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B2B Lead Generation: Why B2B Wholesellers Move From Print to Digital
16 Nov 2016

B2B Lead Generation: Why B2B Wholesellers Move From Print to Digital Today

Traditionally,  B2B lead generation in small and medium-sized companies has happened through printed product catalogs, which was sent to distributors. The marketing and sales team would then wait for orders to start rolling in. However, this method comes with problems, such as high print and distribution costs and difficulties with the administration and tracking of orders. If your business is still relying on this method to generate sales, you could be losing out. Online B2B lead generation is important if you want to be where the magic is. 

In the face of the growing consumerization of business buying, many B2B companies in Europe are beginning to move their catalogs and ordering process online and hence, online B2B lead generation is becoming an more and more integrated part of their marketing strategy . It’s a trend that has proved very successfull for the Europeans, which is why businesses all over the world are expected to embrace it over the next few years. Let’s take a look at the reasons why European sellers are moving from print to online, so you can see whether it makes sense for you to join them.

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B2B Lead Generation

For many businesses, the main advantage of an online catalog is its ability to generate more leads than a traditional print catalog. When you use an online catalog creator to convert PDF to HTML5, you can add interactive features that would never be possible in a print catalog. For example, you can enable pop-ups that prompt your customers to give you their contact information, so you can contact them with offers that might interest them in the future. When you have contact information for your prospects, you reduce the risk of them forgetting about your brand and choosing to go with one of your competitors instead. 

Lead generation is becoming increasingly important for B2B marketers. According to a survey conducted in July 2016, more than a third of B2B marketers said that B2B lead generation programs were helpful to their businesses.

B2B Lead Generation: Why B2B Wholesellers Move From Print to Digital

Shop Integration

Online catalogs can integrate with your e-commerce system, allowing customers to click on a link in the catalog to instantly purchase a product they need. This method of ordering is much faster than traditional systems, where customers have to call a number or fill in a form to order products from a print catalog. It also cuts down on administration work for employees who traditionally had to enter phone or mail orders into your system.

By linking directly from your online catalog to your web shop, you can ensure you don’t lose readers at this critical stage in their buying journey. Readers can instantly go to your online store, where they can make a purchase or add an item to their basket, and then return to flipping through the catalog to find more products that interest them.

B2B Lead Generation: Why B2B Wholesellers Move From Print to Digital


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Another significant advantage of interacting with your catalog readers online, rather than in print, is that you can track their behavior. When you send out a print catalog, you have no idea how long your business customers spend looking at each page, or whether they even open the catalog at all.

When you use an online catalog, you can see how many people read each page and which links they click on within the catalog. This information could help to give you a deeper understanding of which products most interest your target audience and how the design of your catalog influences the way readers interact with it. You can then use this knowledge to adjust your marketing efforts, so they better align with your customers’ needs and expectations. For example, if you notice that many people purchase a particular product after you include a video of someone using it in your online catalog, you may want to consider investing more in product videos to drive future sales and lead generation.

B2B Lead Generation: Why B2B Wholesellers Move From Print to Digital

Printing Costs

Finally, the obvious benefit of using online catalogs is that you don’t have to pay printing or physical distribution costs to get your publications in front of your target audience. Printing a new catalog every season can be a significant financial commitment for a business, so switching to online catalogs could be a way to bring down your operating costs.

In addition to the cost benefits, online catalogs can also support your claim to be an environmentally friendly company. Think about how much paper goes into the catalogs you ship out every year, all of which ultimately ends up being thrown away. By switching to digital, you can save paper, save money and even play your part in saving the planet. Online catalogs are therefore good for your bottom line and good for your reputation as a responsible business.

How to Move From Print to Online Catalogs

There are many reasons to move from print to online when it comes to your catalogs. Many businesses across Europe are using online catalog creator tools, such as iPaper, to convert PDF to HTML5. This allows them to create stunning interactive catalogs that can grab the attention of browsing readers and turn them into interested leads. If you are interested in lowering marketing costs for your business and gaining greater insight into how your customers interact with your catalogs, this could be the perfect time for you to make the same move.

Consider trying out a few digital publishing platforms that include lead generation tools for both your flipbooks and website. That way you don't have to commit to a system before you know how it works and if it fits your needs. I also recommend that you read this article that covers 9 essential questions that help you decide whether a an online catalog creator can help your business achieve your goals. You can start a free trial with iPaper today, just click here to get started right away. You will receive an email with your login details, then upload a PDF to convert if to an online publication, and you are well on your way to providing your readers and customers with an interactive experience that drives more sales. 

Get started with B2B LEAD GENERATION 

If you want to try B2B lead generation for yourself, then feel free to read our blog post about does and don'ts when making pop-ups  or get the short checklist for a quick overview. 


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About the author

Jesper Wilhelmsen

Jesper Wilhelmsen

Jesper Wilhelmsen is Inbound Marketing Specialist at iPaper. Jesper is passionate about exploring new tendencies in the field of marketing and communication and always strive to optimize the communication effort and find the synergies in combining communication platforms.

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