Customers, including B2B ones, demand that they get personalized service from a business if they are to buy the latter’s offering. To succeed at this, your business’s CRM database should possess quality customer/client data that extends beyond minimal contact information. You need complete data so that your marketing and sales team will know how to hit the right spots and get the conversions you desire.
If all of this seems too much for you, then fret not. This article gives you information about the data sources you need for list building, the steps involved in the process, and the benefits of outsourcing it. Read on to build a loyal customer base and a robust future for your business.
Data Sources Used for List Building Purposes
There is no dearth of rich customer and client data sources in this information age. The challenge though is to filter and select the ones that deliver the best quality of data possible with the least resource expense. The clutch is to cast as wide a net as possible to capture information from multiple data sources but not compromise on the quality of data available.
Here are a few rich customer data sources that you should utilize to unleash the full potential of your CRM.
♦ Customer Referrals
If you have an app or website that people frequently visit, like an eCommerce portal, then you can take the help of your present customers to get information about potential new ones. All you have to do is ask them to refer your service to their contacts, like friends and family. In exchange, you can reward them with a discount or some other perk.
The advantage of this method is that the new person is likely to be more willing to divulge their contact details since the request is coming from a person they are familiar with. This is a version of word-of-mouth marketing, which is a very effective method of brand building. Here though, you get something valuable in return along with more conversions, i.e., your new customer’s contact information.
People like to feel lucky by winning prizes, so why not use that fact to gather more information about them? This is the idea behind holding contests like lucky draws. You can do this either online or offline. All you have to do is ask them to fill out a form with their details to enter the contest and get a chance at a reward.
While that is happening, you will be rewarded with a flurry of customer information that can include not just emails but also phone numbers and addresses in case you intend to send their gift to their doorstep.
The classical method of gathering customer data for list building and surveying is a must for every type of organization. It not only gives you the customer data you need but also lets you have a pulse of the market at large with opinion surveys. One of the most effective ways of implementing surveys is post-sales feedback. You increase the chance of gaining that customer’s information for a few reasons.
One is that the person is already familiar with your brand and its offerings. Thus, there’s a certain level of trust that’s already established. Another important factor is that they will feel that they are contributing to developing the product/service by making their opinion known. Thus, you are getting their contact information and their purchase references and helping them build brand loyalty.
Another scenario where you can implement a survey is before the launch of your brand or product/service in a market. You can build curiosity among your target audience with relevant ads before launching your survey campaign. You can give a brief account of what your brand and product/service is about and ask for their opinion. Similarly, you can also get their contact information while providing some perks like early bird offers.
♦ Website/Landing Pages
Your business is practically non-existent if it doesn’t have a website. Statistics show that 75% of customers judge a company’s credibility based on its website design alone. So why not use this valuable piece of marketing digital real estate to gather some visitor information while they explore your brand? The most potent way to get their information is via the Contact Us section. You can have them fill out a form with their details with the promise of a personalized service/product sale experience.
You can even have pop-ups that show up soon after they hit a page that asks for their details to send them newsletters and other communication material. You could also create dedicated landing pages with survey forms. Their URLs can be attached to ads about your services/products so that the customer goes directly to these places, increasing the likelihood of you getting more leads.
An example of this tactic in action is an Internet Service Provider asking for a customer’s details to install their router and provide their services. The customer must fill out their contact details for the technician/salesperson to visit the customer’s premises to either provide a demo or install the necessary equipment. Either way, the ISP gets the contact details of the customer, even in cases where the customer refuses the service.
♦ Online Events
Recent lockdowns brought forward the true potential of the Internet in connecting people. Since people couldn’t attend live events offline, they did the same online via webinars and online concerts.
This trend has remained, and its prevalence has only solidified, with the future looking to bring in more of the same. With people getting accustomed to this method of attending events, you have the potential to make it big in gathering customer list-building data.
It is customary for formal webinar conductors to gather basic information about attendees before the event to appraise them of its start date, time, and other information. This data collection includes designation, company name, official email ID, etc., all vital data for solid list building.
Informal events, too, can get similar data during the signup and ticket provision phases. The online ticket-buying option necessitates the use of customer contact information to send the ticket and other important information about the event. Online surveys about the event can also form a part of the data-gathering process since an attendee is more likely to respond to one right after the conclusion of an event.
♦ On-Ground Events
While the world is certainly doing a lot of activities online, some things simply cannot follow the trend. An example is a food fest; unless people can pull dishes out from their screens, they are left with no choice but to attend one on location. Such events provide the perfect opportunity to gather customer data for list-building purposes.
