The need to generate leads has always been crucial for businesses, and the challenge has only gotten tougher for small brick-and-mortars who are fighting to thrive in an increasingly “uberized” world. So much consumer activity is conducted online, and even mega corporations like Walmart and Macy’s, once deemed invincible, are in a major slump. But there is an advantage to being local — so long as you get to know your neighbors.
Snowcap Data today announced the launch of Leadbird, a lead-generation toolkit designed for small and medium-sized businesses. The Internet-based platform, which aggregates real-time local data, looks to give small businesses the same kind of access to data that big businesses have, but on a hyperlocal level. From there, SMBs can design direct marketing campaigns based on information about the consumers in their proximity.
“Mega-corporations have massive marketing budgets and can purchase targeted lists or create their own with their own large customer base,” Carl Rohling, CEO of the NYC-based company told Street Fight. “Today Amazon connects [consumers] to a local electrician when you purchase a light fixture on Amazon.com.”
His point — and largely the problem Snowcap looks to solve— is that SMBs don’t have endless consumer information and automatic lead generation at their fingertips.
“SMBs seldom have access to this real-time data and are limited to internally sourced customers,” Rohling said. “Leadbird offers rich, real-time data on a local basis for them to filter and consume for targeting new customers.”
Since launching in 2014, Snowcap Data’s main goal has been to “extract and monitor data from the Internet and produce this data so it’s consumable for [its] clients,” Rohling said. The process starts by identifying data sources and then programming Snowcap’s technology platform to retrieve or monitor the data on a specific basis (this can be in real-time, or monthly or quarterly). The data can come from a variety of places such as a competitor’s website or its social media pages, or even marriage announcements in local online publications — anything public that can build a consumer profile on a local person.
Leadbird is the piece of the puzzle that acts as a self-serve marketing platform for SMBs to use the aggregated hyperlocal data and send out “targeted postcards” to potential leads.
“We are launching a platform where SMBs —with a free account — can view all of the local leads we produce for free,” said Rohling. “We offer the SMB the option to create a 4 x 6 postcard, or email directly within the platform. We offer templates and sample language as well as the option to upload their own artwork. Once created, we automatically send out future postcards as we source relevant leads for the customer.”
One example would be if a day-care were looking to introduce their services to people in the area. They could sign on with Leadbird to have a business postcard mailed to all the new parents in their neighborhood.
They can do this once, or on a month-to-month basis.
“We are constantly producing data across the country from public sources and aggregating this with our licensed data,” said Rohling “This is real-time 24 x 7. We then geo-locate the data and publish so it’s available by town or zip code. Instead of selling a list which might be six months old, we offer what is available right now on 1 x 1 event/record basis. [We ask], ‘Who recently opened a business in our neighborhood? Who recently got married or had a baby in our neighborhood?’ And let [our clients] see it one month in the past, current and one month ahead, if available.”
Leadbird has piloted with restaurants, insurance, community banks, and professional services such as plumbers, electricians, and attorneys, said Rohling. As the service picks up momentum, Rohling hopes it will become a business networking platform where SMB owners can come together and share hyperlocal leads with one another.
“To get there, we need to attract SMBs by offering leads that we are able to source from the Internet ourselves,” said Rohling.
Nicole Spector is a contributor to Street Fight.