Everyone is talking about demand generation.

Every CEO wants his or her marketing managers to be experts in it.

Well, the way we see it, demand generation is not just a skill, it’s an approach.

It is understanding that today, on average in a B2B complex sales process, 17.6 touch points are required to close a deal.

It is understanding the need to close the gap between marketing and sales.

It is knowing that demand generation is a consistent and holistic effort put into every marketing plan you have.

Check out these three fundamental elements that help build a demand generation approach your company cannot afford to miss out on.

Optimize Your Content

We want to see traffic on our site. We want it to be high quality. Targeted. And of course, we want it to convert leads. This is what we want. But how do we do that?

Optimize your content to not only get people on your page, but to keep them there. With a content strategy, you can use blogs, social media and landing pages to target specific personas and convert leads. By taking into account the marketing funnel, your readers’ journeys, and different touch points, you can use content as a way to direct your audience to the right places. To get a wider reach into your target audience, implement an inbound strategy, creating connections with influencers and having them mention you in their blogs and social content.

You invest time and money to bring in traffic, so make sure your content is tailored toward your audience’s interests. This means understanding where they are in the funnel and creating different types of content that will capture readers’ attention and  can help them advance in the conversion process.

Do keep in mind that implementing these strategies once won’t do the trick, you must stay consistent with your content plan in order to build trust and encourage engagement with prospects and other industry influencers.

Paid Media Can Help Get Quick Wins

Organic traffic is great, but when you need to show quick wins and present results, the process needs to be sped up.

Paid media campaigns, such as those done on LinkedIn, can help you see results faster. One of LinkedIn’s strengths is the ability to run a campaign to a very specific target audience by filtering characterizations (geographic location, size of company).

Recently, LinkedIn published a case study on a campaign that we managed. By using LinkedIn tools, having multiple assets and a/b tested landing pages, we ran an ongoing optimization process that led us to generate leads at 5X the target rate for the campaign and helped our client engage key decision makers across 200 targeted accounts. Of course, as demand generation is no stand alone effort, the paid media campaign was one success in a larger holistic marketing plan.

Present Results in a Clear Way

Most of the time, we are so focused on running our campaigns that we forget the importance of showing off results. There is, in fact, a need to justify marketing investments and their alliance with business goals, especially for those working in sales. One way to do this is by setting up an all-inclusive dashboard that represents your results according to your predetermined KPIs. To meet this challenge for our clients, we’ve built  dashboards that present marketing plan outcomes according to their KPI’s and measurements, as pictured. This helps them to be prepared when budget discussions occur, and make data driven decisions. A cumulative dashboard may be the best way for you to present and analyze your data from all marketing activities, online and offline.

Please note that this data is just for visualization and does not represent any real data.

There is no one-time checklist for demand generation. Every step of the way, in every campaign, blog post, and even lead conversion you work on, you must be constantly thinking about your demand generation strategy. Understanding the need to have long lasting engagement with your contacts is one of the biggest challenges that marketers face today, but implementing these three fundamental elements will help you build a strong demand generation strategy.