When it comes to being a marketer, web forms are a critical component of any marketing campaign. They help us understand who is consuming our online content. We set up forms to capture information we deem pertinent, and then wait for the results to come in. We’ve all done it, so you know it’s true. Every marketer has their own unique set of data points that they gather, but generally you’ll find that one data point is ALWAYS included: the email address. The email is the most important field because it tends to be the most effective way to reach a contact. However, sometimes the email they provide isn’t a business email. So what are you to do?
Honestly, don’t sweat the personal stuff! Despite popular belief, personal emails can be USEFUL to your marketing efforts. Picture this: you release a gated white paper on your website and the next day you find you have 50 new form fills. Awesome news right? Then you look closer and realize that about 60% of them are freemail addresses (GMail, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc.). Normally this would be discouraging because an email like firstname.lastname@example.org doesn’t really tell you much about who your consumer is and even though you may have asked for their company name, you can’t really tell what their role is (unless you included that as a required field too, in which case, I suppose you do know what their role is!). Regardless, without knowing enough about a person, you can’t send them a relevant message and your deliverability rate ends up going down. This is a huge bummer, but it doesn’t have to be that way!
As a marketer, I would definitely benefit from a tool that could connect a personal email address to a B2B persona and luckily for me, I have one at my fingertips (Shameless plug for Synthio’s SynthConnect feature)! Being able to match a freemail address to the user’s business persona has been a great way to pull otherwise inaccessible information to better segment people for email campaigns. The ability to tailor content that improves conversion rates is essential for turning prospects into clients.
On the flip side of this, your B2B contact database could also benefit from having additional personal information like a freemail address for each contact record. Name, company, title, and email are the typical data points in a company’s contact record, but think about how much more segmenting you could do if you had even more fields to work with like keywords, installed software, social media URLS (Facebook, Twitter, Google+), address, previous job, etc. These extra fields of information can help you tailor an email campaign that is unique from any other the prospect has received and could be the difference in securing that lead!
That being said, don’t let the personal emails in your database get you down. Just find a data partner who can help you utilize that personal data and blow away your prospects with personalized emails that are sure the have the leads pouring in!
What are your thoughts on personal information in your contact database? Leave a note in the comments!