Don’t you love this time of year?
Christmas cheer, seasonal celebrations, and a winter wind-down that massages out the tension and grind of the previous, work-heavy months.
And if you’re a Star Wars fan like me, there’s an extra cherry-on-top to anticipate this December.
The next chapter of the Star Wars saga, Episode 9: The Rise of Skywalker, has been announced.
It’s officially hitting cinemas on December 20th (not that I’m counting or anything.), woot!
To celebrate its release, I’ve gone through past Star Wars movies and culled useful lessons to boost B2B sales (a good excuse for binging previous episodes I might add).
Below, you’ll find my top Jedi B2B sales hacks for lead generation imbued with the power of the “force,” enjoy.
Think about any cult classic or famous movie/novel. Does it end with the character holding onto the same beliefs or lifestyle as the beginning?
There is a journey, a transformation of some kind.
When you first meet them, the protagonists of Star Wars were far from “hero material.”
Luke Skywalker was a simple Tatooine farm boy; Anakin Skywalker merely a junk dealer slave. Nothing impressive, right?
But, the journey they experience, and the trials and tribulations they overcome ultimately change them into Jedi warriors.
This character-arc is an essential ingredient to compelling stories.
And, by sharing a relatable success story, case studies equip your lead generation with the power of story.
Edelman’s research of over 25,000 people revealed that “trust is almost as important to consumers as quality and value.”
Surprisingly, the study found that when making a purchasing decision, trusting a brand was more important than its reviews and reputation.
Leads might doubt what you say, but they’ll be more receptive to third party opinion about you.
And that’s what makes case studies influential trust builders, especially for B2B buyers who make analytical purchases.
Marketing agency Fractl uses data-driven case studies to establish trust and authority.
It’s working wonders for their B2B lead generation.
According to Fractl’s marketing director Kerry Jones, case studies are an essential piece of the lead generation puzzle for B2B sales. She reports that:
“Case studies are highly effective at converting visitors to leads – about half of our leads view at least one of our case studies before contacting us.”
Fractl also receives SEO benefits from published case studies. Some of their consistent sources of traffic are case study pages.
Reaching out to prospects, creating valuable content, and optimizing are all critical, necessary parts of lead generation.
But, with 92 percent of B2B consumers basing their decision on referrals and reviews, your best salespeople?
Are often your customers.
Compelling case studies tell their stories and up your lead generation game.
When George Lucas first envisioned the idea of Star Wars, he thought of it as a “western movie set in outer space.”
He more or less combined two genres into one impressive movie setting.
Similarly, joining forces with another company can be a mutually beneficial event from which both parties generate leads.
Look at GoPro and Redbull—both companies champion adventure and high octane excitement.
Joining forces, they launched the Red Bull Stratos — a viral event (with over 40million views) in which Felix Baumgartner jumped from the edge of space, and broke the speed of sound while free falling to earth.
Collaboration isn’t just for B2C businesses.
According to American Express’s Collaboration Index, companies that collaborate more see an average of 44 percent more yearly growth and achieve better ROI.
For B2B lead generation, webinars are a great way to collaborate with other B2B businesses. 73 percent of B2B marketers and sales leaders report webinars as a top lead generation tactic.
Consulting agency Impactnd, partnered with Wipster—a product they regularly rely on—to create a webinar both their audiences would benefit from.
After agreeing on targets beforehand, they devised the responsibility of promoting the webinar and gathering attendees. It resulted in over 900 registrants and 200 participants.
And when HubSpot partnered with Adobe to present a “Design for Non-Designers” webinar, it drew a massive crowd of 5000 people.
Find a company to join forces with, and reap the lead generation benefits with collaborative webinars.
In Rogue One, K-2SO single-handedly fought a small army of stormtroopers so Jyn Erso and Cassian Andor could swipe the Death Star plans.
And in The Force Awakens, BB-8 hid a map of Luke’s location from the Order before it was delivered into the hands of General Leia and the Resistance.
Did you know that 92 percent of companies are investing in A.I and machine learning this year?
With an army of competitors, and a mountainous list of tasks and objectives ahead of you, it helps to have your B2B druids—or A.I. assistants—at your side.
Others, like referral software Buyapowa (previously Reward Stream), whose Leadbot amounted to 30 percent of converted leads in the first 45 days, use A.I. to supplement customer service and nudge leads down the funnel.
While it can’t wholly replace or single-handedly overcome common marketing challenges, A.I. does a great job of providing support to both—B2C and B2B businesses.
In The Empire Strikes Back, Han Solo boldly chooses to evade capture by heading straight into an asteroid field, C3PO tells him, “Sir, the possibility of successfully navigating an asteroid field is approximately 3,720 to 1!.”
To which Han replies, “Never tell me the odds.”
In the world of marketing and B2B sales, you’re constantly reminded of “the odds.” A popular one is the “odds” of succeeding with outbound sales tactics, for example.
According to HubSpot, only 18 percent of marketers say outbound practices provide quality leads.
Outbound sales are seen as outdated—something people did back when Internet Explorer was a valid browser.
And, while inbound may be the “next phase of marketing” on the web, it doesn’t detract from the efficacy of other sales tactics.
The fog of hype surrounding inbound has cast a shadow on outbound sales tactics that work.
Compared to inbound, outbound sales is a faster and more dynamic process. You experience short feedback loops from multiple interactions within your control.
And, with these rapid results, you can fail fast and adjust direction, or scale your wins into a thriving, repeatable system.
This is exactly what Alex Berman, founder of Experiment 27—an agency that works with mobile app development firms—did to scale his agency.
Because he wanted to scale with speed, inbound marketing wasn’t an option. So Alex decided to find leads instead of waiting for leads to stumble across him.
He went all-in on outbound sales. The results?
Alex and his team grew Experiment 27 from $0-$400k annual recurring revenue in just 30 days, generating a total of $2.5 million in B2B sales.
If Alex listened to the odds and avoided outbound sales, he wouldn’t have achieved the results above.
Be like Han Solo, don’t let best practices and statistical odds decide your actions. Instead, test to see what works and keep an open mind.
The biggest lessons in our lives often come from captivating stories, cautionary tales, and inspirational anecdotes.
And, if a whiny Tatooine farm boy can transform into a rockstar Jedi, there’s nothing to stop you from becoming a B2B sales-generating Jedi.
Pick just one of the hacks above to use. Like Luke, start small and focus on scaling as you get better.
You’ll be a master of the B2B lead generating force before you know it!
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