TechTarget Scoops up Oceanos Marketing

TechTarget LogoTucked into the tail end of TechTarget’s earnings release last week was notice that they had acquired Oceanos Marketing, a contact data management company.  Both firms are based in the Boston suburbs.  Oceanos brings “data quality and data management expertise that will help us improve our offerings and deliver better results to our customers.”

Oceanos began as a list broker in 2002, but has since evolved into a B2B contact aggregator and data refinery.  The firm aggregates 97 million active US contact records (as of August 2017) and retains millions of inactive names and emails to assist with hygiene.  Data is aggregated from over a dozen vendors and includes social data from FullContact and Pipl.  Oceanos provides data enrichment, TAM analysis, net-new contacts, and a set of data specialists to assist with projects.

TechTarget manages a smaller set of 18 million subscriber profiles, 16 million of which are technology professionals.  The Oceanos acquisition should allow TechTarget to improve both the quality of their subscriber dataset and expand coverage into non-technology positions.  As technology purchase decision making has expanded beyond tech titles, Oceanos provides significant lift into other job functions.  Oceanos contacts are mapped to 12 Job Functions, 109 Sub-functions, and 7 Job Levels.

Oceanos President Brian P. Hession identified their differentiators as their unique blend of technology, professional services, and data quality. With data quality being critical to ABM sales and marketing initiatives, the inclusion of real world project fulfillment through their program specialists provides Oceanos with data quality insights that are used to continuously inform and enhance the data quality processes. “We apply both technology and real-world insights to ensure the highest quality of data before we are releasing it. We are incorporating a continuous stream of data quality insights into our code to address the many nuances that a program specialist encounters manually on a dataset,” said Hession last summer.  “The way that Oceanos is going to be successful in the future is if we can assemble an internal contact database that is of the highest quality in the industry.  So there’s been a lot of focus on putting models on top of our contact data.”

“Social data plays a role in our data hygiene process and serves as a ‘signal’ within both our Data Quality Score (DQS) and ABM Usability Score. The social information is sourced from reputable partners,” said Hession.  “Oceanos does not scrape contacts across LinkedIn or, in that vein, any social media site. All of our contact records originate from carefully selected third party data providers.”

The acquisition cost was not announced but was deemed “non-material.”  Oceanos 2017 revenue was around $5 million.

Openprise Expanded Data Marketplace

Data Orchestration vendor Openprise expanded its Data Marketplace with the addition of seven new vendors: Dun & Bradstreet, Oceanos, DiscoverOrg, KickFire, Acxiom, Cognism and People Data Labs.  The Openprise Data Marketplace is a third-party data mart which assists with “onboarding, ingesting and normalizing data” into major platforms such as Salesforce, Marketo, Eloqua, Microsoft Dynamics 365.

“Our customers benefit from having access to accurate and complete B2B marketing data – from verified account and contact data to organization charts to intent signals and buying scoops,” said Katie Bullard, DiscoverOrg Chief Growth Officer.  “The depth of our data gives sales and marketers a 360-degree view of target accounts and contacts, and our integrations ensure that data is always fresh, complete and up-to-date.”

“Openprise users can now incorporate Oceanos‘ contact hygiene and provisioning solutions directly within their automated processes to improve their demand generation and Account-Based Marketing initiatives,” said Oceanos’ CEO Brian P. Hession.  “Our API wraps five leading hygiene vendors into a single solution, further amplifying the benefits marketers realize.”

Openprise Content Partner Network
Openprise Content Partner Network

Openprise assists with cleaning and normalizing customer data, assesses match rates, recommends new data providers, coordinates data processing, and unifies data across systems.

John Donlon, Senior Director of Marketing Operations Strategies at SiriusDecisions, called acquiring and standardizing high quality prospect data as “one of the biggest challenges marketers face” and “critical” to implementing the SiriusDecisions Demand Unit Waterfall.  “Any technology that can facilitate that will give organizations a huge leg up not just in understanding their target audience, but in driving meaningful interactions throughout the buyer’s journey.”

Openprise claims that no single data vendor can provide superior data than their platform.  They also warned that a multiple vendor strategy is often ineffective due to industry content white labeling, resulting in little incremental value.  “With our Multi-Vendor Enrichment Strategy Service, our customers know quantitatively how each incremental vendor’s data will improve their database and they have the processes in place to easily integrate new data in a way that conforms with their existing data policies.”

