What is B2B contact data?
B2B contact data is the business contact information of employees, including job titles, email id, and phone numbers. This data is part of sales intelligence and facilitates B2B sales activities. B2B contact data may also provide contact details of the key decision-makers (such as C-level executives) to establish the first line of contact for business.
Where does the data come from?
B2B contact lists comes from diverse data sources, including company records, company websites, social media, and other online sources. Data providers (like ZoomInfo) and aggregators collect data physically or with web scraping tools and augment it with information from government records to provide comprehensive contact data. Sales and marketing teams often use inbound sales leads and lead magnet tools to collect contact information on their audience or prospects.
- Physical data collection: Data collected from surveys, feedback forms, conferences, and trade shows.
- Company records and reports: The information published in these reports is collected as part of the B2B contact data.
- Government records: Information from company registries and revenue reports filed with the government.
- Web scraping tools: They use NLP (Natural Language Processing) to find contact details from company websites, news portals, registries, and social media.
- Lead Magnet Tools: Companies use gated content to collect contact details from website visitors.
- Lead capture forms: They collect contact details to provide access to product listing or product details.
- Email marketing campaigns: Opt-in future contact forms and emails are used for collecting contact details.
What types of attributes should I expect?
Typical attributes of B2B contact data include:
- Company name, size, industry, industry codes such as SIC or NAICS code if applicable, geographical presence
- Contact person’s name, title, and department
- Contact person’s office address, phone numbers, email ids, and social media presence (such as LinkedIn profile)
How should I test the quality of the data?
The quality of the data depends on the use cases. Data considered as complete for one project may be incomplete for another project. Like other categories of B2B data, this data also needs to be tested for data collection methods, data accuracy, recency, and consistency.
To test the quality of the data:
- Ensure that the methods used to collect data are suitable for your requirements.
- Validate data for accuracy and consistency.
- Verify that the data was recently updated, or that it is updated in real-time
- Test the data for completeness and if the data attributes match your requirements.
Who uses B2B contact data?
Marketers and sales teams use B2B contact data points to identify ideal customer profiles, target audiences, target accounts, and qualified leads. They leverage individual contact details to personalize marketing campaigns, improve conversion rates, and accelerate the customer journey. Marketers drive multichannel campaigns using high-quality, comprehensive contact details and boost the campaign’s effectiveness.
B2B contact data streamlines sales efforts by segmenting the data and facilitating personal communication with the decision-makers.
Companies often use B2B contact data for the enrichment of other B2B data categories to strategize their marketing and sales activities. It can augment different types of company data, such as firmographic data, to build comprehensive profiles of companies.
What are the common challenges when buying this type of data?
The most common challenges are obtaining good quality data (data completeness, timeliness, accuracy, and consistency) and ensuring the credibility of the sources and their collection methods.
- Source credibility: Contact data from trusted sources such as government records and company reports are reliable. However, other data collection methods may need additional verification to ensure that the information is authentic. For example, website visitors may knowingly give wrong information to lead magnet tools or lead capture forms. The web-scraping tools also may not use the most sophisticated algorithms and may present incorrect information.
- Data completeness: This type of data is used for personalizing the communication with the target companies. If the data is incomplete, its use will be limited. For example, if it does not include the email id of the decision-makers, sharing information through email will not be possible. Another point to note is that data can be complete for one use case, while it will be considered incomplete for another use case.
- Data timeliness: Data completeness and accuracy are closely related to how recently the datasets are updated. For example, if a new company phone number is not available in the datasets, the use of the dataset gets limited. Verifying that the data is recently updated is critical to ensure its value. For data derived using web-scraping tools, ensuring that the websites present updated information is essential.
- Data accuracy and consistency: Sales teams leverage contact data to personalize communication with the target companies. If the data is inaccurate and inconsistent across sources, it does not help efficient campaigning. B2B contact data is used for market segmentation and enriching other B2B data. Hence its accuracy and consistency are central to streamlining the sales efforts.
What are similar data types
B2B contact data is similar to B2B Intent Data, B2B Leads Data, B2B Marketing Data, Firmographic Data, Technographic Data, Business Ownership Data, and other categories of business data.
You can find a variety of examples of B2B and company data in the Explorium Data Catalog.
Sign up for a free trial of the Explorium External Data Platform to access the available data.
What are the most common use cases of B2B contact data?
You can use the data for use cases in marketing and sales, such as B2B marketing and outreach, Account Based Marketing, and lead generation.
- B2B Marketing: Data-driven B2B marketing personalizes the marketing communication between businesses in a scalable way. It leverages several categories of B2B data to deliver better engagement and improve ROI on marketing spend. With identified intent and leads, B2B marketing ensures focused sales efforts to gain more business.
- Account-Based Marketing (ABM): In B2B marketing, ABM or Key Account Marketing is leveraged to target existing high-value accounts and generate additional business. ABM is known to improve ROI on marketing investments and build strong partnerships. B2B contact data contributes to identifying target companies and creating a personalized strategy to approach them.
- Lead Generation: Companies use events, gated content, social media platforms, search engines, and other sources to generate leads. Data-driven lead generation analyzes customer profiles and buying intent to identify potential customers. It leverages B2B contact data along with several other B2B data categories to find prospects. The benefit of data-driven lead generation is scaling and prioritizing the prospects to improve sales.
Which industries commonly use this type of data?
This data is used for marketing and sales activities across industries, including retail, CPG, eCommerce, healthcare, pharma, travel, tourism, hospitality, entertainment, manufacturing, hi-tech, banks, insurance, and financial services.
How can you judge the quality of your vendors?
The first step in judging the quality of vendors is analyzing their customer feedback. As the next activity to shortlist vendors, success stories and case studies help understand the contribution from the vendor. Demos is a hands-on method in evaluating the data quality and ease of integration. Interacting with the reps of shortlisted vendors is the final step, where you can get your queries resolved and ascertain vendor reliability.
- Customer reviews and testimonials: Most vendor websites provide customer feedback as reviews, ratings, and testimonials. This feedback delivers insights into customer strengths and weaknesses. It also helps understand how the vendor engages with the customer. Numerical ratings signify customer satisfaction, and reviews provide more details of the projects with the vendor datasets. Reviews often share information on industry verticals and project sizes. Testimonials coming from long-term partners focus on vendor strengths and competencies. All the forms of customer feedback indicate if the vendor’s capabilities and experience match your requirements.
- Success stories and case studies: Many vendors share their successful case studies explaining the challenges faced by the customers and how the vendor helped manage them. Case studies are helpful in comparing the projects with your intended use, and assessing if the vendor is the right fit. Case studies can also give insights into the vendor experience, familiarity with methodologies, and timely delivery.
- Demos and sample datasets: Demos are a reliable way to examine the data quality and if the vendor datasets are suitable for your use. Watching data in action helps build confidence in data quality and ease of integrating with your systems. Sometimes live demos are available or the vendor can arrange one for you. If sample datasets are available on the websites or on request, you can try them out in your projects.
- Interacting with vendor reps: Once you have shortlisted vendors based on customer reviews, case studies, and demos, you can use the interaction with vendor reps as your final evaluation measure. Discussing your requirements with the reps helps both parties to check if the vendor is suitable. You can assess the delivery capabilities and the possibility of custom datasets. It is also an opportunity to discuss data quality, testing, and integration requirements. A comprehensive evaluation of vendors ensures that you choose the right vendors and build a long-term partnership with them.