Data is one of the most powerful assets in your marketing toolkit. With a good analytics strategy, you can transform the multitude of data your business receives every day into measurable, actionable insights that will inform your marketing strategy, business operations and overall workflows.
This is the best way to ensure that you’re able to create marketing campaigns that connect with the right people, tell your audience what they want to hear, and get results.
What is data-driven marketing and why do you need it?
It’s no longer enough to make important business decisions based on a gut feeling alone. You now require insights and opportunities that can be easily identified and implemented into your marketing campaigns to ensure that you’re getting the best return on investment (ROI). So, what do you use to do this? It’s probably obvious, but the answer is data!
Data-driven marketing is the technique of using data that has been collected from customer interactions with your business to better inform your understanding of what your target market wants, when they want, where they want to see it, and the best way to deliver it to them.
You can gather this information from a variety of places, including:
- Past marketing campaigns
- Current marketing campaigns
- Your customer relationship management (CRM) system
- Your Google Ads traffic
- Your website traffic
- Your social media insights (from your page or even individual posts)
This data can be used to optimize your overall marketing workflow to provide better customer experiences and boost your sales performance.
Want to master your data? Answer all your questions in What Is Data-Driven Marketing and Why Is It So Important?
Why is analytics so important?
Data has always been important, but with the changes in technology and the way that we interact with customers, it is more important than ever that you have the right information for the job. Effective marketing means that you’re able to reach the right person in the right place at the right time to move them along the customer journey and turn into a paying customer.
So, what does data have to offer in this process? Simply put, everything. It is your ticket to finding the right people, understanding when and where to reach them, and doing it all with incredible ads and content that directly relates to what they’re looking for.
Generally speaking, your database is your hub for all things business, and it holds an innumerable amount of information that can turn your marketing campaigns into success. The benefits of data and analytics for a powerful customer journey are too high in number to list for you here, but we’ve got a few that might help you understand why it is so important. These include:
- The ability to boost user acquisition
- The overall ability to improve your customer experience at all stages of the marketing funnel
- The power to predict customer behavior to better serve your audience with what they want when they want it
But knowing that analytics holds this power won’t help you. You need to know how it does it, and we’ve all got all the information in our guide here: 5 Reasons Analytics Helps Create Data-Driven Customer Journeys.
Big data analytics and you
Big data is a term that has been floating around many industry verticals for a while, and if you’re not familiar with it and how to use it to transform your company’s growth, then you need to get onboard.
Big data is a collection of structured and unstructured data gathered by companies like yours. It is gathered for the purpose of identifying and collecting valuable information for predictive modeling, machine learning, and big data analytics projects. But it’s not the amount of data that matters – it’s what you do with it.
With businesses around the world constantly trying to outperform each other while simultaneously hoping to connect with their customers, the amount of data collected is of a staggering amount. Within these datasets lies two broad types of data – that which is useful to your business, and that which is not. Discerning between the two is difficult, and this is where big data analytics comes into play.
To use big data analytics, you need to understand it. Get all you need to know in What Is Big Data And Why Is It Important?
Using big data analytics to make your marketing matter
Making marketing decisions based on a feeling or what your competitors are doing won’t cut it anymore. Businesses that are succeeding in today’s market have a not-so-secret secret – they use data to inform their decisions!
Unfortunately, a fair chunk of the data you accumulate every day isn’t useful. In fact, bad data use costs the United States’ economy $3 trillion every year. You don’t want to be part of that statistic!
So, what can you use big data for across your business? There are a variety of areas it can benefit including:
- Customer acquisition processes
- Content and outreach optimization
- Performance monitoring and improvement
- And more!
Knowing that big data analytics can do this is one thing, but understanding how to use it to do so is another. That’s why we’re here with your go-to guide that’ll tell you How to Use Big Data to Improve Your Marketing.
