What is Demand Generation? 5 Essential Components of a Successful Demand Generation Strategy

Demand generation is all about creating demand or interest for a product or service in the mind of the target audience. Let’s look at 5 essential parts of a successful demand generation strategy.

By Navid  |   17 Feb, 2020  |   0  |  Published in Business,

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In its most basic form, demand generation is all about creating demand or interest for a product or service in the mind of the target audience.  Demand generation can be as broad as the concept of marketing itself, facilitating an exchange between a buyer and a seller.  In fact, demand generation or simply “demand gen,” touches on the entire marketing funnel.  I view demand generation as the most fundamental reason why I have a job as a marketing specialist.

A good demand generation strategy requires careful consideration for the brand, marketing funnel, sales funnel, and post-sales actions.  Depending on the strength of the brand, the focus of an excellent demand generation strategy can simply be on the lower parts of the funnel.  I firmly believe that no one is going to buy anything from anyone unless they know who they are (i.e., branding).  Therefore, it goes without saying that branding is the most impactful part of any marketing strategy – demand generation included.

Here are some essential components of a successful demand generation strategy:

Demand Generation at Events and Conferences

Events are still a great place to meet and connect with prospects.  The key to using events as part of demand generation is finding the right events to sponsor, attend, or feature.  For example, if a company is selling security software in the healthcare industry, the right conference or event for demand generation is not necessarily a security conference.  The target audience is more likely to attend a technology conference focused on the healthcare industry – ready to learn about new solutions to problems.  Considering events and conferences can be an expensive way of generating demand, it is imperative that the route to the target audience is well planned in advance.

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Content

A great and rather inexpensive way of informing the target audience about a product or service, and thereby generating demand is to create useful content.  This content is more about demonstrating thought-leadership than highlighting benefits and features.  Good thought-leadership content should focus on explaining the problem statement well before offering a solution.  This ensures that the target audience can first identify with the content author and build trust before being let down the sales path.  Demand generation content can include blog posts, guest blogging, guides, ebooks, or whitepapers.

Email Marketing

Emal marketing can be an excellent tool for demand generation: delivering news, offers, promotions, and the essential content directly to the target audience.  What makes email marketing unique is that it is the only time marketers have a direct (and free) path to the subset of the target audience who is willing to listen.  When the target audience volunteers to opts into a company’s email list, marketers should take advantage of their mindset and interest level.  Frequency of emails and the content of each email can determine whether a recipient unsubscribes or moves forward and becomes a lead.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Target keywords, both a domain level and at the individual content level, can ensure that the target audience becomes aware of the product or service intended for them.  The target audience is looking for a product or service to alleviate a pain point.  A successful demand generation strategy requires an SEO-first mindset.  It is the SEO research that determines the content (based on volume and likely intent) – not the other way around.

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Social Media Marketing (SMM)

Social channels can be a great way of reaching the target audience and creating demand.  Of course, social media platforms aren’t created equal: Facebook is great for b2c demand generation, whereas LinkedIn and Twitter are better for b2b.  Sharing content on social media can give the target audience a great opportunity to both discover and learn more about products and services offered.

Demand generation can take many forms.  Generating interest for a product or service is difficult – particularly in the early days of a new product or service.  Consistency matters here.  It is important to highlight that demand generation is often a medium or even long term strategy.  It takes time to create opportunities such as content or events, but it may take longer for the target audience to become aware of the opportunities.

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