The Openprise platform supports data onboarding, data cleansing and enrichment, data unification across systems, and data delivery.

Other members of the marketplace include ZoomInfo, InsideView, Salesgenie (Infogroup), Orb Intelligence and Synthio.

SalesIntel Human-Verified Contacts

SalesIntel supports prospecting by Job Level, Department, Title, Company, Location, Size, Email, and Contact Name.
SalesIntel supports prospecting by Job Level, Department, Title, Company, Location, Size, Email, and Contact Name.

Manoj Ramnani, CEO of CircleBack, launched his next venture, SalesIntel, as a beta service this month. After spending a decade in the sales and marketing space, Ramnani realized that “high quality and affordable B2B contact data for sales professionals was missing, and that enterprises were looking for a better deal.”

Traditional contact files are around 80% accuracy, but SalesIntel claims 95%+ accuracy through human verification of their contact records. Once added to the database, SalesIntel contacts are subject to a 90-day reverification cycle to maintain accuracy. 95% pushes the limits of accuracy due to the 2 to 2 ½% natural decay rate of contacts based on ongoing executive changes.

SalesIntel currently covers one million U.S. contacts, but it is growing at 100,000 names per week. Ramnani projects that the SalesIntel database will double in size to two million contacts by September.

Every contact record contains an email address and 90% contain direct dial phone number and LinkedIn hyperlinks. SalesIntel also provides headquarter and branch location switchboard numbers.

This data acquisition model is similar to the editorial process implemented at DiscoverOrg which has built a high quality database of three million contacts subject to 90-day human reverification cycles.

Ramnani emphasized that contact quality is even more important in the era of ABM targeting and committee buying:

When they do start a conversation, sales reps lack the contact information to easily include and reach out to everyone involved at an account. Each business decision involves seven buyers on average, but at least info for two of those contacts is expected to be wrong on average. Inaccurate data doesn’t only cost the cost of acquiring the data. It costs your sales team time, profit, and can slow down deals.

  • SalesIntel CEO Manoj Ramnani

SalesIntel also supports ABM lookup of contacts at companies and broader list building. Screening covers basic location, employee, revenue, title, and name filters along with six job levels, nine departments, and industry codes (SIC and NAICS). Location screening is limited to State and ZIP codes. Up to 500 records may be downloaded at a time.

The basic service offers 50 view-only contacts per month for $50. The standard service provides 100 downloadable contacts per month for $100 and the Advanced service provides 250 contacts per month for $250. A Salesforce integration and technographic selects are coming later this month.

“My team and I started this journey six months ago with the mission to make sales professionals’ lives easier,” Ramnani said. “We realize that salespeople shoulder the most important responsibility for the existence and growth of their organizations, namely, revenue growth. Our goal is to use the power of machine gathering and human verification to make their lives easier by providing them with the highest quality data on the market.”

Zoominfo Growth Acceleration Summit

Zoominfo held its third annual Growth Acceleration Summit in Boston last month.  The event projected increasing marketing confidence by the firm, with Earvin “Magic” Johnson keynoting and lectures by many of the top sales and marketing thought leaders including Jay Baer, Convince & Convert; Tiffani Bova, Salesforce; and Keenan, A Sales Guy, Inc.  Analyst sessions included Sirius Decisions, Heinz Marketing, and Forrester.

The event also provided a forum for announcing ZoomInfo’s latest Growth Acceleration Platform features.  New capabilities include a revamped ReachOut 2.0 Chrome Connector and a HubSpot Connector.

Magic, who has a long history of success in business and team ownership, provided personal anecdotes about his basketball and business career.  Key pointers includied hiring self-motivated staff that are smarter than you so as to continuously renew the organization; make sure you over deliver on customer expectations; and reward your staff, not just executives, as it is the staff that will ensure your ability to continuously over deliver;  Finally, he said that there are too many competitors out there to ever relax – both businesses and athletes need to continuously improve.

The new Hubspot connector allows users to upload Accounts and Contacts to Hubspot with a click of a button from either a browser or the ReachOut Chrome connector.  The HubSpot integration also supports ZoomInfo Complete which provides on demand enrichment at record creation.  ZoomInfo Complete for HubSpot is currently in beta.

