Ruth P. Stevens

Is B-to-B Prospecting Data Accurate? Research White Paper

WPState_ofB2B_ProspectingDataAccuracy2016 (3)_Page_1Title:  The State of B-to-B Prospecting Data Accuracy

Published by/Authors: Bernice Grossman, Ruth Stevens, Karla Blalock, and David E. Knutson

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Score:  Five out of Five

Length: 4 Pages

Highlights: 

  • Data accuracy at the account-based level is stronger than expected which was telephone verified by PointClear
  • Five database companies participated in the study (out of 28 and I bet the others wish they had partaken) are:
    • Equifax
    • Harte Hanks
    • Infogroup
    • Lake B2B
    • Salesforce
  • Each database was telephone verified for accuracy for company name, address, city, state, zip and URL.   
  • The percentage of accuracy is reported for each category by company.

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What the Growth of Inside Sales Means to B2B Marketers

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I heard an arresting comment at the LeadsCon conference in New York in August.  The speaker claimed that inside sales has outstripped outside sales in B2B, a statistic that both surprised me and got me thinking.  Turns out, the statement was based on a recent study showing that inside sales is growing 7.5%, compared to field sales at only 0.5%, and that as of 2013, 53% of the B2B sales rep population sells by phone, instead of face-to-face.  It strikes me that this development bears enormous implications for B2B marketers.

On reflection, I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised, since phone-based selling is so much more efficient than hitting the road to make face to face sales calls.   Inside sales has graduated over time from the role of inbound order-taker to a full-fledged territory rep, with a full sales quota, but one who can handle a lot more accounts. 

Interestingly, inside sales reps appear to be more effective as well.  The same study shows their quota achievement levels at 85%, compared to field sales, who only achieve their quotas 81% of the time.

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Named Account Marketing: New Tools and Techniques to Reach a Limited Universe

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Some B2B marketers know exactly what accounts are in their target market.  What a luxury!  These marketers can eliminate the old “spray and pray,” and focus all their attention and investment in a finite universe of prospects and current customers.  It’s almost like mass customized selling, with maximum coverage and minimal waste.  Best of all, a number of new tools and tactics are now available to do the marketing job efficiently. 

I’ve been involved a few situations like this recently.  At DMA14 in San Diego, I heard a fascinating talk by Mark Rentschler, marketing director at Makino, a large manufacturer of machine tools.  They have spent a few years building a database of the 6,000 accounts they already do business with in North America, plus another 6,000 prospective accounts.  Makino’s approach?  “Laser focus,” says Rentschler.  “These are the accounts we pay attention to.”

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