Entering a cookieless marketing world in 2024 will present challenges to brands across industries and B2B marketers are no exception. In fact, given the ongoing digital transformation requirements of most brands in the B2B world, the loss of cookies in the data space could be particularly impactful for those brands that haven’t evolved their approaches and data sources.
So, let’s examine what quality B2B data looks like heading into 2024 and explore how B2B marketers can address their most pressing data pain points.
Digital transformation: The journey from offline to online
Digital transformation efforts among B2B marketers will accelerate as we approach a cookieless future. But, the systems and technologies storing the data required for this transformation often operate independently, making it challenging to extract insights. In a post-pandemic world where remote work is the new standard, B2B buying and selling environments have become even more complex. The influx of data from both offline and online sources can be overwhelming and challenging to maintain, even as organisations move towards hyper-automation using tools such as AI, machine learning, and event-driven software to analyse and govern data.
Today’s B2B enterprises need to employ data sources designed to maintain quality and consistency across digital transformation efforts, especially concerning uniting offline and online audience data. Here’s the process that data must undergo to connect the dots on B2B audiences effectively in a cookieless, privacy-first world:
- Source: Offline B2B data is collected from various sources, including government records, public filings and business directories. Offline data includes information such as company names, addresses, financial data, ownership details and industry classifications.
- Match: Offline data is matched to qualified and compliant digital IDs, including browser, mobile, hashed email and Universal IDs.
- Enhance: Digitised data is then appended with additional information, including email addresses, phone numbers and other relevant details.
- Validate: Data is processed to eliminate errors and inconsistencies. It should then be validated through cross-referencing against authoritative sources and cleansed by de-duplication and format standardisation.
- Activate: Only with this foundational quality-focused process can B2B audiences then be activated across demand-side platforms and retail media and social networks for omnichannel programmatic targeting.
Solving B2B data challenges
As outlined above, B2B marketers must hold their audience data to high standards as they move into a cookieless, privacy-first reality. For those looking to overcome common but persistent challenges in sourcing B2B data, here are the items to include on your checklist:
Data accuracy: Many B2B organisations struggle with an inability to maintain accurate data due to errors and outdated records. To solve this it requires a data provider with a rigorous data validation and cleansing process designed to ensure accuracy and quality.
Comprehensiveness: Incomplete data often restricts businesses from fully understanding their target audiences. Enterprises must seek out partners with comprehensive, global-wide data coverage.
Integration capabilities: Not having the right integrations often inhibits the flow of data and prevents a comprehensive view of customers. B2B enterprises should look for partners with seamless data integrations and APIs that easily incorporate data into platforms and workflows.
SMB reach and accuracy: Many sources of B2B data have gaps in reach and accuracy when it comes to small- and medium-sized business data, but these are important audiences for B2B success. Enterprises should seek data sources with strong coverage of businesses with ten or fewer employees that are constantly refreshed with government and credit data.
Privacy and compliance: Failing to adhere to privacy regulations can trigger both legal issues and reputational damage. B2B enterprises require data sources with robust data security and compliance measures that can safeguard them against such risks.
Audience data is the foundation of B2B enterprises, as B2B buyers are unlike any found in the consumer space. Theirs is a complex, multi-stage decision-making process involving multiple stakeholders, and B2B products are complex, often customised and frequently involve nuanced systems integrations. Without a quality data foundation, accelerating digital transformation efforts are prone to roadblocks and less-than-optimal outcomes.
Ensure you’re holding your data to the highest standards going into 2024 and beyond.