You’ve probably heard this countless times before: we live in an ever-changing world. Thanks to technological progress, the world of business has entered a state of permanent flux. Countless new startups have taken over while existing ones—including well-established brands—are failing to keep up.
Perhaps that’s because many companies today struggle to use big data to inform their operations and marketing strategies. Sure, most of us acknowledge the importance of big data. Research shows that around 64% of executives believe that data-driven marketing is the key to success in this cutthroat economy. And yet, 87% of marketers consider data as their most underused asset.
So then how can one use data effectively and create impactful marketing strategies?
Here, you will discover the importance of building a data-driven organization in an era of constant change. You will also learn how to use data to drive your marketing strategies.
4 Tips for Building a Data-Driven Marketing Strategy
1. Create a Data-Driven Culture
As mentioned, many business leaders would love to use data extensively throughout their company. Some do have enough data to create stellar marketing strategies, but still fail to use it to their advantage. Then there are data-savvy companies such as Google and Facebook who continue to use data to drive profitable growth.
Like most of us, you’re probably wondering, “How can my company achieve similar gains with our data?”
Start by promoting a data-driven culture. It will require a lot of effort, time, and money. Even with brilliant minds on board and the right tools, these won’t guarantee a successful transformation. If teams continue to resist change, there won’t be progress.
The most effective way to shape a data-driven culture is to create a committed core team that can lead by example. When change starts from the top, it often cascades down throughout the rest of the company. You don’t need a hefty budget for this. A crucial investment instead would be the core team’s time and money.
2. Gather your Data
The sheer volume of data that consumers produce on a daily basis can overwhelm even the most robust companies. Without proper marketing automation tools, it will be harder for teams to collect and analyze data. So, make sure to unify those disparate systems.
Integrated solutions make it easier for you to comb through vast amounts of data, allowing you to spend less time searching and more creating highly personalized marketing campaigns.
Aside from improving operations, you can use these tools to create a seamless shopping experience. With the right tools, you can empower marketers to work more effectively and efficiently.
Here are different types of data that might be relevant to your needs:
- Customer data
- Competitors’ data
- Marketing analytics
- Social media analytics
- Qualitative data
Focus on key performance indicators when you’re trying to determine which data is worth collecting. You should also look into several departments. According to Jim Bergeson, CEO of Bridgz Marketing Group, relevant data often hides in the company’s inner resources—from dealers and sellers of products or services to your sales force. With that data, you can see how the company is performing at every stage of the buyer’s journey.
3. Assess your Data
Focus on your KPIs when you are evaluating the data you gathered. Once you have everything you need, you can take action. Use the data you collected to create a solid marketing strategy. Here are the steps you can take:
(i) Enhance your Content Marketing Strategy
Content marketing has always been an excellent tactic for engaging customers, driving traffic, and improving sales. Compared to traditional methods, it costs 62% less and it produces about three times as many leads. Needless to say, this marketing tactic is critical to the current landscape of business, where consumers crave for relevant and valuable content.
The data you gather should help you get to know your audience. Do they like videos, blog posts, or GIFs? What kind of posts do they want to read or watch? What social media networks do they frequent?
More importantly, your data should enable you to determine the best way to engage with them. It might take a few tests, but it will be worth it in the end.
(ii) Find a New Submarket
Have you found a new potential submarket for your products or services? When your data reveals that much, you don’t necessarily have to redo your entire branding strategy right away. You might instead want to consider marketing to new audiences.
Let’s say you sell gourmet snack boxes for birthday and holiday celebrations. By looking into search results from your website, you can figure out if there are potential clients looking for similar products for something like wedding anniversaries.
You can then action by expanding your line and catering to couples looking to create custom snack boxes for their significant other.
With the right data, you can explore new possibilities to expand your brand. You can figure out which niches and audiences to target. Also, your data will tell you if all these possibilities are currently feasible.
(iii) Eliminate Obstacles
Uncover all the obstacles that consumers come across throughout the sales process by analyzing your data. Then, create a plan to eliminate those issues.
Let’s say your data reveals many instances where potential consumers end up abandoning their shopping carts.
What could be keeping them from purchasing your product?
Look at the rest of your data, and identify potential problems. These issues could either be technical or informational. For instance, your copy could be misleading. Your checkout page might take forever to load. Whatever the case may be, you should come up with a solutions to prevent more losses.
(iv) Embrace New Marketing Channels
Are you reaching out to your target audience on the right marketing channels? In the age of social media, it’s not wise to limit your marketing efforts to your own website. That’s no way to survive or thrive in the digital era.
When it comes to exploring alternative marketing channels, you should let your data be your guide. You could enter new social media networks, or co-market with different brands who have different products.
4. Test and Optimize Your Strategy
Data can empower you to create an effective data-driven marketing strategy. To generate value from it each time, you should regularly carry out tests that reveal the practices that you need to start doing and activities that you need to stop right away.
You can then optimize your strategy based on the results. As long as you follow the aforementioned tips, you will always have the tools and framework to analyze new data.
Measuring and optimizing your marketing strategy allows you to engage and retain the right audience by distributing relevant and consistent content. In doing so, you can drive profitable customer action. You can also make sure that the brand is on the right path to achieving its goals.
Expanding your budget and developing more strategies won’t necessarily help you stay ahead of the competition. If you’re looking to gain a competitive edge, you ought to implement data-driven marketing strategies.
Investing in integrated solutions will benefit the company in so many ways, starting with making data collection so much easier for everyone.
Figure out what your company is and what it hopes to become, and the technology can help you achieve that. By analyzing data and testing your strategies, you can better understand the changing demands of customers and find the best methods to serve them.
Above all else, cultivate a strong data-driven culture to make sure that no opportunity is wasted.
So, are you ready to embrace a data-driven culture?
Author Bio: Danielle Canstello is party of the content marketing team at Pyramid Analytics. They provide enterprise level analytics and data analytics software. In her spare time, she writes around the web to spread her knowledge of the marketing, business intelligence and analytics industries.