Predictive analytics can be powerful for B2B lead generation and demand generation. These eight questions from marketing technology expert David Raab will help you evaluate vendors.
Editor’s Note: This post is excerpted from The Buyer’s Guide to Predictive Analytics for B2B Sales and Marketing, by David Raab. David has more than thirty years experience as a marketer, consultant, author and analyst. His firm, Raab Associates, Inc., helps marketers select the best marketing technologies and service vendors. You can download the report free of charge here.
Data is the foundation of predictive analytics. Some systems work primarily with structured data such as customer attributes and transactions. Others add semi-structured data such as Web logs or unstructured data such as social media and Web site content or call notes in CRM. Systems may process and provide data at the company level, or individual level, or both. Applying standard categories to data is important to help systems analyze results effectively despite variations in inputs.
8 QUESTIONS TO ASK
- Does the system process and provide data about individuals, companies/accounts, or both?
- What static data does the system use, such as company size and individual title?
- What behavior data does the system use, such as Web page views, purchase history, and promotion responses?
- What derived data does the system use, such as lead status, average purchases, or engagement rating?
- What unstructured data does the system use, such as text of social media content or call center transcripts?
- How does the system process unstructured data to make it useful, for example by identifying people, products or topics that are mentioned or by flagging unhappy customers?
- Does the system track information over time, such as frequency of Web site visits or changes in management?
- Does the system apply standard categories to data such as title, department, industry, topic, etc.?