3 use cases for dark data analysis in marketing & sales

Data is the new currency in marketing and sales. The processes in these departments are becoming more and more data-driven – certainly also in your company. However, the more sales and marketing rely on it, the more important it is that the data on which decisions are based is really the right and relevant data. But this is not always the case. Because most tech platforms are only able to collect and process a small part of the available information. Namely, visible and structured data that almost always refer to the past. A true treasure of data of multiple size lies beneath the surface, which would enable much more precise statements in real time as well as highly probable forecasts – dark data. The problem is that they hide largely unstructured in a large number of scattered sources.

Dark Data - unstructured dataThe great thing is that AI is increasingly capable of detecting, collecting and – above all – interpreting this unstructured data. This gives you much deeper insights into your leads and customers, enables you to react more quickly to changes and provides you with more information on whether you are using the right data points as the basis for segmenting your contacts.

Three typical examples of how you can use Dark Data in your marketing and sales:

Use Case 1: In-depth insights for preparing calls

Technology profile e.g. from Dark DataImagine you could see at a glance which technologies a potential customer is using in his company, you knew in which countries he is going to increase his activities – without official announcement – or in which product groups the company is currently investing more. This and more information is already available on the Companies and Markets platform. And all this in a clear graphic format for quick preparation of meetings. The data for this is collected by an AI from millions of sources on the Deep Web. It interprets signals and mentions that have not been taken into account in conventional data collection – for example, the prerequisite for certain software skills in job ads. This turns a huge amount of unstructured data into meaningful, in-depth company profiles that you can call up with just one click. In a slimmed-down form even free of charge.

Use Case 2: Validation of data sets and trigger event detection

Even the most extensive data set is only valuable if it is up-to-date. AI-supported data enrichment and updating – for example using the Implisense API – also relies on Deep Data. Have records about your leads and customers automatically replenished and kept up to date. Quantity and quality of data in one solution. Another benefit of automatically updating your records: You recognize trigger events as early as possible and can react immediately. By evaluating the unstructured signals on the Deep Web, you know about relevant changes in your contacts even before your competition.

Use Case 3: Automatic segmentation based on relevant data

Data form the informative basis for the creation of positive customer experiences and the interpretation of customer behaviour. But are you sure you’re really looking at the relevant data points? An example: A restaurant wants to get to the bottom of the decline in walk-in customers. To do this, those responsible use customer feedback on food, ambience and service. But what if the main reason is a difficult parking situation in the surrounding area? If your interpretations are based on the wrong data points, you will draw the wrong conclusions and possibly even act counterproductively.

Implisense Pro helps you segment your customers and leads with Dark Data. Because the AI searches among the huge datasets it has created from the unstructured information for commonalities that connect your best customers. And on this basis, it suggests companies that also have these characteristics. The algorithm automatically determines which data points are important for identifying leads with great potential for you. In other words, the segmentation is really based on the relevant data.

Lift the data treasure below the surface by making Dark Data usable in marketing and sales.

3 use cases to increase success through data enhancement

Our blog posts deal a lot with data-supported work in marketing and sales. However, it is clear that the quality of these measures depends critically on the amount and quality of the data you have on your leads, prospects or customers. Only with an extensive set of relevant and up-to-date data can you gain in-depth insights that enable you to address your segmented target groups precisely. Yet many companies do not even have the possibility to collect data to this extent. They receive only limited information from their leads – and it is not always clear how up-to-date these are. So how can you fill even large gaps in your knowledge? The magic word is data enhancement.

Success through data enhancement

Benefit from the extensive databases of a specialized company and be automatically provided with extensive data sets on your leads and prospects, but also on your existing customers. For example with the help of the Implisense API, which you can integrate directly into your existing systems. Define which data is relevant for you and receive up-to-date information at any time with the help of an algorithm. This is useful for a whole range of applications. Three exemplary Use Cases:

Use Case 1: Increase conversion on your website

It has been proven that every additional field in a web form increases the dropout rate. The less data your users have to enter, the lower the hurdle for conversion. With a solid solution for data enrichment in the background, you can keep your web forms as minimal as possible. Just ask for the most necessary information – Implisense will then fill in everything else for you. This means you get more leads and still have all the relevant information you need. And you’ll also improve your potential customer’s user experience. So win-win!