ReachOut 2.0 identifies LinkedIn pages and URLs and maps them to ZoomInfo Intelligence. Profiles, which include firmographics, emails, and direct dials, may then be quickly uploaded to CRMs or sales engagement platforms..
ReachOut 2.0 identifies LinkedIn pages and URLs and maps them to ZoomInfo Intelligence. Profiles, which include firmographics, emails, and direct dials, may then be quickly uploaded to CRMs or sales engagement platforms.

 

ReachOut 2.0 streamlines account and contact research from within Chrome, providing instant access to ZoomInfo intelligence while browsing.  The service is context sensitive, providing company and contact profiles based upon the current LinkedIn record, URL, or CRM record being viewed.  The service also supports quick export to Salesforce, Hubspot, Microsoft Dynamics, Outreach, and SalesLoft.  When expanded into an 80% screen view, full company and contact intelligence is displayed.  Company insights include location, firmographics, people at company by job function, company locations with contacts and location counts per geography, technologies used (licensed from HG Data), and competitors (licensed from Owler).  Contact data includes company intelligence along with an expanded set of social links and contact details.

The 80% ReachOut expanded view supports full prospecting both across companies and within a single firm.  Users can quickly select records and share them to CRM (Salesforce, MS Dynamics, HubSpot) or Sales Engagement platforms (Outreach, SalesLoft).  Being able to enlarge to the 80% view allows Zoominfo to pack a full-featured offering into ReachOut, helping it expand from a tool to a full-service product.

ReachOut 2.0 supports full profiles and prospecting when expanded to 80% of the screen.
ReachOut 2.0 supports full profiles and prospecting when expanded to 80% of the screen.

ReachOut now supports user tagging allowing users to store campaigns, lead source, etc.

“If you combine your own intelligence with Big Data, you create for yourself a crystal ball that gives you the ability to focus your attention on the most important things that need to get done,” said CEO and Chief Scientist Yonatan Stern. “When you focus, it doesn’t cost you more money, but you can increase productivity and profitability.”

“Over the last year, we have doubled down on our strategy of making ZoomInfo’s contact and company data available on the platforms where our customers live,” said Phil Garlick, VP of corporate development.  “In keeping with that strategy, we have released two new products that integrate seamlessly with a host of platforms and systems our customers use.”

Also unveiled at the Summit was ZoomInfo’s new ZoomInfo University certification program, “a comprehensive, hands-on certification program that enables B2B professionals to fully leverage its B2B contact and account database for business results.”

The new training program teaches best practices around persona development, lead scoring and routing, market segmentation and territory management, campaign strategies, and data management.

“ZoomInfo University is designed to strengthen your knowledge of the industry and usage of the entire ZoomInfo Product Suite,” said Garlick.  “It’s both a deep dive of capabilities and the beginning of a lasting growth acceleration journey.”

ZoomInfo continues to be confident in their data quality due to their Community product which provides them with access to email signature blocks.  According to a sales rep, records updated within the past year have a 90% deliverability rate.  He noted, however, that deliverability will vary by industry and function due to the underlying contact decay rates of various segments.  For high decay functions (e.g. sales) and industries (e.g. high tech), he suggested using the six-month update select to ensure receiving the highest quality leads.

Rhetorik: What Does GDPR Mean for B2B Marketing?

I’ve been looking for a good description of what GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) means to B2B marketers and finally came across a session given by UK technology profiler Rhetorik.  There have been a number of issues that have muddied the waters, making it difficult to provide much more than general rules.  Amongst the issues are a focus on the implications to consumer marketers, the lack of a general law that spans the EU, and an emphasis on rumors and fears about what will happen to firms that fail to comply with the regulation.

Rhetorik Data Protection Officer Samantha Magee noted that GDPR covers how and why companies hold and protect data.  It is focused on internal processes rather than external communications, and is channel agnostic.

In around 18 months, the EU will pass uniform ePrivacy legislation which covers external communications in member countries.  Until then, rules will remain fragmentary.  For example, Opt-in or Opt-out protocols differ by country with the UK amongst the more liberal countries:

Opt-in / Opt-out workflow by country (Source: Rhetorik)
Opt-in / Opt-out workflow by country (Source: Rhetorik)

For the moment, GDPR has given teeth to local regulations.  In the UK, the PECR (The Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations of 2003), overseen by the Information Commissioners Office (ICO), remains the applicable regulation for consumer, single trader, and small partnership communications.  It was drafted after the European Directive 2002/58/EC, otherwise known as the or ‘e-privacy Directive’, was implemented in 2002.

