Which Contact Data Acquisition Strategies Are Most Effective for B2B Marketers?

January 19, 2022
DGR Top B2B Tactics Acquiring Prospect Customer Data Jan2022

The importance of customer data continues to rise, with a majority of marketers saying it is a driving factor in their decision-making. And, when it comes to acquiring that data, registration forms are considered one of the most effective tactics, per a recent report [download page] from Demand Gen Report and Dun & Bradstreet.

Some 8 in 10 (79%) of the more than 150 B2B marketing professionals surveyed cited registration forms on their own websites as being among the most effective ways of acquiring prospect and customer data. Fewer respondents consider content downloads or offer forms on dedicated landing pages (54%) to be one of the most effective for acquiring prospect and customer data. Interestingly, earlier research shows a more favorable attitude to gated content from B2B website visitors than marketers.

It wasn’t too long ago that in-person events were considered one of the top demand generation tactics. While this may be the case again in the future — once in-person events are back in full swing — fewer than half (47%) of B2B marketers consider them to be an effective tactic to acquire customer and prospect data.

Data Acquisition Strategies and Collecting Data

It turns out that close to half (45%) of respondents say they plan to implement a formal data acquisition strategy in the next 12 months or beyond. However, there are some factors that stand in the way of more marketers doing so. Siloed data has long been a challenge to obtaining insights from data. It also appears to be one of the main issues that prevent some two-fifths (42%) of marketers from implementing a formal data acquisition strategy.

While they are encountering other struggles in creating a formal data acquisition strategy, such as lack of resources or lack of expertise or experience, that doesn’t mean marketers haven’t formulated some goals for their databases. The most cited goals are targeting specific segments for better engagement and identifying key stakeholders within target accounts.

Beyond collecting contact data such as name, email address, company and title, fewer appear to be collecting the data that may help them better achieve their database goals. Considerably fewer marketers say they collect information such as industry vertical, company size and specific needs or pain points. Surprisingly, fewer than 2 in 5 (36%) collect consent to receive messages in accordance with data privacy initiatives like GDPR and CCPA.

However, marketers are showing interest in obtaining deeper data intelligence that they are not currently collecting. This data includes a timeframe for buying decisions, specific commentary on challenges and pain points, and buying intent insights.

Data Quality

Challenges also persist with maintaining data quality in contact databases. Some 7 in 10 (71% of) respondents consider old or outdated data to be one of their biggest challenges in this area, while close to two-thirds (64%) say they don’t have the time or resources to implement an effective process. 

In order to ensure data accuracy, more than half (56%) of respondents handle data quality assurance in-house. Others are turning to first- or third-party data providers (21%) and data quality management providers for their data quality assurance. One-third (33%) say they use third-party data suppliers to validate contact accuracy.

The full report can be found here.

About the Data: Findings are based on a survey of 186 B2B marketing professionals from a variety of industries, 59% of whom are based in the US.

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