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What is the Difference Between Lead Gen and Demand Gen?

Jen Spicola Posted by Jen Spicola on May 9, 2019

What is the difference between demand generation and lead generation

Without being a marketing expert, you know that one thing you need to truly make your business soar is customers.

But in order to get customers, you have to find them - and convince them to use or buy your product or service. Short of standing on a street corner and personally informing every passer-by about your business, what's the best way to make sure customers know how to find you?

In the world of marketing, there are two ways to go about obtaining new customers: Lead Generation and Demand Generation.

While neither is morally superior to the other, each method to win over customers and help your business soar has its own advantages and disadvantages. Let's take a look. 

Lead Generation

Lead Generation is laser-focused on potential customers. This method of generating customers makes sure that your marketing only reaches a specific population. 

In order to successfully harness this method, you need to get the details about your ideal customer so that you can accurately target them with your marketing. What's the difference between Demand Generation and Lead Generation We suggest creating buyer personas. Buyer (or customer) personas help you envision your ideal audience.

You'll fill in demographic and personal details for the kind of person who will passionately love - and hopefully help promote - your business. The information you get from your buyer personas will give you the metrics necessary to target your ideal customers when you're marketing your product or service. This will especially come in handy with social media marketing, where platforms allow you to control who sees your ads and content based on demographic and social parameters that you set. 

Quick Recap: Lead generation is a method of finding customers based on detailed knowledge of your ideal customer using highly specific targeted marketing strategies. 

Demand Generation 

Demand generation is a different breed. While lead generation pushes out advertising targeted to your specific audience in hopes for a bite, demand generation focuses on content marketing and brings the audience to you by way of interest in what you have to say.

Think of the last time you searched for something on the internet. A recipe, the answer to a quick question, a news subject you were interested in...where did it take you? That business or source was likely using demand generation methods to bring you into their realm. You may not be there to purchase at that time, but you now know who they are and attribute their brand as one that provides meaningful content - leaving the door open for business.

Demand generation is about content. And not just any content, but content with a purpose.

Customer service plays a large part in demand generation as well. The way you interact with your past and future customers becomes your brand's personality, paving the way for how they interact with YOU in the future.

Quick Recap: Demand generation is a method of finding customers based on creating demand and interest in your company within the broader landscape of the market. Success requires solid data, metrics, and epic market knowledge.  

Which method should you choose?

Both methods have the ability to attract customers in different ways. So how do you decide who wins out for your business' strategy? Which do you choose? What is the difference between lead generation and demand generation

The winner is the one that fits best for your business. 

Both methods of attracting customers have merit. Your job is to carefully weigh and consider the various needs, metrics, and goals of your business and match them against the two different techniques. 

A truly successful marketer will analyze their business and reap the benefits of both methods. Once you are able to pinpoint exactly where your resources are best focused, your business will soar!

Topics: Inbound Marketing, Demand Generation

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