Blog post By Paula Chiocchi on 2015-03-09
As techniques and tactics for marketers continue to evolve with the changing times, one of the latest and most intriguing weapons to emerge is “intent monitoring.”
Intent monitoring is the process of observing what your target prospects do or say online on social media sites, media publications and mobile apps to determine which products or services they may desire. This information can then be used to directly target these individuals with the appropriate messages or ads. It’s an innovative marketing technique that attempts to catch a potential buyer before their customer journey has even begun. For example, if a consumer tweets about a marathon she just participated in, she might receive an ad for running shoes or other workout apparel.
If you think you’re ready to dive into intent monitoring, consider these five top factors as you prepare your initiative:
Delivers Better, More Relevant Ads: Today’s constantly connected consumer presents businesses with ongoing marketing challenges. While some who receive such messages may be taken aback by a perceived privacy intrusion, the reality is that such data is obtained from open, public social and media platforms, and the end result is a more appropriate and better received ad, leading to significantly improved response rates. One brand recently experienced a 463% increase in email click through due to intent monitoring. Cutting through the constant clutter of information with messages that are timely and relevant is the goal, and intent marketing is of interest to forward-thinking marketers because the technique relies upon the consumer making the first move.
Tied to Increased Mobile Use: Intent information can be gathered from computer use, as well as through mobile apps, such as price alerts, wish lists, entertainment and TV, comparison shopping and purchase history. The wealth of information shared via online activities is staggering, and it has skyrocketed as rising mobile use expands the window for gaining insight into consumers’ on-the-go online behavior. Intent monitoring has the potential to allow marketers to make use of this information like no other technology today.
Not Just for Large Companies: Smaller businesses need not feel outgunned here. In fact, they may even have an advantage over their big-budget, global competitors. Upon finding messages and individuals of interest, smaller firms have the agility and flexibility to quickly react and follow-up on any initial conversations. The real trick with intent marketing is to use the first show of intent as the springboard for additional communications across a number of channels.
Requires a Specialized Message: With intent monitoring, the manner in which messages are delivered is key. This is not the opportunity for a “hard-sell” message, but instead, taking a tone that offers assistance or advice can work well, as can incentivizing through discounts and special offers. Follow-up to the initial message will be equally important, as customer courtship requires more than a single contact on social media in order for a meaningful and lasting relationship to form. Multichannel marketing techniques can prove powerful here, opening additional avenues of interaction and giving businesses further opportunities to talk to customers and prospects.
Works for B2B: Intent marketing is not just for B2C brands. B2B companies are also utilizing the technology to listen for prospects, and better serve existing customers. Madison Logic, a leading intent monitoring solutions provider, evaluates over a billion B2B interactions across 1200 topics each month, providing its B2B customers with intent data from 100 vertical business publishers to target people who have just read whitepapers on, say, enterprise software or searched for cloud computing solutions. Marketers are able to use intent data to better segment their email nurturing efforts, find more qualified leads, understand which leads are currently in-market, and to increase the responsiveness of their current customers.
By zeroing in on target decision makers by pulling data from myriad online locations, intent monitoring enables marketers to be more timely and relevant. It’s the latest weapon in the constant battle to get past the noise and clutter, and deliver the right offer at the right time. Quite a powerful weapon for marketers indeed.
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