How to Use Intent Data to Book Demos Using Apollo.io
Are you tired of chasing cold leads and wasting time on accounts that aren't a good fit? Do you want to focus your sales and marketing efforts on accounts that are actively researching solutions like yours?
B2B research from Bombora indicates that only 15% of accounts are in market for a solution at any one point in time. No matter what you do from a sales and marketing perspective, some accounts are not going to engage even if they are a perfect match for your ICP. There may be other factors at play (employee turnover, new software just installed, budgeting cycles, waiting for a funding round, etc.). There is of course value in awareness and education but if your goal is pipeline, it's best to focus efforts on the accounts with active projects to make the most use of your SDR teams time and book more demos.
It's time to start using intent data if you are not already.
What is Intent Data?
Intent data is information that provides insights into a company's buying behavior and signals their interest in a particular product or solution. This data is collected from a variety of sources, including:
- First-party data: This data comes from your website and marketing programs and provides insights into what's happening on your site and with your content. Tools like Leadfeeder use IP lookups to identify the accounts that are visiting your website and can provide some account scoring including # of unique user visits (although generally not personally identifiable information), total of pages viewed, if they are from target account lists, high value page visits like Pricing or Enterprise pages, etc. Leadfeeder (now Dealfront) also integrates with Hubspot, Salesforce and the rest of your stack if needed via Zapier.
- Second-party data: Second-party data comes from partners or other sites like G2 that can report back who is researching your company/product, market, and competitors on their comparison platform.
- Third-party intent data: This data is gathered by companies like Bombora, which tracks user activity at the account level across the web and reports on companies "surging" on topics at any point in time. Activity is tracked across 7K+ topics across the web and providers can report on companies ‘surging’ on topics at any point in time - sending a strong signal of an active project going on, and perhaps should be added to one of your campaigns TAL to run ABM and SDR efforts against. This surge data refreshes weekly as companies move in and out of market. Other popular third-party intent data providers include Leadsift (their data is available in Apollo.io).
Best Practices for Using Intent Data to Book Demos
How do you operationalize intent data? Handing over a list of target accounts to the sales team is not enough. To make the most of intent data, here are some best practices to follow:
- Identify the buying committee at B2B accounts. Depending on the complexity of your product, there can be as many as 12-18 buyers in the decision making unit. It's helpful to map out and identify the key decision makers and 2-3 main personas per account that are consistent keys to your sales process. Build a list of up to date contact info.
- Leverage tools like Apollo.io, Zoominfo and Snov.io to find relevant contacts. With Apollo.io, you can add additional filters to target accounts based on firmographic and technographic data, filters like job title, department, location, and find relevant contacts within those accounts.
- Engage buyers and guide them along their path to purchase with content. Remember that the buyer is in charge of their “journey”, not your sales or marketing team. Research from Integrate suggests it may take as many as 22+ personalized touches on average to close a B2B sale per contact. It can be helpful to build a content map to guide individuals through Awareness, Consideration, Purchase phases for your product. More and more research gets done online before a prospect ever engages with an SDR or agrees to a demo. Each buyer is a real person with different informational needs. For instance a hands on practitioner may respond to a free trial or features demo, while a CIO is going to be more interested in a a report around security, compliance, total ROI, etc.
- Consider surrounding the buying account teams with ABM ads and programs on other channels (display, LinkedIn, etc.) for support.
Personalize Your Messages
Let's take the example of a project management software with a 6-month sales cycle and a $50K ARR deal. Here are some features and pain points that each member of the buying committee might care about:
- The CEO is focused on the strategic benefits and ROI of the software. They want to know how it will help the company achieve its long-term goals, such as increasing revenue, improving efficiency, or entering new markets. They may also be concerned about the security and compliance implications of the software. Features that might appeal to the CEO include advanced analytics and reporting, enterprise-grade security, and customizable workflows.
- The CIO/CTO is interested in the technical capabilities and integration possibilities of the software. They want to know how it will fit into the existing technology stack, how it will scale as the company grows, and how it will integrate with other tools and platforms. They may also be concerned about the level of customization and flexibility offered by the software. Features that might appeal to the CTO include API access, seamless integrations with popular tools, and robust developer documentation.
- The CFO is focused on the financial impact of the software. They want to know how it will affect the company's bottom line, including the total cost of ownership, return on investment, and payback period. They may also be concerned about the budgeting and forecasting implications of the software. Features that might appeal to the CFO include flexible pricing options, easy-to-use budgeting and forecasting tools, and clear ROI metrics.
- The project manager is interested in the practical benefits and ease of use of the software. They want to know how it will help them manage projects more efficiently, collaborate with team members, and achieve better outcomes. They may also be concerned about the onboarding and training process for the software. Features that might appeal to the project manager include intuitive and user-friendly interface, customizable dashboards and workflows, and comprehensive training and support resources.
By personalizing messaging and content for each decision maker and addressing their specific pain points, you increase the chances of booking a demo and ultimately closing a deal. If you are setting up a Cold Email Outreach program for the first time, consider some best practices for improving email deliverability and response rates.
- Layer in a cross channel SDR approach. Email is workhorse but also consider personalized LinkedIn outreach, phone calls and other channels. Lead and account scoring and Apollo "plays" can be used to prioritize the next best SDR action. For instance if 3 people from one account have hit your site, visited 10+ pages and an email has been read 3 times by a contact that matches your key buying persona, Apollo can be set up to create an automated call task for your SDR based on this account and user activity.
How Apollo.io Can Help
Apollo.io can help you make the most of your intent data by providing a powerful platform for executing your sales and marketing efforts. Here are some of the features that make Apollo.io a valuable tool for sales and marketing teams:
- Access to intent data: With Apollo.io, you can filter your target accounts based on intent data, firmographic data, and technographic data, making it easy to identify the accounts that are most likely to convert.
- Find relevant contacts: With Apollo.io, you can search for relevant contacts within your target accounts based on their job titles, seniority level, and other criteria.
- Send personalized email sequences: With Apollo.io, you can set up and send personalized email sequences to your target contacts, making it easy to scale your outreach efforts. Account lists can be built for different account segments, specific buyer personas developed, and message sequences set up and automated for each variation.
- Integrations with other tools: Apollo.io integrates with a variety of other sales and marketing tools, including Salesforce, Marketo, and HubSpot, making it easy to incorporate Apollo.io into your stack.
Getting Started with Intent Data to Book More Demos
Want to get starting using Intent Data and set up an outbound engine with SDR support? Contact us and let’s have a discussion about your needs. SaaSBoost.io can help set up an outbound strategy using intent data and other sources and even layer in outsourced SDR services.