Insights from INmarket: How Lenovo Uses Predictive to Drive Demand Generation


At INmarket, Lenovo’s Demand Generation Strategy and Operations Manager, Mike Ballard, began his presentation by confessing that he isn’t actually a big data nerd. In fact, as a right-brained, creative marketer who happens to love bacon, he struggled having to “love data more than bacon” for his job.   

It wasn’t until Mike discovered predictive that he realized the power of the data he previously disliked. Now, Mike Ballard pushes his team to be data-driven: “Don’t come to me about a decision with ‘I think…’ Start it with “the data tells me…” or the “data shows…” And here’s why. 

Leveraging such data could help his team tackle some common B2B demand generation challenges, such as needing more prospects, having product buyers who only care about their product or product-line buyers who want to be marketed to differently, and targeting new contacts.  

Lenovo uses predictive in two key ways to tackle these demand gen duties: 

  1. Timing: It shows when customers will buy and where they fit into the buying time frame. This way, marketing and sales are better equipped to know how and when to reach out to prospects. For instance, it would help shape who receives feeder versus nurture emails.  
  2. Total Addressable Market: 6sense found that 90% of the accounts currently in Purchase or Decision buying stages have never had an opportunity opened in the last year. This means there are a lot more prospects out there who are (or are close to being) in-market to buy. This kind of insight provides a clearer picture of their marketplace and empowers them to rethink on a larger level everyone they should be marketing and selling to. 

By providing such insights, Mike Ballard says predictive “is going to touch everything we do from a marketing standpoint.” It will help dictate aspects of all marketing activity, such as email campaigns, display ads, funnel gaps, LDT and web optimization, and will become marketing’s central nervous system.

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