How B2B fintech lenders can sharpen their analytics with external data to increase qualified leads
- Many fintechs are addressing niche market segments with innovative solutions, like SMBs, which come with unique challenges.
- In the second part of this article series, we discuss how the data can be leveraged in generating leads and accelerating the sales pipeline.
This is the second in our series of articles on how the right external data can enrich internal data to unlock new opportunities and create competitive advantages for fintechs targeting SMBs. In our previous article, we discussed how the right data could assist in B2B credit risk assessment. This time, we’re focusing on how fintech companies can sharpen their analytics to generate quality leads and accelerate their sales pipeline.
Many players in the fintech industry are targeting the small and medium-sized business (SMB) segment. Fintechs offer financing to SMBs that they may not get from traditional banks. SMBs’ flatter hierarchies shorten sales cycles for growth-hungry fintech start-ups. With as many as 32.5 million small businesses in the US, the market is ripe with opportunities, but the competition is fierce.
Fintech companies looking to stand out from the competition need a strong, data-driven sales and marketing strategy that attracts and captures the right leads with precision and accuracy. The best way to do so is by enhancing valuable internal data with external data to enrich leads and create more accurate lead scoring models.
If you’re in the fintech space, especially if servicing SMBs, Tearsheet would like to learn more about your relationship with data in the survey below:
Survey: How do you use external (alternative) data?
Here are three ways fintech companies can leverage external data to boost marketing efforts and streamline the sales process:
- Refine customer segmentation analysis to better target ideal customer profiles — those that are low-risk and more likely to pay on time.
There’s only so much information a company can get from internal data gathered via form fills, website engagement, and page visits. Refine customer segmentation by incorporating external data to overcome the two top challenges fintech companies face when marketing and selling to SMBs, which are:
- Struggling to find leads that are both qualified and have a propensity to become profitable. This is because data on SMBs is fragmented with low match rates and limited variety coupled with rule-based models that are either too simplistic — everyone is a lead — or too complex — hardly anyone qualifies as a lead. It represents a lost opportunity to identify and sell to new customers quickly.
- Identifying the percentage of potential customers (out of millions of SMBs) who are open to their products and services and likely to convert. Unless they find these businesses and effectively market and sell to them, growth will be slower.
- Optimize the lead qualification process for better conversions
Boost marketing efforts and streamline the sales process by guiding sales teams to accounts more likely to convert to profitable customers.
- Pre-screen and accelerate approvals for improved customer experience
With third-party data, fintech companies can get a complete picture of customers, especially their financial performance and capacity to repay their loans on time. The ability to pre-screen and process loan applications faster would appeal to and create more value for prospects.
External data is only effective when combined with your internal data and an insightful understanding of your market.
We see our customers create lead scoring models that incorporate third-party data such as credit ratings, previous history with bankruptcy, revenue trends, loan repayment history, assets owned, and social media presence and engagement. The result is better targeting, improved conversions, streamlined operations, less time wasted pursuing bad leads, and less money spent on recovering defaulted loans that were extended to incorrectly qualified leads.
Some unique attributes that our customers have leveraged using external data include:
- SMB company data — for example years in operation, company type, and number of employees
- Business funding information
- Location-specific income and financial stability indicators
- Business owner verification, email, and phone validation
- Social media activity, which can help to legitimize a prospective borrower by determining a social media presence, following, and engagement on relevant channels such as LinkedIn.
External data platforms like Explorium can centralize access to a wide variety of external data without the costs and overhead of managing contracts with multiple providers. Not only are the data sources curated for quality and reliability, but they also form a single, collective, inter-compatible catalog, so you can treat them as a single resource, lifting out only the details you need.
For more insights, download our white paper, The Definitive Guide to External Data for Fintech.