When I started at Salesflare, I was obsessed with these websites.
Not because they would get us tons of leads. They just don’t if you’re not willing to open up your wallet big time for a good listing.
No, I used to browse them for hours because of the gazillion reviews people left our competitors. It was a great way to get to know our target audience and their needs. It helped me figure out what kind of value we needed to create to win them over.
Today, I know who our target customers are and I know what kind of value they’re looking for. The game has shifted from getting to know them to put the moves on them.
Which brings us to the next phase: how do you target all those target customers at scale?
This guide will walk you through the steps needed to get target customers like these in front of your value using cold emails, Facebook Ads and LinkedIn automation.
We’ll be taking Capterra as an example but you can make this work for any webpage that provides you with at least the following three elements:
- first name
- last name
- company name
Here’s what a typical Capterra review looks like (for workflow automation gem Zapier)
In addition to the name of the reviewer and the company he/she represents, we’ll also have their role and their industry.
Zapier has 130 reviews on Capterra. Of course, there’s no way we’re going to manually copy and paste all of that data.
Welcome to the Scrapocalypse ⛏
- 1: Create a scraping recipe with Recipe Creator
- 2: Scrape it. Scrape it real good with DataMiner
- 3: Match Company Names with Domains using PhantomBuster
- 4: Use FindThatLead to find email addresses for cold emailing
- 5: Match personal addresses to make Facebook Audiences with FindThatLead
- 6: Match LinkedIn Profiles with PhantomBuster
- 7: Automate LinkedIn outreach with Dux-Soup
- Cold email
- Facebook Ads
- LinkedIn outreach and automation
- Microsoft Excel and/or Google Sheets
Step 1: Create a scraping recipe with Recipe Creator
There’s tons of scraping tools out there.
To get the data we want, we don’t need something fancy schmancy. DataMiner is a free and easy Chrome extension that does the job.
First thing you’ll need to do is set up DataMiner to scrape the data you want, creating a recipe for it.
I’d happily share mine in the public DataMiner directory but I’d need to have a paid subscription to do that, which I don’t.
Instead, I’ll just tell you how to create the recipe yourself, which will also get you acquainted with data scraping logic.
Once you get a hang of this, no data on the web will be safe for you anymore.
First, download Recipe Creator — another Chrome extension that will work together with DataMiner. Open it up on the page you want to scrape and click ‘New Recipe’.
You’ll now be taken through a process that’ll help you define the data you want to retrieve from the review page.
Check out this 2-minute video for instructions: https://youtu.be/XZY1KQq62hE
This recipe will work for every Capterra product page you’d ever want to scrape.
Step 2: Scrape it real good with DataMiner
Time to mine the gold.
Open the DataMiner Chrome extension and select the recipe you just created with Recipe Creator.
Names, roles, company names, industries and company sizes.
Hit ‘Download’ on the bottom of the DataMiner UI for a .CSV with the results.
Pretty sweet but not quite enough have them fall into your web. Yet.
Step 3: Match Company Names with Domains using PhantomBuster
(There is an alternative way to retrieve Domains. This involves getting LinkedURLs from names + company names (with another PhantomBuster script) and then revisiting/scraping those LinkedIn profiles using Dux-Soup. Head over to Step 5–6 if this sounds more like your jam.)
To find email addresses, we need (1) names and (2) domains.
Names we already have.
Domains we can find by running the Company Names through a search engine and getting the first result, which will be the company’s website in about 90% of the cases.
No, we’re not going to do this manually.
You’re a human being. This is robot’s work so we’ll have a robot do it.
PhantomBuster is a platform that gives you the power to automate repetitive data scraping tasks like this one.
You just have to tell it what to do.
We to set up a bot that automatically runs search queries in Google for each of the company names, then save the first result in a column of a .CSV export file.
That is exactly what this script does.
You can follow these steps to set up the script in PhantomBuster and run it to retrieve Company Domains from a list of Company Names:
- Head over to Phantombuster and create a free account.
- Select ‘Agents’ from the top menu and Create a ‘New Agent’ from the form on the top.
- You’ll be taken to a scary-looking code interface. Stay calm, you just need to copy-paste a script into it.
- There may be some pre-filled code into. Empty everything (Select All > Delete/Backspace) and copy-paste the code from this script.
- The script will source Company Names from a Google Sheet. Copy the contents of the .CSV with scraped data you got from DataMiner into a Google Sheet and paste the link into the script as shown in the screenshot. Make sure to delete everything after the first combination of letters/numbers when you paste it in.
- The script will source company names from the column with header ‘Column’. If you followed the scraping script from Step 1 this should be fine.
- Go into ‘Settings’ and set a number higher than 0 for ‘number of retries’. Google has the tendency to block IPs if a certain number of searches are run from the same IP in quick succession. The script will relaunch and use another IP if this happens.
- Click ‘Launch’ — you’ll get something like this.
- Download the .CSV with the Company Domains – this will be called output.csv
These domains enable you to find work email addresses (Step 4) and LinkedIn profiles (Step 6) for the reviewers.
Step 4: Use FindThatLead to find email addresses for cold emailing
FindThatLead is a badass lead finder tool that will get you email addresses from inputs like names and domains.
From the data we have gathered, there’s two things we can do with FindThatLead:
- ‘Domain Search’ to retrieve emails linked to a Domain
- ‘Lead Search’ to find specific emails from First Name, Last Name and Domain
All you need: a .CSV with a ‘Domain’ column — FindThatLead will get you emails for every domain.
