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53 Key Lead Generation Statistics for B2B Marketers: 2020 Analysis of Data and Market Share

Category: B2B News

We see lead generation becoming more sophisticated by the day, with marketers increasingly utilizing lead management software to facilitate personalized and multi-channel customer interactions. With automation, mobile, and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies set to mature in the coming years, we can only expect more shifts and disruptions in the way we get leads.

To help you get up to speed with the latest in this industry, we have compiled some of the most essential lead generation statistics for B2B marketers this 2019. From B2B lead generation report forecasts to in-depth studies on channel effectiveness, we will provide you with all the information you need, for you to be able to keep up with the changing B2B marketing landscape.

key lead generation for b2b marketers statistics

General Lead Generation Statistics

More and more B2B businesses realize the different benefits that lead generation has to offer. As you’ll see in the statistics we’ve listed below, an increasing number of companies are putting more focus on their lead generation strategies to improve the quality of prospective clients that they are attracting. In addition, B2B companies can expect to see more advanced software solutions as new tech such as big data, predictive analytics, AI, and social media pave the way for more proactive and personalized lead generation.

  • B2B companies with mature lead generation processes enjoy 133% more revenue compared to average companies. [1]
  • Having good lead generation practices allows businesses to have a sales quota achievement rate that is higher by 9.3%. [2]
  • Companies using lead generation tactics have sales reps that spend 73% of their time selling while sales reps at companies without lead generation only spend 57% of their time on sales. [3]
  • The biggest factors that will drive B2B marketing growth are big data, predictive analytics, AI, and social media. [4]
  • 56% of organizations are exceeding their revenue goals because of effective lead generation efforts. [5]

Increasing Investment in Lead Generation

With the data we’ve mentioned, it comes as no surprise that the B2B lead generation market size is projected to grow consistently in the coming years. To prepare for this, B2B companies are increasing their budgets to capitalize on what these new lead generation techs have to offer. But this isn’t to say that B2B companies are going to simply invest their money on just any marketing tech.

Companies are becoming more selective on the kind of platforms they spend their top dollar on. Moreover, they take the time to ask around as well as research thoroughly before making a purchase.

  • The B2B business information segment, which comprises the financial and marketing aspects of the industry, is estimated to hit $68.5 billion by 2022. [6]
  • Digital lead generation advertising spending is seen to hit $201 billion by 2023. [7]
  • 70% of companies say their demand generation budgets have increased while 34% say that they are expecting an increase in spending by 20% in the coming years. [8]
  • 71% of marketers say that their allotted budget for lead generation will increase in 2019. Of these, 46% mentioned that the increase would be as high as 20%. [9]
  • 53% of marketers say that over ½ of their budget is reserved for lead generation. [10]
  • When choosing a software, marketers often make their decision based on referrals (55%), customer references (46%), media articles (38%), vendor-authored materials (38%), analyst reports (34%), crowdsourced reviews (27%), and information from salespersons (22%). [11]

app selling

With the advent of social media and the increased use of the internet, it has become more difficult to capture and retain the attention of consumers. In fact, since the beginning of the century, attention span has decreased by 33%[12].

This is why you’ll see that marketers are optimizing their lead generation tactics in such a way that they will tap their target audience through their preferred channels. For one, website optimization and content creation are utilized to hold the attention of higher quality leads. Some also utilize user reviews for lead generation as many buyers rely more on what their peers have to say about a product. There’s also a noticeable push for more quality instead of quantity. For that, learning more about the behavior of your customers through analytics and behavioral intelligence assumes a bigger role in your marketing efforts.

