How to take advantage of intent and participate in the buying cycle

How to take advantage of intent and participate in the buying cycle

“Buyer intent signals are a set of indicators that tell me if the account I’m targeting is relevant to my brand or relevant to one of my offerings,” said Husam Al Mukhtar, Senior Director of Strategic Marketing for B2B intelligence platform ZoomInfo. The latest MarTech conference.

“Unlike first-party site sharing, signals of intent differ in the sense that they are collected from third-party apps or from third-party content that I don’t have access to as a brand,” he added.

Marketers can collect buyer intent data from everywhere they interact with customers. It can come from product reviews, message boards, blog comments, case studies, general news articles, and more. Unfortunately, many marketers fail to act on this wealth of data and incorporate it into their campaigns.

Buyer Intent Signals
Source: Hussam AlMukhtar

“94% of buyers do some form of online research before they reach me as a brand,” Mukhtar said figuratively. “This is important because my ability to close a deal could be as high as 74% if I were to be the first brand to reach the decision maker. Given the importance of this signal, marketers have been trying to understand how to use it.”

Here are three ways marketers can better understand and make better use of this valuable intent data to improve the customer buying cycle.

Review your brand customer buying cycle

The buying (or buying) cycle is a visualization that tracks customers as they move through the sales funnel to reach the buying stage. It is the brand’s responsibility to guide them at every touch point.

“These tactics and programs have a shared responsibility across all of them and individually as well,” Mukhtar said, which is to raise awareness of the brand, products and offerings to effectively generate intent.

illustration buyer cycle
Source: Hussam AlMukhtar

Consumers perform a good amount of self-education before and during the buying cycle, and often develop their own processes regardless of brand. It is up to marketers to align their buying cycles with these processes to meet customer needs and retain leads. They need to understand where the customer is coming from.

“Our buyers are fairly tech savvy and, most importantly, privacy conscious,” he said. “They find that opening an email can be tracked, visiting a website can be tracked and attributable – they might not want to and might be hopping around.”

Use intent as a unit of measure

The selector describes a useful strategy he uses to measure customer intent in the buying cycle. By creating a table that divides customers into “groups of intent,” show how marketers can determine each lead’s buying propensity: “These KPIs can be categorized into these three different units: “no intent,” “some intent,” and “high intent.” “. And we can use the metadata that comes from these signals.”

A chart detailing the process of measuring buyer intent
Source: Hussam AlMukhtar

It is ultimately the marketer’s decision on what determines the level of intent, but it should be based on specific actions that customers take throughout the lead cycle, such as clicking a call-to-action button, downloading a technical document, etc. Once the results are ranked, marketing teams can more easily apply intent insights to their campaign strategies.

“When I set up this table, I can then take the result of these units — ‘no intent’, ‘some intent’ and ‘high intent’ — and apply it on top of the account-based funnel,” the mukhtar said. “Then I can come up with an engagement matrix that will allow me to start looking at what kind of campaigns I can run for these different groups.”

Develop a customer engagement matrix

The Engagement Matrix framework relies on data collected from the Intent Measurement Table, mapping client intent scores to actionable engagement steps. Each work item can be custom created for the respective cohort based on their degree of intent.

Customer engagement matrix table
Source: Hussam AlMukhtar

“If I were to take a set of non-intent accounts with ‘no intent’, I might want to put them into a high-speed digital program aimed at generating new leads, and move the account from ‘no intent’ to ‘low intent’ or ‘high intent’,” said the chosen one. .

Categorizing customers in the buying cycle in this way can enable marketers to convert intent insights into more effective campaign tactics.

“Determining intent metrics across your account conversion paths helps marketers understand where they can maximize spending efficiency and where they can allocate their dollars,” he said.

About the author

Cory Patterson is an editor at MarTech and Search Engine Land. With a background in SEO, content marketing, and journalism, it covers Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and PPC to help marketers improve their campaigns.

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