This article is part of our Centers of Excellence, a thought leadership series where we publish our internal best practices to help others in similar situations.
This time last year we realized there had to be a better way to gain more efficiency in our targeting, and ability to test our copy and creatives at scale.
We had a good understanding of what our ideal customer profile (ICP) looked like, and the places they hung out online.
This, unfortunately, left us paying incredibly high cost-per-clicks (CPCs) because of the targeting parameters I knew we needed to work within.
Why We Needed Software
I knew we would need to find a solution to become hyper-targeted towards each of our ICPs, while also leveraging insights from our CRM to ensure the right message was reaching the right persona at the right time.
The benefits we knew we needed
When pitching our need for software to optimize our advertising, I wanted to make the benefits we’d gain clear to the executive team. Here are the gains that are most important for us:
- Give sales and marketing a clearer view of potential prospect’s intent data and journey throughout the funnel
- Help us operationalize our marketing program
- Allow us to tie our sourced and influenced data back to marketing investment
- Get a true, clear landscape of how to make optimizations within our program as we continue to grow and scale
- Help us make a much more targeted program structure for those that we know are within our ideal customer profile (ICP), have the preferred technographics/firmographics/etc.
- Give insight into new accounts that are not currently being targeted
Criteria for Evaluation
After getting the team to agree that we needed this type of software, it was time to evaluate the top choices.
But before selecting which software to evaluate, I wanted a clear idea of which features were most important for our needs. This would give me an objective lens to view each demo.
- Orchestration capabilities – Functionality that sets the sales team up for success, such as data on target accounts, progress through the funnel, engagement metrics, etc.
- Destination integrations – Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Google Ads, etc.
- Self service capabilities – Ability to own the program ourselves, and make edits to ads as needed
- Salesforce and/or HubSpot integration
- No committed monthly media spend minimums
Nice to haves
- Technographic information/enrichment capabilities – Information on the tech stack of accounts we’re targeting, and ability to enrich accounts with additional data.
- Sales team visibility
Demo & Findings
Once I had a clear understanding of what I was looking for, I researched the top players in the space: 6sense, Engagio (just before they were acquired by Demandbase), Terminus, and Metadata.
Here were my findings:
Metadata was a smaller player in the space, but I chose to evaluate them since they’re making a lot of really interesting strides in the market. They seemed to conceptually interpret account based marketing (ABM) differently, and thus are defining a new category: demand generation platform.
This caught my attention.
I’ve always been really interested to better understand how the term ABM became such a buzz word. After all, isn’t ABM just better marketing? Isn’t it the type of marketing we should have been doing all along?
So, that’s just it. We needed a platform that allowed us to do better, more accurate marketing without costing an arm and a leg. And Metadata does just that.
Plus, according to G2’s Summer 2020 ABM Report, Metadata is #1 in overall category, including #1 in ROI, Time to ROI, Implementation Speed, Usability, and Satisfaction.
Here’s how Metadata optimizes demand gen efforts.
Further identify your ICP(s)
Metadata integrates with Salesforce, our CRM, to pull historical data from closed won opportunities to help us identify exactly the type of profiles we should be targeting. And inversely also pulls data from closed lost opportunities so that we can make educated decisions around who we should not be targeting.
MetaMatch for audience creation
MetaMatch is their proprietary matching functionality that allows for audience creation across Facebook, LinkedIn and programmatic display. Why should you care? This allows you to more accurately target your B2B audience on Facebook where users have likely tied that account to their personal email.
Optimize for pipeline and revenue, not leads
Since Metadata is integrated with our CRM, the platform can dynamically put more spend toward the ads that are driving pipeline and revenue. Less wasted spend, more revenue. Win win.
Automate lead enrichment
Metadata helps us match personal data to business data and enriches our leads before they enter our marketing automation platform or CRM.
It was clear that Metadata was the best choice for our needs. When I first started this research, they were not even on my radar, but I believe they will be a very large player in this space in the coming years.
The way they interpret marketing aligns with our strategy, and the approach they’re taking for their product roadmap is nicely in sync with ours. The pricing is fair, and the added benefit of testing is something that will benefit us as we bring new products to market, and widen our audience.
I promise this is not a paid sponsorship. Metadata hasn’t prompted us to write or publish this. I just found it to be critical software for us, and hope this helps others as well.