There are six bases for communicating with clients and prospects, all of which have equal weight: Consent, Contract, Legal Obligation, Vital Interest, Public Task, and Legitimate Interest.  Of these, Consent (e.g. opt-in) and Legitimate Interest are the most common for B2B marketers.  Support and service departments would most likely be covered under contractual relationships.

“Legitimate Interest aims to provide a solid and lawful basis upon which commercial communication can occur, allowing marketers to promote their products and services to a targeted and well defined audience,” said Magee.  “At its heart, is the desire to ensure that commercial practices and communications are relevant to the individual, offering the assurance that high standards of care are applied and that their essential privacy” rights are considered of the utmost importance.”


Part II continues with a discussion of the UK PECR law and additional details on Legitimate Interest.

DealSignal Total Audience Platform

DealSignal, which offers an on-demand platform for Total Audience and Contact Data Management for B2B marketing and sales, recently rolled out its Total Audience Metrics (TAM) module.  The new platform helps sales and marketing professionals improve Go-to-Market and Demand Planning processes by allowing them to measure and visualize their total audience and determine coverage gaps in their CRM and MAP.  The new platform analyzes TAM by persona, account segment, and buying committees (what SiriusDecisions calls Demand Units).

“We’ve run hundreds of TAM analyses for B2B marketing teams in various industries and customers are consistently surprised to find that they’re missing more than 80 percent of their target audience—the contacts that fit their target personas and ideal customer profile. TAM coverage is currently averaging 18 percent in existing CRM and MAP systems. It’s a big ‘aha moment’ to learn that you’re missing out on marketing or selling to a large majority of your potential buyers. Often, the best potential buyers – those most likely to convert – are among the missing contacts found in the gap analysis,”

  • DealSignal CEO Rob Weedn

The firm is seeing rapid uptake on its TAM service which is available as either a freemium (TAM Estimates) or paid option (TAM Actuals).  “Early feedback is that this is a great way to verify the counts and size up the Outbound and/or ABM marketing programs over the upcoming year,” said Weedn.

According to DealSignal, TAM Estimates are accurate to ± 20% of Accounts and Contacts.  “We’ve been offering this for a few months and it is very popular” with customers and prospects “leveraging this analysis for initial demand planning and budgeting,” said Weedn.  “TAM Actuals is a Paid Offering, charged based on credits on our platform, which provides perfectly accurate Total Audience metrics based on Accounts and Contacts.”

The DealSignal platform dynamically discovers, refreshes, and verifies records based on the TAM criteria.

DealSignal has adopted the term TAM, but calls it Total Audience Metrics instead of Total Addressable Market.  Weedn explained the difference between the DealSignal and Classic TAM approach:

Total Addressable market is classic and static top down analysis, based on sample/partial market data, typically performed by market research and analyst firms like IDC, Gartner, etc.  “Classic TAM” is not necessarily an accurate sizing of the market, it is not frequently updated, and, most importantly, there is no real way for marketing and sales teams to plan marketing and sales programs with a classic and static top-down TAM, and definitely no way to execute against the Accounts and Contacts in that TAM.

DealSignal, is here to help marketers market and sellers sell, so we perform an accurate, bottoms-up, dynamic analysis, based on complete market data, of the actual counts of the Total Audience – which we define as the Accounts that meet Target Market criteria (Industry, Employee, Revenue, Technologies Used, etc.) and Contacts that meet Ideal Buyer Persona criteria.  Further, our Total Audience Metrics/Measurements include a process to dynamically discover and verify the underlying Accounts and Contacts, so TAM Analysis is dynamic, based on actuals, and can be updated on demand.  The Accounts and Contacts can then be converted, with one click, to fully enriched and verified with full Account/Contact Profiles and Contact Information to be used in marketing and selling initiatives.

Using the DealSignal platform, users can define target personas and Ideal Customer Profiles (ICPs) to build out their TAMs, using micro-targeting criteria such as Titles, Profile Keywords, and Locations that yield results as ranked lists of relevant accounts and contacts. The module compares the TAM against the CRM and identifies gaps by account, industry, geography, etc.  DealSignal provides the TAM based not only on CRM data and large third-party sources, but through dynamic sourcing and verification, so the TAM results are “comprehensive and accurate” with net-new accounts and contacts.

