How to Use B2B Intent Data to Drive Sales + Improve Returns in 2023
Your sales reps only get about 5% of a B2B buyer’s time during their entire purchasing journey, according to Gartner.
That certainly raises the stakes for every sales interaction, doesn't it?
Without comprehensive insights into buyer behavior and intent, you might keep missing out on valuable opportunities to close deals.
You don’t want to end up feeling like…
That's where B2B intent data comes in to save the day.
By capturing real-time signals and deciphering subtle cues indicating purchase intent, you can gain a competitive edge like never before and engage prospects at the right moment, with the right message.
In this article, we'll explore the key sources, signals, and strategies for gathering intent data and share a list of tools that can help you harness its power.
Discover how you can use intent data to propel lead generation, enhance customer targeting, and revolutionize your sales process.
Let’s get started!
What Is B2B Intent Data?
B2B intent data is a strategic asset that enables businesses to identify, engage with, and convert potential customers by leveraging behavioral signals and understanding their intent to purchase in the B2B market.
It’s collected by observing the behaviors of your ideal customer profile, specifically online content consumption trends. By overlaying intent data with ICP insights, you can gain a clearer understanding of who desires your product or service, aligning customer targeting efforts with actual intent.
Analyzing B2B intent data reveals the buying signals exhibited by prospects, whether those signals are overt or subtle, enabling you to position your offerings as the optimal solution.
Common buying signals may include activities like:
- Keyword research
- Requesting product demos
- Downloading bottom-of-the-funnel assets (gated content)
The benefits of B2B intent data are many – let’s have a look at a few key ones.
Benefits of B2B Intent Data
Optimizing your sales pipeline
By tapping into buyer intent data, you can easily spot the prospects most likely to become high-quality leads, boosting your lead generation game and keeping that pipeline full efficiently. And that's not all - the use of intent data also ramps up your conversion rate, getting you closer to those sales-qualified leads by engaging with potential customers who are itching to buy. Plus, for long, tricky, or complex sales cycles, intent data gives you the edge to break barriers, tailor your approach, and close the deal.
Lower churn rate
With intent data in your corner, you'll be able to spot a consistent target audience and reach out to customers before they even think of leaving. Tailored plans and prompt outreach show them you care. Plus, intent data helps you identify opportunities for upselling, ensuring you meet their evolving needs. With personalized engagement and superior customer experiences, you'll build loyalty and satisfaction.
Stronger relationships, increased retention, and a much lower churn rate.
You want customers to think…
Whether it's a targeted outreach campaign or a sales demo, personalization is the key to successful engagement.
Intent data gives you the insights to customize your sales and marketing efforts, actively listen to customer concerns, and build trust. It's all about capturing their attention and getting that positive response.
Armed with valuable insights into your customer demographic, your sales team can align your outreach with customer needs.
With intent data and personalized communication, you’ll be able to enhance experiences and drive meaningful customer acquisitions.
Types of Buyer Intent Data
Explicit Intent Data
This type of data is willingly shared by potential users through forms on your website, giving you a direct window into their preferences, needs, and interests. When they take the time to fill out a form, you get accurate insights into their intentions and requirements. It's like having their playbook in your hands. Of course, explicit intent data has its limitations. Not all website visitors will complete a form. But it’s still a goldmine for your business - with this data, you can personalize your marketing and sales strategies, cater to their needs, and create amazing customer experiences.
Implicit Intent Data
Instead of customers providing it directly, implicit intent data is derived from their indirect signals, like the keywords they research or the websites they visit.
It's kind of like having to read between the lines.
Implicit intent data offers a broader perspective, capturing a wide range of user behaviors and unveiling hidden patterns. Sure, it may be less precise than explicit data, but it reveals the underlying motivations and priorities of potential customers. By analyzing this data, you'll gain a comprehensive understanding of customer engagement, allowing you to optimize your marketing and sales strategies.
Derived Intent Data
This type of data combines the power of both explicit and implicit sources to give you a comprehensive understanding of your user’s behavior. By integrating insights from direct interactions and forms (explicit data) with online activities like keywords and website visits (implicit data), you get the full picture of your user’s intentions and preferences throughout their buyer's journey.
Working with derived intent data can be complex, but the benefits are massive. You can make informed decisions to refine your targeting strategies, personalize your marketing efforts, drive meaningful engagement, and optimize your overall sales process.
What Are Other Types of B2B Data?