Use Case 2: Qualification & updating of leads

When we talk about modern data-supported marketing and sales, then it is not just firmographic data in which you should be interested. But especially signals that give you an indication of where your prospective customer is currently in the purchasing process. However, this status can change quickly. Once data has been obtained, it may become obsolete a short time later. Of course, you cannot bombard your leads with regular new data queries. An intelligent data enrichment tool like the Implisense API therefore not only provides you once with a comprehensive data set, but also regularly with daily updates to your contacts. This keeps your data automatically qualified and gives you valuable signals about changes that could affect the type of message you want to send to your contact.

Use Case 3: Segmentation & personalization

Without an appropriate data enhancement solution, you usually don’t have a comprehensive dataset immediately. Instead, you have to laboriously collect data from multiple sources over time. However, because a certain amount of information is needed to meaningfully segment and prioritize your leads, this can only happen at a later point in time. In other words, you’re wasting valuable resources on leads that you know too late don’t interest you very much. At the same time, you leave out the possibility of reacting quickly to highly potent leads. By enriching your data, on the other hand, the complete data set is available to you at a stroke. You can categorize your new lead immediately and send it maximum personalized messages depending on its relevance and status in the purchasing process. In this way you waste less potential, use your existing resources more sensibly and convert prospective customers to customers more quickly.

These are just three examples of applications for the beneficial use of data enhancement. A powerful tool that simultaneously accelerates and improves marketing and sales. A real booster for your conversion.

Marketing Automation – an introduction

Sit back and relax as a result of automated marketing? Unfortunately, it’s not quite as beautiful as that – but still offers a number of practical advantages. Marketing automation is not the replacement of marketing processes or even employees by software, but a valuable way to increase efficiency and success in marketing. Because the automation of certain standard processes gives you more time for conceptual and strategic considerations. And for direct contact with your customers and prospects. By taking less care of the practical delivery of messages to your target groups, you gain free resources that you can use to develop these precisely tailored messages. As a result, you achieve more conversion and closer customer relationships.

Marketing Automation supports you in various stages of the buying cycle:

Marketing Automation is not just sitting back

Lead Generation with Marketing Automation

While it is one of the simpler examples, it is still an indispensable form of marketing automation: websites and landing pages lead your prospects to a contact form. The prospective customer enters his data there and these are automatically imported into your CRM. This simple form of marketing automation is already a clear relief compared to a call where you would have to record this data manually or an e-mail from which you would still have to transfer it into the system. And most of us have long since integrated it into our daily workflow. Automation should become just as common for you in the following stages of the buying cycle.

Lead Organization with Marketing Automation

The qualification, segmentation, prioritization and updating of your leads is one of the critical points in your marketing that can be improved significantly through automation. The system automatically assigns leads to a specific list – by audience, trigger, purchase status, and any other segmentation criteria you have identified as important to your workflow. Of course, this requires an extensive set of data. These are automatically obtained from a third-party source – for example using the Implisense API – and the records for your contacts are enriched with comprehensive additional information. As a result, fine and qualified segmentation can be performed automatically. And it’s ongoing: New data, progress in the buying cycle, etc., influence the scoring of your leads and, if necessary, change to another list. This is a crucial component for the targeted delivery of personalized messages to your leads at any time.

Targeted contacting of leads with Marketing Automation

This fine segmentation of your leads is in turn the key to successful email marketing. After all, widely spread mails with corresponding general messages lead to a much lower degree of exhaustion than highly personalized mails that address your prospective customers with targeted messages. Exactly tailored to his current status in the buying cycle and the resulting needs. By knowing these, you will be able to answer the right questions at the right time – and thus significantly increase the probability of a successful deal. If your system registers that a lead is entering the next phase, it will automatically be addressed with the specially developed message.

