By Ellen Gomes
Using rich data is commonplace in the B2B world. It seems though that people have tended to shy away from applying those same data-driven marketing principles to the consumer marketing world or may not have even known that it’s possible. For the businesses that do, it’s a game changer.
B2B marketers have the art of prospecting down to a science. They know exactly what their clients look like and use data insights to guide their ideal targets through the buyer’s journey.
Although the B2C world is different, in some ways there’s a lot to be learned from the way B2B marketers manage their audiences, personalize their customer experiences, and use data to drive strategy.
Let’s take a look at some areas that we’ve traditionally thought of as B2B marketing and examine at the process through a B2C lens.
New Data Economy
I had the pleasure of attending the Marketing Nation Summit recently where Marketo CEO Steve Lucas welcomed us to the Engagement Economy. The process Lucas outlined for success in this new era is to listen, learn and engage. Although this might seem like an obvious way of operating, it hasn’t always been as easy as 1-2-3 for businesses to follow this process.
The area that most organizations have struggled with is the learning part. In order to effectively engage with their customers, organizations must gain insights about who they are, what they care about, and what they are interested in.
Many B2B marketers have successfully overcome this challenge by leveraging third party data to cover information gaps, which allow them to learn as much as possible about their clients, prospects and target accounts. For example:
- Firmographics—Detailed company characteristics have become widely available through LinkedIn or vendors such as Dun & Bradstreet and ReachForce.
- Technographics—An organization’s technological profile can now be scraped by companies like Datanyze and BuiltWith.
- Intent Data—Business users web content consumption can be gathered from social listening tools or web aggregators, like Bombora.
- Engagement Data—As we all know, this is Marketo’s sweet spot—an engagement platform enables us to track how an individual is currently engaging with your organization across channels and across marketing and sales for seamless communication.
All of this sounds great, right? But you might be wondering if this level of rich data is even available on a consumer level? Well, previously this would have been near impossible. But we have come a long way in understanding individuals to the point that your reliable data options are starting to become plentiful.
In the past, you may have only had someone’s name, address, and their transaction history with your company. While you can glean some insights from this 1st party data, you really need to enrich with 3rd party data to get some real, actionable insights. Let’s look at some of the data points that are now accessible to help drive a strategy for B2C marketers.