Imagine how much easier sales would be if you knew exactly what your prospects were thinking, planning, and looking for. 

Unfortunately, even the best B2B sales tools don’t allow you to read your prospects’ minds. 

But you do have access to the next best thing: buyer intent data.

Also known as predictive buyer data, B2B intent data allows you to learn about your prospects’ goals and agenda. In other words, it helps you understand a lead’s intent. Having this type of knowledge is a game changer in sales; it makes it possible to improve lead quality, keep your pipeline full, and ultimately increase your sales revenue. 

Interested? Keep reading to find out how you can use B2B intent data to better understand your prospects and boost sales.

What is B2B Intent Data?

B2B intent data is a type of sales intelligence gathered through online activity tracking. B2B marketing and sales teams can use intent data to find out what potential customers are searching for online, gauge a lead’s interest level, and predict their likelihood of making a purchase.

For example, B2B intent data might highlight new leads who are actively researching a solution just like yours. By combining data from multiple sources, including search engines, social media, and first-party data from your website, you can figure out how far along they are in the buying journey. 

Some types of buyer intent data also reveal other behavior signals that can help you find and target your future customers before they even know about your solution.

How Is Buyer Intent Data Collected?

Intent data is typically a mix of online behaviors, interactions, and searches that tells you what a potential customer is likely to do (or purchase) next. 

Through analyzing online behaviors, interactions, and searches, B2B intent data allows sales reps and marketing professionals to better understand their target audience, how to best nurture prospects, and identify qualified leads.

When it comes to collecting different types of intent data, there are a few different options to choose from. Depending on your goals and resources, you might benefit from a mix of first-party, second-party, and third-party intent data. 

Let’s take a closer look at what type of information each of these options provides and how you can go about accessing it.

Types of B2B Intent Data

types of b2b intent data

First-Party Data

First-party intent data is information collected right from the source. Any behavioral data collected from your own channels, including your website, CRM, or SaaS platform, falls into this category. First-party data might include interactions, downloads, acquisition channels, and other metrics that matter most to your sales and marketing teams.

First-party data is a great resource because it’s reliable and free to access. However, perhaps the biggest advantage is that it’s uniquely yours—which means your competitors don’t have access to the same information. 

One of the drawbacks of first-party data is that it limits your insights to owned channels, existing customers, and leads who are already aware of your product or brand. So, it’s best used in conjunction with second- or third-party insights.

Second-Party B2B Intent Data

Second-party intent data is first-party data that’s been collected by an external source. For example, this might include information supplied by social media platforms, review sites, or search engines.

B2B sales teams might lean into second-party data if they want more detailed user insights that go beyond their own website or platform. You can use second-party intent data to see what potential customers do and search for online, even when they’re not interacting with your channels directly. 

This can be helpful to see what buyers are researching and engaging with on social media or what they’re searching for on Google.

Third-Party B2B Intent Data

If you don’t have access to your own intent data—or you’re looking to pivot, expand, or otherwise target a different segment than your current customer base—then you’ll want to look for third-party resources that can supplement your information.

Third-party intent data can be purchased from third-party data collectors, such as data aggregators, advertisers, and ISPs. Sources typically include user IP addresses, cookies, and tracking tools that mine user data online.

Buying third-party data provides several benefits, including a broader overview of trends in online behavior, searches, and activities for users who fit your audience. And since it’s such a large amount of data from various sources, you can uncover new ways to target in-market or sales-ready leads who aren’t currently aware of your solution.

How to Use B2B Intent Data to Your Advantage

Whether you collect data from owned channels or purchase intent data from a data vendor or B2B information provider, there are plenty of ways you can use intent data to optimize your sales process. 

To give you a sense of how intent data might fit into your own sales strategy, let’s take a look at the most common ways businesses use intent data. 

how do marketers use third party intent data

Generate New In-Market Leads 

According to the 2021 Gartner Technology Marketing Benchmarks Survey results, the top reason marketers use third-party intent data is to target net new in-market buyers—AKA buyers who are actively looking for a solution but have yet to enter your funnel specifically. 

B2B intent data can help you find out who is searching for product comparisons, reading reviews, and searching for pricing info. This knowledge primes you to reach out to leads at just the right moment with just the right information to guide them towards a sale.

