With a Goal to Produce ‘Top-Tier Quality Leads in any B2B Market,’ IRONMARKETS Tests New Waters

A three-year process at IRONMARKETS has led to a new platform called BlackBoxLG. B2B media veteran Jim Bagan (pictured), VP, demand generation & education for IRONMARKETS (formerly AC Business Media), says it can be that “trusted source” for other publishers.

“So I have a true story,” Bagan told me towards the end of our Zoom interview about BlackBoxLG, IRONMARKETS’ new platform. It allows media companies to sell—or purchase—from a single source provider built around a network of the top 1.5% of lead generation databases in the United States.

“I had a salesperson from an organization [I was working with] call me the other day from a parking lot, and he’s like, ‘Hey, I’m 20 minutes in from talking to this client, and can you just spend some time with me and really just go through it again.’ This is what it’s all about. We love to do that.”

What’s new about this platform that IRONMARKETS is now marketing to other media companies is that, it’s from one B2B publisher to another.

“BlackBoxLG is a way to democratize and scale lead generation for the B2B market outside of it,” Bagan explained. “And the reason why I say outside of it [is because] I spent some time over in the IT industry, selling content syndication and lead generation, and they have it down to a science—so much so that they’ve been buying leads for a very long time…

“What we were able to do was to look at what was done there and bring it to traditional B2B markets, and we started internally. The challenges that we had with our lead generation program are pretty universal when it comes to B2B, outside of tech. And that’s your database challenge. That you have your list. And it’s a very good list. And it’s a list that obviously has an affinity for the product. But as marketers increasingly focused on ROI, finding accounts that make sense” was the key.

So they looked outside the box to find lead gen partners who would pass a very rigorous test. “We would rinse and repeat and learn, and over literally a year-and-a-half we got to a place where we had extremely good partners that we could rely on,” Bagan said. “Then we also knew that if this worked in our marketplaces, it could probably work in several other B2B industries.”

One of the things that they noticed most was that lead generation vendors are focused on IT. “That’s their bread and butter. That’s where all the revenue is at,” Bagan said. “But they had these massive databases. So the trick became, did they have first party intent signals? Were they compliant? Do they own their own database? That’s extremely important because you want to be the originator.

“We can [now] go to a publisher and say, ‘Listen [there are] no full-time employees [required]. We can help you sell lead generation. We can get you scale revenue, repeatable business, which is huge, and we can help with the heavy lift of B2B sales training”—which Bagan added, is the “largest part” of the equation. You’ve got to change that old mindset.

Bagan said that the platform is priced “very reasonably, [though] you have to understand that to get quality, you’re going have to pay a little bit more. However, that quality is going to translate into repeatable, scalable business. The easiest way to start is just go to the site and contact us.”

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