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Successful lead generation strategies according to B2B decision-makers

Link to the research report

About this survey:

Survey question: Of the reasons listed below, which create the most success in your qualified lead generation strategy?

Survey period: March 2021 - April 2021

Notes on data:

Ironpaper asked respondents whether or not their business generates enough qualified leads to fill the sales pipeline and reach growth goals. Respondents that answered “yes” were directed to this question. In total, 101 individuals answered this question.

Effective one-to-one outreach (40.59%) and addressing buyer challenges (37.62%) are significant components of successful lead generation. Messaging strategies can play an outsized role in both marketing and sales. As many B2B companies pour significant investment into campaigns, PPC, SEO, and other channels, we see that content and messaging often lack necessary investment. 

B2B decision-makers see the most value in these top strategies: Our brand has market visibility or strong referral sources, effective one-one outreach, we speak to buyer challenges in our messaging, paid media campaigns, inbound, SEO or social efforts, and web conversion rate.

Top successful lead generation strategies: 

  • Effective one-one outreach
  • We speak to buyer challenges in our messaging.
  • Our brand has market visibility or strong referral sources
  • Paid media campaigns

Strategies viewed as less successful in a qualified lead generation strategy amongst this group: 

  • ABM campaigns
  • Industry trade shows
  • Reporting systems discover what works 
    • Our website conversion rate and inbound, SEO, or social efforts were also viewed as more successful than reporting systems in discovering what works.

Marketers and sales teams may view top strategies as more successful in lead generation since these may be more personalized and targeted approaches than industry trade shows, ABM campaigns, or reviewing CRM insights internally.


Please note that some of the numbers have been rounded for simplicity and quick comprehension.

The 180 respondents were individuals with business and/or marketing decision-making capabilities at a B2B company. Respondents consisted of 50% sole decision-makers, 29% those who share decision-making authority, 18% that have input into decision-making, and 3% that have insight into decision-making within the organization. Most respondents indicated Marketing (30%) or Sales/Business Development (28%) as their respective areas of expertise in their current jobs.

About Ironpaper

Ironpaper is a B2B growth and intelligence-gathering agency that uses a hybrid data-driven and creative process to produce measurable business results for clients. We partner with B2B companies to build growth engines for marketing and sales success. Through these partnerships, we’ve uncovered common trends in the marketing and sales process that can accelerate a business forward and pitfalls that cause stagnation.

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B2B Marketing and Growth Agency.

Grow your B2B business boldly. Ironpaper is a B2B marketing agency. We build growth engines for marketing and sales success. We drive demand generation campaigns, ABM programs, B2B content, sales enablement, qualified leads, and B2B marketing efforts. 

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