Intent data can be very useful for B2B marketers in the ongoing quest for customer insight. But what is it, how do you deploy it, and how do you deploy it well?
Recently I took part in the Business Marketing Clubs Podcast alongside B2B Marketer Dave Stevens, Louis Fernandes, MD of HRS Group for Northern Europe, CEO of Odyssiant, Aly Richards and Luan Wise.
Dave Stevens started by asking, “tell us what Media Effect does.”
We are a young agency with quite a specific niche, and that is helping b2b tech companies extract maximum value from their Intent Data investments. We do that by helping them choose, integrate, and execute on the right data. All of that strictly aligned to the company’s goals, be it acquiring more leads, lifting the effectiveness of sales and marketing outreach, improving conversion, generating more pipeline, ABM.
What is intent data?
It’s any sort of information that indicates an individual’s or group’s interest in buying a product or a solution.
For example, I want to buy a Cloud Storage solution for the agency, so I just go online, do a bit of research on independent websites, then I look at some brands, go and meet them, make my shortlist and purchase it.
Almost all the actions I have taken that led to that purchase could be tracked, including the first part on the internet and the second part with vendors. So if you are vendor, when I was on the internet, that normally is classified as 3 party data or external (doesn’t belong to you because other parties collected this data), but when I landed on your website, left my details, requested a meeting, that’s when you collect 1st party data or internal.
All those traces of my behaviour is what we call intent data.
‘Why is Intent data important?”
If you’re a vendor, you benefit from knowing and having the ability to influence purchase decisions with the implementation of Intent Data. This initial stage is usually unknown to you unless the buyer has decided to engage with your brand from that first click, but as we know this usually happens a little later in the buying cycle.
Without intent data, you could potentially miss an opportunity to place your brand in front of a ready to buy customer and during COVID19 that initial window of independent research shrunk almost to zero! Buyers are having to make decisions fast. So that ability to capture your buyers in the early stages is incredibly important, particularity in the current circumstances.
“What are the results of employing intent data at the right time during the buying cycle?”
An intent data-driven strategy will help you potentially reduce your audience, results and make stats greater. You’ll make your campaigns timely and relevant and you’ll see engagement rates increase and lead acquisitions become more effective. As a result, marketing teams will deliver a better quality of leads into the sales pipeline and this will filter into better ops for their reps.
This strategy could easily allow you to double your pipeline compared to other marketing methods.
“An example of using Intent Data well”.
Citrix presented how they’re using TechTarget data during one of the providers summits just before lockdown. They explained how they’ve embedded Intent into all of their systems. It’s used across the entire organisation. This is achieved by a custom-built dashboard, that pulls first-party data from the CRM and marketing automation and third-party data that updates on a weekly basis. This shows the whole organisation the account rankings based on their likelihood of purchasing their solutions.
It also tells them who is carrying out the research, plus the topics they’re interested in. This enables both marketing and sales to focus their efforts where it counts!
“Given the fantastic benefits, why is Intent data so relatively underutilised?”
One of my goals is to provide companies with this knowledge and make them understand the incredible benefits, but I think it may be down to a few things;
I think they feel it may be too complex to add to the mix or may create false positives, in other words, they don’t believe that intent data can generate an accurate purchase prediction.
There are some adoption challenges that can quickly lead to loss of faith. It’s important to have a sound onboarding strategy.
My message is, Intent Data is the future of B2B Marketing.
There are more buyers online than ever! People are bombarded with ads, so it’s now paramount to make your marketing more efficient and relevant than ever. Not doing this results in an unnoticed brand. B2B buyers expect the same personalised experienced as they do in B2C. I believe that there is nothing better than knowing their interests and using data to turn it into the best possible buying experience.