Data is a big investment for any company— but, if you research vendors and invest intelligently, it can have a dramatic impact on your company’s financial success and growth.

However, if you’re not smart about your purchase, bad data quickly becomes a costly mistake.

Don’t let your data come back to bite you. Check out our tips for getting the most out of your next B2B data purchase.

1. Make sure your vendor understands your business and your goals.

Are you looking to rent a list for a one-time mailing, or do you need to regularly update and append in-house lists to ensure accuracy and completeness?

A reliable data provider will take the time to carefully review the needs of your organization, and craft a contract that suits both your short term and long term data goals. Make a list of your requirements and communicate these to each vendor. Once you are presented with a contract, carefully review the contract before signing to ensure the offer meets your needs. For a more in-depth look at selecting a data provider, check out the following blog posts:

2. Determine what services your price includes.

Be sure you fully understand what you’re paying for. Many times, vendors advertise a low cost per record to bait buyers. Unbeknownst to the buyer, this will only cover the “basic” package. Once a deal is made, the vendor will tack on extra charges for additional selects, fields, or multiple users.

Read the fine print of your contract and don’t be afraid to ask questions. If something sounds fishy or isn’t inherently clear, speak up! Comb through your contract for hidden costs and limitations, minimum purchase requirements, data expirations, setup/delivery fees, or rush charges.

Hint: Vendors are often more flexible when it comes to pricing with prospects they believe will become long-term customers; if you think you’ll utilize this service long term, speak up!

3. Don’t buy data you don’t need.

There is no sense in purchasing data your organization will never use. Before you make a purchase, ask the data provider whether they have a method for running their dataset against your existing customer/prospect list or a suppression file.

This process will uncover records that aren’t worth your organization’s investment, including duplicate and incomplete fields. Often times, this will come at an additional cost but has the potential to save your organization of money in the long run.

4. Understand the vendor’s customer service policies.

Reliable data providers will often compensate you in some way for bad data that doesn’t live up to their accuracy and deliverability guarantees. Find out if the dataset you’re buying is covered by these guarantees and exactly what is required to prove a record is a duplicate, undeliverable or inaccurate. Agree in advance on how you’ll be compensated.

5. Ask for a discount.

Discounts come in many forms: volume (or long-term contract), pre-payment, new customer, bundled offers, reduced rates on net new records after your first purchase, etc. Research the vendor’s other product options, too — they may be willing to offer a free trial or discount on one or more of them to win your business.

Buying data can be complicated; keep these tips in mind to get the most value out of your data purchase. For B2B data you can trust, contact ZoomInfo today!

About the author

Ryan Hadfield

Ryan Hadfield is the Director of Marketing at ZoomInfo, the leading B2B contact data solution.

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