What Is Demand Generation Marketing?

In a crowded marketplace or where high levels of education are needed, the best marketing strategy is the one that helps you stand out. Demand generation marketing does this by driving long-term engagement, ultimately increasing awareness of and interest in your products or services. This guide provides an overview of demand generation marketing and explains how you can use it to grow your business.


What Is Demand Generation Marketing?

Demand marketing is a strategic approach that focuses on building long-term engagement before potential prospects are ready to buy. It’s not about getting a quick boost in sales or “going viral” for a few days where you can only capture in-market audiences already interested in buying. The main purpose of demand marketing is to understand your customers’ needs, show them why your product or service is the best fit and even build lasting relationships by empowering them with solutions to problems they never knew they had.


The Framework For Successful Demand Generation Strategy

Because demand marketing is a comprehensive approach to driving engagement, it has multiple components. This entails adopting a multi-channel marketing approach where your marketing efforts and channels all cohesively work together to promote customer loyalty and drive sales.


1. Establish Your Ideal Buyers

Before you can make sales, you need to have a sense of the audience your are going after and how best to reach them. Demand generation marketing uses a variety of techniques to bring leads into your sales pipeline. Here are a few examples.

  • Search engine optimization: SEO brings in leads by making your website more visible to search engine users. The closer your pages are to the top of the rankings, the more opportunities you have to connect with potential customers. This ultimately ends up being a channel that helps fuel your content marketing efforts.
  • Social media: When you interact with current customers on social media, potential customers can see those interactions, giving them an opportunity to learn more about your business. If they like what they see, they’ll sign up for your email list or take some other action that demonstrates an interest in your offerings. You can empower your potential buyers with key thought leadership considerations related to their field, helpful guides and other resources to make them better at what they do.
  • Account-Based Marketing: Use tools like Zoominfo, Crunchbase, and other prospecting resources to compile an ABM list of potential businesses to go after. Establishing your ideal targets and identifying where they frequently consume content through manual research and streamlined tools like Sparktoro.
  • Industry-Recognized Publications & Media Placements: When it comes to amplifying your message, there’s no better go-to to capture market attention then partnering with established publications that your ideal buyers frequent.


2. Generate & Capture Demand for Your Products or Services

If demand already exists for your products or services, you need to capture some of that demand. You can use SEO, pay-per-click advertisements and other methods to make potential customers aware of what makes your business different from other companies in the same industry.


3. Shorten the Sales Cycle

The longer it takes you to complete each step of the sales cycle, the longer you have to wait to close a deal. Shortening the sales cycle is one of the most important aspects of demand generation marketing, as it ensures you have a steady stream of paying customers. You can do this by creating highly targeted offers and showing potential customers that you understand their needs.


Why Is Demand Generation Marketing So Powerful?

No matter what industry you’re in, competition is fierce. The cost of acquiring a new customer is also on the rise, especially if you do any type of paid advertising. Demand generation marketing puts you ahead of the pack by helping you connect with your audience before they’re in buying mode. If a potential customer already trusts you as a source of relevant information, they’ll be much more likely to buy from you when they’re ready to make a purchase.


How to Use Demand Generation Marketing Effectively

To succeed at demand generation marketing, follow these steps:

  1. Set goals. For best results, your goals should be SMART: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound. “Get more leads” isn’t a SMART goal, but “Increase lead volume by 15% within 90 days” is. Once you have a goal in mind, you can take steps to achieve it.
  2. Identify your target audience and make sure you understand their needs.
  3. Create high-quality content. Content marketing makes it easier to connect with current and potential customers at every stage of the buyer’s journey. Your content should have value and be relevant to the needs of your ideal customer. For example, if your company sells accounting software, you may want to offer a white paper on using software to increase efficiency in the accounting department. Content can take the form of articles, blog posts, how-to guides, videos, white papers, case studies and more.
  4. Determine the best way to distribute your content. Creating high-quality content is just the first step in content marketing; once you create it, you have to make sure potential customers have access to it. In addition to publishing the content on your website, you may want to publish videos on YouTube, send out a direct mail piece or partner with another company to distribute your content to members of your target audience.
  5. Track your performance. If you don’t monitor relevant metrics, it’s difficult to know how close you are to reaching your goals. Depending on your needs, you may want to track the number of leads generated, the percentage of leads who turned into paying customers, the number of visitors to your website or the number of people who contacted your business within a certain amount of time.

Generate Demand to Grow Your Business

When it comes to generating leads and making sales, it’s important to be original and give your prospects something of value. It’s also essential that you do regular A/B testing to determine which offers are the most successful. If you need help with demand generation marketing, contact Riverbed Marketing. As a HubSpot partner agency, we know how to help businesses craft effective offers and make sure the right people see them.

Picture of Michael Bergen

Michael Bergen

Co-Founder & VP of Demand Generation at Riverbed Marketing I'm a passionate tech enthusiast that loves the outdoors. I'm a data-driven demand generation marketer with over 10 years experience with inbound & demand marketing strategy.