When it comes to understanding and engaging with your target audience, it's important to be aware of the different types of B2B data at your disposal. Here are the five major types you should know:
- Demographic data: Includes personal information like names, email addresses, locations, employment histories, and skills. It gives you insights into your target audience's personal and geographical characteristics.
- Firmographic data: Focusing on company information, firmographic data provides details such as company names, locations, industries, employee count, and revenue.
- Technographic data: Covers information about features, integrations, hardware and software technologies, and specific tools used by businesses. It allows you to understand the technology landscape of your target audience and refine your marketing strategies accordingly.
- Chronographic data: Captures events and changes over time, such as company relocations, hiring trends, funding, acquisitions, and milestones. It helps you identify key moments and triggers that can impact purchasing decisions or present new B2B sales opportunities.
- Intent data: Intent data reveals the online behavior and intentions of potential customers, and provides insights into prospects' interests and preferences, enabling you to personalize communication and target them with relevant content.
Incorporating synthetic data into the analysis process can further enhance analytical insights and enable more accurate predictions and informed decision-making.
Let’s take a deeper look into some of the main use cases of B2B intent data.
Four Main Use Cases of B2B Intent Data
Lead and Account Scoring
As a sales rep, you often face a flood of outbound leads, making it essential to prioritize your engagement. This is where lead scoring comes into play.
With intent data, you can rank prospects based on their level of intent, creating a clear hierarchy of targets and determining the optimal order for outreach. This approach revolutionizes lead generation, ensuring that you invest your time and resources in the most promising opportunities. Buyer intent data also helps you differentiate between prospects actively researching pain points and those with casual interest, providing valuable insights to assess their fit within your ideal customer profile. By incorporating intent data into lead and account scoring, you can increase efficiency and improve conversion rates by engaging with the most qualified and engaged prospects first.
Personalizing Your Marketing Strategies
With intent data, you can optimize the website user experience (UX) and content flow for each visitor by strategically positioning relevant information to attract potential buyers.
Intent data is also especially powerful in account-based marketing (ABM), where understanding individual stakeholders and personalizing your communication is crucial.
You can identify interested prospects actively seeking your offerings and expand your account list. Moreover, intent data allows you to personalize engagements with target accounts, prioritizing outreach and crafting tailored content that resonates with stakeholders.
Your leads should be feeling like…
Targeting Your Ideal Customer
When it comes to targeting your ideal customer, B2B intent data’s got your back.
By harnessing intent data, you can create laser-focused search and display ads that capture attention and drive engagement. Understanding the intent behind a prospect's search allows for tailored messaging and accelerated buying journeys.
With insights into online behaviors and related interests, intent data empowers the delivery of hyper-targeted ad campaigns that speak directly to their needs. By cross-referencing target account lists with intent data, you can create ad experiences that are highly relevant to users based on their demonstrated interests and behaviors.
Intent data also allows you to tailor content to different stages of the sales funnel, nurturing potential customers and guiding them toward conversion.
Expanding Your Outreach
While nurturing current leads is crucial, intent data also empowers you to reach a wider audience and attract new prospects. You can identify and target a whole new segment of potential customers, introducing them to your brand and guiding them through the sales funnel.
With a deep understanding of their needs and preferences, you can deliver compelling messaging that captures their attention and encourages meaningful interactions.
Expanding your outreach through intent data ensures relevance by reaching prospects who are more likely to convert into valuable leads.
How Do You Gather Intent Data?
When it comes to capturing intent data, you've got an array of sources at your fingertips.
Your own website and external sites hold valuable clues.
Intent signals act as breadcrumbs, revealing a person's interest or inclination towards a particular product or service. These signals manifest through online actions like:
- Website clicks
- Search requests
- Social media engagement
- Email interactions
- Lead form submissions
Now, while some vendors rely on data from various channels and their internal systems, there's a more direct approach available.
Intent data providers offer powerful platforms that analyze real-time online activities of potential customers and target accounts. Instead of relying on predictions, these platforms track specific online behaviors related to your offerings.
Armed with this intel, your sales teams can reach out proactively, establishing meaningful connections even before explicit buying intent is expressed.
These platforms also offer actionable recommendations and predictions about where your contacts and accounts stand in their buying journey.
But there’s a ton of platforms out there - which one is the best for you? Let’s take a look at the 4 top tools for intent data collection.
