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Tactic: Build vs. Buy

Written by
Rudy Lai
Last Updated
July 20, 2023
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What is Tactic?

Tactic is a data platform that extracts data from multiple unstructured and structured data sources, internal and external to the company, to create a single, real time view of your target market, aggregating data on key accounts, people, triggers, and insights. 

Tactic can sync this unified data synced with your CRM, or operate as a standalone central source of intelligence. Customers can build target accounts, marketing campaigns and personalized sales outreach programmes on top of Tactic.

Understanding what Tactic does

The best way to explain this is by example. 

Say a company is trying to get a better understanding of their customers. Before Tactic, they would have teams of people integrating data from databases like Zoominfo, building custom web scrapers, and performing and entering manual research. This results in a lot of overhead to ensure that all this work is entered cleanly into the CRM.

By deploying Tactic, business users (not technical engineers) will be able to integrate all of those data sources, extract relevant insights, consolidate them into a unified customer profile, and then make that profile usable to other systems that might need it — like Salesforce.

That process allows the company to use segmentation to better understand their market and create more personalized campaigns. 

The company could easily create a target account list based on everyone who has a B2B SaaS model and a large team of salespeople. Or, they could quickly segment and build audiences on accounts that recently opened a new office.

Understanding Key Features of Tactic

To effectively build a view of your target market, with insights that are relevant to your business, Tactic solves the following technical challenges:

  • Collection and standardization of data in real-time or via scheduled data ingestion.

  • Extraction of relevant data from unstructured data sources, like news articles and PDFs.

  • Account resolution and unification of all data with the resolved accounts. (think: “J. P. Morgan” vs. “jp morgan”)

  • Data analysis and enrichment, including tagging, scoring, segmentation, computed attributes (eg. percentage of employees in engineering), etc.

  • Be responsive to business needs and extract different types of data over time, while maintaining data quality and time-to-market.

  • Activation and democratization of data, including the ability to trigger actions in real time based on account data and activities, and sophisticated UIs for sales and marketing business users.

  • Secure, reliable and scalable infrastructure to host the platform, including data storage, manipulation processing and data pipelines.

6 Factors To Consider When Deciding To Build Or Buy

Now that we understand the key requirements, let’s assess the six major factors that can help you decide whether you should build or buy Tactic.

1. Cost And ROI

The key factor to consider is the total cost of ownership, including implementation, maintenance and support. 

Buying Tactic saves you time. All users can log in and start getting value within hours. You would only pay for what you need, whether that’s accounts researched, integrations, customer success, or data services.

If you build Tactic in-house, you would need recruitment efforts, team salaries towards product managers and engineers, third-party data licenses, infrastructure costs and security and quality certifications for development and maintenance. There will be a period of experimentation and learning that increases time and costs. 

2. Technical Infrastructure And In-House Expertise 

When buying Tactic, you wouldn’t need any extra resources for implementation and integration. In fact, Tactic is designed for sales and marketing users to self-serve and create data that truly meets their needs. They can integrate Tactic into their tools in one click.

On the other hand, building in house requires expertise in cloud infrastructure, data engineering, marketing, product management and support. You will need to figure out how to integrate with tools like Salesforce and Hubspot, manage access rights and usage, and establish different user profiles.

3. Agility and change

By buying Tactic, every new business need is easily and swiftly addressed. For example, new CROs often ask teams to redefine and clarify their ideal customer profiles. Winning new customers in a particular segment will create new requests for more lookalike accounts.

Rather than having your internal teams scrambling to figure out how to scrape for new data requirements, you can simply configure Tactic to make data in this new way.

Furthermore, Tactic provides the capability for frequent data updates, ensuring that you always have the most current and accurate information at your disposal. 

In contrast, in-house data collection efforts may struggle to maintain the same level of timeliness and accuracy. Old data is bad data, and you can face a lack of trust in your in house system.

4. Business Strategy And Alignment

Is creating account data the core job of your data team?

If you consider the processing of account data to be a differentiator for your business, you might consider building a specialized system per your needs. 

If you’d rather focus on your core business functions and let Tactic handle data processing, then buying may be the way.

5. Deployment Scope And Features

The deployment scope and features in the proposed system also play a role in this decision. If your organization needs a system with minimal features for a few regions, you might be able to get away with building in-house.

On the other hand, buying Tactic gives you the ability to scale the system per business needs. 

If your go-to-market vision has a larger scope with complex and state-of-the-art features, such as international market expansion, a mix of inbound/outbound/growth funnels, and win/loss analysis, then building Tactic in house would require heavy investment and technical expertise. 

6. Timeline

It takes about a year and a half to build a system with basic features in-house and much longer to build Tactic. 

When you buy Tactic, implementation can be as quick as three hours. It’s essential that teams consider this when deciding: Is the organization ready to wait two years while building its system without the fear of lagging in a competitive market?

To conclude, there isn’t one right answer, but there is a right one for your company or team. Whether you buy Tactic or build one, you are going to make the right decision as long as you are assessing all the factors.

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