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    June 4, 2009 // 6:24 AM

    How to Turn a Blog into a B2B Lead Generation Machine

    Written by Mike Volpe | @

    B2B lead generation machine blog

    B2B blogging experts understand that a blog is a lead generation machine.  This blog generates more traffic than our main company website.  Each month, tens of thousands of people find this blog through search engines and social media websites, and thousands of them like the content enough to take the next step and respond to one of our offers and become a lead.

    Some B2B bloggers think a business blog is just about thought leadership.  Yes, B2B blogging is great for thought leadership and brand building.  But, with this blog we get all the benefits of thought leadership, and also get lots of leads.  By maximizing the lead generation potential of your B2B blog, you can have your cake (thought leadership) and eat it too (leads).

    How to Maximize the Lead Generation Potential of a B2B Blog

    1. Publish Great Content.  While you might think that to get more leads you need to publish more sales content about your products and services, you are wrong.  That type of content is not interesting to your prospects, and few of them will read it.  Publish content that is useful to your prospects, and lots of them will find it.  The first step is to build a big audience so you have more people to try to capture as leads.  Better, more interesting blog content means more readers.
    2. Create Compelling Offers.  Once people are reading your blog, you need to entice them to get to know you better and become a lead.  Offers are what you offer people in exchange for their contact information.  One offer is not enough.  We have over a dozen different offers that we use on this blog, because we want to have an offer that is targeted towards the content of each blog article.  For instance, the bottom of this article has an offer to watch a webinar about blogging.  The offer is targeted to the content of the article.  An offer to watch an SEO webinar would not work as well, because the readers are not thinking about search engine optimization.  That makes sense and is a natural next step.  In addition, your offer should not be "request a demo" because people reading a blog article are not ready to jump all the way to watching a demo.  They usually want more education first.  Let them take the natural next step.
    3. Test Killer Calls to Action.  The Call to Action is what people click on to receive the offer.  It is basically the sales pitch for the offer.  You want to rotate different versions and test lots of these in order to get more people to notice them and click on them.  Trying different colors, fonts and placements is important, and all of this can take some time to test and analyze yourself.  We have calls to action in square buttons on the side of the blog, at the bottom of each article with text and an image, and sometimes we put them other places too.  You can rotate all of these manually to try to find the ones that get more clicks.  Or, you can use a free product to automatically optimize your calls to action.

    Do you use your B2B blog for lead generation?  How?  What tips for B2B blog lead generation do you have to share?

    Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ginable/

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    Topics: Blogging Lead Generation

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