If you’re a B2B marketer, you live and breathe demand gen. And in demand gen, the most important thing is how well you fill the pipeline. Sales wants leads and it wants them now. But as any B2B marketer who has been around the block a few times knows, it’s not as easy as it looks.
Drawn from a survey of more than 100 B2B marketers, a recent report by Demand Gen Report identifies the top 10 challenges to achieving success with demand generation programs.
Notably, it’s not the lack of data. Only 14% of the respondents cite this as a challenge.
This is no real surprise. A separate report by Ensighten found that 62% of marketers feel that they are overwhelmed by the data they have, while a staggering 85% said they are unable to fully apply that data to their marketing programs. The challenge isn’t the need to gather even more data, it’s gaining the ability –whether it’s through expertise, technology or both— to harness data and put it to work for you.
By contrast, the biggest challenge identified in the DGR survey is “identifying new lead sources” with 41% of the B2B marketers surveyed identifying it as a challenge.
This challenge points to a connection between identifying new lead sources and the inability to make use of the surfeit of data currently at a B2B marketer’s fingertips. Properly applied, data can unlock a wellspring of lead sources, especially when it comes to account based marketing.
When data is filtered through an ABM platform that can synthesize multiple data sources, it can not only help you target your identified account list, it can help you find the accounts you don’t know about yet that are actively expressing interest in products and solutions like yours.
Content, Content, Content
Thirty-eight percent of marketers cited the ability to create and/or source content to support campaigns ranked as the second greatest challenge.
The challenge of creating effective content has long plagued B2B marketers. Lack of expertise, staff shortages, bureaucratic approval chains, all stand in the way of executing efficient content programs. But here too we can identify the inability to harness data as one of the roots of the challenge.
Madison Logic, for example, makes use of research surges. Through a combination of intent data and our proprietary registration data, we can determine what accounts are actively researching a topic and the exact terms and phrases they’re using to do that research. This not only bolsters content creation, but also propels the messaging you use for your entire program.
Much of the DGR study points to the same thing. It’s not the lack of data that’s the problem; it’s the inability to use data. This is what stands in the way of running effective demand generation programs. As Todd Park, Obama’s technology advisor, has said: “Data by itself is useless. Data is only useful if you apply it.”
Check out our whitepaper on how to use data to run powerful account based marketing and demand generation programs.