives.
Which led us to this one question...
As a marketer, what are the most challenging obstacles to your lead generation success in the coming year, and how do your
SMB and Enterprise peers plan to overcome them? To find out, Marketing Advocate (in partnership with Ascend2) fielded the
Lead Generation Benchmark Survey, completing interviews with 445 business leaders and marketing practitioners from around
the world. This insightful report is full of graphs, charts, and comparison statistics that contrasts the strategies, practices, and
trends of large enterprise organizations to their SMB counterparts to determine which marketing mix is used to develop the highest
quality lead generation.
Please know that this exclusive research has been produced for your use. Put it to work in your own marketing strategy planning
and presentation materials. Clip the charts and blog about them online, or socialize the findings via your social media channels.
Please use and share this research credited as published.
Lastly, we thank the marketing professionals who shared their opinions and insights. We appreciate your time.
Enjoy!
Paying it forward,
Courtney Wiley
Vice President, Marketing
Marketing Advocate
4
About two-thirds of enterprise organizations outsource all or
part of lead generation campaigns, gaining higher levels of
expertise and performance, compared to a minority of SMBs.
Marketing Advocate Tip
How can you generate high-
octane channel demand
generation in 2014? Combining
outsource and in-house resources
is key.
The Marketing Advocate Success
In 6 program includes:
1) Partner Recruiting
2) Partner Activation
3) OEM-led Demand Gen
4) Partner-led Demand Gen
5) CRM/PRM Integration
6) Branded + Content Marketing
Enablement
Download the free infographic for
more details.
5
Improving the quality and increasing the quantity of leads
generated are top objectives for companies of all sizes.
Marketing Advocate Tip
Increase the quality of leads
generated with a high-quality
lead nurturing campaign.
Here are three tips from our
Top Ten Best Practices list:
Tip #1: Select asset types that
speak to the specific stage of
the buyer’s journey
Tip #2: Don’t over email. At a
maximum, send an average of
9-12 emails per quarter
Tip #3: Make sure each call-to-
action is clear and concise
Get tips 4-10 here.
6
Mediocrity best describes lead generation success for
about eight out of ten companies. 12% of enterprises are
very successful versus 15% of not successful SMBs.
“Adequacy is the
enemy of excellence.”
Peter Drucker
7
Lack of in-house resources for creating original and
compelling content may be the weak link in an otherwise
effective lead generation strategy, particularly for SMBs.
Marketing Advocate Tip
Yes, content is king. So how can you
be king? Here are the five stages in
the buyer’s journey and the content
needs associated:
Stage 1: Unqualified Suspect
Need – brand awareness
Stage 2: Suspect
Need – educational tools
Stage 3: MQL
Need – solutions content
Stage 4: SAL/SQL
Need --- targeted solutions content
Stage 5: Customer!
Need: commitment to their success
Download the complete infographic.
8
Email marketing and Content marketing are still the top
performers for companies of all sizes, while direct cost tactics
like paid search and telemarketing are preferred by enterprise
size companies.
Quick Tip
Here are a few email marketing
rules you simply have to
implement today:
1) Always take into account local
time when sending emails.
2) Never be verbose in email
copy. Keep your body copy to
145 words or less.
3) Always keep your email
subject line to 50 characters or
less.
4) Never send more than one
email to your recipients per
day.
For the entire list of email rules,
visit our Resource Center.
9
The two most difficult lead generation tactics (social media
marketing and content marketing) are completely reliant
on each other. Without one, the other would not succeed.
Marketing Advocate Tip
What are the channel marketing
technology trends for 2014?
Listen to one industry expert
discuss:
1) What’s the next generation
technology that I should look
to invest in to set my firm up
for success?
2) To what trends of channel
demand generation should I
pay attention?
3) How can I increase the quality
of my demand gen efforts?
Listen to this two-minute Skype
interview.
10
Leads generated in a long and complex sales cycles require
nurturing to build relationships with multiple decision-makers,
a challenge more likely to be faced by enterprise companies.
Marketing Advocate Tip
The free whitepaper Lead Nurturing
Guide: 7 Rules for Increasing
Qualified Leads offers these best-
practice guidelines:
#1: Educate prospects throughout the
buyer’s journey
#2: Automate lead nurturing
#3: Customize your email campaigns
#4: Implement multi-touch marketing
#5: Drive prospects to customized
microsites
#6: Implement lead scoring
#7: Measure your nurturing
campaigns
11
While enterprises and SMBs use marketing software to a
similar extent, enterprise marketing operations are more
complex, often supporting the needs of channel partners.
Marketing Advocate Tip
In your day-to-day prospecting
activities, do you subscribe to a
“one size fits all” or “spray and
pray” methodology?
To extend beyond unsolicited
email and cold calling to a truly
integrated lead-to-revenue
process, your business could
benefit from Through-Partner
Marketing Automation (TPMA)
software.
Successful TPMA software helps
to develop quality demand
generation, convert prospects, and
speed the conversion velocity of
leads.