Customer loyalty with Marketing Automation

In the same way that you accompany your leads through the purchase process, you also sustainably bind your existing customers to your company. And they have promising cross-selling and up-selling potential. Because the automated monitoring of your contacts does not end with the purchase. Let yourself be informed automatically about current trigger events and use your knowledge for an equally targeted and personalized approach. Whether it is the opening of a new location, a change in management or another event that increases your chances to expand your business relationship.

Introduction of Marketing Automation as a chance for process optimization

Successful marketing automation is therefore not the simple one-to-one automation of your existing processes. Instead, take the opportunity to critically review your marketing processes and adapt them to the requirements of modern, automated marketing. In this way, you not only benefit from the immediate efficiency advantages of your automation solution, but also from a leaner, resource-oriented process. And last but not least, more revenue thanks to increased conversion.

Data is essential for every Marketing Automation. Enrich your customer data directly in your CRM system – with the Implisense API. Further information can be found here. 

Different types of personalities and how to spot them

When selling a product or service, you should better understand the type of customer how he or she is thinking. Since people are different, there can be no universal patent recipe for it. However, there are some interesting concepts of categorizing potential customers more quickly and to respond effectively to their specific motivation. A relatively well-known and popular concept is the 4-colour model by Frank M. Scheelen. It distinguishes four different personality types: red, blue, yellow and green people. We have briefly summarised for you what distinguishes the individual types and how you should best encounter them in order to convince them of the advantages of being your customers. Best of all, there are new ways of doing the work automatically. But let’s start with the four different types of customers.

Customer types based on the 4-colour model
Customer types based on the 4-colour model by Frank M. Scheelen (in German)

The blue customer

Blue customers are the classic rational thinkers. They are very disciplined, organized and reflective – and they make their decisions. This means that a blue customer expects from you the most comprehensive information possible about your product or service in order to carefully weigh up its advantages and disadvantages. For him, facts stand clearly above his personal relationship with you. Provide this type of customer with sufficient details and give him enough time to think them through. But be careful: blue customers like to try to postpone decisions in order to weigh them over and over again. So work actively towards a decision without exerting too much pressure too quickly.

The green customer

Even customers of the green type need time to process their arguments. However, this is not so much due to a high need for analysis, but rather because they tend to be risk averse. Although green customers are friendly, cautious and largely reliable in their statements, they prefer to stick to the tried and tested and the familiar. Accordingly, it is difficult for you to convince them of a new product or service provider. Listen attentively and find out what risk your counterpart is trying to avoid – in order to then make targeted arguments that give him more security in this respect. Since this type of customer places a lot of value on the opinions of others due to his own decision-making difficulties, it is also worthwhile to find out who is a potential co-decision-maker – in order to win them over to your offer as well.

The yellow customer

The yellow customer type is completely different. He loves the new, the extraordinary and can quickly be inspired by an idea. With his creative nature, he likes to take it up and is also able to infect others with his optimism. If you meet yellow customers with the same openness and cordiality, you will quickly find a common level. But this enthusiasm is both a blessing and a curse. Because it also makes it very easy to distract a yellow customer. Despite initial euphoria, many projects are not implemented later. So it’s worth it for you to invest a little time and build up a trustworthy relationship with this customer. Because the relationship level is very important for him. He also likes to talk about private matters. Conflicts are not his thing. Use your good relationship to keep the enthusiasm of your yellow customer alive for a long time and finally get your deal.

Der red customer

On the relationship level, you will in turn reach the red customer less. In its dominant, controlling way, this type of customer will try to consciously provoke and challenge you. Demonstrate determination in this case and stand up to him confidently – but give him the satisfaction of feeling a little superior to you. If you manage this balancing act, he will give you the chance to convince him of your product. Because the red customer type is quite open-minded towards something new – as long as you can sufficiently demonstrate what positive results he can expect from it. Do not hold him up unnecessarily with personalities or exaggerated friendliness, but argue clearly and goal-oriented. If you then find a clear and precise answer to each of his questions, it can also suddenly go very quickly with the conclusion.

