Intent data is all the rage – that’s because it’s the closest thing we B2B marketers have to getting inside the minds of our current and future customers. Since 2017, Terminus has partnered with Bombora to bring B2B demand marketers what we believe to be the best-in-breed intent data.
Now, we’ve deepened our integration with Bombora to bring your intent data into Account Hub automatically. No more manual exports and merging – we handle the heavy lifting for you so that you can focus on taking action on your intent data as soon as you get it.
Why is intent data in Hub mission critical for me?
I’m glad you asked.
It sounds like a little thing – piping intent data directly into Account Hub to save you a few clicks. But let’s think about why intent data is so valuable in the first place: it tells us when to hit the NOS on engagement with a specific account.
That means that the recency of the data – and your ability to action it quicker than your competitors – is a core part of what makes it valuable. Keep in mind that the way Bombora delivers meaningful signal is by first creating a baseline for how much every account normally consumes content on every topic. (They do this automatically – you don’t have to do anything!) When they say an account is surging, it means they’re seeing significantly more research on a certain topic than normal for a given account.
Hear it from Bombora co-founder Michael Burton directly:
Using Company Surge data to its fullest potential comes down to a few core actions:
First, selecting a broad, comprehensive set of topics that are directly related to the service provided – think about the pain points, benefits, use cases, company and product names related to what you’re selling. When companies are surging on more than one of these topics, and certainly on several of these topics at the same time, it is a very strong indicator of intent.
Second, acting on that signal quickly. Our most successful customers use intent signals to automatically trigger actions in platforms like Terminus. When intent signals the beginning of a buying cycle, Terminus triggers awareness campaigns across display and social networks. Once signals get more intense or specific, air cover should increase and span multiple channels, and these insights should be passed over to sales so everyone aligns on the right accounts at the right time.
So as soon as you get the signal, the name of the game is acting on it fast – and Account Hub lets you do that!
How to use intent data to level up your demand gen engine
You can use intent data to level up many parts of your B2B marketing practice (and many marketers already are). Here are just a few tactical plays.
Run proactive ads to companies with intent for your topic area
Intent is your earliest signal that a company might be entering a buying cycle for your product or service. The simplest way to get value out of intent data is by using it as a trigger for entry into an advertising program.
In Terminus, your Bombora intent data has two values:
- Intent topic (the keyword for which an account is showing intent)
- Last Surge date (the last time the account showed intent for that topic – delivered once a week)
As soon as intent signal comes into your system, you can use it to automatically start warming the account with display advertising. This ensures you get your message in front of potential buying committees as early as possible.
Pro-tip! The more topics a prospective account is surging on simultaneously – the higher level of confidence Bombora and Terminus have that they are entering a buying cycle.
Use intent as a progression measure in markets without innate demand
Some of us are lucky enough to be building new categories (oh, I don’t know, like account-based marketing platforms). But when you creating a new solution to a problem, it often means there’s no innate demand for your solution – yet.
Consider using intent data in areas adjacent to your fledgling category to assess whether your message is getting noticed in the market. This is sort of the reverse of the strategy above – instead of starting with accounts that show intent, start with accounts that match your ideal customer profile but have not yet shown intent for keywords adjacent to your solution.
As you begin to target them with account-based campaigns, you can look at the increase in intent signal as a way to measure whether your messaging is resonating with your audience and driving more intent for a solution.
In this case, you may focus intent keywords on the problem you’re trying to solve, rather than specific descriptors of your solution.
Deliver topics to SDRs to tailor their outreach
Intent keywords are a great tool for SDRs when they’re flowed directly into SFDC on their active accounts. They can both help SDR or BDR teams focus their day with a priority hit-list of in-market accounts, and provide critical clues on what sort of personalization might resonate best within a specific account.
This works especially well if you have a broad product or services offering that solves multiple challenges or functional areas. Sometimes reps can be left wondering where to start and which products or problems to focus on – intent data (along with your own first-party engagement data segmented by product line or subject area) can help with that!
Keep track of churn risk with competitor intent
Intent data doesn’t stop being useful after the first sale. In fact, tracking intent for your competitor’s branded keywords within your existing customer base can be a great way to help your success or account management team predict at-risk accounts and take action earlier.
An unhappy POC might not tell you that they’re thinking of switching, but they will tell the rest of the internet. Monitoring their intent signal and surfacing it to account managers, or using it to automatically trigger campaigns, makes sure that your team can react in time to address early concerns or surface features your customers might not know you had.
Use intent as a signal for account progression to ramp up engagement
You should be running some of your most aggressive campaign tactics when an account is showing prolonged intent across a wide group of relevant topics. We’ve all read the stats about how the first sales rep in a deal is significantly more likely to win, all else being equal. This is because they’re able to have those critical first consultative conversations that frame the terms in which the future customer thinks about the problem, and possible solutions to the problem. It’s your chance to stack the deck in your favor by deciding what deck you’re all playing with.
The opportunity to frame the entire buying process is precious – and it’s a marketer’s job to create and monopolize on those opportunities. That first intent signal is the time to go hard with consultative content that helps your prospect put their problem into words, and start framing what they’re going to look for in a solution.
This is where it’s great to get omni-channel: coordinate ads, BDR email, direct mail, and hyper-personalized content hubs.
So there you have it – now go put your intent data into action!
Originally published on April 3, 2019.