Fine-Tune Your Outreach Strategy

Not only can B2B intent data help you identify new potential buyers, but it can also provide insights into the type of messaging they might respond to. In fact, the second most common use case for third-party intent data is improving buyer engagement insight (in combination with the first-party intent data).

It reveals how customers are interacting with your platform, website, or other digital channels, which allows you to measure lead engagement. 

Personalize Your Messaging

Half of the respondents in the 2021 Gartner survey use third-party data to personalize messaging based on buyer research. That’s because intent data can tell you a ton about the type of messaging your prospects will most likely engage with. 

Once you know a bit about a lead’s intentions (and the psychology of what makes prospects respond positively to a certain type of sales pitch), you can optimize your messaging for specific audience segments and then personalize it further to create meaningful interactions with individual leads.

Nail Your Outreach Timing

Sending your message at the right time is a large part of the battle of sales outreach. Try to connect with a lead too early and they might not bother responding or be ready to listen to your pitch; reach out too late, and you’ll likely miss your shot to show them your solution before they sign up for a competitor.

Don’t waste your hard-earned (or bought) data with generic email campaigns or ill-timed outreach. Purchase intent signals allow you to focus on leads who are at just the right stage of the buyer journey, so you can focus on leads who are qualified by looking at all the data available on their online activity.

Align Content with Buyer Interests

A data-backed content strategy caters to your leads’ interests, needs, and search patterns. In combination with SEO best practices and first-party data, you can use third-party intent data as the basis for creating a content marketing library that speaks directly to leads who fit your ideal customer profile.

For example, you could use third-party data to learn about the content consumption habits of your target market. Once you know the type of content and topics your target audience is most interested in, you can create relevant content to meet that demand.

Get to Know Your Customers Better

Getting to know your current customers and actively engaged prospects is one of the best applications of first-party data. After all, when it comes to understanding the psychology behind making a sale, a good place to start is by studying your existing customer base. Similarly, if you learn about what already works to bring people to your website, you might find new ways to increase traffic and engagement.

Using Google Analytics or another tool to monitor leads on your website can tell you a lot about what your potential customers are thinking and doing. So, instead of guessing at what your customers are looking for or blindly targeting new leads, you can see exactly how current customers interact with your site or SaaS product, as well as how first-time visitors or new leads engage with your website and content.

Develop a Stronger ABM Process

B2B intent data can play a major role in identifying best-fit leads for your company and bolstering your account-based marketing (ABM) strategy. B2B buyer intent data helps you recognize in-market leads, score leads more accurately, and personalize messaging for audience segments—all of which are key components of effective ABM. 

Plus, by helping identify the best channels and messaging for your targets, intent data informs how you should approach marketing to specific accounts. For instance, what does a potential buyer respond to most positively? How do they access your website or content? What signals are they giving off that help you identify decision-makers and understand their position in the buying cycle?

Not to mention, it’s often easier for marketing and sales teams to work in alignment when they have access to accurate intent data. You can use B2B intent data to decide which accounts to focus your resources on and use the pull of hard data to get marketing and sales pros to rally around a common goal.

Unlock Even More B2B Data with Datanyze

In the right hands, B2B intent data is a powerful tool for marketing and sales. It can help with everything from attracting the right type of leads, bumping up your win rate, and increasing your revenue and growth rate. 

But in order to unlock the full potential of B2B intent data, you need to supplement it with additional information about your leads. So, it’s vital that you pair your B2B intent data with a smart approach to lead generation and the right tools for sales outreach.

Datanyze can help you do more with your B2B intent data. By using Datanyze in combination with information from first-party data and third-party intent data providers, you can do more with your data and generate more valuable prospecting lists.

The Datanyze Chrome extension quickly uncovers the actionable contact data you need to make connections, including accurate email addresses and phone numbers. With Datanyze, you can surface contact details from social media profiles and websites without leaving your browser—which means you’ll have more time and energy to focus on crafting the perfect outreach message and personalizing your offering.
Want to make the most of your B2B data and uncover meaningful insights more quickly and efficiently? Try Datanyze today and boost your sales and marketing efforts with high-quality customer data.