Marketing Survey Results: We Need Leads!

The wonderful thing about surveys and research is how they help us keep up to date on how clients are feeling and what their current challenges are.

Digital Agency Vital in the US released results of their survey of 7500 respondents. What was the number one marketing challenge cited? Generating leads.

The survey examined a large array of performance goals as seen in their infographic here:

Survey Results.
Survey Results. Screenshot courtesy of

Next on company’s priority list were:

  •  generating brand awareness, increasing site traffic, and building a comprehensive marketing strategy.

From my studies and experience, this appears fairly accurate.

Reach and Visibility are a Big Piece of the Puzzle

Here on the AI Marketers blog, I’ve focused on the challenges of creating reach and visibility for building significance with prospects, which leads to more traffic. The matter of a comprehensive marketing strategy of course would be a tough challenge for small business owners who are often unwisely winging it on their own. They lack time and they don’t have the acumen to perform a digital marketing audit and build the pieces of success. Even marketing agencies struggle with this.

Survey Results by Company Role
Survey Results. Screenshot courtesy of

Every manager, CEO or marketing specialist has their own hierarchy of priorities.

Only PR people surveyed said acquiring customer leads was not their priority. Of course, their work comes before leads and they focus on building reach and visibility and getting the brand message across powerfully and clearly across the web and social sphere.

Lead Generation is the End Result of Other Contributions

Business owners cites getting leads (35.6%) followed by building brand awareness (9.4%). Sales people felt aligning sales and marketing (10.5%) was what they desired along with converting buyers (9.94%) and targeting buyers (8.77%) effectively as their wish list. Content creation was cited by 6.8%.

Traffic generation was cited less by larger corporations who have more resources and power to generate that traffic, whereas smaller business found this was a big challenge. Given trends to squash free organic exposure on Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Google, this is not a surprise. SMBs have taken a traffic hit over the last few years especially.  They’ve learned that a weak brand can ruin SEO, social media performance and content engagement.

IT people, CEO’s and Marketing Director’s had slightly different priorities. Digital Agencies had a more distributed priority list: lead generation (18.87%), brand awareness (14.7%) and a marketing strategy (7.5%)

Only 3.8% of respondents believed proving ROI was a challenge. That makes sense since more managers believe that if you achieve the top 3 wants, that ROI will logically follow.  As long as their marketing is aligned and there’s no miss on targeting, then that might be true.

Our takeaway from Vital Design Agency’s excellent survey is that getting reach, visibility and traffic really is the big small business challenge. But will that solve their lead generation challenge?  Perhaps, if their brand really is solid and significant.  The real question to ask is if capturing a million visitors and 100 million search impressions will help?  Is their branding and value offer up to snuff?

Do small to mid-sized company executives really understand what the precursors to more traffic and leads are?

The consensus that a strategic plan is part of the solution, however the survey didn’t dig into what kind of marketing study and strategy they’ve conducted.

The survey didn’t ask what companies were actually doing to generate the desired outcomes.

A Strong Brand Generates Traffic and Leads

Hopefully, they’ll be pursuing everything they can to become more significant to their customers by building a strong brand. It’s not really a call to action that generates leads, but rather a strong UVP/brand that generates enough credibility to be considered worthy of investigation.

Vital Design is an interesting agency and their brand architecture strategy is a unique service feature. I have a lot of faith that strong brands make everything else easier, so any intelligent framework for building a powerful brand makes sense.

For small companies, it’s important to conduct a digital marketing study to understand what your brand values are, and what content and channels would work for you. Even if you’re just doing SEO and content strategy, you still a service provider who appreciates how your brand should be positioned so its significant to prospects.

Leads only happen when you and your company are most significant to customers. Prospects can only sign one company so they’re going to sign with the provider that’s most significant to them.

Looking for a more affordable approach to building visibility and traffic?  See AI Marketers marketing service packages, including advanced search engine optimization.  Buy what you need and move to the next level at your pace.

Gord Collins | Advanced SEO Strategy | AI Marketing | State of SEO Report | Real Estate Marketing | SEO Software Platforms | AI SEO |  Marketing Service San Diego | Marketing Audit | AI Software | SEO Company

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