DealSignal combines APIs, algorithms, and human intelligence to achieve a much higher level of contact accuracy (95 – 100% according to the firm) than most vendors.  The company provides a 100% guarantee on all Account and Contact data.  The system enriches and verifies existing leads, contacts and accounts.  As it conducts dynamic data sourcing, DealSignal claims account enrichment match rates between 95 and 100% and lead enrichment match rates between 85 and 100%.

DealSignal TAM Analysis Module
DealSignal TAM Analysis Module

DealSignal dynamically discovers, enriches and verifies account and contact lists through a combination of AI robots and researchers combined with CRM and MAP feedback loops.  The firm claims a deliverability rate between 94 and 97% and reverifies data on demand for every customer request, with a two week window for contact aging.  Records that fall outside of the two-week window are reverified overnight.

“Since static data-at-rest quickly becomes dated, we do not trust it, you should not trust it, and you should certainly not rely on it to define or optimize your vital marketing or sales programs. It must be renewed and refined at runtime,” said Weedn.  “We believe in dynamically refreshing and re-verifying data on-demand, when it needs to become active and put into a marketing or sales process—and we’ve uniquely designed the DealSignal platform to do just that.”

DealSignal has automated and editorial processes that place its data quality at a level claimed only by DiscoverOrg.  Both firms utilize editorial teams for staying ahead of the 25 to 30% contact decay rate suffered by static databases.  DiscoverOrg performs a full data verification every 90 days while DealSignal performs a just-in-time data quality review overnight.

“Marketers and sales teams currently rely on solutions that provide 50 to 80% quality.  That is a B- or F on a test, and we need to change the expectation to impeccable quality, at 95-100% (A or A+) to greatly improve marketing and sales performance,” said Weedn.

Last month, DealSignal released a GDPR risk assessment module which enriches CRM data with contact locations and flags EU-based leads.  Users can also choose to exclude EU-based leads.

“B2B marketers are faced with many challenges today: identify and engage their total audience, try to keep their audience data fresh and accurate, and comply with new regulations like GDPR. Given the negative consequences associated with GDPR, most marketers are scrambling to review and re-verify the location and status of their contacts,” said Weedn.

Leads are pre-purchased on a volume basis with 1,000 credits running $895.  Volume discounts kick in at 5, 10, 25, 50 and 100 thousand credits.

D&B Optimizer for Marketing

DNB Optimizer for Marketing -- Key Features
DNB Optimizer for Marketing — Key Features

Dun & Bradstreet rebranded D&B Workbench Data Optimizer as D&B Optimizer for Marketing and announced a set of enhancements to the platform.  The Workbench name, now dropped, went back to the product’s origins as NetProspex Workbench, one of the first DaaS Hygiene / Enrichment / Prospecting platforms.  The rebranded product includes a series of new features including an Analyze module, Salesforce Contact Optimization, custom email deliverability targets, and NAICS industry code support.

“This new name reflects Dun & Bradstreet’s commitment to deliver the very best in data optimization services,” the firm wrote its clients.  The new name is also consistent with its other Optimizer solutions: D&B Optimizer for Salesforce and D&B Optimizer for Microsoft.

The new Analyze module delivers profiling and market opportunity analysis “utilizing D&B Master Data and proprietary machine-made analytics.”  Features include dynamic dashboards which help marketers visualize their primary profile by revenue, employee size, and industry.  The service also provides look-a-like opportunities to assist with ABM expansion and pipeline growth.

The new Salesforce Integration for Contact optimization supports contact cleansing and enrichment at a frequency determined by the customer.  Dun & Bradstreet claims that the Salesforce integration may be setup in fewer than twenty minutes.

Custom Email Deliverability Levels allow marketers to dip deeper into Dun & Bradstreet’s pool of emails and select contacts with lower reliability scores.  The default level is 90% deliverability, but highly targeted selects may require using contacts that are below the 90% deliverability threshold.  Dun & Bradstreet called the 90% threshold “our recommended level for most email campaigns.”

Finally, D&B Optimizer for Marketing added NAICS industry code selects.  The product already supports the older US SIC industry taxonomy.

Other D&B Optimizer for Marketing features include data validation and standardization (email, phone, address), duplicate flagging, data hygiene reports, lead prospecting, segmentation analysis, and data enrichment (firmographics, D-U-N-S Numbers, corporate linkages, technographics, biographics).