  • For B2B lead generation, the top 3 organizational objectives for content marketers are lead generation, sales, and lead nurturing. [13]
  • 85% of B2B marketers say that lead generation is their most important content marketing goal. [14]
  • When it comes to budgeting, marketers prioritize content creation (46%), online advertising (44%), public relations (44%), email marketing (35%), and traditional ads (34%). Social media (26%), website optimization (20%), marketing automation (18%), and SEO (11%). [5]
  • B2B companies are now focusing on lead quality over lead quantity (73%), improving conversion rates (72%), generating increased lead volume (62%), and improving their ability to measure the marketing impact (61%). [8]
  • The channels that marketers use most to attract leads are email (67%), website (60%), and search (50%). [8]
  • A lead generation market research shows that the most effective channels for early-stage engagement are email (59%), search (56%), website (51%), social media (44%), online ads (27%), retargeting (19%), contact syndication (17%), telemarketing (14%), direct mail (7%), and predictive analytics (2%). [8]
  • Some of the marketing strategies that successfully generated leads over the past few years are events (68%), webinars (61%), lead nurturing campaigns (57%), white papers (50%), case studies (50%), and videos (37%). [8]

Source: Demand Generation Report 2018

The Role of Email in Reaching Potential Customers

Email is one of the most used communication channels today. Thus, it makes for a good way to reach your target audience. In fact, it remains the most effective strategy in lead generation. As you’ll see in the data below, you can further boost the impact of your email campaigns if you start to segment and personalize them.

  • 79% of B2B marketers say that email is the most effective distribution channel for demand generation. It is followed by blogs and social media at 60% and 41%, respectively. [15]
  • Email campaigns can yield a 17% open rate and a 4% click-through rate. [5]
  • Segmented email campaigns can boost campaign revenue by 760%. [16]
  • In 2018, marketers started leveraging data to personalize email content. [17]

Content Marketing for Lead Generation

In addition to email marketing, one of the best ways to attract the attention of potential clients is content marketing.

Let’s face it–consumers are getting tired of seeing ads. This is why an increasing number of businesses leverage content marketing strategies. This allows them to provide consumers with substantial landing pages or blog posts filled with useful information that they’d actually want to read. This way, you’ll have a better chance of engaging them and retaining their attention.

  • 90% of companies utilize content marketing to attract inbound leads. [13]
  • 62% of B2B businesses leverage strategic landing pages for lead generation. [18]
  • Businesses can increase their leads by 55% if they increase the number of landing pages they have to a minimum of 15. [19]
  • 53% of content marketers leverage interactive content to generate more leads. [15]
  • Blogging allows you to have 434% more indexed pages and makes your websites and landing pages more visible on search engines. [20]

The Rise of Influencer Marketing

One of the increasingly popular lead generation strategies today is influencer marketing. Nowadays, consumers no longer trust ads and celebrity endorsements. Instead, they rely on influencers, bloggers, and YouTubers for their purchasing decisions. This is why many marketers are now focusing on building partnerships with these influencers. By doing so, they can reach a more targeted audience and generate higher quality leads.

  • 80% of companies believe that influencer marketing is an effective channel. [21]
  • 2/3 of marketers plan on increasing their budgets for influencer marketing before the end of 2019. [21]
  • 42% of marketers have an always-on influencer marketing strategy. [22]
  • 67% of businesses say that influencer marketing can help generate leads from more targeted demographics. [23]
  • Almost 70% of marketers build partnerships with influencers to promote their content. Meanwhile, 59% do so to help launch products. [24]

Lead Generation Strategies You Should Consider Changing

Of course, while there may be quite a few new lead generation strategies that would make great additions to your existing marketing efforts, there are also old ones that might no longer be worth your time or money. According to marketers, there are quite a few marketing tactics that may have been effective over the past few decades that are considered overrated today.

In addition, there are also strategies that are still considered effective today but require a bit more care during implementation. This is because they can have negative effects on your campaign when not planned thoroughly.

