By Barbara Winters, HG Data
Just like the majority of B2B marketers today, you’re probably very aware of account-based marketing (ABM). In addition, since the strategy is so popular among marketers today, you know it can deliver a strong competitive edge.
ABM succeeds when you build your ideal customer profile with all the public information you can acquire. While demographics and firmographics give a baseline to your customer profile, turning a prospect into a customer still requires a lot more information.
Technographics provide information on technology installation and other insights, such as when a particular technology might have been purchased, how long it’s been in use and where it is being used. Combining demographic, firmographic and technographic data can make all the difference in completing a sale.
Take, for instance, these two competing vendors.
“Vendor A” and “Vendor B” both have identified midsize manufacturers as a market that is a good fit for their SaaS offering. Based on their account histories, both see a high likelihood that prospects in this market will want what they’re selling. Both vendors have all the same demographic and firmographic data, but Vendor B also has access to technographic data on the prospect. The technographic data reveals exactly what ERP technology the prospect is currently using, approximately how long they’ve used it and when they last upgraded. Who do you think wins the business?
Data-Driven Insight Is The Game Changer
Although both vendors have viable cloud-based ERP SaaS applications, Vendor B closed the business using technographics and here’s why:
Personalized Messages: Personalizing by name and contact information is only the beginning. Technographics enable your sales and marketing people to personalize the message based on specific installed base information and insight.
First Impressions: When you only have seconds to make an impression, you need to lead off with your most compelling argument. A prospect is more apt to pay attention when you can point out specifically how you compete with their current ERP.
First With The Solution: Even if Vendor A could potentially collect the same technology install data over time, when you have technographics, you can spend less time gathering information and more time building a sales strategy and tailoring its message.
Focus On Pain Points: Look for the problems a prospect will face before they become serious. Vendor B’s sales and marketing had the information needed to identify both the potential problem and the solution. They then reached out to the prospect from a position of insight, knowledge and understanding.
Connect With The Right Stakeholders: By leading with a customized message addressing a specific issue, Vendor B has a higher likelihood of connecting with the decision makers responsible for making a buying decision.
Communicating From A Position Of Strength: Because Vendor B saw specific customer challenges on the horizon and could address those head-on by marketing a realistic solution, the sales team didn’t have to try to win the business on price. Data-driven insight enables you to analyze the situation and recommend the best path forward — whether you’re offering a compatible solution or arguing for replacing a competitor.
Barbara Winters is the VP of Marketing at HG Data. She has more than 20 years of technology marketing experience and a successful track record of growing brand value and revenue through integrated marketing programs. Prior to HG Data, Winters worked at Intel in a variety of marketing roles, from campaigns to market research to branding and messaging. As a non-engineer who has spent her career in tech, both software and hardware, Winters’ expertise revolves around helping brands talk to their customers instead of themselves.