You can follow a similar strategy as online events, where you hand out rewards, tickets, or other event-related items in exchange for attendee data. You could also hand out feedback survey forms at the exits or during the event so that you get to understand your audience better alongside getting their contact information.
♦ Social Media Accounts
Social media companies’ business model is based on gathering their users’ data and providing them with relevant ads. Why not get in on the action yourself via your social media accounts? These platforms provide a treasure trove of customer contact information in just a few steps.
You could use a data scraping service provider to gather customer information in bulk from these websites. Additionally, you could run through the usual list of customer outreach methods, like contests, quizzes, promotions, and direct feedback, to attract customers and get their contact information.
An unsung advantage of using social media is that people regularly update their bio, ensuring that your contact information doesn’t go stale. You also get the advantage of brand familiarity via referrals and other sharing options. Thus, your followers are more likely to give you the information you need about themselves, especially if they feel you are personally reaching out to them.
♦ Partner Sites
A business is seldom a lone-wolf effort, requiring the help of many others in a mutually beneficial arrangement. This applies to gathering customer information as well. You could get access to the customers of other businesses when they run ads on their platforms or introduce your brand in their email newsletters.
What Is the Standard List Building Process?
The collection and processing of data gathered via multiple sources is a long and arduous process that requires careful planning and execution. This is followed by an equally time-consuming process of extracting the relevant information through multiple data management functions.
The resultant contact list is one of the most valuable assets of your company since your sales and marketing personnel won’t have to worry about making wrong moves when they reach out to their prospects.
The many steps that help deliver the perfect contact list are elaborated on below.
♦ Gathering Customer Data
Every piece of client data is a valuable resource that needs to be considered. There are a lot of sources available to businesses wishing to broaden their operating horizons. To collect essential consumer data from all reliable sources, a comprehensive setup is necessary.
Further, it is necessary to sort through the data that has been gathered and choose the most pertinent information to include in the database. Given that information will come from many sources and be collected over a lengthy period, the data volume may be substantial. If you outsource list-building services, the company’s experts will be able to manage that task with ease, ensuring proper data entry and list development.
♦ Contact Profile Creation
The next phase develops a buyer persona, carried out when all the relevant information about customers or clients has been collected and accurately categorized.
The method that salespeople must use to increase the likelihood of turning that prospect into a buyer will be determined by the persona. It will include a variety of data that the contact building company has produced, including industry, company size, the customer’s need for your product or service and how well it will meet that need, their view of it, and how likely they are to enter a contract.
♦ Understanding Target Companies
You can concentrate your efforts on those that are most likely to produce results by evaluating the target organizations as part of the B2B list development process. You’ll be able to more readily reach them based on criteria that influence them like location, industry, SIC/NAICS codes, serving markets, size, and franchises. The process becomes easier once you know which ones will meet your predicted bespoke profiles
♦ Leveling of Personnel and Departments
Since there is a hierarchy in an organization, your chances of success are higher if you target its most powerful people. You will be able to layer the database of contact information more effectively based on the relevance of each contact to your goals. The information you have about target companies and their profiles and the buyer’s persona that you will create through the available data should help immensely with this goal.
Finding the decision-maker in your target department and directly approaching them will reduce the number of resources required to execute the assignment, increasing profit margins.
♦ Targeting Specific Individuals
The process of gathering and learning every detail about the critical decision-maker starts once they have been identified. It’s time to look up any pertinent personal information about that person that is publicly available online that relates to their work profile.
Outsourced contact discovery firms that work primarily online can diligently compile the necessary data and produce the complete persona that your sales staff will require when carrying out their duties. Without adding any bulk to your operations, they will provide you with what you require.
♦ Contact Information Confirmation
Erroneous data can enter the database despite the most recent data mining techniques and technologies and cause a speed bump in your company’s smooth operations. Inaccurate contact information is particularly troublesome since it will prevent the first step required for progress—making contact.
To validate them, you should check each target’s available contact information. Such as email addresses, phone numbers, office addresses, and social media profiles. If this layer of data validation is applied during contact database creation, the overall accuracy of your data will improve. Additionally, your salespeople won’t have to deal with ineffective contacts or, worse, deliver information or packages to the wrong person.
A Few Tips for Effective Enterprise List Building
The ever-changing nature of the market makes list-building a difficult task that requires constant conscious input from list building experts to devise a strategy that counters. The volatility of markets and ensures the access to information about the targeted people. Here are some measures you could take toward that goal:
- Update The List Regularly: People’s contact information doesn’t remain constant. Every piece of contact information is susceptible to change, including at times, their names. Therefore, you should constantly work to keep yourself appraised of such changes. Incorporating the same into your list as soon as possible. You could do this by redoing contact data extraction either by yourself or via an outsourcing agency.