To find the email addresses of specific people at companies, you’ll need a .CSV with three columns: First Name, Last Name and Domain.
Since you scraped the names in full, you’ll need to split first name and last name. The fastest way to do this in Excel is to select the column containing the name and then using Data > Text to Columns, using ‘Space’ as delimiter.
A free FindThatLead account will get you 10 credits per day, so you’ll need to upgrade to a paid plan.
Here’s the thing though: you won’t find anything cheaper that is as good.
Step 5: Find LinkedIn Profiles with PhantomBuster
Having names and domains also allows us to match reviewers with LinkedIn Profile URLs.
Similar to how we matched Domains to Company Names, we’ll have PhantomBuster automate scraping Google to retrieve LinkedIn URLs from name + company name.
Yes, you’ll need another script.
The steps to have PhantomBuster execute it are essentially the same as the ones described in Step 3.
- create a New Agent
- empty the terminal and copy-paste the script
- link a Google Sheet containing names and company names. The script will take names from column A and company names from column C. This is based on the scraping recipe outlined in Step 1
- Run the script hitting ‘Launch’
- Download .CSV with results
PhantomBuster will just fill the first empty column in the sheet with results, so you don’t need to set something up there.
Running the two scripts to retrieve domain names and LinkedIn profile URLs, you now should be left with this beautiful sheet of data on your competitor’s customers.
Step 6: Unleash the Dux
To make the most out of the found LinkedURLs we’ll be using one of my favourite growth hacking tools: Dux-Soup.
Dux-Soup is a little robot that allows you to auto-visit LinkedIn profiles.
You can use it to auto-visit targeted profiles in LinkedIn or Sales Navigator.
You’ll get new connections, introductions and leads without lifting a finger.
Dux-Soup will also scrape first names, last names, industries, roles, company size and company domains and whatever else they have filled in on their LinkedIn profiles. Exportable as a .CSV — file.
In fact, instead of retrieving domains with the PhantomBuster script, you could have also first scraped the LinkedIn Profile URLs and then visit those with Dux-Soup to get company domains.
To auto-visit/scrape the LinkedIn profiles of the Capterra reviewers, we’ll be using Dux-Soup’s ‘Revisit Data’ feature.
Note: Revisiting is a Pro-feature. It would set you back about $15 a month.
#1. Download Dux-Soup .CSV template
The idea of Dux-Soup’s ‘Revisit Data’ is to revisit profiles you auto-visited before.
We’re going to trick Dux-Soup into thinking it already visited the LinkedIn profiles of the Capterra reviewers before.
All it takes is a .CSV with Dux-Soup export headers and first names + last names filled in.
You can get a template here.
#2. Paste the Linked URLs in the ‘Profile’ column
Dux-Soup will update the rest of the data once it revisited the LinkedIn Profile URLs in the ‘Profile column’.
#3. ‘Revisit’ the LinkedIn profiles
#5. Upload the .CSV with the LinkedIn profiles
#6. Hit ‘Visit Profiles’ from the Dux-Soup Chrome extension UI
#7. Download results with ‘Download Data’
Step 7: Create Facebook Audiences by getting personal email addresses with Dux-Soup’s email finder
As soon as you hit that ‘Visit Profiles’ button, Dux-Soup will ask if you want it to find email addresses too.
Dux-Soup has a point system where 1 point is good for 1 email address return.
You can either buy these points or trade in the email addresses from your LinkedIn connections.
This is how they source all those emails.
Return rate? About 90% ????.
Get this: a lot of the email addresses Dux-Soup will return are personal Gmail — addresses.
Simple: back when LinkedIn was taking its first steps, most people signed up with their personal email and never bothered to change their primary email addresses to their work email.
If you’re having an oh oh — moment now: sorry about that. Now go ahead and change it.
There’s good news too.
Personal email addresses are what you need to create Facebook Audiences from these competitor’s customers.
Once your Facebook Audience has reached a certain size, you can make a Lookalike Audience out of it.
More of your competitor’s customers ????.
If you’re looking for more inspiration to hit hard on Facebook, make sure to check out my Facebook Playbook.
What about other review websites?
You can apply this Play and its steps to any website that gives you at least names and company names.
Keep in mind that you’ll need to create different scrape recipes with Recipe Creator. It goes without saying every other website will have its data structured differently than Capterra.
I used Capterra as an example because it’s arguably the most important software review website out there and because most products have a ton of reviewers you can all turn into leads.
Second biggest GetApp is part of the Capterra — ecosystem as of recently and sources reviews from Capterra onto its page. That plus the fact that it leaves out company names for reviewers makes it not worth looking at.
Scraping G2Crowd is possible (and interesting) but more complicated because the reviewers’ credentials are only provided on the reviewer’s profile page.
This means you’d first have to scrape all profile URLs to then scrape the data you want off each profile URL. This is not possible with DataMiner’s free version. If you’d like to get into this, feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn or Facebook.
A software directory you can pretty easily scrape is Siftery.
Siftery lists the companies using a particular software product.
You can scrape these companies pretty easily by using DataMiner’s ‘GetSimilar’ feature on each page.
This will get you all the company names and their Siftery Profile URLs in two columns.
Repeat on every page.
There’s a drawback.
Siftery only allows you to check out 120 companies using a software product. With each page showcasing 30 companies, you’ll be prompted to submit a special request to Siftery as soon as you try to access page 5.