Download this whitepaper to learn
more:
5 Signs You Need Through-
Partner Marketing Automation
12
Without lead segmentation, campaign targeting and
relevancy are diminished. Enterprises are twice as likely to
have a comprehensive set of segmentation fields as SMBs.
Marketing Advocate Tip
Your database is the foundation
for all of your marketing.
The free whitepaper 4 Steps to
Building Your Ultimate Contact
List gives these four steps to
building your ultimate database:
#1: Know your buyer
#2: Augment, append, Acquire
#3: Segment
#4: Select the right partner
Download your complimentary
copy to read more.
13
Notes
14
Research methodologies
Surveys are conducted online from a panel of more than 50,000 Ascend2 research subscribers
representing a range of marketing, sales and leadership roles, company types, sizes and
geographic regions.
The questionnaire used is standardized to incorporate our methodologies across all studies while
maintaining our proven 3-Minute Survey format. Survey findings are examined in a quantitative
context by experienced analysts and reported objectively.
15
Survey demographics
16
About Marketing Advocate
Marketing Advocate accelerates revenue growth through the channel with its Through-Partner
Marketing Automation (TPMA) software. The company's industry-leading TPMA solution drives
effective B2B channel marketing for many of the world's largest brands, including HP, IBM, Microsoft,
and NetApp. By maximizing lead efficiency, generating sales-ready leads, and building pipeline,
Marketing Advocate helps global organizations turn channel marketing into a revenue driver. The
company was recently recognized as a 2013 Gartner “Cool Vendor” and showcased as a corporation
that is innovating sales and marketing techniques to help global IT providers go to market more
effectively. For more information, visit MarketingAdvocate.com
17
About Ascend2
Marketing software firms and marketing agencies partner with Ascend2 for reliable research-based
demand generation. Our integrated research, content creation and demand generation programs are
transparent – putting the spotlight on your brand and the interests of your audience.
Learn more at www.Ascend2.com
18
Corporate Headquarters
Centerville, MA 02632
(508) 775.9064 +1 (855) 623.1356
www.MarketingAdvocate.com
19

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2014 Lead Generation Benchmarks by Company Size

  • 1. The most challenging obstacles facing lead generation success and how SMB and enterprise marketers plan to overcome them in the year ahead. 2014 Lead Generation Benchmark Survey: Trends by Company Size Research provided by Marketing Advocate in partnership with Ascend2
  • 2. Lead Generation Benchmark Survey: Trends by Company Size Research conducted by Marketing Advocate in partnership with Ascend2. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License. You may adapt, copy, distribute and transmit this work. However, you must attribute the work as produced by Ascend2 and its Research Partners but not in any way that suggests that they endorse you or your use of the work. You may not use this work for commercial purposes. 2
  • 3. Table of Contents Nothing pumps new life into sales like lead generation 4 Resources used for lead generation campaigns 5 Most important lead generation objectives 6 Rating the success of your lead generation strategy 7 Lead generation’s most challenging obstacles 8 Most effective lead generation tactics used 9 Most difficult lead generation tactics to execute 10 Types of sales cycles and number of decision-makers 11 Marketing software usage for lead generation purposes 12 Lead segmentation fields in marketing databases 13 Research methodologies and survey demographics 15 About Marketing Advocate 17 About Ascend2 18 3
  • 4. Nothing pumps new life into sales like lead generation Lead generation may be the lifeblood of sales, but this research report reveals a serious problem; only 8% of respondents rated their lead generation strategy as “very successful” in achieving their important objectives. Which led us to this one question... As a marketer, what are the most challenging obstacles to your lead generation success in the coming year, and how do your SMB and Enterprise peers plan to overcome them? To find out, Marketing Advocate (in partnership with Ascend2) fielded the Lead Generation Benchmark Survey, completing interviews with 445 business leaders and marketing practitioners from around the world. This insightful report is full of graphs, charts, and comparison statistics that contrasts the strategies, practices, and trends of large enterprise organizations to their SMB counterparts to determine which marketing mix is used to develop the highest quality lead generation. Please know that this exclusive research has been produced for your use. Put it to work in your own marketing strategy planning and presentation materials. Clip the charts and blog about them online, or socialize the findings via your social media channels. Please use and share this research credited as published. Lastly, we thank the marketing professionals who shared their opinions and insights. We appreciate your time. Enjoy! Paying it forward, Courtney Wiley Vice President, Marketing Marketing Advocate 4
  • 5. About two-thirds of enterprise organizations outsource all or part of lead generation campaigns, gaining higher levels of expertise and performance, compared to a minority of SMBs. Marketing Advocate Tip How can you generate high- octane channel demand generation in 2014? Combining outsource and in-house resources is key. The Marketing Advocate Success In 6 program includes: 1) Partner Recruiting 2) Partner Activation 3) OEM-led Demand Gen 4) Partner-led Demand Gen 5) CRM/PRM Integration 6) Branded + Content Marketing Enablement Download the free infographic for more details. 5
