How Technographics Help Your Sales

Author
Dmitry Chervonyi
Published
01.20.2020
Reading duration
7m
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Generally, we bring up technographics whenever we speak about data enrichment. So, it’s time for us to give this subject the attention it deserves.

What are technographics? How do you find them? How do they help you with increasing close rates? How do technographics help you If you’re not an IT vendor? 

If you have been looking forward to seeing all those questions answered, get comfortable and dive in! We’re about to explore the concept of technographic data and how it can advance your marketing.

Explaining technographics

Previously, we described technographics as a technology stack used by your prospect companies. However, to be more precise, technographics mean segmenting statistical data on usage/ownership of technology among certain groups. This analysis includes:

  • Hardware and software. What do your prospects use? What is the most popular OC? What kind of hardware do they find the most suitable for their needs?
  • Apps and tools. What do your prospects rely on in their work? What is their most common choice of digital instruments and programs?
  • Ways of use. How do your prospects implement their software and platforms of choice? Are they enthusiastic about introducing new products? Do they stick to the classics?

Since technographics cover all of these questions and more, they are a logical and integral part of your data profile along with prospects’ firmographic data.   

What makes technographics important? 

It’s a common misconception that only IT vendors benefit from technographic data. Companies that provide services and products based on IT rely on technographics when building their sales strategy and marketing efforts. However, the opportunities provided by technographic data aren’t limited to them only. 

In the world, where digital tools, applications, software, and platforms keep evolving, you simply cannot afford not paying attention to technology and how your prospects use it. Whether you are a large corporation or a startup company, your marketing efforts should be built not on lucky guesses, but on accurate data about every aspect if your prospects’ workflow. Only then can you locate competitive edges and utilize them before your competitors do. 

Narrow your search down 

On average, over 50% of sales reps spend their time searching for potential buyers. Only a fraction of their working hours are dedicated to actually contacting those buyers or selling to them. It happens because they have to work with a rather large prospect base. While every prospect in it seems viable and valid, without proper segmentation and details, it’s hard to tell if they’re worth reaching out to. 

Many sales representatives figure that out after a while of searching across numerous platforms. For example, you may think that you found your perfect client. Their industry, company size and revenue are a 100% match to your Ideal Customer Profile. However, then you find out that the prospect in question uses software that is incompatible with the solution you sell. In the end, all the effort and time dedicated to creating email templates and campaigns for that particular prospect go in vain. 

A rather grim scenario, don’t you think? Luckily, technographics help you avoid it and work only with the prospects that need your products and services.

Know the stack, know the prospects 

The way your prospects use hardware and software, their responsiveness to new solutions can be an eye-opener your sales campaigns need. 

  • If you specialize in customized digital solutions, showing your familiarity with your prospects’ technology stake makes them less apprehensive and more interested in continuing the conversation. Nobody minds a vendor who knows their digital infrastructure and, therefore, can outline opportunities for digital transformation clearly and promptly.
  • Even if you don’t specialize in technology development, knowing how your prospects react to new offers allows you to adjust your unique value proposition. In case your target audience is extra cautious and prefers to take things slowly, you can work on test services and samples, making your introduction as subtle as possible. If your prospects are open to new possibilities, you can go straight to the point and tell about how your assets cover your prospects’ pain points.

Make new discoveries

Whenever you enter a new market, there is no such thing as irrelevant information. Every little thing counts. Being aware of your prospects’ technology stack allows you to tweak your marketing campaigns and introduction and make your sales message speak your new audience’s language. Regardless of the industry, people like it when the vendor takes time and effort to understand them and their core values. 

This is why technographics are a vital part of account-based marketing. Going hand-in-hand with firmographics, they become the foundation for the prospect’s account and targeting. Gathering and organizing technographic data also allows you to personalize the message for each account faster. After all, when you know how to tell your accounts apart, you don’t have problems with building an individual offer for each prospect. 

Build your customers’ loyalty 

Sales aren’t just about getting new customers. They’re also about nurturing relationships that last and benefit both parties. However, some companies often face one and the same issue. They manage to convert a prospect into a buyer. That buyer makes one purchase and goes off the radar sometime later, not coming back to extend the subscription. What could go wrong? Why does it happen? In many cases, a lack of understanding of the buyers’ needs and plans is to blame. 

Enriching your data profile with technographics improves your forecasting because it allows you to see a pattern most of your prospects follow in their development. Also, when you’re aware of the limitations and weak points of the technology used by your prospects, you can pinpoint the stage at which your prospects are going to run into some performance issues. What does it give you? An opportunity to reach out to them at the right time with a helpful offer. From a one-time vendor, you become a company to rely on. When your clients know that you have a solution for every point of their roadmap, there is no reason for them to look for other companies. 

Is it possible to collect technographic data on your own?

Whenever we talk about data research, it comes with a “don’t try this at home” hint. But in fact, you absolutely can research and collect data on your own. The thing is, without a proper research plan or knowledge of platforms, it can take months before you find anything of value — and the more time you spend on digging through databases, the higher are the chances of you missing the emergence of a trend that can turn the tables on your approach to sales. 

This is why, if you don’t have a dedicated expert to do granular lead research for you, it’s better to outsource this task. In the end, you will save more time and budget while having a detailed report handed over to you and your sales teams. 

But in case you’re still interested in collecting technographic data on your own, you can begin with researching your loyal customers. Your long-time clients represent your ICP. So, studying their arsenal of tools and apps is a start. See if there is a common trend among all your loyal customers or whether there is software used by more than five clients. Document all your findings and research them through various platforms to add more accurate qualifiers to your ICP. 

What we strongly recommend against is going for generic, non-customized routes. It’s not enough to dig up a general industry marketing analysis. You need data for every segment: your area, each state covered by your services, etc. If your research is not thoroughly customized and specific, it won’t be of much help with your sales campaigns. 

Conclusions 

The digital age is not going anywhere. New trends and solutions come, get outdated and then they are replaced with new options. Different companies adjust to these changes at a different pace. Being able to track these changes and respond defines the ultimate success of your marketing campaigns. Gathering and segmenting technographic data allows you to make sense of all that technology and focus only on the most relevant areas. 

On average, companies spend over $200 billion on software every year. It’s an integral part of their lives and work activities. Logically, it should be an integral part of your research. When you understand how your prospects implement and use technology, you can see more opportunities for client engagement and building interest. Our main advice — don’t look at technographic data separately from your firmographic data and other types of prospect data. Only when all angles are presented to you, can you see the real source of your prospects’ issues or constraints and make all the components of your sales strategy click into place. 

Dmitry Chervonyi

Chief Growth Officer at Belkins
Since starting his career in sales & marketing 9 years ago, Dmitry never stopped searching for new opportunities that can turn the tables on sales development and the ways that shape B2B relationships. He is always eager to share his findings with the audience.
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