  • Only 18% of professionals believe that outbound practices can provide high-quality leads. [25]
  • A lead generation market report revealed that professionals deem paid advertising (30%), organic social media (14%), and online paid advertising (11%) as the most overrated marketing tactics. [11]
  • Marketers need to contact prospects at least 18 times to get a response. However,
    the call-back rates are below 1%. [26]
  • The overall customer engagement rate that social media can generate is 0.58%. [27]
  • As of 2019, 56% of email traffic ends up in the spam folder. [28]
  • 1 in 7 consumers believes that half their emails are relevant to them. As a result, 59% end up unsubscribing from email lists of brands because of the frequency of their emails. [29]
  • 21% of consumers mark unwanted messages from brands as spam instead of unsubscribing, causing negative effects on email marketing campaigns. [29]

Source: Demand Generation Report 2018

Lead Generation and Technology Statistics

Technology is reshaping how businesses operate, and their marketing processes are no exception. As we move forward into the future, we’ll see lead generation rely more on automation and AI. What’s more, we can expect marketing efforts to be monitored and evaluated more closely using data analytics.

With that said, now might be the time to invest in marketing automation software so as not to lag behind your competition. But of course, as you integrate more modern software solutions into your workflows, it is also best that you put focus in retraining your marketers so that they may maximize the use of your new investments.

  • The top tech investments for marketers are account-based tools (49%), multi-channel lead nurturing (41%), content syndication (37%), retargeting (37%), marketing automation (33%), predictive lead scoring (29%), content measurement (34%), attribution modeling (30%), and data enrichment (28%). [8]
  • Among the tech that marketing leaders use for their operations are CRM software (68%), mobile campaign management (68%), marketing automation software (67%), social listening (67%), Internet of Things (66%), and AI (51%). [30]
  • The annual marketing automation spending of companies is forecast to hit $25.1 billion by 2023. [31]
  • Lead management automation can boost revenue by 10% within 6 to 9 months. [32]
  • 79% of top-performing companies utilize marketing automation. [33]
  • Companies are also considering leveraging chatbots as they can deliver $8 billion in cost savings by 2022. [34]
  • 80% of companies intend to use chatbot automation by 2020. [35]

top technology investments

Top 5 Lead Management Software

  1. HubSpot Sales. HubSpot Sales is an efficient pipeline management platform that helps streamline communication with leads. Find out more about this software through our HubSpot Sales review.
  2. Freshsales. Freshsales can help you score, verify, and nurture leads through multiple channels of communication. Check out our Freshsales review to learn more about these features.
  3. Pipedrive. Pipedrive uses a sales pipeline methodology to help you organize your leads and contacts. Our Pipedrive review can tell you more about the platform.
  4. Copper. Copper can give you an overview of how each lead moves down the sales funnel. Learn more about the software in our Copper review.
  5. Pipeliner. Pipeline offers built-in features for qualifying and nurturing leads to encourage conversion. Read our Pipeliner review to learn more about the platform’s capabilities.

Lead Generation Challenges Statistics

Lead generation may have become faster and more efficient thanks to the availability of various marketing platforms. However, there are still plenty of internal and external factors that marketers should be wary of. Modern marketing strategies rely heavily on data and the utilization of new tech—all things that require budget and support from executives. What’s more, new approaches to lead generation need a more hands-on effort that might potentially spread your workforce too thin.

  • 61% of professionals say that lead generation is their biggest marketing challenge. [25]
  • Lead generation is difficult due to insufficient time for all marketing tasks (48%), poor/undefined sales processes (33%), lack of quality leads (33%), and lack of budget (23%). [36]
  • Marketers say that the biggest barrier to successful B2B lead generation is lack of resources such as staff and funding (61%), lack of quality data to drive campaigns (42%), insufficient customer insights (38%), limited ability to develop content (37%), and lack of alignment between sales and marketing (35%). [10]
  • Despite the popularity of mobile marketing, many professionals (49%) still don’t know what role it plays in their campaigns. [10]

The Increasing Cost of Acquiring Customers

You will likely notice that the cost of acquiring prospective clients is becoming higher. So, choosing which leads to focus on and where you source your leads is more crucial than ever.

