Demand gen vs lead gen: What’s the difference?

8 February 2023
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If you’re preparing a marketing and sales strategy, you’re likely looking at different ways to engage with potential customers—and that’s where demand and lead generation comes in.

Demand generation and lead generation are key to attracting new customers and monetizing your sales funnel, but they’re used at different stages of the process. Demand generation impacts the first stages of engagement, while lead generation targets prospects that already understand your brand.

Keep reading for a breakdown of the main differences between demand generation and lead generation.

What is a sales funnel?
A sales funnel is a visual concept describing a prospective customer’s journey to becoming a definite customer. It is visually displayed as a large pool of prospects at the top of the funnel to a narrowed-down list of clients at the bottom. Demand and lead generation strategies are implemented at different stages of the sales funnel(opens in new tab).

The main stages of a sales funnel are Awareness, Interest, Decision, and Purchase. In essence, the more advanced the stage, the more prepared a prospect is to become your customer.

What is demand generation?
Demand generation is a top-of-the-funnel activity that expands your sales pipeline with people that are aware of and interested in your products. Normally, prospects gathered through demand generation have either just heard of your brand or are unsure how your products could benefit them.

Often, prospects captured through demand generation can be quantified, but aren’t contactable. At this stage of awareness, audiences are less likely to part with their personal details.

A popular way to generate demand is to post blogs regularly on your website, offering valuable industry-specific information, and acting as a magnet for organic traffic. While you can track clicks and time spent on your blog pages, you don’t normally get identifiable information about your visitors.

Read more: Demand gen vs lead gen: What’s the difference?

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