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Intent-Driven Marketing: The Simple Guide to Generate More Sales in 2024

By Liza Shuttleworth Last updated: 11 minute read Lead GenerationMarketing Guides

How can I generate more sales? A question most businesses are asking themselves every day.

You can continue with the tried-and-tested methods, but we all know that they are not the best way to remain competitive.

But don’t throw away what works just yet! Rather, look at ways to make it work better.

To increase positive sales leads, use marketing strategies targeting consumer intent. This approach helps you connect with individuals who are ready to make a purchase.

Marketing is successful when a business can integrate various funnels like loyalty and ambassador programs, social media, affiliate programs, and the added bonus of intent-driven campaign to generate sales.

Imagine the potential when all your focus is on individuals who are already browsing to buy!

Intent or Intent-based marketing is not new. However, with latest technologies, it has become a necessity for the success of online businesses.

With this style of marketing, you will have the resources to qualify consumers who are in the market to buy. And you will also be able to design content around big data that will boost your sales.

Sounds promising, right? So here’s the scoop.

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    What is Intent-Driven Marketing?

    The overwhelming majority of online-based consumers go through a process that mostly leads to a purchase. This process is referred to as the buyer’s journey. And understanding this journey is vital to the way you market yourself.

    From a buyer’s journey, you will be able to identify their intention and that’s where intent-driven marketing comes into play.

    A potential customer will leave tell-tale signs of their intentions through their online behaviour.

    The sites they visit or revisit and the amount of time they spend on specific content make predicting their intention a reliable means of forecasting their journey toward a purchase decision.

    It is important to understand that a buyer journey relates to an individual person. Even with B2B dealings, the decision-makers are the buyers that you will be focused on and not the entire company.

    They will mull over what you have to offer. So your objective is to guide these individuals to a purchase decision.

    You will use the same dynamics that powered intent-driven marketing with individual consumers. This is the foundation for identifying your target: an individual person.

    For this marketing style to succeed, you must be one step ahead of a customer in their buyer’s journey. To do this, you have to read into a buyer’s intent.

    Using demographics and browsing history alone does not give a clear enough picture of a buyer’s intent at a specific moment. An interesting Google statistic confirms that limited data can sometimes be deceiving.

    Fun Facts

    40% of baby product purchasers don't have children
    Published by Instapage

    This means that if you operate in the baby industry and only target potential buyers based on demographic data, you’d be missing out on a whopping 40% of buyers!

    Targeting strategies are most effective when current data is added to the mix. This helps to more accurately read intent.  

    You’ve probably heard people say, “strike while the iron is hot”. Well, this is what intent-driven marketing is all about.

    You have the ability to watch the iron warming up along the buyer’s journey, so you have to strike at the right time to convert intention into a purchase.

    Because you are focusing on consumers with high purchase intent, your returns will be much greater than with other approaches. Dollar for dollar, this style of marketing is definitely worth the investment.

    What is Purchase Intent and How to Use It?

    Purchase intent can be defined as the probability of a person’s motivation to purchase a product or service.

    By following the buyer’s journey, you will be able to develop content to lead consumers along their journey to the purchase stage and beyond.

    Below is a basic picture that outlines the different stages of a buyer’s journey.

    buyers journey through intent marketing
    The buyers journey as illustrated by Uhurunetwork

    Consumers in this digital age use the Internet as their first go-to resource when they want or need anything.

    The Internet serves as an instant information bank that guides consumers to their specific topics of interest, and this is where their buyer’s journey begins.

    To tap into a potential business, companies should actively create purchase intent among consumers by placing their products or services in front of them.

    This creates brand awareness and purchase intent without the consumers specifically searching for the product or service.

    As illustrated below, statistics show that companies can increase purchasing intent by 186% in they respond to product misuse and give adequate guidance on product usage.

    They can increase intent by 92% if they offer refunds, upgrades, or exchanges on products.

    And finally, they can increase intent by 116% if they do not refer purchasers to additional steps, like contacting customer service.

    How to drive intent marketing to purchases
    Column Five Media describe how to drive intent to purchase

    Big data allows a company to not only identify interest but also to strategically lead the consumer to considering and making a purchase.

    Purchase intent can be divided into two main categories namely, informational intent and transactional intent.

    Informational Intent

    With informational intent the consumer is more focused on educating themselves on the benefits of your product and is possibly comparing what you have to offer to that of your competitors.

    That’s where comparison sites and blogs come in handy ( the full strategy can be found below).

    This is a call to action and the way you interact with this consumer will largely determine whether or not they become a customer.

    They do have the intent to purchase but need a bit more convincing at this point.

    Transactional Intent

    Transactional intent shows behaviour that indicates a willingness purchase. Here too, you need to prime the consumer to actually make the purchase by listening to them and giving them precise answers without the usual padded sales pitch.

    The consumer has already shown an interest in your product or service and after the initial purchase, you can connect with them and suggest add-on purchases that will benefit them.

    You now have them as a customer but you want to turn them into a loyal customer. 

    3 Benefits of Intent-Driven Marketing

    Increasing Trust

    By placing yourself out there you are open to praise and criticism alike which is a good thing in both cases. You have to take care of your online reputation because a good reputation breeds trust.

    The more organizations, companies, groups, and individuals recommend or vet you, the better your company will be perceived by others. And this will result in an increased conversion rate that will show in your sales figures.