  • 6. Improving the quality and increasing the quantity of leads generated are top objectives for companies of all sizes. Marketing Advocate Tip Increase the quality of leads generated with a high-quality lead nurturing campaign. Here are three tips from our Top Ten Best Practices list: Tip #1: Select asset types that speak to the specific stage of the buyer’s journey Tip #2: Don’t over email. At a maximum, send an average of 9-12 emails per quarter Tip #3: Make sure each call-to- action is clear and concise Get tips 4-10 here. 6
  • 7. Mediocrity best describes lead generation success for about eight out of ten companies. 12% of enterprises are very successful versus 15% of not successful SMBs. “Adequacy is the enemy of excellence.” Peter Drucker 7
  • 8. Lack of in-house resources for creating original and compelling content may be the weak link in an otherwise effective lead generation strategy, particularly for SMBs. Marketing Advocate Tip Yes, content is king. So how can you be king? Here are the five stages in the buyer’s journey and the content needs associated: Stage 1: Unqualified Suspect Need – brand awareness Stage 2: Suspect Need – educational tools Stage 3: MQL Need – solutions content Stage 4: SAL/SQL Need --- targeted solutions content Stage 5: Customer! Need: commitment to their success Download the complete infographic. 8
  • 9. Email marketing and Content marketing are still the top performers for companies of all sizes, while direct cost tactics like paid search and telemarketing are preferred by enterprise size companies. Quick Tip Here are a few email marketing rules you simply have to implement today: 1) Always take into account local time when sending emails. 2) Never be verbose in email copy. Keep your body copy to 145 words or less. 3) Always keep your email subject line to 50 characters or less. 4) Never send more than one email to your recipients per day. For the entire list of email rules, visit our Resource Center. 9
  • 10. The two most difficult lead generation tactics (social media marketing and content marketing) are completely reliant on each other. Without one, the other would not succeed. Marketing Advocate Tip What are the channel marketing technology trends for 2014? Listen to one industry expert discuss: 1) What’s the next generation technology that I should look to invest in to set my firm up for success? 2) To what trends of channel demand generation should I pay attention? 3) How can I increase the quality of my demand gen efforts? Listen to this two-minute Skype interview. 10
  • 11. Leads generated in a long and complex sales cycles require nurturing to build relationships with multiple decision-makers, a challenge more likely to be faced by enterprise companies. Marketing Advocate Tip The free whitepaper Lead Nurturing Guide: 7 Rules for Increasing Qualified Leads offers these best- practice guidelines: #1: Educate prospects throughout the buyer’s journey #2: Automate lead nurturing #3: Customize your email campaigns #4: Implement multi-touch marketing #5: Drive prospects to customized microsites #6: Implement lead scoring #7: Measure your nurturing campaigns 11
  • 12. While enterprises and SMBs use marketing software to a similar extent, enterprise marketing operations are more complex, often supporting the needs of channel partners. Marketing Advocate Tip In your day-to-day prospecting activities, do you subscribe to a “one size fits all” or “spray and pray” methodology? To extend beyond unsolicited email and cold calling to a truly integrated lead-to-revenue process, your business could benefit from Through-Partner Marketing Automation (TPMA) software. Successful TPMA software helps to develop quality demand generation, convert prospects, and speed the conversion velocity of leads. Download this whitepaper to learn more: 5 Signs You Need Through- Partner Marketing Automation 12
  • 13. Without lead segmentation, campaign targeting and relevancy are diminished. Enterprises are twice as likely to have a comprehensive set of segmentation fields as SMBs. Marketing Advocate Tip Your database is the foundation for all of your marketing. The free whitepaper 4 Steps to Building Your Ultimate Contact List gives these four steps to building your ultimate database: #1: Know your buyer #2: Augment, append, Acquire #3: Segment #4: Select the right partner Download your complimentary copy to read more. 13
  • 15. Research methodologies Surveys are conducted online from a panel of more than 50,000 Ascend2 research subscribers representing a range of marketing, sales and leadership roles, company types, sizes and geographic regions. The questionnaire used is standardized to incorporate our methodologies across all studies while maintaining our proven 3-Minute Survey format. Survey findings are examined in a quantitative context by experienced analysts and reported objectively. 15
  • 17. About Marketing Advocate Marketing Advocate accelerates revenue growth through the channel with its Through-Partner Marketing Automation (TPMA) software. The company's industry-leading TPMA solution drives effective B2B channel marketing for many of the world's largest brands, including HP, IBM, Microsoft, and NetApp. By maximizing lead efficiency, generating sales-ready leads, and building pipeline, Marketing Advocate helps global organizations turn channel marketing into a revenue driver. The company was recently recognized as a 2013 Gartner “Cool Vendor” and showcased as a corporation that is innovating sales and marketing techniques to help global IT providers go to market more effectively. For more information, visit MarketingAdvocate.com 17
  • 18. About Ascend2 Marketing software firms and marketing agencies partner with Ascend2 for reliable research-based demand generation. Our integrated research, content creation and demand generation programs are transparent – putting the spotlight on your brand and the interests of your audience. Learn more at www.Ascend2.com 18
  • 19. Corporate Headquarters Centerville, MA 02632 (508) 775.9064 +1 (855) 623.1356 www.MarketingAdvocate.com 19