Digital transformation is more than just a buzzword – as pointed out Forbes, 70% of companies have already deployed a strategy to improve the adoption of digital services and solutions or are actively working on it.
And, in 2019 alone, companies spent more than $ 2 trillion globally to drive digital adoption and improve overall organizational performance.
For technology industry product and service providers, this presents an opportunity: If B2B sales teams can determine where companies are struggling with digital transformation initiatives, they can improve targeted marketing efforts and increase sales. total.
But how do you bridge the gap between potential conversions and practical insights? Technological data. In this article, we’ll describe what is (and isn’t) technographic, how businesses can collect this data at scale, and why this data is important to help improve B2B sales efforts.
What is technological data?
Technology is a hallmark of the words “technology” and “demographics,” and refers to information that describes the use of technology solutions, their adoption rates, and the potential challenges they present to organizations.
The challenge? This technographic definition is not terribly useful without context.
First, let’s talk about what technography is not:
Demographics focus on information about people – how many people are employed by a specific organization? What points of contact exist? How has the size and configuration of the workforce of companies evolved over time and what is on the horizon. This information is essential to help identify potential leads and develop initial marketing efforts, but does not offer any insight into the use of the technology.
Firmographic data refers to information such as company size, product offerings, industries served, total revenues, and even physical locations. This data is useful in helping to create targeted campaigns that generate interest in B2B sales, but do not include metrics or technology metrics.
So what exactly East technographic data? Simply put, this is the practical application of information about the technology stack used by a potential customer. – everything from the infrastructure and network tools they use to the applications they prefer and the rate of adoption of those large-scale applications.
Used effectively, technographic data can help companies align their product offerings with digital transformation needs and capture customer interest.
To note? There is a distinction between pure technographic data and social technographic data. While tech data speaks of the use of software, hardware, and network technologies within an organization, social technographic data focuses on the consumption and use of social media technologies within a business.
While this is useful for social marketing efforts, it does not serve the same function as tech data for B2B marketing efforts.
How to collect technology data
When it comes to collecting technographic data, three main methods exist:
The most direct method of collecting technographic data starts at the source: the staff of the target companies. Using phone or email surveys, companies try to collect information about how technology is adopted, deployed and used to drive B2B efforts. The challenge? Most companies don’t respond to cold-call surveys, and many are unwilling to provide specific usage data, even through email response templates. While this method can provide generalized usage data, it is often more problematic than it is worth.
2. Website scraping
Website scraping tools extract specific information from corporate websites about the applications and services used by businesses. While this can produce more accurate results than survey data and without having to cold-call companies, it does require technical expertise to ensure the tools collect and report relevant data. In addition, security controls on websites may limit the type and amount of data that can be collected, and the information available may be out of date.
3. Third party purchases
The easiest way to get tech data is to buy it from a reputable data collection provider. With the rapid adoption of cloud-based SaaS, PaaS and IaaS solutions, service providers and data analytics companies now have access to much more robust and reliable technographic datasets than interested parties. can buy.
While there are certain limits to this data collection – for example, personal data must be anonymized to ensure compliance with local and global privacy laws – businesses can access massive amounts of data. technology that can be used with the correct third-party provider.
However, it should be borne in mind that not all providers are created equal. Some promise massive data sets, but can’t deliver, while others can’t deliver real-time information. Best bet? Do your research before contracting a tech data provider.
Why tech data is important
Technographic data alone provides a window into the use of company technologies. Combined with targeted marketing and sales efforts, this information can dramatically improve conversion results.
The four actionable benefits of tech data include:
1. Improved segmentation
With accurate data on the use and deployment of technologies within potential customer organizations, businesses can better define granular customer segments based on current needs and ongoing priorities to ensure efficient use of business resources.
2. Improved specificity
Prospects are often inundated with pitches for new technologies and services. Technology data allows sales teams to talk about specific issues faced by potential customers and quickly capture their interest.
3. Increased prioritization
Not all leads have the same potential value to businesses. But it is difficult to distinguish the priority of the leaders, especially in an increasingly competitive technology market. Technology data can help companies quickly assess which leads are most likely to move on to new solutions and which require more time.
4. Reduced lead time
Speaking of the weather, news announcements about new technology solutions, mergers and acquisitions, or product launches offer jumping off points for successful sales discussions – but only if teams are equipped with relevant tech data to help connect the dots between press releases and customer needs.
Tactical technical targeting
Technology data enables marketing and sales teams to create tactical, targeted campaigns that address real-life issues facing organizations undergoing digital transformation.
By prioritizing in situ issues and providing comprehensive solutions to emerging challenges using technographic data, B2B efforts can stand out and contribute to sustainable customer conversion.