Dun & Bradstreet Gives You a Unique Approach to Intent Data
Today, the average B2B customer is already 76% of the way through their buying journey before ever engaging with a sales representative.1 If you're waiting for them to find you, chances are you've already lost. Ideally, buyer intent data lets you uncover who is actively engaged in a buying journey, and where they are in the process, so you can reach them earlier and close deals faster.
Despite its promise, intent data isn’t magic. It is like any other data set – context and quality are key. Choosing the right provider is key, too. Consider the "keywords" below when you’re considering leveraging intent data.
Limitations. To sales and marketing professionals, the concept of intent data may sound too good to be true. Unfortunately, there are many scenarios for which that's actually the case. Available intent data that’s based on keywords is robust for established technology categories but may not add value for new or emerging technologies or for companies that provide a niche product or service. It's also not as effective a solution for organizations outside the tech industry.
Customization. Some providers of keyword intent data have you choose "off the shelf" keywords that don't sync with the audiences you want to identify, further limiting its usefulness. This can result in equally "off the shelf" interactions that may turn current and potential customers off. Your results may improve if you have the opportunity to use your own customized keywords and phrases to create a model that's unique – and uniquely yours. Machine learning techniques such as Natural Language Processing (NLP) can help to identify which online content has semantically similar content to your targeted audience. This also allows you to define more highly focused and nuanced audiences, or broader, larger scale audiences.
Precision. Does your intent data provider use only the company IP domain as the identifier? You might think that’s great news because you’re better protected from the risk of violating privacy laws and you’re still uncovering intent. Not so fast! IP addresses don’t offer insight into corporate relationships or account-level purchasing power. You may know that there are intent signals coming from the domain www.apple.com, but from which of their hundreds of locations? You need insight into each prospect's full corporate family tree if you want to laser-focus on the right target and really benefit from the promise of buyer intent.
You also need insights into “who” is displaying activity. Is it the head of marketing operations investigating a solution like what you have to offer, or is it a summer intern surfing the web for a paper?
Intelligence. Another benefit of intent data derived using NLP is that it can verify online content for relevancy and screen out engagements that don't fit your persona profile. Focusing on soaring intent scores along with buying-stage intelligence can help you target both early-stage, to influence decisions, and later-stage, to trigger conversions. Today's B2B buyers are uber-informed and have come to expect smart, personalized content. If you’re following a prospect and reach out to them with a touchpoint that’s uncannily relevant to their present pain point, you've just gained their trust – and earned bonus points. You’re an important step closer to conversion.
Relevance. All keyword-driven intent data is not created equal. Your intent data supplier should provide scored data based on the nature of content consumed. Is an organization browsing or buying? There's a difference between general category information and more targeted content that indicates an organization is preparing to make a purchase. For example, if we look at the keywords "Cloud Storage," an article titled, "IT Priorities for 2020: Cloud Storage is Key, But On-Premise is Still Critical to Run the Business" might generate a buying score of 20. But, a more detailed article, like "Dropbox and iCloud Drive: How Each Service Approaches Cloud Storage" could generate a buying score of 90.
Compatibility. If onboarding and utilizing intent data seems like a daunting task, consider centralizing your whole data system. With marketing automation platforms, you're likely already using first-party intent data to track progress and lifecycle. Adding third-party intent data to the mix unveils valuable new insights that not only nurtures new leads but rekindles existing relationships. Look for vendors who can offer a single platform source for first- and third-party intent information, and allow you to activate audiences through personalized, omni-channel campaigns. With a holistic approach to customer data, your teams can optimize content and activate the audiences as it fits with your go-to-market strategy:
- Customizing digital audience for programmatic advertising
- Uploading into MAP or CRM for outbound marketing or sales prospecting
- Segmentation alongside your own first-party intent data
- Modelling and omnichannel activation
Integrity. Finally, while you're learning how to best leverage your data, it's worth asking how that data is collected. Considering the direction new regulations are taking, compliance can be a legal minefield for some intent data providers. Work with your vendor to be certain that their data is sourced in-line with regulatory requirements — including GDPR, CASL, and CCPA — protecting you from many issues.
A New Approach
D&B Buyer Intent is a new approach to intent data, using your own customized key words and phrases to create a unique – and uniquely you – model. We layer our intent signals with NLP to identify which online content has semantically similar content to your targeted audience. This allows you to define highly focused and nuanced audiences, or broader, larger scale audiences.
D&B Buyer Intent data links to the location-specific D‑U‑N‑S® Number and Live Business Identity®. This way, we’re able to differentiate between signals across entire corporate family trees, to help you be laser-focused on the right target.
With our unique approach, leveraging intent data is no longer limited to niche tech categories. We’re bringing intent capabilities to the masses.
For more information on how to get started, click here.
1 SiriusDecisions (SiriusDecsions was acquired by Forrester in 2018)