As marketers, we all want to avoid wasting precious dollars on campaigns that don’t work. If we have it our way, we’d like our strategies to be on point and to deliver results right away. But – and as much as we may like to believe it – it’s not all rainbows in the marketing world and we are bound to fall short numerous times before we get the right marketing recipe that will bring in money into our businesses. (Well unless you are using data management of some description…).
But fear of falling short should not render us impotent. Sometimes it is a case of not seeing the forest for the trees. But, the good news is, there are things that we can do to minimise our errors and create more meaningful and efficient campaigns that make our ROI worthwhile, these things can be achieved through a data management platform.
In this article, we’re going to dive into the role of data management platforms in data-driven marketing and how we can maximise one to make our work as marketers easier and more productive.
Leaning into Data-Driven Marketing
If you’re one of the marketers who rely on gut feeling, constantly telling yourself, I think this will work for my customers, then you are someone who needs to read on. Nowadays, it is hard to stand out as a brand by simply relying on your hunch, especially when there is so much data available for you to leverage. There’s no way you can predict what your target market will do or what their needs and behaviour will be except by analysing real customer information.
If you want to provide meaningful experiences and value to consumers (because let’s face it, this is what brings them back time and time again), beyond the obvious first sale, you need to invest in data-driven marketing which gives you useful insights into the preferences of your customers.
Why is data important in marketing?
We cannot emphasise enough the value and overlap between IT platform management and marketing, specifically, using customer data analysis from IT based initiatives. In fact, some of the most compelling benefits you can take away from shifting your marketing approach include.
- Clearer understanding of the target audience
- Better understanding of where they engage and when
- More ways to develop personalised advertising messages
- Engaging communication with your customers in the right channel
In short, solid analysis facilitated by a customer data platform manager, will enable you to target your customers at the right time and through the right promotional channel. Not only is this a more native experience and one which people engage with more, but it translates to more satisfied customers, increased revenue, and improved loyalty. Who wouldn’t want that, right?
But how can you gather data to make your marketing efforts better and more targeted?
Types of Data
- First-Party Data. This is first-hand data that you collect from your customers and prospects when they use your website, subscribe to your email list, engage in your social media posts, download your app, and other related actions they do within assets that you own.
- Second-Party Data. This is information that you acquire from a partner company with whom you signed a data sharing agreement with.
- Third-Party Data. This data is readily available for use by the public (you may need to buy it) and is usually collated by marketing research groups, website analysis companies, and analytics platforms.
In evaluating your market, your first-party data will provide the most useful information. However, to ensure accuracy in what you collate, we recommend you compare your own data with industry insights so that you can have a more intelligent approach to developing your branding and advertising strategy.
Tools You Can Use to Find Data
It is all good and well to tell you to use data-driven marketing but the catch is, , actually collecting data that matters. Top-level quantitative or qualitative data is not going to cut it. It is important you use the data-driven marketing tools – not only ones that allow you to collate information easily, but which allow you to leverage it for true insight. In our experience, there are a few key tools you should consider when gearing up.
- Google Data Studio – This is an amazing platform that allows you to import data Analytics, Google Ads, BigQuery, and spreadsheets. You can also integrate other tools including SEMRush, Ahrefs, and the like. And the interface is easy to use
- AnyRoad – If you want to gather data from live experiences to help improve your understanding of your customers’ buying behaviour, AnyRoad is a must for your business.
- GetFeedback – Learning about how satisfied consumers are about your product or service is key to helping you modify your offering to further meet the needs of the people who need it. A tool like GetFeedback, which you can integrate with SalesForce, gives you valuable data straight from the customers who used your product or service.
Creating a Strategy Using Data
It’s hard to collect information when you don’t know what you’ll be using the results for. As such before you even attempt to gather data, you should first establish clear marketing goals and objectives and postulate what you may want to do. Look at the current performance of your product or service and your company and then identify areas of improvement that you can use as the basis for your objectives.
Let’s say, for instance, that you’ve been paying to show your ads on Facebook and the Google Display Network but you notice that your business is not getting enough traction. Despite the paid ads, you are not getting sufficient leads to make you profitable. The questions you might have include:
- Are my ads not communicating well to my target audience?
- Am I showing my ads in the right place?
- Where are the majority of my target audience hanging out online?
First thing you should do, would be to develop some theories as to the causes of your business dilemma, and then counterbalance it with your end goal and of course, the data that you need to collect so that you can create a plan that will help you achieve your end goal.
This is when you can start collecting data from different sources. Remember to use a data IT management platform to organise the data and for you and your team to easily analyse the information collected later on.
At the start, use Google Data Studio or another simple to use insights tool that you find comfortable using as your data management platform. As you get more skilled, then look to change it up to a more powerful suite. But this should all come once you have proven it is working and have extra money as a result to spend on a better data management platform.
Once all of the data points you need are laid out properly, transform raw data into the metrics that you can use to devise a new data-driven strategy. You and your team can now brainstorm ways forward including campaigns you can launch as part of your experiential marketing plan.
But don’t treat it as a set and forget, make sure you are constantly monitoring and tweaking things to drive towards better performance.
A final thought on Data Management Platform
It may have once been the way to go, but today, it is not enough to expect that advertising alone will boost sales. You need to be more intentional and data-driven. By shifting to a data-driven approach, you can help reach your customers at the right time and you can craft more personalised messages that they will truly love.
If you are seeking help to make the shift to data management and analysis as part of your marketing strategy, consult us here at Three Piece Marketing today.