March 20, 2023

Don’t Be the Spammer That Goes to Market (Part 2)

By: Megan Creighton


Ricciardi Group’s “Going, Going, Gone to Market” content series is focused on exploring smarter targeting strategies that drive real business growth. In our first article, my colleague Jay DiPietro explored the negative side effects of mass marketing and determined that one of the most important things to avoid in B2B marketing is spamming your audience.

To recap, when people think of spam they think of obvious junk piling up in an email folder that they bulk delete every so often. In reality, spam encompasses much more than that. It includes ALL unwanted interactions from a brand, such as:

  • Irrelevant offers
  • Conflicting messages
  • Advertisers that just produce noise
  • Sellers that don’t know things that they really should know about you

All of these things lead to frustrated prospects and hurt the credibility of your brand, which can be detrimental to your marketing goals, including your performance marketing. 

So, what’s the answer? Enter part 2 of our series: Data-driven Account-based marketing.

All of our marketing activities boil down to one singular activity: B2B selling. It’s our goal as performance marketers to ultimately build a pipeline for the sales team and drive real business growth. In order to do this successfully, marketing and sales teams must be aligned – if sales teams are prioritizing selling to specific accounts, then marketing teams should prioritize marketing to the same or similar accounts. Better yet, marketing and sales teams should work as a unit to deliver the most cohesive account experience.

Get Smarter with Account Intelligence

Think about how clever and tailored B2C experiences are becoming. B2B experiences can and should be that way too. You just have to take the time to be diligent and “do your homework.” And there are principles, technologies, and tools that you can apply to help you.

Your ultimate goal: account intelligence.

By marrying your first- and third-party data, you can match and maintain insights into your target accounts that will help you develop more selling strategies that won’t dismay them.

Step 1: Gather first-party data using signals.

Look toward your own MarTech stack:

  • CRM (Salesforce, HubSpot)
  • Marketing Automation (HubSpot, Marketo, Pardot, Eloqua)
  • Email (MailChimp, Constant Contact)
  • Website (Google Analytics, Adobe Analytics)
  • Advertising Platforms (Social, Programmatic, Search)
  • Owned Product Usage

Try to glean insights like:

  • What is the firmographic composition of your current customer base?
  • Which titles and departments were a part of the buying process and what roles did they play?
  • Who were the decision makers and at what point were they involved in the process?
  • Which types of companies took the shortest amount of time to close and which types of companies have the highest contract value?
  • Which types of companies are most likely to be upsold?
  • Who is subscribing to your email communications or engages with you on social media?
  • Which types of content are resonating across your website and advertising campaigns?
  • Which companies have the highest usage of your products or services?

Step 2: Maintain your data! 

The average B2B database is 25% inaccurate at any given time (Forrester). This includes: reconciling duplicates, cleaning inaccurate data, enriching missing data points, and validating emails.

If you don’t have a recurring database maintenance plan in place, it’s recommended to reach out to your database administrator, your platform representative, or an outside vendor for assistance and guidance on best practices.

Step 3: Connect with third-party data sources 

Appending your first-party data with third-party data sources can help you understand:

  • Company hierarchies
  • Contact connections
  • Account IDs and Industry codes
  • Technographics
  • Intent (surging content consumption around specific topics, active competitor research)

The End Goal

Once your team is aligned on your first- and third-party data sources, you can incorporate these insights into custom fields within your database to keep it organized, accessible, and well-maintained. In addition, you can augment your lead and account scoring to assign more weight to certain activities or attributes that are the most impactful. The payoff is a clear view into the types of accounts that are the most strategic for your business to go after, and where accounts fall into each phase of the buyer’s journey.

To learn how you can turn these insights into action, stay tuned for our next post in this 3-part series, 3 Ways to Activate Your Account Intelligence Data.

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