It’s All in the Intent: Using Intent Data to Generate High-Quality Leads

With the huge amount of consumer data moving online, we can decipher the buying needs and patterns of literally millions of customers. Lean how to leverage intent data to generate high quality leads.

BY: RICHARD BERTCH ON SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 07, 2019
It’s All in the Intent: Using Intent Data to Generate High-Quality Leads

In this era of digitalization, there has been an enormous spurt in data. And it continues to increase exponentially.

By 2020, the world is slated to generate 44 zettabytes or 44 trillion gigabytes of data, which is roughly around the estimated number of stars in the universe. With the amount of available data doubling every two years, we are in an unprecedented era of digital growth.

Rather than letting this massive amount of data sit around passively, we can actually put it to use and unravel insights to put to our advantage.

Technology has undergone a major shift, and with it, the way the world conducts business has also changed. Majority of businesses all around the globe are moving online to make use of the power of digitalization, and increasingly storing their data in clouds, cutting down operational costs, and increasing efficiency.

With this huge amount of consumer data moving online, we can decipher the buying needs and patterns of literally millions of customers.

This is where intent data comes into the game.

Intent data is the data collected pertaining to the online activity or habits of a person.

How Can Intent Data Help In Lead Generation?

Intent data is a great way to identify and predict the behavior of your leads and prospects.

This data is recorded and used to alert the concerned sales and marketing teams of business when the criteria match their particular solution.

Using this data, the sales and marketing team can effectively identify leads and pursue them, run their email marketing campaigns, pitch the product, follow-up, and ultimately convert them to sales.

Intent data holds enormous untapped potential in the field of sales and marketing, especially when it comes to generating qualified leads. And if used properly, it could potentially open a floodgate of incoming revenue.

Impact on Sales & Marketing

The major benefit of intent data is its capability to powerfully and accurately predict which leads are ready to make a purchase, and when.

For instance, in an ecommerce site, if a person has been searching for different mobile handsets under $300 for over two weeks, there is a very good chance that they will make a purchase very soon, within that monetary range.

However, intent data is most effective when used in conjunction with other data. For example, just because someone is searching for a mobile phone under $300 is not reason enough to guarantee that he or she will buy it. It may so happen that the budget is way above what he or she can afford, and they are simply window shopping.

Thus, intent data works best when used along with other data, that narrow down the list of accounts to only those that exactly fit the product description. Other types of data would include the range of their other buying habits, firmographic data, and technographic data. The more data available, the better will be your targeted marketing campaign.

What are the types of intent data?

There are predominantly two types of intent data. They are:

First-party intent data

This type of intent data has been around for many years. It is fairly simple to gather, simply by tracking one’s website.

Third-party intent data

This is the new age intent data. Apart from tracking the activity on your website, you can keep a tab on activities on other websites as well. Not only do you get to know any spike on your own website, but you are also informed about similar spikes in other sites.

How Can Intent Data Help Generate High-Quality Leads?

There are many ways for you to leverage the intent data to your advantage.

1. Personalized experience for anonymous visitors

It’s common for your website to get anonymous visitors.

In fact, approximately 60% of your website visitors are anonymous.

Anyone visiting your website before filling out an opt-in form, fall under the purview of anonymous activities.

However, this is a slightly immature way of putting it because no customer can truly be anonymous. All you need is the right technology for identification. You can take advantage of it, and successfully identify the company or industry that the person belongs to, based simply on their Internet Protocol ID.

Disregarding this, the person is still relatively anonymous.

It is thus difficult to fit them into the broader scheme of things within a company or industry. In such cases, you have no idea where the customer fits in the professional hierarchical classification, so it becomes more difficult.

After tracking visitors successfully and getting to know more about the pages they viewed, you can use the provision of a more personalized experience. This can serve customized and tailor-made content to suit the customer needs, and push or incentivize them into purchase action.

Usually, this is also a mode to encourage anonymous visitors to identify themselves by filling up a form, so that they can be further pursued by the sales and marketing team, giving you a higher probability of conversion to sales.

2. Engagement of inbound leads

Inbound leads are an excellent opportunity to convert an inquiry into sales immediately.

Just imagine that a qualified lead has just filled up a contact form to download one of the white papers from your website. The next course of action should be to immediately contact that person to cash on the opportunity.