- Communicate With Your Customers: You may need to make some changes to your business and its associated elements that could affect your present customers. If so, ensure that they get to know of these changes. Otherwise, you could lose the people on the list that you’ve acquired. In some cases, you could lose those new to your business too.
- Prepare Your team : Preparing your team for the list-building process can make it efficient. Be practical about the demand volume you can handle and build the list accordingly. Set an estimated budget for it and stick to it as much as possible. Ensure that all relevant personnel are aware of their roles in the process to avoid undue confusion. Have the necessary IT setup in place for the data.
- Go With Account-Based Marketing: You may want to cast a wide net to acquire as many customers as possible but that may yield low returns. Instead, go with ABM, where only those capable of purchasing your offerings are targeted. Bifurcate your list into ABM, and other interested parties sections and prioritize the former.
Outsource B2B List Building Services For The Best Experience
A sales proposal that is well-timed and carefully crafted is crucial to a company’s ability to make money. The preparation that goes into it also impacts the company’s impression, aiding brand reputation enhancement. Due to the shared advantages realized, such trust can elevate corporate relationships to even higher levels, yielding better profitability. And the foundation of developing sales pitches is a contact discovery procedure that is precisely defined and executed.
Owing to the importance of B2B list building services. You’ll probably want to designate a specific team of people to handle it. You might decide to go the internal route because of the type of data gathered and the potential competitive advantage that data processing brings.
However, outsourcing will prove more beneficial because of the following advantages:
♦ Employee Quitting Rate Reduction
Your salespeople may already be overworked with what they have on their hands. By adding the burden of list building, you may demoralize them to the point of them giving up. Losing devoted employees is a problem for every business.
Instead, outsource B2B List Building Services to free them up to concentrate on their primary duties. All the information needed for the remote team to perform at its peak will be provided. And it will be communicated simply. Such a system motivates employees to advance, but only within your organization rather than outside of it.
♦ Cost Effectiveness
Appointing new staff and purchasing new tools for your contact-finding procedure will give you a lengthy receipt along with the contact list. In contrast, an offshore agency will only provide the latter.
You reduce the cost of the procedure while maintaining an extensive contact list thanks to the cost benefits of economies of scale, exchange rates, and years of expertise working in the sector.
♦ Quick Task Completion Time
As stated above, contact discovery is a time-consuming process that may prove expensive for the company. You can use that time more effectively to complete other, more important activities.
However, getting results quickly is also crucial, which is where external B2B list creation services excel. You can expect your lists in record time thanks to their sheer numbers and skilled labor, eliminating delays in finishing your work.
♦ Easy Access To Expertise
The thoroughness of contact discovery necessitates that people doing it are familiar with all of its nuances. In other words, it should be handled by professionals. When you outsource your work to a dedicated company, you can easily access the top professionals. You won’t be required to invest time and resources in finding and maintaining such individuals.
♦ Excellent Customer Support
A professional list-building services provider will go to great lengths to guarantee that your every request. It is addressed because collaboration is essential to a project’s success. They will be there for you at every step of the process, especially when it comes to revealing important information. They discover about your contacts when they get in touch to verify the information.
♦ Data Security
Security becomes a critical concern when keeping a contact database because enterprise data and confidentiality go hand in hand. A minor leak could result in lawsuits, lowering the value of your brand and increasing your losses.
Contact discovery services use several privacy and security safeguards to ensure this won’t happen. Regarding data generated for you, they will abide by your confidentiality terms, safeguarding both your business and your client’s interests.
Business relationships require continuously nurturing them to yield the desired benefits. That process starts with regularly gathering and maintaining accurate customer and client information from multiple valuable sources. Enlisting B2B list-building services for the task gives you the best information for your CRM purposes while providing additional benefits. That could take your list-building and other processes to new heights. Your profitability and good brand reputation are bound to follow.
Gracie Ben is a data analyst currently working at DataEntryIndia.in, a leading company providing data entry & mining services & other data-related solutions. For more than ten years, she has actively contributed to the growth of many enterprises & businesses (startups, SMEs, and big companies) by guiding them to utilize their data assets. Having a keen interest in data science, Gracie keeps herself up-to-date on all the latest data trends and technologies shaping the industry and transforming businesses. She has written over 1600 articles and informative blogs so far covering various topics, including data entry, data management, data mining, web research, and more.