B2B Data-driven Marketing: What Is It and Why Is It a Challenge?

data-driven-marketing

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The data within your marketing database is also different. 

Here are 5 important points to note: 

1.   The data architecture is often multi-level. 

A business record may contain a minimum of three levels – the site or physical location of business, its parent company and the individuals associated with that company. 

2.   The core customer record is based on a site. 

Most customer records are dependent on a location or site where the buying relationship exists.

3.   Data hygiene is critically important. 

B2B data is difficult to gather and maintain since employees move around.  Title change, companies go out of business and change locations. Keeping accurate data is a challenge.

4.   Data is gathered by hand. 

Much business data is available for rent or purchase from service providers, but most B2B companies find that they must fill in the gaps by themselves, especially in niche markets.  This often requires business marketers to invest in data enrichment efforts.

5.   The data includes both prospects and customers. 

Because the B2B sales process is long and involves multiple contacts within a firm, business marketers are very likely to maintain purchased prospect data in their marketing databases, for purposes of nurturing relationships with prospective buyers and influencers.  (Consumer marketing databases rarely house prospect data, because it is often cheaper and easier to rent it as needed.)

Keeping close to your customer is THE reason you engage in data-driven marketing. 

Over the next few columns, we’ll explore some key things to keep in mind as you embark on this journey:

  1. Using data to promote your business – how to get started
  2. Finding someone to support your marketing efforts – data consultants and how to choose
  3. Enriching your data to learn more about your customer
  4. Managing bi-lingual marketing data – some dos and don’ts from an architectural perspective
  5. Preparing for the future of marketing with your data

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About the author

Theresa Kushner

Theresa Kushner is a journalist-turned-marketer and Vice President of Enterprise Information Management at VMware.  She is responsible for master data management, business intelligence and advanced analytics.  She and Maria Villar co-write a column for LatinBusinessToday.com. They are co-authors of Managing Your Business Data: From Chaos to Confidence, published by Racom Books in 2008.