Please note: Colour changer

However, it is not enough to categorize your counterpart according to customer types and then always accept this scheme as given in the future. Under stress the type of your customer can suddenly turn into the exact opposite. The blue becomes yellow, the green red and vice versa. In every conversation situation, pay attention to the essential signals of your customer again and adjust to them individually.

This example shows that concepts such as Scheelen’s 4-colour model can of course only ever depict the complexity of human personalities and decision-making processes in a highly simplified form. Obviously, the situation in which you meet your potential customer also plays a role. However, it can be a useful orientation aid when it comes to quickly assessing the behaviour of your counterpart and selecting your very basic discussion strategy. A talented salesperson’s tool is to refine these individually with the right incentives.

Example: Zalando and Deutsche Bank

At Implisense, we started in 2018 to automatically classify public marketing assets such as tweets, press releases or job advertisements of millions of companies to find out dominant personality types according to the 4-color model. In the following, we would like to give you two examples of well-known companies from Germany that are among the market leaders in their segment. The numbers in the sections indicate the absolute number of recognized 4-color keywords for the respective companies.

Datenanalyse der angesprochenen Persönlichkeiten

A direct comparison of the two graphs immediately shows that the red and blue portions clearly dominate at Deutsche Bank. At Zalando it is the green and yellow shares. Two market leaders, but very different models. The companies consciously – or unconsciously – communicate certain ideas about themselves and the customers they want to reach with their communication.

Currently various marketing departments in Germany evaluate these analyses in order to monitor their own communication with regard to the communication of competitors. Furthermore, these continuously ascertainable findings via API should also be used to consider 1:1 communication, e.g. in mailings or account based marketing. In this way, the concept devised by Frank M. Scheelen may help more people to address the issue correctly and be better understood.

Tip: Note the customer type of your contact person in your CRM system. In the future, you will already know at the beginning of your conversation which signals you should pay more attention to. Automated classifications can also be automatically imported into your CRM with the Implisense API on a daily basis.  

 

Technographics – What the technology used is telling you about your target group

Following our recent focus on firmographics as B2B counterparts to demographic data, we would like to discuss a third category of market segmentation information: technographics refers to technographic segmentation.

Technographics also serve to summarize or differentiate individuals or companies on the basis of their similarities and differences with regard to certain variables. In order to be able to deduce from this how likely they are to be interested for your own product or service or to be able to tailor your marketing and sales approach to this target group.

picture drone

What is technographic data?

Technographic data provides information about the hardware or software used by a specific person or company, their usage patterns or their attitudes to specific technologies. Just as demographics and firmography each provide a profile of the person or company to be described, so a technographic description gives you a picture of the person or company’s IT profile.

What do technographics tell you?

The use of technographics naturally makes sense especially in technological environments. If, for example, you offer business software, it is logically a strategic advantage for you to know which other systems are already in use in this company.

But even beyond IT-based products and services, these data have some significance. Knowledge about the use of certain industry-specific software can provide you with insights into certain internal processes. Or the use of many cloud services can give you insight into the home office policy of your leads. And so on – in particular by linking the technographic data with firmographic information or certain trigger events – profound conclusions can be drawn.

Where do you get technographic data from?

There are many ways to obtain information about the technical conditions in your target group. In some cases it is enough to simply ask for it. Maybe your support is directly at the customer’s and can get a picture of the situation on site. Another possibility are digital crawlers that, for example, read information about the IT environment of your website visitors. But job advertisements can also be a valuable source. Take a look at what software skills potential employees are expected to have. And, of course, such data can also be purchased from special service providers.

You can easily access technographic data using Implisense Pro. With intelligent filters, you can even search for companies with specific IT needs.

Admittedly, the interpretation of technographic data may require a certain degree of creativity and association, depending on the activity of your company. But especially in conjunction with company graphics or other information you already have about the company in question, they can provide you with the decisive impulses for a promising approach in marketing and sales. And they are a must for IT companies anyway.

Give it a try: This step-by-step explanation makes it very easy to find companies that use a certain technology (e.g. Mailchimp).