5 Myths About Buyer Intent Data

December 20th, 2019

I’ve lived through some questionable fads in my life (think snap bracelets, feather hair extensions, and velvet tracksuits). And I’ve seen my fair share of marketing trends that came and went just as quickly as planking. (I’m pointing at you, branded fidget spinners). But one trend that’s undeniably here to stay is buyer intent data.

 What is buyer intent data? Simply put, it’s the tracked journey of in-market buyers to determine who is signaling intent to purchase. With the right data, you can create powerful ABM campaigns and focus marketing spend on the accounts ready to buy. At the same time, sales can nail their pitches with content that buyers are actively seeking. The result: highly efficient campaigns and accelerated deal cycles. 

But for buyer intent data, there are several misconceptions. With so many buyer intent data tools on the market today, it’s important to know what’s fact and what’s fiction when it comes to intent data. 

Myth #1: More is better

Like every trend that blows up suddenly,  those who are late to the party might be stuck playing catch up. And while buyer intent isn’t exactly new to marketing, if you’re not using it you probably think you’re behind. The flurry of research surge alerts and external data sources may seem overwhelming. 

more buyer intent data isn't always better | trustradius.com

Where do you start? It feels like an endless Billy Mays’ infomercial- but wait, is there more? Should I be investing in all the tools?

The simple answer is no – more is not always better. There is a difference between buyer behavior that exhibits actual intent and noise of simple online research. There are several providers that focus on purely topical information where companies may or may not have even entered the awareness stage of the buyer journey. Buyer intent scoring from providers focused on general online research is not indicative of interest, influence, or consideration. So don’t fall into the Billy Mays trap – quality over quantity

Myth #2: All intent data is the same

Here is where quality really beats quantity every time. Intent data is only as good as the content driving buyers to the page. Platforms with rich customer voice and insights attract prospective buyers to engage with products and move down the purchase funnel.  

Many sources focus solely on high-volume metrics like page views and impressions. According to the 2020 B2B Disconnect, when buyers are evaluating software and hardware on a review site, the top two things that influence their decision are qualitative content of a review and finding reviewers most like them.

Without in-depth content for buyers to read or context to compare your product, these shallow signals are a better gauge of general than a resolution to purchase. Think about it – would you rather send top-funnel content to companies that viewed your profile, or have impactful conversations that engage prospects based on the comparisons they made and specific use cases they read?

Myth #3: Buyer intent data doesn’t inspire action

One of the fastest-growing Instagram giveaways of the 2010s was for a red bathing suit from Sunny Co. I remember scrolling through my feed one evening to find that 100 of my friends reposted the original picture.

While the scale of giveaway turned out to be a bit too much for the retailer, the takeaway here is that it gave people a reason to care. Each person who shared the post showed off their intent to acquire a new swimsuit.

The most valuable intent data shows you when your buyers care. Internally, what will your team get out of the acquired data? If it doesn’t highlight buyers who care enough to take an action within your target key accounts, it is not useful. 

However, if you could outline the path a prospect followed from landing on your product’s page on TrustRadius, it would tell a story like the one below: 

  1. A buyer from MegaCorp landed on a product category page, driven by Google search. 
  2. This buyer accessed a buyer’s guide, which helps them investigate the top products in your category and understand the landscape.
  3. The MegaCorp buyer compared your product to competitive products from Acme, Inc, SaaSCorp, and Globex Org. 
  4. They read long-form reviews highlighting your key differentiators. 
Buyer intent data can help shorten sales cycles to shorter than the golden days of the cabbage patch doll | trustradius.com

With insight into this customer’s journey, you know what case studies to send that prospect and sales can follow up with them with the perfect objection handling to close the deal. Sales cycles will be shorter than the golden days of the Cabbage Patch doll. 

Myth #4: Account-level data isn’t helpful

Picture this: someone at a company is digging into your product. They’re looking at a ton of reviews, comparing your product to all your competitors, and digging deep into an investigation. Would your sales team want to know about that? 

If an account is active, you should elevate them because someone in their company is looking at a solution. Based on your target market and with the help of sales intelligence software, it’s simple to narrow down who was researching a software solution. If the account is already in a nurture sequence, each of your personas at the account is probably being targeted. Now you know what information to serve them. 

Research from the B2B Disconnect reveals that buyers purchase through committee. And half of that committee never speaks directly to your reps. So, you want to ensure that you are understanding the questions and concerns of every single member of that committee, even if you don’t know who they are. Intent data gives you insider info on what is important to everyone at the account, so you can look like a hero when you reach out.

Myth #5: I need a data team to ingest intent

Does scrolling through spreadsheets of intent data scare you more than a Furby | trustradius.com

Does scrolling through spreadsheets of intent data scare you more than a Furby in your darkest nightmares? If so, you might think you need a data team to E-T-L all of your intent data to make it usable for your teams. Fear not: no data team is needed to leverage buyer intent data. 

As long as your intent data provider can integrate with your Martech stack, you can bypass time spent mapping and get the intent straight to the people that need it in real time. To integrate TrustRadius buyer intent data into your systems, use our API or Zapier app to notify your team of activity, score leads, and create effective campaigns- and alert sales that their accounts are active. No Furby nightmares here. 

The truth about buyer intent data

Buyer intent data is no mere trend – it’s the future. It’s already here, and it will continue to shape the way we market and sell software to provide customers truly personalized experiences. However, where you get your intent data is just as critical to your success as how you implement it. 

Are you interested in learning more about high-quality purchase signals? Let us show you how you can get the most out of buyer intent data!