As per industry research, conversion rates are way higher if you are able to contact an inbound lead within the first 15 minutes. It is logical because the potential customer has just consumed your sales content, and your brand’s name is the first thing on the customer’s mind. But that brand recall will fade away quickly if you delay calling your inbound lead even for a few hours.

Hence, instead of prioritizing inbound leads with outbound ones, you need to act much faster on inbound leads to convert it into sales.

3. Pursuit of known leads

Identifying the right potential lead is a big challenge for any digital marketer.

However, the job is considered only half done if you know the identity of leads.

The next step is to capture known leads by making the potential customer to fill a contact form or to click on a specific link of your emailer. Once that happens, you pretty much know all the relevant information about your lead.

Pursuing a known lead offers a higher possibility of conversion. For instance, you are calling a business owner who runs an ecommerce business of less than $100,000 in revenue per quarter for an X geography. Here, you exactly know the requirement of lead, and you can pitch your product more efficiently. You will never pitch this business owner a marketing tool which costs $10,000 because you know that his business can’t afford such a huge marketing budget.

Known leads provide an opportunity to the sales and marketing team to roll out personalized offers by segmenting the leads into different categories.

The most qualified method to categorize leads correctly and deploy them in a suitable engagement campaign is by leveraging a combination of their known first-party and third-party intent along with the behavioral data. This helps in identifying the credible identity of leads along with their context and value within the organization.

4. Predict and identify potential prospective customers

How can you acquire customers quickly in a sea of internet users? The first step is to find out your market and its prospects. Again, intent data comes into the play.

Sales and marketing teams are on the constant quest to optimize its campaigns to ensure that they are only targeting potential customers. With over 4 billion internet users, it has become even more pertinent to identify the needs of your target audience so that you can align your product as per their needs.

Your marketing campaign must have the potential to bring the right potential customers to your website. For instance, if you are trying to sell high-end headphones, which costs $1000. Who should you be targeting? A group of teenage students or employed young people who are also music enthusiasts? The latter group makes sense because they are not dependent financially on anybody to make the buying decision and are also interested in music.

This use case is to identify prospective customers who are more likely to be interested in buying your product. Marketers can identify such groups by analyzing demographic attributes, including age, income, and interests, among others.

Behavioral analysis of customer is another medium through which you can quantify their behavior on your website. It allows the segmentation of customers and then analyzes their interaction with the company. It helps you gain essential, actionable insights about priorities, motives, and buying behavior of the customer. It also helps in achieving greater personalization.

5. Sending personalized emails

41 percent people switch their loyalties to other companies due to lesser personalization of services.

No other way of digital communication has sustained the way emails have. Despite the success of social media marketing, email continues to be a constant and reliable medium of communication.

The chances are maximum number of your target audience would have an email account. But there is one problem; they also several emails a day. Customers don’t even open several promotional emails until they see something valuable or of their sheer interest.

Personalization is the only way to churn out best returns from your email campaign. In fact, 61% of American consumers say they’ll share more personal data with companies to receive more personalized updates. It’s a win-win situation as it saves the time of both marketers and customers.

Customers are not concerned about what you sell; they care about what’s useful to them. So, there is no point in selling a high-end laptop to a high school student.

Personalized emails make even more sense as they have an 18-percent higher click through rate and 5-percent greater conversion rate.

Recommended products on personalized emails are individually selected based on their preferences and unique search history. This means that customized email campaign can fetch a sales return, which is six times higher than the average email campaign.

Personalized email campaigns also experience a lesser unsubscribe rate than the regular one. This means that you are not irritating your potential customer with your irrelevant marketing campaign and are delivering something valuable for your customers.

Wrap Up

A business can only thrive if it is able to increase its customer base every quarter. For sure success in digital sales and marketing, customer behavior data in the digital space is extremely important.

Your target should be to reach out to the maximum number of potential customers by leveraging the massive amount of available data. However, you need to leverage intent data cleverly to get maximum output out of available data.

You can identify customer buying behavior, dig out hidden patterns in purchasing behaviors, and segment the market through demographics, geography, psychographics, and consumer behavior. The target audience becomes more relevant with such practices and helps in generating high scoring leads and customers eventually.

About the Author

Richard Bertch

Richard is a contributing finance author at ChamberofCommerce.com and freelance writer about all things business, finance and productivity. With over 10 years of copywriting experience, Richard has worked with brands ranging from Quickbooks to Oracle creating insightful whitepapers, conversion focused product pages and thought leadership blog posts. Richard can be reached at richardbertch@gmail.com.

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