An incredible 75 percent of companies claim to benefit from big data. However, only a simple four percent are actually set up and know how to use it to be successful. This is because big data can be difficult to manage – meaning that you’ll miss out on opportunities for growth if you aren’t able to manage it well.
Fortunately, we’ve got a step by step process that will ensure that you’re able to identify data that you can use to better optimize and improve your marketing strategies – and even your business as a whole. These are as follows:
- Start with clear goals
- Determine what data is useful
- Have a focus for your data
- Be open minded
- Be equipped with other information
- Map it (your data) out
- Find the right team
- Automate the process
When you understand each of these steps, you have a roadmap that will drive you to success. Pair this roadmap with incredible data and implement it correctly, then you’re able to create engaging marketing campaigns, improve your overall customer experience and of course, get a better return on your investment.
To learn more about these steps, our guide, Big Data Analysis: How to Find Hidden Opportunities, will give you the information you need to know.
KPIs to focus on
Do you know why your business is performing the way it is? Can you name five metrics that you’re tracking, state their purpose and develop actionable strategies to improve those numbers?
The truth is that many companies cannot do this or aren’t watching the right metrics. They have KPIs that they like to track, but have missed a lot of opportunities by not working with the right ones. This means that their reporting is inaccurate, their audience targeting is poor, and that they’re making business decisions while misinformed.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution for tracking KPIs. What suits your competitors may not work for your business. You cannot go exactly by what someone else is doing, but you can use some of the most common KPIs to create a plan for yourself.
- New leads/prospects
- Cost per lead
- Inbound marketing ROI
- Organic and paid traffic
- Social media reach and engagement
- Click-through rate (CTR)
But remember – you’ll need to track it based on company goals and what’s important to your future. Don’t just look for good numbers, look for those that tie to the performance results that matter.
Make the most of your KPI management with 10 Common Marketing KPIs You Need to Watch.
Or learn more about why your CTR is important, but not the only thing you should focus on in Why You Can’t Bank Results On Your Click-Through Rate.
Turning data into performance
By now you understand that you have a wealth of actionable data that you can use to benefit your business. But knowing what to do with it can be overwhelming as there is so much of it.
So, what do you do? As with any marketing strategy, you need to have a foolproof game plan that is customized to your business. This will help you identify information that you can use to make informed decisions in many areas across your company, including marketing, workflows, staffing, and audience information.
Knowing where to start can be difficult, especially if you don’t know where to look. That’s why we’ve developed a handy set of tips you can use to orient yourself in your data analysis process.
Get started today with 10 Tips That Transform Data into Actionable Marketing Metrics.
Monitoring your metrics with the right tools
Tracking the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns is essential. After all, what is the point in creating them if you aren’t monitoring the results? There are a variety of ways to measure your campaigns’ success, but like any business, you’ll want to use the one that is quick, effective and sustainable.
Introducing Google Tag Manager and Google Analytics. These are two of the premier platforms for tracking and marketing campaign management.
Google Tag Manager (GTM) is a free tool that allows you to manage and distribute sections of code on your website without any further input. This is one of the best and most accessible ways to implement and manage your data tracking systems.
Google Analytics is a web analytics service that tracks and reports website traffic. This also provides you with a code that you’ll need to implement on your website. After this is enabled, you will be able to set up various tasks in the Analytics dashboard to track a range of metrics and KPIs.
Want to know more? Read our guide: How to Track Marketing ROI With Google Tag Manager and Analytics.
Avoiding vanity metrics
You have a multitude of metrics being gathered every day by your brand across a variety of different channels. These metrics can be overwhelming, making it hard for businesses to identify the data that must be singled out. If you focus on the ones that look good but don’t bring results, this can lead your team in the wrong direction.
These types of metrics are called vanity metrics, and they paint a successful picture of your company without providing anything that actually benefits you. There are three questions you can ask yourself to identify information like this, and they are:
- What decision can we make with this?
- Can we intentionally reproduce the result?
