I’m often asked about the best list source(s) to use for sales prospecting, lead generation, and demand generation campaigns. When you want to build a list of target contacts, where you get the intelligence from is an important question. There is no one pat answer because it depends on many factors. The answer will have a critical impact on the productivity and results of your focused outreach or marketing lead generation and demand generation campaigns.
Business Intelligence for Sales and Marketing Lead Generation Comes in Many Forms
I have researched, selected, inherited and used a wide variety of list sources. A list source is defined as a source of specific data about your prospects.
Here are a few sales prospecting, B2B lead generation, and demand generation list sources:
- Harte Hanks
- InfoGroup OneSource
Not all sources of company intelligence are the same. I’d like to share a few planning questions you may want to ask yourself in order to determine which is the best list source for your initiative.
So, for those who have asked and those who are wondering, these are the factors that will help you know which list source(s) to use.
How to Choose the Best Source for Building Your List
- Define your ideal buyer profile. In order to select the list source(s) that best matches your ideal buyer profile, you have to clearly define your ideal buyer profile for your initiative first. Who are you targeting? Which companies? How do you distinguish your target companies? Do you look at industry, vertical, size by employee, revenue or geography? What characteristics determine your ideal contact or buyer? Is it title? Do you look at contact title? What level of contact do you want to reach? Decide if you are targeting executives, mid management or company owner. What departments do your ideal contacts work in? Is it Corporate, Marketing, Sales, Customer Service, Finance or Systems?
- Determine how you’ll connect. In order to select the list source(s) that provide the contact data you need, you must understand how you’ll connect. The question is how do buyers want to connect with you during your sales prospecting, lead generation and demand generation campaigns. Do they prefer phone? Email? Both? Other?
- Prioritize must-have information. List source(s) cannot be all things to all people. You need to prioritize ideal buyer profile characteristics and contact details, and decide which ones are a must-have and which ones are a nice-to-have for your sales prospecting, lead generation and demand generation campaigns.
- Research and Select. Using clearly defined criteria should put you in a better position to select the list source(s) that most closely meet your needs for each sales prospecting, lead generation and demand generation campaign.
Which list source(s) work for you? I’m interested in your comments.
With so much said about aligning sales with marketing, come back next week to hear my thoughts on aligning customer service with marketing.