Business-to-business data can feel like a tough mountain to climb in the marketing world. It can be difficult to know what information will be most useful to you, where to find the B2B data you’re looking for, and how it will help your marketing spend. In this article we will define B2B data, detail where you can find B2B data, and discuss how better B2B data can lead to higher ROI.
Business-to-business data, or B2B data, is a database of company and employee information used for marketing and sales purposes. The type of information found on B2B databases includes company names, employee names, job titles, departments, job descriptions, tenure, email addresses, phone numbers, social media profiles, technographics, and firmographics.
This information is then used to prospect, determine decision makers, establish your target market, and generate leads.
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Technographics involve categorizing companies based on the technology they use. This data can include what technology products they use, the purpose it serves, how much they pay for it, and how long they’ve been using it for. This helps sales professionals tailor their pitches to showcase the benefits of their technology over a competitor’s.
Firmographics are a set of descriptors used to categorize companies into different market segments. They commonly include company size, location, and Standard Industrial Classification (SIC). The same way we categorize people with demographics, we categorize companies with firmographics. Marketing professionals use firmographics to define their target market in a B2B capacity.
There are many places where you can find B2B data, from paid to unpaid, and fairly easily to difficult. The options we are going to discuss are social media, website data, ways to purchase data, and companies that provide B2B data.
Social media is a free and fairly easy way to source B2B data. The amount of digging you have to do will vary from person to person, depending on how many social media profiles they have and how active they are on each one.
The top source is usually LinkedIn because typically people list their job title, job description, and how long they’ve worked in each job. You can also view posts and articles written by this person, as well as their reactions to other people’s posts.
Beyond the basic data people usually list on their LinkedIn profiles, you can also dig a little deeper for the types of posts, people, and companies they interact with. Other social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter will probably show a more personal side to them.
On these platforms they’ll probably post more about their family, interests, and hobbies. If you’re going into a sales meeting with someone, this could help you create conversation and build connections around shared interests.
Your business’s website can be a great resource for B2B data that might otherwise go undiscovered. If your website has blog posts, whitepapers, or informational ebooks to attract potential customers, you can analyze the website traffic they bring in. Since they’re already clicking on this content, you have an idea of their interests.
Beyond this, you can also analyze website traffic volume, the source of the traffic, and conversions. You can use website tracking tools to obtain this information. Another way to collect this data is to require visitors to provide basic contact information like their name and email address in order to download your material. This tells you who they are, how to contact them, and a topic that interests them.
When looking at your prospects’ websites, they might have a “Meet the Team” page which lists employee names, titles, and a brief introduction, often with a professional headshot. Company websites sometimes have blogs. The authors and content of these blog posts might also hold valuable B2B data for you to consider.
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If you don’t have the time or the patience to gather B2B data, there are paid options for you to outsource this work or purchase the data outright. One option is to hire freelancers to gather B2B data from the internet for you. There are several freelancer websites including Fiverr, PeoplePerHour, and UpWork where you can hire someone directly. You can pay people hourly or on a project basis.
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Another option for obtaining B2B data is purchasing it outright from existing databases, reputable agencies, and on-demand B2B data providers. A few B2B data companies are Krill Technologies, GBSN Research, and FrescoData. With an on-demand B2B data provider, you will work together to define your target market. Then, at your command, they will begin researching for you. This means the data you’ll receive is current and accurate.
Better B2B data can lead to higher ROI because it helps you prospect, cold call, and sales pitch more effectively. Having up-to-date B2B data is a huge time saver when making a list of prospects and cold contacting them. If you have an accurate list of names, job titles, and contact information, this allows you to make sales calls quickly and more efficiently.
B2B data can stretch your marketing budget because it means you won’t have to spend extra time looking up office phone numbers or email addresses. Your sales team can spend all of their time cold calling and cold emailing instead of searching for contact information. This should hopefully translate to an increase in sales pitches, meetings, and new clients.
Having the technographics and firmographics of companies you are looking to target helps you improve your marketing spend because you’re only spending time and money on companies that are likely to be receptive to your efforts. Having the proper research allows you to better see which leads are potentially hot or cold.
Having current mailing addresses and contact information means marketing packages are being delivered to the correct people in the correct places. If you know who the decision makers are, you know exactly who you need to send a marketing package to. With B2B data, you no longer have to waste time pitching to an employee who doesn’t make the purchasing decisions.
Business-to-business (B2B) data is company and employee information compiled into a database for sales and marketing purposes. A few examples of B2B information are company names, technographics, firmographics, employee names, job titles, tenure, job descriptions, office phone numbers, email addresses, and LinkedIn profiles.
This data is then used by marketing and sales professionals to establish their target market, pinpoint decision makers, prospect, and generate leads.
B2B data can be found on social media platforms, on your own website and other company sites, and it can be purchased from outside sources. Social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram can be great sources for company and employee information. People’s profiles can potentially tell you how long they’ve been at a certain job, what their responsibilities are, and what their hobbies are outside of work.
Your own company website is a great avenue for sourcing B2B data. Content like blog posts, whitepapers, and informational ebooks can help draw in traffic. Then you can analyze your website traffic volume, the traffic source, and conversions. You already know what your traffic is potentially interested in based on the content they’re clicking on.
When analyzing your prospects’ websites, sometimes there is a “Meet the Team” page which lists employee names and titles along with a professional headshot. If a company website also has a blog, you should scan the posts for insight on the author. These blog posts could potentially provide valuable B2B data.
If you don’t have the time or patience to conduct B2B research yourself, you can outsource this task to a freelancer. Websites like UpWork, Fiverr, and PeoplePerHour can help you do this. You can also purchase this information from B2B databases, agencies, and on-demand providers.
Accurate B2B information can help improve your marketing spend because you’re spending time, money, and effort on hot leads and decision makers. You’re also sending marketing packages to the right people in the right positions.
The information we discussed surrounding business-to-business data, where to find it, and how it can lead to higher ROI were meant to demystify the process, make it manageable to implement, and provide value for all levels of marketing professionals.