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Call or Email with a Cold List—Only on Opposite Day.

Tap into warm connections instead.
Stephen Heitz, Chief Innovation Officer | Tim Trull, Chief Strategy Officer

This article is a brief abstract of our exclusive and authoritative study that takes the guesswork out of technology advertising and marketing. Rather than speculating about what will drive B2B technology consumers to action, we've asked them.

Download the complete 2017 U.S. Technology Marketing Report 


No one likes to be interrupted. Whether you’re at home whipping up dinner or at work digging into an important report, a visit, phone call, email, text or any other type of unexpected communication from someone you don’t know will get little—if any—of your attention. Perhaps that’s why only 4% of survey respondents overall for our b2b technology white paper said they prefer telemarketing or cold calls when considering technology products or services.

Still, telemarketing does have its place in b2b marketing strategy. It costs about 80% less, for example, to make phone calls instead of visiting potential clients in person. It also provides a way to reach customers who would not likely make the trip to your place of business. And some of those who do answer the call will be happy to learn why they should adopt your solution for survival in a world of disruptive technology. If just such advice and education are what you’re selling, you could score some major wins. But expecting a prospect to make a final purchasing decision after a single phone call might be, well, a little over optimistic.

The term “cold calling” can also be applied to B2B email marketing or sending message blasts on social media if the list does not key in on prequalified recipients with a reasonable expectation of receiving your message. Compared to a ROI of 4,400% for B2C email marketing efforts using an opt-in list, results for B2B will likely be disappointing—especially with a scraped or cold list.

Business size does matter, but only slightly. Of those surveyed who generate less than $1 million in annual revenue, only 2% responded positively to telemarketing and cold calls, while businesses generating $10 million or more in annual revenue revealed a 6% preference for this marketing tactic. 

One possible solution to avoid making calls or sending email content marketing campaigns that leave recipients cold is to use intelligent methods to identify warm leads. In doing so, it’s more crucial than ever to work with a business partner capable of gathering and analyzing relevant data. Gartner Blog Network® member Todd Berkowitz predicted the rise in access to intelligent data will lead to more personalized emails to more targeted lists in 2017 and beyond based on technographics, intent and predictive analytics.


This can already be seen with the explosion of big data in 2016 and at least one marketing technology newcomer with a proprietary algorithm to access, analyze and repackage that data at a highly personalized level. Node, a San Francisco-based startup also known as, uses AI to identify opportunities by diving deep into people-based data for warm connections.

These kinds of services, provided at varying degrees by a variety of providers, make it possible for anyone to take advantage of AI and big data analytics to offer personalization. By 2035, AI could double annual economic growth rates.

However you do it, tap into your warm connections. If you don’t know how to identify or create them, partner with an organization that does. It’s far better than settling for low click-through rates or online risking interrupting someone by phone who’s potentially heating up a frozen meal for dinner.

2017 U.S. Technology Industry Marketing Report

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This article is a brief abstract of our exclusive and authoritative study that takes the guesswork out of marketing technology to businesses. Rather than speculating about what will drive B2B technology buyers to action, we've asked them.

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