B2B Data Provider: How to choose the right one for you!
B2B data purchase. It might not be a subject that gets your pulse racing but believe us when we say it, it should! Think of your data as the foundation of building a house. You wouldn’t build your forever home on sloppy, unstable marshland so why treat your campaigns any differently. An excellent, data provider will, in turn supply high-quality data to your sales and marketing team with fantastic insights enabling them to identify and target valuable prospects and market to them in a personalised way.
At Spotler, we know how time-consuming finding, cleansing, and enhancing data can be, so we’ve put together our bible of selecting the right B2B data provider for you. We’ll help you get to grips on whether your company is ready to purchase data, which provider is the right fit for you, and what criteria you should be looking out for.
Without further ado, here are a few queries we plan on tackling today:
- Do I need a B2B data provider?
- What does data provider do?
- Which data company will suit my business?
- How do I find the right data company?
- Can I email my purchased data?
Do I need a data provider?
Let us start with the basics. Is a data provider right for you? Whether you keep it in a spreadsheet (yikes!) or have the flashiest all-singing, all-dancing CRM out there, data gathering and maintenance is performed and necessary for every business. Collecting and managing this data in-house, without the help of a third party can be time-consuming, costly, and could leave your database at the mercy of human error.
Here are some exciting reasons as to why a data provider might be a good investment for you:
- Gives you, and your sales team, more time!
Let’s face it, it’s not the highlight of anyone’s day. Admin and data cleansing are a chore. With a data provider, you have the stress and responsibility taken off your plate so you can put 100% into your other tasks.
- Generates new lead opportunities.
Great, you’ve got your sales team updating CRM with loads of great insights about existing prospects. Well, that’s it. EXISTING prospects. Working with a data provider fills your funnel with loads of new, exciting leads and prospects for your sales team.
- Every marketer’s worst nightmare – GDPR.
There are so many rules and regulations when it comes to emailing new data. With a third-party provider, they stay on top of the rules for you! Working directly with a data company gives you first-hand guidance in keeping your company compliant and out of the ICO’s sight.
- Keep your data current.
Time flies when you’re having fun, and with time, company details chop and change faster than you can blink. Offices move, numbers change, and employees leave and join. You can see yourself chasing your tail when keeping your data current. You update one thing and another changes with it. Using a data provider can keep your data consistently clean and correct.
What does a B2B data provider do?
Right, so we’ve got to grips as to whether you think a data provider is the right route for you and your business. Next, lets really get into what a data provider really does.
A data provider can cover a whole range of different services. Their core values are CRM management, data cleansing and sales funnel enhancement but they umbrella out into so much more. Data providers have evolved quickly with the fast-paced business world. As needs have changed and grown, so have their services. From the early days of just selling contact details, the industry grew into something much bigger and now data providers sell full solutions equipping sales teams with the knowledge and means to connect with their target prospects.
Much like any software or service, what works as a solution for one company, might not work for another. A data provider needs to be tailored to your specific requirements as a company, so choosing the right one is imperative to its success. These interchangeable factors boil down to which industry you work in, what type of data you require, how much you’re willing to spend, and which sector the provider specialises in.
What different types of data provider is out there?
- Owned data providers. use in-house data collection techniques and technologies such as webpage crawlers and email confirmed opt-ins.
- The middlemen. Brokers and Resellers collect their data from third parties and sell it on.
- Then there are Aggregators. These companies use different paid and organic sources for their data such as websites, public resources, and directories.
Most providers aren’t one sole “type” and no category is superior to the other. To maintain the highest quality, varied data, each provider must rely on multiple sources. In order to invest in the best, we suggest you do your homework and research each provider to see how best they suit you.
Which data company will suit my business’s needs?
Purchasing data can be a big financial investment, so, understandably you want to do all your research and take into account all the factors that go into choosing the right data provider that suits your business’s needs.
Be clear about your end goal – in-house and to your potential provider
As we said previously, every company is different and requires a tailored data plan specific to their needs. In light of this, not every provider will be able to cater for you so it is vital that you are clear and confident in what you require from your B2B data provider prior to going on the hunt!
Your first thought should be, why are we looking to purchase data? Are you looking to enhance your pipeline with new leads and prospects? Are you having trouble maintaining the data you already have? Or do you have a specific new campaign you would like to start and need some assistance getting started? Whatever problem you wish to solve, ensure you communicate it clearly to your prospective data provider from word go.