Four Best Tools to Help You Collect Valuable Intent Data
As a leading provider of real-time B2B intent data signals, ZoomInfo offers automated workflows that seamlessly integrate with your tech stack. It allows you to enrich your existing customer records with valuable intent data and firmographics, taking your insights to new depths. With features like list quality, company information, filters, segmentation, business hierarchy info, automated workflows, and CRM integrations, ZoomInfo has got you covered.
With a massive database of over 50 million businesses and 230 million professionals, ZoomInfo also stands out for its ability to match ideal customer profiles with prospects using specific search criteria. It offers a range of services, including lead generation, email building, and live chat, to help you locate and convert ready-to-engage leads.
They offer 3 pricing plans tailored to different business needs and provide pricing details upon direct inquiry.
With their comprehensive data and advanced features, Lead Forensics helps you accelerate engagement with prospects and customers. By identifying website visitors, gathering demographics, tracking browsing duration, and more, you gain valuable insights for meaningful conversations. Renowned for its IP tracking technology and the largest B2B IP address database globally, Lead Forensics provides reliable details about unidentified visitors. Seamless CRM integration and dedicated customer support ensure a smooth experience.
They offer 2 pricing plans tailored to different business sizes and provide pricing details upon direct inquiry. Plus, you can try Lead Forensics with a 7-day free trial to experience its capabilities firsthand.
With G2's Marketing Solutions, you can educate yourself, identify in-market prospects, engage with customers who have reviewed your products, and showcase your success. Leveraging website visitor data, G2 offers actionable intent insights, notifying you when existing customers explore competitors. It also helps identify common competitors among prospects, enabling personalized sales pitches. Seamlessly integrating with tools like Salesforce, G2 offers churn risk insights and multi-channel attribution. Integrating G2 Buyer Intent into your sales stack allows for automation and targeted engagement. Overall, G2 provides a wealth of actionable data for sales teams to enhance performance and make informed decisions.
Pricing details are available upon scheduling a demo call.
This advanced conversational sales and marketing platform is designed specifically for Salesforce users, offering a range of features to supercharge your efforts. With chatbots, live chat, advanced routing, and omnichannel alerts, Qualified enables immediate action with named accounts. It empowers B2B companies to leverage their website as a data source, identifying high-value visitors and detecting buying intent signals. With features like live chat, voice and video capabilities, custom chatbot creation, and account-based buyer intent signals, Qualified helps shape targeted sales and marketing campaigns. The platform offers seamless integration with Salesforce and provides key functionalities such as buyer intent insights, B2B lead generation, CRM integration, competitor analysis, and more. With Qualified, you can enhance your pipeline generation efforts, accelerate sales processes, and drive revenue growth.
Starting from $3,000, Qualified has 3 pricing tiers, including an enterprise-grade plan.
Now, you’ve got the data collection part of B2B intent data down - but what’s next? How do you actually use it to fuel sales?
Let's take it a step further and check out how you can use buyer signals to supercharge your lead scoring with Toplyne.
Use Powerful B2B Intent Data to Score Leads With Toplyne
Toplyne’s headless AI can help you develop a smooth-running pipeline of product-qualified leads.
The tool analyzes in-app usage patterns and intent data to spot any cross-selling or upselling opportunities. This, in turn, will drive your net retention revenue (NRR) through the roof.
How does it work?
Here’s how companies like Canva and Vercel generate sales pipeline from their self-serve funnel using Toplyne:
- Step 1/7: Create monetization playbooks to surface conversion and expansion opportunities (leads most likely to convert to paying customers, and teams most likely to grow into larger teams)
- Step 2/7: Choose the right leads to target – users (individual users) or accounts (a group of users with an organization).
- Step 3/7: Select the frequency at which you would want leads synced in your GTM apps.
- Step 4/7: Define how many leads you want by either the number of leads or your expected win rate, depending on your sales capacity and GTM strategy.
- Step 5/7: Build custom segments - Build custom segments based on And/Or logic at the deepest level of sub-properties within your product analytics.
- Step 6/7: Validate your GTM strategy - Hold back some users as a control group to test your GTM strategy.
- Step 7/7: Sync your product qualified pipeline into your GTM destinations - CRMs, sales & marketing execution tools, and customer engagement platforms.
The power of B2B intent data lies in its ability to predict buyer behavior, allowing you to be proactive rather than reactive in your outreach strategies.
Embark on a transformative journey with B2B intent data as your guiding compass, diving deep into buyer behavior to fuel your lead generation and customer engagement.
Stay one step ahead of the competition by predicting behavior, aligning your sales and marketing efforts, and accelerating revenue growth through data-driven experimentation.