In an ABM era where buyers are expecting and demanding relevant engagement at every touch point, B2B organizations are looking for deeper intelligence on buying signals to create customized experiences even before a prospect visits their website or fills out a registration form.
While activity data has been the foundational source leveraged by B2B businesses over the past decade via form fills, clicks and open rates, new trends have emerged to help organizations gather greater insights into their buyers. These new components include:
Engagement Data — This includes the total number of touches a prospect has with the brand, the total number of buyers that engage with the brand within a target account, how key accounts engage with the brand and if any engagement with prospects outside of known accounts fit the company’s target profile.
Intent Data — Third-party intent data allows marketers to monitor web activity to identify companies who are actively researching specific topics.
Signal Data — This type of data helps inform marketing and sales teams of companies they should target but are not currently on their radar.
This year’s Buyer Insights And Intelligence Series featured case studies and new models highlighting how top B2B businesses identify, engage and convert key decision makers at target accounts. The weeklong webcast series, which ran from July 9-13, included insights from industry experts at brands such as Fuze, RingCentral, TechTarget and many more. Here is a quick recap of key takeaways from each of the 13 sessions.
Signal Data Delivers 95% Deliverability For RingCentral
Signal data was a key component for RingCentral, whose goal was to increase average deal size and expand its enterprise market share. The company developed account-based strategies across its sales and marketing teams, which relied on quality data for success, according to David Cowings, Chief Marketing Data Scientist for RingCentral, who presented a webinar alongside Chris Lynde, CEO of SaleScout. After defining personas across their target companies, RingCentral turned to different signals to grade its total addressable market (TAM).
Installed Technology — “We wanted to get a count of how many cloud technologies each company was running,” said Cowings. “We also wanted to get a better understanding of what kind of telecom communications products they used, as well as unified communications, collaboration tools and so on.”
Growth Signals — “The growth signals that we used previously were things such as Alexa page rankings, Facebook likes and Twitter followers,” he said. “But what we wanted to go towards was something a little more scientific that was more indicative of a company size growing or shrinking. So, we were able to utilize a growth signal from SaleScout that identified how many employees a company was currently hiring to see if we can track the hiring growth patterns.”
Relocation Information — “It’s key for us to understand if the company is moving locations or if they are opening up a new office location,” said Cowings.
Behavior Signals — “Behavior signals were something that we leveraged internal first-party and some third-party signals for,” he said. “We wanted to measure how engaged these companies were based upon email activity with them, as well as activity on the website.”
During the webinar, Cowings revealed some positive results that RingCentral has seen after optimizing its contact data, including:
- 3%-4%lift in click-through rates; and
- 5%-10%lift from MQL to SQL.
Fuze Aligns Internal Teams With Buyer Intent
Success at scale requires that sales and marketing work together as a unified team on a unified concept of their target audience.
For example, the unified voice, video and messaging company Fuze recently won a SiriusDecisions ROI Award for its ability to pivot its marketing and sales teams to better focus on ideal accounts with clearer prioritization for sales reps. In a session hosted by TechTarget, the company discussed how it formulated a strategy to leverage intent insights and engagement data to better prioritize account selection.
Prior to resetting its account targeting and analytics strategy, Fuze piloted a predictive analytics solution that did not drive the expected results.
“We went down the predictive analytics route with this initially,” said Will Pringle, VP of Worldwide Demand Generation at Fuze. “We did a very elaborate exercise alongside our sales team and, in the end, it was a spectacular failure. That data was not acceptable to sales, it was so far off that it wasn’t usable.”
To recover from that, Fuze adopted SiriusDecisions’ Demand Unit Waterfall to better understand the flow of the account journey. The company also began leveraging Engagio for their analytics to give account scores based on engagement minutes, as well as TechTarget for third-party intent signals.
Ultimately, the Fuze team saw its marketing and sales execution start to get more relevant.
“Of all the accounts we’re going after, we can tell when they are not only on the website, but what they’re looking at, the topics they’re looking at and the competitors they’re looking at,” said Pringle. “None of it would be possible without alignment, but these intent signals are bringing it to the next level.”
All these parts of account scoring, along with the intent signals garnered from top-tier accounts, have a positive impact on the company’s KPIs, especially when it comes to “elevating contribution to new pipeline creation,” according to the company.
Elevating ABM Campaigns With Account Intelligence, Planning And Personalization
The Buyer Insights and Intelligence Series also featured sessions and use case examples from ON24, Triblio and more. Company executives and industry leaders provided tactical advice to help B2B businesses fine-tune their ABM campaigns with data insights, strategic planning and customized content.
Bryn Powell, Senior Marketing Manager of Global Programs at ON24, outlined techniques for creating rich, engaging content that is scaled to individual accounts. The session spotlighted strategies for creating 1:1 webinar-based campaigns and applying an ABM framework to upsell and cross-sell accounts.
Topics covered include:
- How webinars can fit into an ABM strategy;
- How to personalize content at both the account- and persona-level;
- How to create custom resources for webinars, including CTAs, contact information, polls and surveys; and
- How to repurpose existing webinar content with customized video introductions for target accounts.
“You’ve already created this content,” said Powell. “Don’t think that it’s one-and-done and you can’t continue to promote the content and it can’t continue to touch high-value leads, as well as drive marketing-qualified leads and opportunities.”
“[Millennials] thrive on personalization,” said Lessard. “The challenge is how we think about personalization. We think about relevant, timely, contextual information. That’s great, but I think we often miss the first half of the word: personal. Are [your messages] emotional, interesting, engaging, personal and connect on a human level?”
According to Lessard, those who do personalized video well are seeing a 2-3X higher response rate when incorporating video messages in outbound emails. Video works because it is engaging, emotional, educational and empathetic. During his session, Lessard showcased new trends in video marketing, including:
- Personalizing videos with the recipient’s name or company;
- Customizing videos for target accounts with executive outreach;
- Creating custom video hubs; and
- Using video as part of your sales outreach.
Triblio CEO Andrew Yee discussed the shift towards ABM, how to operationalize ABM in your organization and use cases of successful ABM campaigns from Clarabridge, Vision Critical and FinancialForce in another session. Yee covered best practices for identifying and initiating buyer engagement, alerting sales of marketing qualified accounts, leveraging SDRs as a nurture channel and measuring pipeline.
“When customers execute account-based display ads, you will typically see a lift in in-target account traffic to your website anywhere from 30% to over 300%,” said Yee. “You want to make sure you personalize the on-site experience to capture the account visitor’s attention and engagement. You can do that by making sure when those account visitors come, they see a relevant message and relevant content that will deepen their engagement.”
In another session, Rishi Dave, former CMO of Dun & Bradstreet, Chris Nixon, VP of Marketing at CaliberMind, and Kayla Kirkeby, VP of Marketing at Dizzion, unveiled the importance of data and analytics to identify and target priority accounts. The webcast outlines how marketers can improve their ABM campaigns via a crawl, walk, run approach to target account fit, aggregated engagement and first- and third-party intent data.
“As marketers, we’ve been given so much intelligence and so much data that’s far beyond what we once had,” said Kirkeby. “What we’ve got to remember is that sometimes, there’s greater context within these small snippets of information and data that we’re gathering. It’s how you piece them together that tells the greater story versus just looking at them in isolation.”
Check out all the sessions from this year’s Buyer Insights And Intelligence Series and watch the webinars on-demand to get strategies and tips for driving orchestrated dialog with key decision makers.