Here are a few other important factors to consider during this process:
- Is the data you’re getting comprehensive enough? Start with your end goal. Your new project or what you’re going to need and use this data for. Some providers only supply contact information, which will be no use to your geographical-based marketing campaign. Ensure and enquire with the provider to make sure you’re getting data comprehensive enough for your needs.
- Don’t Duplicate! It would be a sheer waste of money for you to purchase contacts already sitting in your CRM. Make sure you ask about suppressing your duplicated contacts. This also gives you a good insight into how willing your provider is to provide you with a tailored plan!
The factors above are by no means all-encompassing, however, they’re a great place to start. You can elaborate on them due to the demands of your situation.
Do you require specific features or add-ons?
We suggest putting as much weight behind researching what special features and product add-ons each provider offers as you put into your own needs. The extra features may or may not be a necessity for your company, but it’s good to weigh up exactly what you’re getting for the price and compare which is of higher value.
This is important to consider as a provider may solve all your issues, but they may not have an integration you require, or they may cover an avenue you hadn’t thought about yet.
How is the provider’s customer service?
We believe it is THE most important thing. Second to none. Customer service. The perfect data provider quickly becomes the poorest with bad service and your customer journey will be nothing short of a miserable one if you don’t have a provider who works well with you.
Ensure that in the provider’s policy, they account for compensating for old or inaccurate data. Prior to signing any agreement with the provider, make sure you search for reviews and other customers’ experiences. Ask the provider if you are covered by any guarantee for bounced data and how you’re expected to supply evidence.
How to find the right B2B data provider
We’ve said it before, we’ll say it again, RESEARCH!
Ok, so you’re about to enter talks with a prospective provider. Ensure you enter that conversation armed with questions and requirements to save yourself time and sift through the rocks quickly to find your diamond.
Here are some top focal points for you to ask about
- Where’s your data coming from? Ok, you don’t need to know the exact location of your data, it won’t harm but it isn’t vital. What IS vital is knowing that your data is GDPR compliant and sourced legally.
- Is the data in the industry you need? Lots of providers only hold data of certain industries. Make sure to ask and research the industry which your proposed data provider covers before committing to anything.
- How much does that data cost and what does that cover? It’s important to do your research and gather multiple quotes. Sit down with your team and compare the cost outweighed by its advantages, features, and benefits.
Ask for samples and give them a test drive!
Most B2B data providers offer some sort of free trial or data sample. If your sales rep doesn’t offer one of these two options upfront, ask for a sample dataset. Without any sort of real-life trial or sample, it’s nearly impossible to judge the quantity and quality of each dataset.
The majority of data providers will have a free trial or data set they offer for potential clients to give a test drive. You wouldn’t buy a car or house without having a nosey around, treat your data the same way. Even if the provider doesn’t mention a data sample, ask for one. Here are some areas we suggest testing:
- How big is your data sample? Data samples average at about 1% of the list you will end up buying, ideally, you would have no less than 100 data records in your set.
- Is it what you asked for? This might take a little longer but thoroughly go through the sample you received. Does it fit all the specific criteria you asked for?
- Take it for a spin! Put together a test campaign or get your sales team to make a few calls. Really test this data to make sure it’s efficient. Ensure you conduct these tests yourself, so you are confident in the validity of the results.
Some companies don’t offer a free data sample, this doesn’t mean their data is bad, but we do suggest you have all the facts and make a truly informed decision. Without the data set, it is nigh on impossible to be sure of your purchase.
Can you email your purchased data?
In short – yes! You absolutely can send email campaigns to your carefully selected and purchased data. Don’t leave all the work to your sales team, get your marketing team in amongst it too.
Spotler allows you to craft and send perfect campaigns to your purchased data, allowing you to warm-up your new leads by sending them useful content and eventually engaging them with relevant guides and whitepapers specifically related to their web activities.
We even give you hints and tips in your creative campaigns with our artificial intelligence tool to assist and accelerate your engagement rate. Resulting in your campaigns being as big of a success as your shiny new purchased data.
What have we learnt?
Buying into the right B2B data provider can be a colossal task. We ask that you make no rash decisions, do your homework and research all that is on offer to you. Take it one step at a time and ensure your whole team is clear on your end goal. After all, this data directly and in-directly impacts most of your company, especially your sales team!
So, you’ve purchased the data? Now you want to see some returns on that investment – follow this link for the next steps!