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How contact data speeds up sales

July 7, 2021

Did you see the last article in our Get down and data series?

In it, we talked about how contact data fuels marketing campaigns.

But contact data isn’t just for marketers. Salespeople can reap the rewards of detailed, up-to-date contact data too. 

This time, we’re looking into how contact data makes sales teams move faster and with more precision - and ultimately generates even more sales.

Let’s get started - scroll 👇 or use the menu to skip to any section you like.

The five types of sales data | Identifying multiple buyers in an organisation | Making prospecting easier | Shortening the sales cycle | Building a scalable, repeatable process | Further benefits | The world’s best B2B contact data

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The five types of sales data

Briefly, here are the five types of data that we’ll concentrate on when talking about speeding up sales:

  • Demographic – basic contact information including names, email addresses and phone numbers.
  • Firmographic – company information such as location and headcount.
  • Technographic – the tech solutions in an organisation’s stack.
  • Chronographic – events that may signify when a prospect is interested in purchasing your product.
  • Intent – web activity that may indicate intent to purchase.

The more detailed and up-to-date the data you have, the more you’ll be able to speed up your sales process. 

And here are the four main ways you can accelerate your sales with contact data.

1 – Identifying multiple buyers in an organisation

Do you know, on average at companies with 100-500 employees, the number of decision-makers involved in a B2B purchase?

According to research from Gartner, it’s seven.

And guess what? 

For larger enterprise-level companies, that number is going to be even higher. Think of all the people from different departments who are going to be involved - sales, marketing, procurement, IT, legal, finance...the list goes on!

What’s caused this industry-wide increase in decision-makers with purchasing power?

Today’s SaaS and tech solutions have an impact across the whole of an organisation, rather than just affecting one team. As a result, multiple stakeholders want to have their say on a purchase.

Account-based marketing (ABM) and sales developed as a response to this.

How does it work?  

An ABM strategy is where marketing and sales teams align to target multiple decision-makers in an enterprise company. It involves a coordinated approach, with salespeople and marketers working in tandem, developing content that’s specific to the organisation and the individuals inside it.

It’s a high-effort, high-output strategy - but the rewards can be appropriately massive. These days, it’s pretty much the only way to seal an enterprise deal.

What’s the number thing you need for ABM to work properly?

That’s right - it’s data!

Particularly, you need in-depth data on your target organisations and their decision-making employees. You’ll need intel like:

  • Who fills which roles?
  • How do they all relate to each other?
  • Where can they be found online?
  • What types of content do they most engage with?

Your data needs to be as current as possible. In enterprise orgs, things can change very quickly on the ground. People can be promoted, switch teams or jump to a competitor.

2 – Making prospecting easier

Data is the bedrock that prospecting’s built on. 

The better your data, the more effective your prospecting will be. On the other hand, poor data can lead to disaster.

How does data help prospecting?

With contact data, you can create a list of contacts who may be interested in your solution. Then, your salespeople can outreach to those individuals, with a message that positions your product as the answer to their problems.

However, it’s well-known that people move jobs regularly in today’s economy, either within their organisations or in joining new ones. Businesses of all sizes and sectors often reallocate people’s responsibilities and give them new titles. 

Just because someone is a decision-maker for a B2B purchase on Monday doesn’t mean they will be on Tuesday!

What’s the best way around this conundrum? 

It all comes down to data. 

Your salespeople need the best B2B data so they know... 

  • Who the right people are and... 
  • Where they can reach them easily.

If they don’t have good data, they’ll waste their time trying to reach contacts that don’t exist anymore.

And trust us, that can lead to a whole host of problems, from low staff morale to a depleted balance sheet.

3 – Shortening the sales cycle

Most of the time, even if a buyer thinks your product is fantastic, they won’t be in a position to make a purchase.

There can be untold reasons for this.

They may still have time left on a contract with another vendor. Or maybe they won’t have the budget until the next financial year. Whatever the reason is, they’re not buying!

Fast-moving, efficient sales teams don’t waste time in limbo, waiting and following up with buyers who aren’t ready to buy. 

Instead, they use data - chronographic data and intent data - to pinpoint the perfect times to reach out - at the exact moment when a decision-maker is most interested in your product or service.

Chronographic data includes any event that signifies when a company might be open to investigating your solution. Some examples are:

  • Funding rounds.
  • Company relocation.
  • A new CEO being hired and wanting to make a mark.

And intent data is any event that signifies when a company is actively investigating your product or something similar. It allows you to get in front of people early and outpace the competition.

Meaning, in short, your sales cycles will start to shrink!

4 – Building a scalable, repeatable process

B2B sales works when your people contact decision-makers who are ready to buy with a message that resonates.

To do this at scale, you need excellent data.

High-quality data gives you control over your sales process. You can use it to create pinpoint contact lists, where everyone on the lists is likely to be facing the same challenges.

This means you can craft sales messaging that speaks to those challenges and positions your solution as the answer. You can also use your original customer lists to build lookalike lists of other prospects that your solution will work for.

The best thing about a data-driven sales approach is it’s highly scalable. What works for a one-man SDR team will also work for a team of hundreds. As long as you’ve got the data in place, it can all be dialled up or down, as you need.

B2B sales isn’t a one-and-done process anymore. It’s about winning customers that will be with you for several years, where you renew and upsell, maximising customer lifetime value (LTV). 

To achieve this, salespeople need to make the process smoother for their buyers, contacting them on their terms with a personalised, relevant message.

And you can’t do that without top-quality data.

Further benefits

Good contact data doesn’t just speed up sales. It also helps with:

  • Forecasting – contact data helps you understand your market and how many conversations your reps will have during specific periods, boosting predictability.
  • Motivation – if your reps are trapped in dead-ends thanks to out-of-date data, they’ll soon lose motivation. Good data energises your team and reinforces their value.
  • Compliance – your data needs to be GDPR compliant, so you don’t fall foul of regulations.

If you’re not investing in clear, in-depth and up-to-date contact data for your sales team, you’re leaving money on the table.

The world’s best B2B contact data

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