Why (and How) B2Bs Absolutely Need to Protect Web Forms from Spam

Protect Web Forms from Spam

Bots are everywhere.

How many times have you seen “hello, thank you for this very informative article on this topic I will continue reading your blogs on this topic” in a WordPress comment section?

Unfortunately, bots do a lot more damage than just padding comment sections with generic spam.

In your forms, spam can throw off your personalization strategy and cost your business money.

Here’s how to protect web forms from spam in the first place – and even break your reliance on outdated forms entirely.

Why You Need to Protect Web Forms from Spam

Chances are, as your website stands now, your lead magnet forms are your best asset for collecting information about your visitors and creating personalized content like email campaigns and retargeting ads.

When bots enter the picture, they can do a lot more damage than people realize.

Since bots make up about 38% of all internet traffic, this is a very real threat.

It’s Screwing Up Your Personalization Strategy

AI tools, segmentation, lead routing, retargeting ads, triggered email campaigns – all these personalization strategies rely on data to learn about your visitors and adapt.

Bot traffic can significantly throw off your data, especially if the bots are well-disguised enough to fill out your forms and mimic human mouse movement.

Not to mention, not all spam information comes from bots. Plenty of real humans may fill out your forms to access gated content but since they don’t work in B2B, they’re not part of your target audience.

It’s Tedious Removing Incorrect Data

Frankly, spam and bots waste time.

When spam or low-quality leads come in through your lead magnet forms, you must spend time verifying the data and cross-referencing accounts yourself.

You could also pay for third-party bot protection and verification services – but wouldn’t you rather avoid it in the first place?

It’s Wasting Your Time and Money

Time is money and vice versa.

Time and money spent sorting through poor data to improve your segmentation and personalization strategies are time and money taken away from other marketing resources.

For example, your retargeting ads will convert much better and drive more revenue without spam information weighing you down.

It’s much more efficient when you can protect web forms from spam and keep your data healthy from the beginning.

How to Protect Web Forms from Spam

Use these tips to protect web forms from spam so you only deal with high-quality data on bona fide business leads.

Use a CAPTCHA

CAPTCHAs – sequences of letters and numbers from a photo you type into a box – are good for keeping spam out of your inbox. Unfortunately, they can also frustrate leads and genuine visitors as well. Some are impossible to read, and many people don’t care to listen to the sequence.

Include a Test Question

If you work on a WordPress site, you may have had to fill out a simple math equation to enter the admin side of the site. A simple question like this prevents brute force hacking attempts and can protect web forms from spam. Again, this additional question can be a nuisance for genuine leads.

Use a Third-Party Service

You can also simply pay to make your bot data and spam go away. Third-party services are available to sort through your data, remove bots, and shield your lead magnets from spam.

Include an HTML Honeypot Question Strictly for Bots

Using HTML, you can include a special question that only bots will see and fill out. If “someone” answers the question, you’ll know they’re a bot and you can simply remove the data from your system.

Employ Session Cookies

Cookies are also effective for preventing direct traffic to forms – which typically comes from bots. However, if someone bookmarks your landing page, they’ll also get flagged as spam.

Use IP Information to Block Spammers

If the same IP address filled out your form 20 times, it’s safe to say that’s a bot. Keep an eye on this type of traffic and purge the data from your system.

Forms are Holding You Back

Honestly, forms are outdated.

Yes, you read that right. Consider these fast facts:

  • By 2020, 70% of all business searches will take place on mobile devices.
  • Mobile traffic influences 40% of all B2B revenue in leading organizations.
  • 65% of businesses will consider switching vendors if a company does not supply a personalized experience.

What do these facts have to do with forms? Simple: forms aren’t mobile-friendly. No matter how much time you spend optimizing them, they’re still clunky forms that no one wants to fill out on their phone.

Plus, leads like to educate themselves at their own pace. By gating your content behind an annoying form, you’re holding back your lead generation capabilities.

Protect Web Forms from Spam

Source: Think with Google

Alternatives to Forms Every B2B Should Consider

Break your reliance on forms with the following strategies that allow leads to self-nurture.

Plus, you’ll be able to protect your web forms from bots because you’ll only be collecting verified leads from real humans with business email addresses.

It’s a win-win! Except for the bots – they lose.

  • Self-nurturing landing pages: Let your leads consume ungated content at their own pace. Give them a sample and let them give you their business email address to download the rest.
  • Content bingeing: Apps like Amazon and Spotify have made buyers expect the same endless curation from every website they visit – even your B2B website.
  • Adaptive content hubs: Using data-driven AI technology, you can create a content hub that hand-selects personalized content for known leads and anonymous visitors based on information they’ve already read.

Start Generating More Leads Today

Hushly can help you generate 51% more lead conversions and break your reliance on forms in one fell swoop! Forms aren’t mobile-friendly but adaptive content hubs are. Let your leads nurture themselves and submit an email when they’re ready.

We also use special tools and human verification through LinkedIn data to make sure your email submissions not only come from a real human but a bona fide business address.

Take our demo for a spin and see what a life without forms can be like!

