Data is the lifeblood of most businesses today.
Before you even launch your brand, you’ve likely extensively researched your industry, your competitors, and the market overall. And once your business is up and running, analytics are your best friend when doing everything from optimizing your site to deciding what products to offer next.
And while the data that you’re able to collect internally is obviously exceptionally useful, especially when it comes to helping you see what’s currently happening with your business, it has blind spots that can be hard to see. For best results (and your best chance at scaling), you’ll want to look at data enrichment options.
In this post, we’re going to dive deep into data enrichment, including what it is, why it can be so valuable, and how to use it to connect with higher-quality leads and make more sales.
What Is Data Enrichment?
Data enrichment merges your data, which come from internal sources like your Google Analytics or customer surveys, with third-party data from external sources.
This is not purchasing data like industry benchmarks and comparing your own analytics against it to see where you’re measuring up. It’s much, much more specific than that, offering detailed information about individual customers or leads.
Instead, it may take the form of acquiring new demographic data about your existing customer or lead base, like their age, income level, education, job title, or even marital status. You now have more information about existing leads, which is direct and actionable, allowing you to improve your marketing, sales, and lead-nurturing messaging.
What You Can Learn from Data Enrichment
There are a number of different things you can learn from data enrichment that can help you score your leads, including the following:
- Demographic information about individuals. Get information about your leads’ age, gender, education, job title, and more. In addition to lead scoring, this can also help you fine-tune your marketing strategy with more relevant copy, offers, and messaging. While it varies, B2C businesses may benefit most from data enrichment with demographic data.
- Information about a company. Company size, industry, income level, and more. For B2B businesses trying to identify decision-makers in their target audience, this can be a game-changer.
- Geographical information. For some businesses, location is everything. A cleaning service scoring leads, for example, will want to know if someone is inside their zones of service. In some cases, leads from certain areas (including regions, states, countries, or even neighborhoods) may be more likely to convert than others.
- Purchasing histories. This can include their purchase history with your brand, of course, but it can also look at past shopping behaviors. Some users, for example, are more likely to shop online than others, which can be great for eCommerce businesses. Purchasing behaviors can be valuable cues when it comes to lead ranking and nurturing, offering insight into how certain users make buying decisions.
Why Data Enrichment is So Crucial
There’s an idea that the more data you have, the better. In theory that can be true, but this idea really seems to hit home when it’s actually “the more accurate, relevant, and actionable data you have, the better.”
In short, data quality matters.
Think about the lead generation and nurturing process. Let’s say you have 100 people who sign-up for your webinar. Your marketing team hands off this list to your sales team, which has three people. How do you choose who to pursue most aggressively?
If you look at their files and you only have their name and email address, then you officially know three things: Their name, their email address, and that they were interested enough in the webinar topic to register. That may be it.
Plenty of lead magnet forms look like this for B2B brands:
This is a decent start, but unless you’re directly familiar with the company, it ultimately doesn’t give you much to go on.
Here at Breadcrumbs, we’re of course all about lead ranking, which is the process of ranking leads based on different criteria to help identify who is most likely to be a high-value customer. This helps you decide which leads you want to really take the extra time to try to convert.
You can’t properly identify strong leads if you don’t have enough information about the leads that you have. A name and email alone won’t tell you anything; in this case, you’d need to rely on third-party data sources to enrich the information you already have, making it more valuable and more actionable.
How Data Enrichment Works: An Example
You can use data enrichment for a number of different purposes in your business, including improving your marketing campaigns. We’re going to give an example of how it can impact the lead generation and nurturing process.
Let’s say that you’ve developed groundbreaking new SaaS software that will give subscribers instant access to custom-for-them, computer-generated graphic designs as per recent trends. Knowing that many B2B businesses might pay $400 a month in graphic design fees according to your research, you decide to charge $100 a month.
For major corporations, this is nothing. For many small- to medium-sized businesses, however, this is a big ask. They’ve often got tight budgets, and $100 a month can add up quickly.
You quickly realize that certain types of businesses (like those in the marketing, education, and wedding decor industries, all of whom make regular use of graphics) are more likely to retain beyond the free two-week trial. Accounting firms, on the other hand, pay for a single month to get any branded images for their site, and they’re out.