  • Lead generation market statistics reveal that the average cost that B2B companies spend per lead is $198.44. [5]
  • The average cost per lead (CPL) in 2019 is now $811 for events, $110 for SEM, $92 for content creation, $75 for LinkedIn ads, and $73 for affiliate marketing. You should also expect to spend $72 per lead if you use webinars, $53 per lead for marketing campaigns, and $31 per lead for SEO. [37]
  • A B2B lead generation report revealed that companies with revenue under $500 million spend $180/lead, while organizations that yield higher revenues spend $430/lead. [5]

Source: Bop Design, 2018

Tech and Multi-Channel, Key to Lead Generation

B2B products and services won’t go out of style. However, your marketing strategies may if you fail to adapt to the changing B2B landscape.

As you have read from the B2B lead generation statistics we’ve compiled, it’s becoming trickier to attract customers and hold their attention. If you truly want to grow your business with lead generation, you will have to start relying on technology and rolling out a more multi-channel approach to marketing. Through automation, AI, and analytics, you can make workflows faster and understand your target audience better.

However, before you start purchasing different software solutions, be sure to do your due diligence in researching what tools you will need for your specific workflows. Moreover, you need to allocate quite a lot of time and effort to learn them and implement them properly. After all, if you haphazardly invest in new lead generation tools, you might end up wasting your hard-earned money than improve your marketing efforts.

Hopefully, with our list of lead generation statistics, you were able to get a better grasp of the state of the industry as well as how marketers are adapting to the changes. This way, you can start gauging which tactics will work well with your business model, plan out your strategies, and remain on top of your game no matter the shifts in the B2B marketing landscape.

You can further hone your knowledge on lead generation to help you optimize your current marketing efforts; we highly recommend you check out our compilation of lead generation best practices as well.



  1. ^What is Lead Generation and Why is it Important?
  2. ^Sales Best Practices Study
  3. ^The Definitive Guide to Lead Generation
  4. ^B2B Marketing Information Revenues Forecast to Slowly Grow
  5. ^2017 Demand Generation Benchmark Report
  6. ^Global Entertainment & Media Outlook 2019–2023
  7. ^Digital lead generation advertising spending in the United States from 2019 to 2023
  8. ^Tapping Multichannel Marketing & Data As Key Engines
  9. ^2019 Demand Generation Benchmark Survey Report
  10. ^Holger B2B Lead Gen Report
  11. ^State of Inbound 2018
  12. ^You Now Have a Shorter Attention Span Than a Goldfish
  13. ^B2B Content Marketing 2016 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends
  14. ^B2B Content Marketing 2017 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends
  15. ^B2B Content Marketing 2018 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends
  16. ^The New Rules of Email Marketing
  17. ^North America: planned changes in e-mail marketing strategies 2016-2018
  18. ^Marketo Blog
  19. ^Why You (Yes, You) Need to Create More Landing Pages
  20. ^Study Shows Business Blogging Leads to 55% More Website Visitors
  22. ^The State of Influencer Marketing 2019
  23. ^Activate’s Latest Research: The 2018 State of Influencer Marketing Study
  24. ^Influencer Report 2015
  25. ^Not Another State of Marketing Report
  26. ^Insights and Research for Marketing, Sales Development and Sales
  27. ^Is Email Marketing Dead? Statistics Say: Not a Chance.
  28. ^Spam: share of global email traffic 2014-2019
  29. ^Consumer email tracker 2019
  30. ^Salesforce Research Fourth Annual State of Marketing
  31. ^Global Marketing Automation Spending Will Reach $25 Billion By 2023
  32. ^What is Account-Based Marketing (ABM)?
  33. ^20 Lead Nurturing Statistics & Charts for 2020
  34. ^Chatbot Conversations to deliver $8 billion in Cost savings by 2022
  35. ^Can Virtual Experiences Replace Reality?
  36. ^The State of B2B Lead Generation in 2018
  37. ^Average cost per lead (CPL) for different B2B marketing channels in 2020


Nestor Gilbert

By Nestor Gilbert

Senior writer for FinancesOnline. If he is not writing about the booming SaaS and B2B industry, with special focus on developments in CRM and business intelligence software spaces, he is editing manuscripts for aspiring and veteran authors. He has compiled years of experience editing book titles and writing for popular marketing and technical publications.

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