Every B2B Lead Generation Marketing Template Needs Personalization

Lead Generation Marketing Plan Template

Now’s an exciting time to be a B2B marketer.

B2C has already had its moment with personalized entertainment and shopping experiences for everything from meal kit delivery to pharmaceuticals.

We probably won’t see any more groundbreaking technology emerge from B2C for a while.

B2B, however, is ripe for innovation and new strategies.

Long gone are the days of cold calls and in-person meetings.

That’s not to say that face-to-face business is obsolete, but it’s far from the only way to reach your prospects.

Automation and data collection make it easy to reach your leads with personalized content at every stage of the sales funnel.

Sadly, many B2Bs lag their B2C colleagues in terms of putting these technologies into effective use.

As you develop a B2B lead generation marketing plan template, it’s crucial to include some personalization tactics. Your business needs it and your target audience expects it.

Why Does Your B2B Lead Generation Marketing Plan Template Need Personalization?

Your buyers expect a personalized experience.

Companies like Amazon and Facebook have set the stage for hyper-personalized curated content on an individual scale. You may think that doesn’t apply to B2B websites and marketing – but it definitely does.

Your buyers and target audience know personalization technology exists because it’s available in every consumer app on their phone. Their expectations don’t change once they get to work Monday morning.

73% of buyers say they want the same personalized experience that B2Cs supply and half say businesses are not meeting expectations. Meanwhile, 30% of B2B companies say they’re dabbling in personalization strategies

That leaves a huge gap with countless companies not supplying the type of experience their buyers look for.

Personalization and automation aren’t going anywhere. They’re more important in B2B today more than ever.

With your B2B lead generation marketing plan template, personalization can help you understand your leads and how to address their problems.

6 Personalization Strategies to Use in Your B2B Lead Generation Marketing Plan Template

Personalization involves much more than just using your lead’s first name in an email and creating retargeting ads. Use some of the strategies below to stay ahead of your competitors and meet buyer expectations.

1. Multi-Tier Segmentation

In B2B, your segments change a bit compared to B2C.

You could segment your audience based on which company a lead works for, their job role and salary level, how long they’ve worked for the company, their buying influence, and location (to nail down the best time of day).

However, you should also note how your leads like to consume content. Do they want video, blogs, podcasts, eBooks, email, or something else? For example, 49% of B2Bs watch videos during the buying process while 64% listen to podcasts and 76% enjoy infographics.

2. Drive Data from Personalized Content

Data can make or break your personalized lead generation marketing plan template.

For AI tools to learn anything about your audience and provide them with personalized content, it needs to consume data – and a lot of data.

You could start by creating personalized in-depth blog posts for different segments of your audience. From there, your AI tool would watch the visitors of those posts, take notes of which other pieces of content they visit, and continue learning about their behavior to provide similar content.

The more information you collect on leads, the more you can improve your AI personalization strategy for all potential prospects.

3. Adaptive Resource Centers

Here’s where you start putting AI learning and your hyper-personalized lead generation marketing plan template into action.

Think about all the valuable content you’ve created as part of your marketing strategy. Now imagine putting it all in one place where leads and current clients can access it.

With a resource center, you can divide your content into categories like eBooks, case studies, reports, and tutorials. However, instead of simply putting it together, you’d use AI-driven technology to adapt new selections for each visitor based on their unique data.

Here’s what an adaptive resource center looks like in action:

Adapted Resource Center

Source: Sage Intacct

4. Automated Content Bingeing

Selecting the types of content each visitor will like is just one part of the process.

You also must meet their expectation for endless streams of content that companies like Netflix provide.

Make no mistake, your buyers will appreciate removing dead-end landing pages. 78% of buyers say they consume at least three pieces of content from a vendor. Content bingeing allows your leads to self-nurture and educate themselves at their own pace.

By the time they’ve decided to provide their email address or reach out to you with questions, they’ll already have a solid idea of your company’s products or services and they’ll be further along in the sales funnel.

5. Triggered Email Journeys

Based on where your lead gave you their email address, you can create unique email campaigns that introduce them to your brand and how you can help.

Triggered campaigns go out at specific times based on actions a subscriber takes. Did they listen to a podcast about a specific topic? Send an automated email.

You’ll always be one step ahead.

6. Intelligent Retargeting

Retargeting is important through channels like email and LinkedIn but without personalized data, it’s not effective.

If you’re sending the same LinkedIn ad to everyone who ever visited a page on your website, that’s not personalized retargeting. Instead, use features like matched audiences to choose specific ULRs a lead visited to personalize your ads.

Take B2B Personalization to the Next Level

Hushly is specially designed to provide personalization on an individual scale using data you already have about your visitors and leads.

Through tools like content bingeing, adaptive content hubs, thorough lead verification, and more, you can reach your leads on a personal level and help them self-nurture. Not only will you generate more leads, but your leads will be much higher quality and further along in the buying cycle by the time they supply their email address.

Want to learn more about the benefits of using personalization in your B2B lead generation marketing plan template? We have an eBook for that! Check out the 5 Personalization Strategies that Dominate B2B and learn why they’re important.