Big Data // Big Data Analytics
News
7/16/2013
09:24 AM
Connect Directly
Google+
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Mining Big Data For Sales Leads

Tech Leads Online will scour the Internet and parse the data to find potential clients for your sales organizations.

 Big Data Analytics Masters Degrees: 20 Top Programs
Big Data Analytics Masters Degrees: 20 Top Programs
(click image for larger view and for slideshow)
Email blasts are a scattershot approach to online marketing, particularly ones fired out randomly and haphazardly to a mass audience. If you don't know who to target, your pitch might be received as enthusiastically as a Nigerian email scam.

So what's a sales organization to do? One option is to aggregate and analyze all the publicly available data you can find online, and use the information to aim your marketing message at companies and people most likely to be receptive.

In fact, this data-crunching approach is favored by Tech Leads Online (TLO), a competitive intelligence software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform for sales and marketing pros. TLO tracks more than 5,000 technology products and 200,000 companies, with 20,000 to 30,000 new companies added monthly, the company says.

[ What is the key question when it comes to big data? Read Big Data's Big Question: What To Keep. ]

Armed with TLO's data, sales organizations find companies that use their competitors' products, and pitch directly to them.

"We've set up a data aggregation process where we pull in data from all public sources. We utilize social listening techniques to aggregate the information, and then process the data utilizing machine learning technology," Oliver Deng, TechLeads Online chief strategy officer, said in an interview.

"The issue that most companies face is not just the quantity of data, but really the type of data they have in order to figure out whom to target -- what types of companies and people," he added.

Deng wouldn't name the sites that TLO mines for data, but said they include "any public site where you don't have to log into."

The company is selective, however. "We do research to find out how much relevant data we can find on the site. If it's publicly available, we will send out scrapers to aggregate the information," he noted. Deng said TLO's "secret sauce" is it data processing engine. The company guarantees a 90% accuracy rate for its information. "The processing piece is the neat thing about it," he noted. "It's highly accurate, and we fine-tune it."

Deng said that competing sales-lead services often take an old-school, phone-based approach to gathering data.

"They have a very manual process to find out information," he said. "They call these companies and … build relationships. They check in with them."

TLO has competitive intelligence data on 250,000 companies, Deng said. Most of the company's customers are technology firms hoping to target potential customers with greater efficiency.

"The example I give is of a company sending out a blast of 10,000 emails," he said. "Are they being sent to the right people?"

In many cases, they aren't.

"I just got an email the other day from Symantec, pitching me their cloud-based antivirus solution," Deng recalled. "I'm already one of their customers. So the data set they're using obviously is not vetted out."

Online data can provide other, less obvious sales leads too, provided you know where to look.

Deng said that a big tech firm asked TLO to find all the companies running Oracle databases on servers with Intel Itanium processors. The client was trying to benefit from the contentious HP-Oracle lawsuit, a result of Oracle's 2011 announcement that it would no longer port its enterprise software to run on the Itanium chip, which is used almost entirely by HP.

"Servers with Itanium chips have specific model numbers," said Deng. By checking its archive data for those model numbers, TLO was able to extract the necessary server information, combined with Oracle database data, to come up with a list of companies for its client to target.

"There's so much data," said Deng. "It's amazing, all the different sources where you can find data."

Your IT team needs to protect data in the cloud as well as on physical and virtual servers, PCs, and of course mobile devices. To that end, we asked a lot from vendors in this Comprehensive Data Recovery Buyer's Guide. Download it today. (Free registration required.)

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
6 Tools to Protect Big Data
6 Tools to Protect Big Data
Most IT teams have their conventional databases covered in terms of security and business continuity. But as we enter the era of big data, Hadoop, and NoSQL, protection schemes need to evolve. In fact, big data could drive the next big security strategy shift.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Government Tech Digest Oct. 27, 2014
To meet obligations -- and avoid accusations of cover-up and incompetence -- federal agencies must get serious about digitizing records.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
Join us for a roundup of the top stories on InformationWeek.com for the week of October 26, 2014 and for the incredible Friday Afternoon Conversation that runs beside the program.
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.