You also realize that businesses between 10 and 25 employees are your sweet spot; at that point, they have solid funding but haven’t scaled to the point where they have a designer on staff.
This is excellent information for lead scoring purposes. Your sales team can identify a marketing firm with 23 employees and know that they hit a jackpot.
But how exactly will they know that “Jake James, email@example.com” belongs to that marketing firm with 23 employees?
What About Lead Forms?
Sure, you can absolutely ask this on a lead form; it’s not uncommon to see B2B businesses asking about industry or company size.
Some data, though, may be more difficult to get people to answer for a lead generation form.
I personally, for example, will not convert on lead magnets that I otherwise would have if it asks how much my business makes. I understand why they ask —it’s great lead scoring information — but I keep that information between me, my husband, and my accountant.
Lead forms like this are my worst nightmare:
And I’m not alone.
I was recently talking to a friend who was looking into financial planners. She complained that she found one she liked, but that initial lead form (not even a personalized email) asked questions like “do you have 6 months of living expenses saved” and “what kinds of retirement accounts do you have?” She said it felt more like someone was trying to find targets to scam than clients to help.
It’s not just about lead forms that ask about financial status, of course. Many users aren’t going to be willing to leave personal information like whether or not they’re a homeowner, married, or parents on a random form.
And, in general, you don’t want to overwhelm potential leads with long, invasive lead forms. If they’re too long or they ask too much (or even a single question that the user doesn’t want to answer), you can lose them altogether.
This is where data enrichment comes into play. You can still get the information you need, and without potentially isolating and losing customers that could-have-been.
How to Apply Data Enrichment
At this point in the post, the value of data enrichment is pretty apparent. So let’s take a look at how to actually implement it.
In order to do this, we first need to answer one question…
Where Do I Get This Third-Party Data From?
The simple answer is “third parties.” I know, pretty vague.
There are multiple different data enrichment platforms out there that you can use that handle a lot of the heavy lifting for you.
They’re able to pull from third-party data sources of their own, giving you that perfectly-merged and enriched data without someone on your team needing to use scraping methods (which can get you kicked off different platforms) or spending hours combing through lead’s LinkedIn accounts.
How Breadcrumbs Can Help
Here at Breadcrumbs, our biggest focus is on lead scoring. We know that the fastest way to convert a sale is to have a synchronized marketing and sales team so that the right message hits at the right time.
Accurate lead scoring relies heavily on quality, enriched, and relevant-to-you data. The “relevant” part is key, and that’s something that many data enrichment sites forget.
It doesn’t matter to that graphic design firm if their leads are married, for example, but maybe real estate agents have much better luck landing clients who are married than those that aren’t.
In order to help our customers, we do work with third-party data enrichment services so you don’t have to. We’ll also only enrich data based on our customer’s individual needs. If you don’t need to know about someone’s marital status to rank them as a lead, in other words, we’re not going to focus on that.
We can help you make data enrichments with information like demographic, background, interests, and purchase history information for your leads, giving you the data that you need (and nothing that you don’t).
All you need to do is answer a few questions about your business (and we mean that–just a few), connect to your data source, and we’ll get you going! We’ll recommend the best lead scoring model for your business, and then help you identify your top prospects as they move through the sales funnel.
When you’re trying to find new ways to scale your business, reach new audiences, and convert more high-quality leads, data is almost invaluable.
Sure, you need strong strategies, but the data can help you determine what lead magnets to create, what touchpoints to set up, what to ask on lead forms, and which leads are most valuable.
Data enrichment can help you realize not a certain individual is likely to be a high-value customer, but to identify high-value niches overall. This is useful for lead scoring, but it can also be useful for your marketing department, too; they can create resources and touchpoints designed specifically to attract users based on this information. Since businesses scale fastest when the marketing and sales team go hand-in-hand, this isn’t something you want to overlook.
And remember, too, that your marketing and sales teams are busy. Using a tool like Breadcrumbs can take the guesswork (and grunt work!) out of the equation. Your sales team won’t need to spend time trying to crunch numbers or sort through data; they’ll instantly have information about which leads should be targeted, so they can put every second of their time and energy into focusing on that.
Interested in seeing how data enrichment combined with lead ranking and lead nurturing can improve your entire sales process? Revolutionize your business’s lead generation process with Breadcrumbs. Book your free demo today.