Business to business technology marketing has it's own learning curve and comes with its own set of challenges. Likewise, the demands on having the right kind of marketing data for effectively selling specific technology-based products and services also vary and a lot based on the nature of what you sell.
If you sell technology to a more generic market like a simple accounting software or document management software it's perhaps more straightforward to source data suited to your campaigns simply by determining a market segment, target company size and perhaps revenue. Then, of course, you need to locate a source for technology decision makers who are broadly responsible for accounting software or document management software. Purchasing a list of technology leads or subscribing to a database of IT decision makers should give you a decent source of potential leads for your CRM and you are good to go.
However, when your product or service is dependent on another technology generic lead sources are just not good enough and you need to be able to qualify your company and contact data much more thoroughly before its ready for your campaigns. With selling products dependent on another technology the market is not as obvious and it's absolutely crucial to know whether what technology your target company is using before it can be added to your ecosystem of potential leads. If you're not doing this, you're trying to kill a fly with a Gatling gun.
Qualification and lead account profiling is the solution to this challenge and what does not qualify should not enter the lead pipeline or you will end up with a very inefficient marketing machine. For example, a company selling a salesforce.com appexchange application needs to qualify every target company in their system at the very least for "whether the company is using salesforce CRM". Further lead profiling for the number of salesforce users in the company and other more specific questions will only improve the quality of the marketing data you are working with and provide you with more to base your approach and message off.
Although there is more work involved in qualifying, profiling and building your marketing data more slowly and steadily, having good data will pay off in the long run as you are building a more qualified base of potential customers rather than going after companies which may turn out to be dead ends. We have worked with a company previously whose software testing tool is built for companies that use Java, a company whose application performance software works only in data centers that use EMC, a software services company who support only companies who develop in Microsoft .Net and database application company who needed to know if their target companies use Oracle.
The common trend is their products depends on the use of another technology and to build their marketing data they needed target lead profiling and qualification to build better marketing lists for their teams. It needs that extra time and effort but is it worth it? Absolutely!