ABM Data Challenge

Data Myopia

Data defines your greatest sales and marketing assets

Targeting, personalization, measurement... what do these all have in common? Data. Specifically, ABM Data.

Considering data to be a contact you purchase, an Intent Data signal you acquire or a marketing list to hammer upon misses the point. If your company has been in the market for more than a few years, chances are, you already have contacts, intent signals and companies lodged somewhere between platform silos in your tech stack.Data Myopia starts when marketers focus on expanding technical capabilities rather than organizing and making sense of the underlying data in those technologies. #ABM #AccountBasedMarketing #B2BMarketing Click To Tweet

Don't make it unnecessarily difficult for buyer to buy

Contrast these two perspectives...

  • B2B buyers evaluate vendors in a considered purchase using an average of 6 channels
    • Two-thirds of them leave the experience dissatisfied and frustrated, finding no clarity and consistency in the content between channels... making it unnecessarily difficult for them to under understand what the vendor does.
  • Enterprise marketers have deployed an average of five personalization technologies yet only 14% of them can integrate personalized experiences across two or more channels, and 74% say that return on their personalization efforts has been marginal so far.

Intent isn't a way to purchase great targeting

In all the conversation of Intent Data, what's most often left out is the idea that your sales and marketing data is already laden with intent signals.

Intent data is a signal. That's it. It's a great signal because it's trying to fill the "blindside" of your data, the vast majority of the time your audiences aren't directly engaged with you.

Having said that, 3rd party data isn't a panacea. It suffers from three great issues:

  1. Latency - in the best of all situations, it takes weeks for an Intent platform to identify and score sufficient knowledge to determine in market behavior.
  2. Accuracy - it's not always intuitive that the keywords or topics used by an audience reflect what you think they do. For example, if you're an IT security company, it's plausible that people researching physical security or home security might get wrapped up into the signals.
  3. Completeness - your 1st party insight, the knowledge that a target account is responding to your sales and marketing activities, is not included in Intent Data, yet is vastly more important to know.

If you're primary marketing action is to subscribe to an Intent Data feed and trigger sales and marketing actions, you'll always be a day late and a dollar short. By the time accurate intent data is found in 3rd party platforms, that means, by definition, that the account is already weeks into their research and evaluation phase of the purchase. This isn't to say that 3rd party Intent Data is bad or wrong, it's just not a complete marketing strategy.

Don't make it unnecessarily difficult to measure results

New research by Demand Gen Report indicates that only "7% of B2B marketers in the US rate their company’s current ability to measure and analyze marketing performance and impact as 'excellent'".Key to this finding, marketers have relied upon platform based analytics and the majority, 52%, find themselves manually manipulating spreadsheets to try to close the gap.

In a world where B2B buyers use an average of 6 channels to engage sellers, how can we unravel the mess of platform-based measurement when nearly half of the marketers can't measure any results across channels? If that's not enough, half of the marketers aren't able to measure results between buyer stages.

Correcting your vision of data

Until you have a comprehensive and connected view of people and company level data across your tech stack, your marketing will suffer from all the stuff above, and more.

Make 2019 the year where you take a deep breath and develop an internal SWOT team to address this Data Myopia. Sure, there are customer data platform solutions that could help you with this but don't think this is your only path. At least at the onset. Initially, you might want to simply tag and match data between two core systems, like CRM and Marketing Automation. We wrote about this a few weeks ago (High-Performance ABM Starts with a Data Foundation), take a look at that as a next step, and feel free to reach out to us if you need some help or advice.