Customers are the lifeblood of any business. However, we don’t know them at an individual level to cater to their wants and needs. This is where intent data comes in.
Intent data helps marketers understand what their customers are actively looking for, solutions to problems, and products they’re interested in—all based on their behaviors and actions online.
But data are just numbers on a screen if you don’t know how to convert them into high-value information. We’re going to help you with that. In this article, we’ll be tackling:
- The basics of intent data.
- The importance of intent data.
- Three main types of intent data.
- How to use intent data to achieve sales goals.
What is Intent Data?
Converting data into helpful information starts with identifying intent. When used correctly, this makes intent data (also known as buyer intent data) a strong tool in any marketer’s arsenal.
It provides insight into the behavior of potential customers based on internet activity, including the content they consume and the research they’re conducting.
For example, web admins can track the activity of site visitors who accepted cookies. They get data on the pages they view, what they click on, or their downloads. So, why is this important?
The Importance of Intent Data in Sales
Intent data is essential to business growth. Analyzing this helps you develop data-driven strategies and benefits such as:
- Identifying and Qualifying Leads Faster: Insight from intent data allows you to qualify sales leads faster. But, before doing so, you want to start personalizing your outreach.
- Personalizing Marketing Efforts: Qualified leads bring the most value to your business. Intent data allows you to see pages they visited on your site, your competitors, and their paint points. From here, you can personalize cold sales email templates with tailor-fit solutions to their issues.
- Identifying Which Lead to Focus on: Intent data helps your sales team make data-driven decisions on which qualified leads to focus first. For example, let’s say a lead and a competitor have already visited your product pages.
Meanwhile, lead B has read a few educational pieces related to your industry. In most cases, you’d want to reach out to lead A first as they’re more likely to be sales-ready than lead B.
- Creating More Relevant Nurture Campaigns: After identifying the leads to focus on, the next thing you’d need to do is to automate your nurture campaigns. This can provide leads with relevant quality content and helps you increase online sales.
Types of Intent Data
There are two types of intent data used to fuel our business decisions:
This type of intent data is collected from within your sites and online platforms. Here, you can find data on the following:
- Customer behavioral data on your website, app, or social media.
- Data from CRM tools.
- Surveys, forms, and questionnaires.
- Data from email subscriptions or newsletters.
This is intent data collected outside your domains. You can get third-party data from outside sources which offers you broader insight into buyer intent.
Remember, data privacy is a necessary business practice. Be sure to get it from trusted sources who are transparent about how they got their data on:
- Behavioral data across a group of publishers, websites, apps, and social media.
- Bidstream data from websites for targeted ads.
- Data from a publisher’s owned networks of websites and apps.
Using Intent Data to Meet Sales Goals
Now that we understand where the data comes from let’s go through how to use it to reach our sales goals. The most compelling use cases of intent data include the following:
Building a prospect list is the foundation of any sales effort. But, with intent data, you can easily create a list that aligns with your ideal customer profile. Paired with a great CRM tool, you can track high-value leads from your outreach campaigns and build a strategy for conversion.
The goal is to reach new buyers, expand contacts, and create a focused outreach strategy. This is particularly effective for businesses in SaaS and B2B.
Sales Lead Qualification
After creating a solid list of prospects, you need to concentrate efforts on those ready for conversion. This works well with targeted cold email marketing as you get to personalize outreach efforts directly to your prospects.
You’ll have competition no matter what industry you’re in. If you want to get an edge, you need to understand your and your competitor's strengths and weaknesses. Intent data allows you to target leads actively, looking at both you and your competitor’s products or services.
From here, you can lay the foundations for robust acquisition and expansion strategies. Tracking this activity using competitive intelligence helps you find cracks in your competitor's strategy and look for a unique edge.
Finding Upsell and Cross-Sell Opportunities
Upselling and cross-selling help increase your customer’s average order value (AOV). But, to do these strategies effectively, you need to understand their needs. The best way to do so is by analyzing buyer intent data and automating personalized upselling and cross-selling.
Reducing Customer Churn Rates
Keeping customers is just as important as getting new ones. Intent data helps create nurturing campaigns for customers likely to walk away from your business. Even a simple email campaign backed by buyers' data can significantly reduce churn rates.
Intent data helps us better understand our customers. When this happens, we get to qualify leads faster, streamline the sales process, and focus efforts on sales-ready prospects.
Here are some important details you might’ve missed regarding intent data:
- There are two types of intent data—first-party and third-party.
- First-party intent data is sourced in-house (website, forms, social media)
- Third-party intent data is from outside sources. Be sure your source is transparent.
- Intent data can be used to support sales campaigns such as upselling or cross-selling.
- It enables faster personalization and optimizes campaigns.
Are you making the most of intent data?