Where Should You Focus B2B Marketing Strategy? Builder vs Driver Activities

“If you build it, they will come.”

ICON: B2B Marketing StrategyWhile this motto worked well for baseball enthusiasts in an Iowan farm town, it doesn’t work so well for a results-driven B2B marketing strategy.

Why? Because building marketing assets is only half the puzzle to see traffic, leads, and growth. Yet we see many companies focus only on “builder” activities, while neglecting drivers, or vice versa.

Builder vs. Driver Activities for B2B Marketing

Builder versus drivers - comparison

First, what is a builder activity?

A builder activity can be defined as an action focused on building marketing assets. For example:

  • Creating an eBook
  • Designing a white paper template
  • Rewriting a webpage
  • Publishing a landing page to request a demo
  • Optimizing a page for SEO

While these are all great activities, merely creating assets will not result in marketing growth, lead generation, or closed sales deals.

To see this kind of traction, you must invest time and resources into driver activities.

A driver activity can be designed as an action that drives new targeted traffic towards your conversion points. For example:

  • Launching a paid search campaign to drive landing page traffic
  • Setting up a targeted audience for LinkedIn Lead Generation, and running a 2-month campaign
  • Creating and running a plan for Facebook advertising

Driver activities set your builder assets up for success by driving targeted traffic and potential leads to your company’s website and conversion points.

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They also help you achieve statistical significance on your A/B tests, since your sample size is ramped up. With qualified traffic, you can accurately measure your campaign conversion rates and make data-driven optimizations. This can lower your cost-per-lead and improve overall campaign performance.

Finding a Mix Between Builders and Drivers

Working with both drivers and builders in marketing

Both builder and driver activities are critical to campaign growth and to meeting your goals. Unfortunately, many B2B companies invest heavily in one or the other. And as a result, they don’t see much traction on their marketing assets, or many conversions on their website.

For example, imagine you run a PPC campaign without first building quality content and branded landing pages. Where will you drive traffic? Even if you invest thousands of dollars into a paid campaign on any network, if you don’t have tailored and impactful marketing assets to convert them, you will waste your dollars.

This is why many companies see low returns on their paid spend. By driving paid traffic to somewhere generic such as your homepage, for example, you miss out on a valuable conversion opportunity.

Conversely, if you spend all your time building landing pages and content offers — as many marketing agencies and businesses do — but don’t invest resources and budget into driving traffic, your beautiful assets will sit and gather dust. And you will be left wondering why inbound failed your business.

At Ironpaper, we shoot for a balance of about 70/30 between builders and drivers, spending more time to build assets in each month’s playbook, and slightly less time to drive paid traffic to these pages.

We also focus on other important activities, like website development, infrastructure building in HubSpot, and reporting on analytics so we can make data-driven campaign decisions.

Case Study: A Major Mobile Ad Network

Ironpaper practiced the builder-driver balance recently with a major client: a prominent mobile ad network. By striking a mix of both activities, we saw impressive growth for the B2B company.

First, we invested time into repurposing dry, out-of-touch marketing collateral. We built beautiful, targeted content offers such a white papers, infographics, and eBooks. Our team targeted these offers for the right buyer persona. To publish these offers, we created customized landing pages with conversion forms.

Next, we built custom audiences using LinkedIn, and ran paid ad campaigns with daily budgets of around $400. We drove this traffic to lead generation forms and our landing pages to capture new qualified leads.

By driving substantial traffic and impressions, we were able to gather and measure meaningful data with statistical significance. Then, we could make campaign improvements to particular ad designs, forms, copy, and landing pages.

Over time, we were able to lower the cost-per-lead to around $100, an all-time company low in the North American market. We generated nearly 50 marketing-qualified leads from major Fortune 500 companies in a matter of weeks, and gained insights on subject matter that resonated with the target audience. For the next month, using our statistical data, we increased the lead quality even higher while maintaining the number of leads.

With the right mix of builder and driver activities, you can see faster impact on your marketing assets, and scale up your campaigns for never-before-seen campaign growth.

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Ironpaper is a results-driven digital marketing agency. Ironpaper integrates design, technology and marketing for the web to drive meaningful results for clients. We are based in New York City and Charlotte, NC.