The internet has redefined B2B marketing, and nearly everything a prospective buyer does online leaves clues that let you know exactly what they are interested in. Failing to harness the power of this data results in low conversion rates, reduced customer retention, and makes lead generation difficult. This is why 62% of B2B companies already use intent data and monitoring tools.
Your company needs to be ready to use this data, by having the necessary processes in place. Intent data can be leveraged to prioritize the company’s leads based on their engagement level, personalize user experience on the website, nurture leads in the sales funnel, and to identify potential customers.
But how do you know that you’re ready to start using intent data as part of your sales and marketing strategy? Here are the top 5 things to make sure of before getting started.
1. Sales and Marketing Departments are Aligned
How can you be certain that your leads are sales qualified and are in the market for your products or services? Buyer intent data simplifies lead management by allowing you to look into the lead’s research activity to ascertain that they are a potential client. This data helps you segment leads based on their interest in your solutions and their purchasing behavior.
Did you know that marketing and sales teams that are aligned are 67% more efficient? For the best results, your sales and marketing team must work together to activate intent data from a multi-channel perspective. This means both teams have to be aligned and onboard to create the perfect lead generation strategy that will enable them to target prospects that have high chances of conversion.
There are instances, however, when leads don’t fit into your ideal buyer persona. When this happens, you need to have automation tools to instantly segment them from your leads pool.
You should also have a nurturing system to complement the lead scoring process.
2. You Have a Specific Objective in Mind
About 73% of successful companies have a formal way of communicating their strategies. You need to have specific goals for why you need buyer intent data and what you want to achieve from using it. Do you need a higher volume of leads? Are you looking for custom ad audiences? What exactly is your end goal?
The most common uses for intent data are:
- ABM (account-based marketing) based on a leads research level and intent
- Building targeted accounts lists by filtering outreach lists for those that show active interest.
- Targeted advertising to all prospects
- Personalization before making initial outreach
Working without a specific objective in mind is unwise; you will move from point A to point B, but it won’t yield any results.
3. You Have Defined Processes in Place
A study revealed that 96% of the companies have documented processes in place. Intent data isn’t a silver bullet, and for it to work, it has to integrate with strong processes. For example, if you are hoping to sequence intent data leads through outbound emails, you should make sure the processes are fully developed and ready for intent leads before you make the decision to invest.
Some of the tools you should have include:
- Email marketing tools
- Customer relationship management software
- Data analytics tools
- Onsite tracking tools
- Marketing automation tools
These processes streamline the usage of intent data and if they aren’t in place, work on them first then circle back to intent.
4. Required Technology and Resources are Available
How do you plan on using intent data? Do you have the technology in place, or are you just winging it? It’s important that you collect intent data from reliable sources with high-quality traffic to increase your chances of lead generation success.
Intent data integrates really well into existing systems, so having a CRM and/or marketing automation tool in place helps make using and measuring the data easier and more effective.
Using this data also takes time, so ensuring that someone on your team is ready and willing to own it is crucial. For you to continue to leverage buyer intent, you need to constantly monitor buyer signals to identify those that are researching alternative solutions. This information will let you know the leads that are ready to convert and those that need additional support, so make sure you have trigger notifications in place.
If no one has the time to oversee it, take a step back, and re-evaluate when you have the resources.
5. You Have the Bandwidth for Growth
There’s a good chance that intent data will bring you a lot of new contacts, but are you ready for them? Can you imagine following a prospect all through the buyer journey only to lose them at the conversion stage because you don’t have the capabilities to handle their orders? You need to be prepared for all new contacts by having the bandwidth for growth.
For example, if you’re targeting leads through emails, ads, content, etc. you should have the relevant human resource to receive calls or schedule demos. Conduct an analysis of the expected growth rate and put measures in place to make sure all leads are attended to.
Master the Buyer Journey with Intent Data
More than 60% of B2B buyers prefer to research on their own, which is why data-driven marketing and sales strategies are the most effective ways of streamlining lead generation. Which group of prospects contribute most to your revenue? What type of behavior drives the most conversions? Which marketing channels are giving you more sales-qualified leads? Intent data is the only way to make smart marketing decisions!
There’s, however, a catch; you need to be ready to start using the intent data. In a nutshell, you’re ready if;
- Your sales and marketing are aligned.
- You already have a specific objective in mind for the intent data.
- There are defined processes in place for utilizing the data.
- You have the required resources and technology to take action on the intent data.
- You can handle the growth.