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Using B2B data: 4 questions to identify a campaign's perfect audience

by Julie Knight 28 Nov, 2018

How do ensure your data helps get messages in front of the right people?

As B2B data providers, we’re relied upon by our customers to provide accurate and robust information which will help put their campaign messages in front of the right people.

We also need to be able to advise and guide our customers so that they understand how to identify the correct audience and, ultimately, to define their ideal buyer.

Yes, this can be a challenge, but it’s a challenge we relish which is why we take a consultative approach with our customers. We don’t simply take their order.

This means that not only will we give suggestions on data briefs, but we will question the logic of the data brief if we feel it is missing the mark.

So, in the spirit of this consultative approach, we have identified four questions you should ask yourself when starting out on a B2B marketing campaign so that you can be sure you identify the right target audience.

  1. Do you understand the problem your product/ solution/ service solves?

To define your target market, you have to thoroughly understand what business problem your company solves or gap in the market it fills. Only by understanding the problem will you start to then understand who is most likely to suffer from these problems, and start to narrow down industries, verticals and potential buyers.

  1. Have you spent time researching the target buyer?

Once you know the problem, you can start to research a potential buyer and build out a "buyer persona". Essentially, this is a semi-fictional customer based on research.

To build an effective persona you should research your existing customer base; question your sales people; even use independent research if necessary. Do whatever you can to build a picture of your customer and understand their ‘pain points’ and business problems.

Once you have this, you can use a B2B data list to identify companies, and crucially people within those companies that fit the bill.

  1. What are your market segments?

You may have a specific solution for a particular industry - retail, finance, transport, manufacturing etc. - but even within those industries there are going to be different verticals and nuances which could impact the B2B data you need.

Understanding your market means that you can start to segment industries into the individual verticals, and then source reliable data to target each niche audience within the wider sector(s).

This is particularly important when thinking about a strategic campaign because understanding exactly which market you want to target is crucial to sourcing actionable data that will deliver results.

For instance, our Megabase includes a responsive classification system with 2,300 industry types - more than double the government issued Standard Industry Classification (SIC) codes.

This in turn enables much better targeting. By understanding the industry you want to target, you can significantly narrow down this classification from 2,300 to something far more bespoke.

  1. What data do you need to contact your target audience?

Now you know the business problem you solve, you know your buyer persona and you know your target market – the next step is identifying the data you need and what data is available to target your audience.

There are so many data sources available now that it can be difficult creating an accurate and legally-compliant list. This is where a data partner can help.

For instance, our Megabase pulls in data from the top five leading sources in the UK (118 Information, Thomson Directories, Dun and Bradstreet, Corpdata and Companies House), de-duplicates the information and processes over 40 different quality checks. The result is a premium database of high-quality, legally compliant contacts in over 2000 different market sectors.

We use the same processes for every type of information we provide whether it’s email, telephone numbers or postal addresses.

Armed with the right data list, an understanding of what the product brings to the market, a solid buyer persona and a knowledge of the market segment that should be targeted, campaigns are given the best chance of success.

And, if you decide to test us as your data partner, understanding each of these elements will help us to source the most accurate B2B data for your campaign. Together, it’s a win win.

For more information on how to get the most out of data download our Complete Guide to B2B Data eGuide now

 

Topics: data

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