Lead Generation vs Lead Acquisition: What's the Difference?

Lead generation and customer acquisition are two different processes, but they are often confused. Lead generation is the process of identifying, attracting, and turning strangers into prospects. On the other hand, customer acquisition is the process of attracting new customers or customers to your business, turning potential customers into customers. In recent years, there has been some confusion between the terms demand generation versus lead generation.

In fact, digital marketers have begun to use these terms interchangeably, even arguing that there is no need to make a distinction between the two. But are these terms really that interchangeable? Does it matter what you call your targeted marketing strategies? Read on to learn more about the difference between lead generation and customer acquisition.

Lead Generation

is the process of connecting with your leads and obtaining their contact information. It's the process of obtaining, filtering, and then making your potential customers part of your sales systems. The main difference is that, with lead generation, your company gathers all your potential customers from scratch.

In lead acquisition, you get leads from an outside source, which means your company doesn't have to do any of the heavy lifting. Lead Generation Is the Fruit of Your Demand Generation Marketing Efforts. In other words, you captured their attention through demand generation, now you will get their money through lead generation. If we continue with the fishing analogy, lead generation is like baiting the hook with the best lure to catch Chinook salmon in Puget Sound. There are virtually endless methods that a marketer can employ to convert those interested leads into customers, especially when it comes to B2B lead generation. Choosing what types of content work best for your message depends on the overall objective of your campaign.

Demand generation increases your audience by attracting new visitors to your website and presenting your solutions to them. On the other hand, lead generation turns your audience into qualified leads. It's a subtle distinction and the two strategies are deeply connected. First of all, it's important to raise awareness and generate interest, because not everyone is ready to participate or convert right away. Let's take a closer look at the key difference between lead generation and demand generation.

Lead Generation (Bottom of Funnel) Unlike the extensive demand generation network, lead generation strategies are much more specific and specific. They can include closed-content marketing with streamlined landing pages, such as webinars or white papers. Or, they can focus on long-term email drip campaigns that encourage leads. When considering lead generation tactics, it's important to think beyond writing. Audio and visual content, such as webinars and podcasts, is not only good for accessibility reasons, but it is also easily digestible for potential customers. To measure ROI on your demand generation strategy or lead generation content, you need to track multiple data points.

For example, the 90-page white paper may have a high download conversion rate. But how do you know if you reached the right audience or if you forced them to take action? This is not an exhaustive list, but here are several ways to track performance for demand generation versus lead generation. A full-funnel digital marketing strategy requires both demand generation and lead generation to be successful. Let's look at an example of how Terakeet leveraged both strategies to strengthen our inbound marketing efforts. First, we calculated the market share of the best-performing websites within the beauty industry. Then, we leverage the data to generate brand awareness (demand generation) and target specific audiences with lead magnets (lead generation).

This means you start with leads pre-cleaned, filtered and confirmed, without having to deal with filling out forms that contain invalid email addresses. Inbound lead generation refers to leaving fingerprints in the form of websites, blogs, content, or social media, and welcoming strangers and nurturing them into your business. Throughout the demand generation process, your goal is to attract the prospect to the top of the funnel. Sunglasses company Shady Rays's lead generation process includes asking its current customers for the email address of someone they think will like your brand. The higher a lead's score, the closer they are to becoming a sales-qualified lead (SQL), who is just one step away from becoming a customer. As you can see in the diagram below, generating leads is a fundamental point in a person's journey to becoming a delighted customer. Borrowing from the examples above, you could give a potential customer a higher score if they used one of your coupons, an action that would mean that this person is interested in your product. Prospects are part of the larger lifecycle consumers follow as they make the transition from visitor to customer.

Yes, it takes time to create valuable content that teaches and nourishes your potential customers in the funnel, but if you don't offer anything to visitors who aren't ready to buy, they may never return to your website. Another great way to generate leads is by implementing inbound and outbound marketing in a balanced way. Lead engagement data such as HIPB2B campaign engagement data is a great way to grow your database.

Jenifer Dockter
Jenifer Dockter

Devoted pop culture maven. Friendly tv practitioner. Award-winning pop culture aficionado. Amateur travel junkie. General twitter ninja.