Research and Prospecting Analysis Workflow for B2B SaaS Marketing Campaign Strategy

Marketing Strategy | Market Research | Account Based Marketing

Confidential Organization | 2021

You can sift the open ocean for treasure and never find so much as a sliver of iron ore. Or you can put in the time and research to find the best spot in a small cave in northern California to improve your chances of hitting it big. In B2B technology sales, casting a wide net is a surefire way to get nowhere. Intelligent prospecting sets you on the quickest course for success.

Goal

The B2B SaaS sales cycle for products ranging from 150K to over one million dollars is a long and tedious one. Your strategy for reaching leads and the processes by which you move prospects through the various stages of qualification must ultimately deliver your sales team the best possible candidates for this arduous sales cycle. 

I was given the challenge of marketing a Patient Master Data Management solution to an industry that had not yet widely, or even narrowly, adopted MDM as a technical necessity. 

Approach

I began by conducting standard market research. I studied the Life Sciences industry as it pertained to actual patients (vs. renewable energy and plant-based meats, etc.) We felt that the solution would help Life Sciences and Biotech organizations to better market to and manage their patients. So, I had to learn what methods these organizations used to reach prospects and how those patients moved through the onboarding to in-therapy lifecycle.

Once I understood better the mechanisms and technologies used by LS and Biotech organizations I was able to spot some key bits of insight that would help us narrow our target audience.

Once an organization got too big, it was less likely that we would be their first choice as an MDM solution. Afterall, we were in a startup phase and competing against billion dollar, well established competitors.

We found that the consultative portion of our product implementation was extremely helpful for Biotechs that were just beginning to set up their marketing and patient management infrastructures. However, we cannot just assume a Biotech with under 50 million in the bank is about to take off and become a multi-billion dollar business. It could be a failing business or a stagnate company with little growth on the horizon. We had to look at other metrics to determine if an organization would be a good fit to drop into our marketing campaigns.

I came up with a prospecting “equation” (featured below) that would help us narrow our targets to potentially successful, emerging Biotechs:

  • I first eliminated the big players by limiting revenue to 500 MIL.
  • I looked for any organizations with lesser revenue but that had just received massive amounts of funding.
  • I mined data from FDA Clinical Trial Data to understand where these organizations were in the clinical trial stage and when they expected to have their stage 3 trials complete.
  • I looked at anyone that would be completing phase 3 clinical trials within the next 6 months. This meant that they were going to have to begin preparing to go to market.
  • I confirmed this theory by looking at hiring data in Linkedin Sales Navigator for organizations within this phase 3 clinical trial parameter. I could see whether an organization had a major jump in hiring practices for their business development, sales, and marketing departments.
  • I could also see in Linkedin Sales Navigator if a major executive in those areas had just been hired – they were now my new best friend.
  • I searched job sites for biotechs hiring for change agents, marketing directors, business development and operations executives. I went so far as to note whether the words Patient Data Management or MDM skills appeared in those job reqs. This would indicate to us their technology stack which would otherwise be difficult to discover.

I turned all of this into a specific equation and process that could be followed by marketing coordinators or research assistants on a monthly basis to ensure every possible, highly qualified candidate entered our marketing funnel.

Results

Once I had this data answered and my list was substantially narrowed, I could do some more traditional research online. I could research 50 prospects thoroughly instead of 5,000 prospects poorly. We were able to drop extremely qualified prospects into a marketing funnel tailored specifically to their needs. Our spend on ads, content development, and ABM strategies was akin to using a surgical knife to extract leads rather than, again, casting a wide net and wasting a lot of our budget on dead ends. 

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Katie Novo

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