    Higher ROI (Return On Investment)

    In spite of the fact that the cost per click may be higher, pushing up your marketing budget, the ROI in most cases is 3X better than other approaches.

    This says a lot about intent-driven marketing. Because you are able to remove the clutter and concentrate on good quality leads, each qualified lead can be viewed as a potential sale in the making.

    Your ROI will depend on how well you are able to close the sale and how you communicate with your customer after the sale.

    Effective Marketing Outcomes

    Intent-driven marketing is widely used, and your competitors probably use it only to target consumers with high purchase intent.

    In order to remain competitive, you have to focus on the same segment of consumers—the ones with high purchase intent. Otherwise, you will lose many sales.

    This marketing style in our digital world helps channel marketing directly to the end-user without the need for blanket coverage that produces far fewer sales for the same effort.

    This direct link with targeted consumers is a fast-growing marketing strategy that produces good results, depending on the effectiveness of the data tools used.

    It  promotes brand growth by paying attention to the intent of Internet-using individuals.

    5 Ways to Implement Intent-Driven Marketing for Your Brand

    Research Your Company

    Browse the web and find articles on companies similar to yours.

    Study the information they provide and compare it to the information you have created about your company.

    Contact the companies that you feel are doing well and ask them to review your company and include it in future content.

    Solution Reviews

    As part of your research, find third-party websites in your industry that provide solution reviews.

    These third-party sites are a valuable source of information because customers write about their good and bad experiences, which will give you a clear indication of where you stand in the industry.

    It is also a good indicator of how your brand is perceived.

    You need to turn negative reviews into positive customer experiences. This will help you maintain your online reputation.

    The more reviews your business gets, the more sales leads you will get. A review of the service your company provides will start on one site.

    And because of the automated sharing structure of the net, that one review will become visible on a number of different platforms as other websites will use it as a source.

    If the review is positive, it will result in more sales leads. Your online reputation depends on how well you manage reviews.

    A few examples of third-party websites are Capterra/G2 for software reviews, Trustpilot, which covers all niche markets, and Wirecutter, which covers everything related to hardware.

    There are many third-party review sites to choose from. Some will specialize in specific niche markets, while others cover various industries.

    Market to Writers

    Make a list of sites that specialize in articles on the top performers in specific industries or about branded products or services.

    You will have to motivate why your company should be placed on the top ten list in your industry and, in most cases, pay a listing fee.

    If you have won awards or exceeded revenue expectations, or you have included a unique product or service that is a hot seller, you need to use these aspects of your company to make it onto the list.

    Getting a mention on a “top list” is a very powerful marketing tool that attracts a lot of traffic.

    The more lists you get on, the greater the number of leads you will generate from intent-driven marketing.

    Directory Listing

    Directories are often used by customers who know they want to purchase something but are unsure which company would best meet their needs.

    Search directories related to your industry and list your company on as many directories as possible. Every click on a directory will feed you data that can be used to establish intent.

    “Alternative To” Blogs

    Blogs are a strong marketing tool that can be incorporated into your intent-driven campaign.

    Research your competitors and create a series of blogs featuring your company in each blog, highlighting what you offer as an alternative to each competitor.

    The goal is, on the one hand, to have those blogs ranked high for keywords that contain your competitor’s name + alternative and, on the other hand, to ensure that when your customers want to compare your solution to your competitors’, they can do it on your website, where you control the content, and not on your competitor’s site.

    Every blog you create must only focus on one competitor and the specific alternative that you offer.

    You can link content to each blog that will qualify intent. Here again, every click on a blog post generates usable data for your marketing strategy or campaign.

    The Equinox case study on this marketing style highlights their approach to increasing sales revenue year over year. Here is a short video that covers many great ideas.

    Performics YouTube Channel


    Intent-driven marketing is a very effective digital way of converting marketing efforts into sales.

    Marketing in our digital world has opened up markets that would otherwise be an outreach for companies restricted to a small territory. The Internet has opened up international markets, requiring big marketing budgets to use conventional marketing strategies.

    By refocusing marketing strategies to identify an individual’s intent through their online behavior, a company can generate positive leads that will produce a high sales success rate.

    Through intent-driven marketing, a company can identify purchase intent. A consumer’s attitude to content will unveil their purchase intent.

    It may be for information only, or it could be the consumer wanting to purchase. Either way, purchase intent is a hot lead that will result in a sale if acted upon in the right manner and at the right time.

    Intent-driven marketing is generated through a positive online reputation and positive customer reviews. Managing your company’s online reputation is vital to success through this marketing.

    This is a big win for consumers because, ultimately, only reputable companies can establish an online presence and maintain it over the long term.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    What is Intent based Marketing?

    Intent-based marketing focuses on the buyer’s journey using big data to identify customers with purchase intent. For a more detailed answer, read this guide.

    What are the benefits of intent based marketing?

    There are a number of benefits to intent-based marketing and we have discussed a few important ones that include trust, ROI, and marketing outcomes. You will find the details in this guide.

    How to run intent based campaigns?

    There are a lot of different avenues you can use to drive your campaign. We have mentioned a few in this guide like what type of research to do, who to reach out to, and what you can do to improve your online presence. Read the guide for details.


    DemandZen: Intent-Based Marketing Basics

    Instapage: Purchase Intent

    Uhurunetwork: Buyer’s Journey Stages: Types of Content to Create for Each

    Excelerate Digital: How to Create Purchase Intent 

    Allerin: 5 Ways You Can Benefit from Intent Marketing