- Does the data show us an accurate representation of the truth?
If your metrics have the right answer to these questions, then the information is actionable and should be used to further optimize your marketing strategy. If not, then while it looks nice, it should not be a major focus of your future marketing campaigns.
Help yourself avoid these shortcomings in What is a Vanity Metric and What Do They Mean For Your Brand?
Identifying some common vanity metrics
We don’t want you to fall victim to the metrics that many other businesses lose opportunities to. A lot of this information may seem like it is showing you that your business is growing – but don’t be fooled. If you track this data over more actionable metrics, then your growth will suffer.
And while it may be tempting to up your marketing spend when you see that your Facebook page has received 20,000 likes, it doesn’t mean that people are actually engaging with your content or purchasing from your business. Even worse, these likes could be bots who have no intention of ever buying from you.
This is why metrics like this need to be taken with a grain of salt. They may sound good, but if you base your entire marketing campaign – or even business – off them alone, then you’re risking failure.
Common vanity metrics include social media impressions (e.g. likes and followers), a spike in website traffic, and your subscriber numbers (on your blog for example). Naturally, you want these numbers to be big, but we cannot stress enough that you cannot make them a major part of your data analytics strategy.
Find out some of the vanity metrics you need to avoid and what to replace them with in 5 Vanity Metrics That Your Digital Marketing Strategy Doesn’t Need.
Keeping your customers loyal
Getting people to purchase from your brand is hard, but keeping them retained is even harder. However, it is much cheaper for your brand to retain a customer than try to acquire new ones. Why? Because loyal customers are much more likely to spend money and continue to return.
Your analytical data has a depth of information that you can use to find out how, where and when to better connect with customers. This includes your:
This is the process by which previous customers drop off your marketing funnel. Unfortunately, this is an unavoidable part of every business. The closer your customer churn rate is to 0%, the better your customer retention strategy is.
Calculate this using the following formula:
x = (The number of customers you lost in a month / the number of customers you had at the start of the month) * 100
Repeat purchase rate
This metric tells you how many of your customers are so impressed with your company that they come back to shop another time. The higher this number is, the better. The only time that this may not be the case is if your company offers a product or service that should only be purchased once.
Calculate this using the following formula:
x = (The number of customers who have purchased from you two or more times) / (your total number of customers) * 100
Net promoter score
This metric is very common, and refers to the number of customers that your business has who are loyal supporters.
Calculating this is subjective, and requires data that shows what percentage of your customers are promoters and which are detractors. When you have this data, subtract the detractor percentage from the promoter percentage to get your score.
Customer lifetime value
This is one of the most important metrics not only for your customer retention strategy but also for your overall business health. It refers to the value of a customer to your business across the entirety of their relationship with you.
Calculate this by figuring out the value of all purchases an average customer makes throughout their relationship with your company and then multiplying this by the average order value.
This can be done at an individual level, but also company-wide to get a broader picture.
Learn six more metrics to watch in 10 Important Customer Retention Metrics You Can’t Ignore.
Managing your data from one place
We’ve already discussed why you need platforms like Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager. But what about all that other data that comes flooding onto your website every second?
This includes audience details (such as name and email address), number of clicks, heatmapping, bounce rate and more. Tracking this information without help can be very difficult.
Fortunately, there is a solution that will make it easy to gather, sort and analyze your audience’s information. Customer relationship management systems have a range of benefits that include the storage and organization of big data, opportunities to identify qualified leads, and improved customer service across the board.
We recommend HubSpot for all your CRM needs, but take a look at our guide to find out more before you jump in – Customer Relationship Management: How to Choose the Best CRM System.
Your company’s data holds a wealth of information that allows you to optimize and find opportunities to grow. Without analytics, your business doesn’t have the information it needs to efficiently target its audience, meaning that your marketing, workflows, website, and more won’t be able to convince them to buy your products and services.
But don’t worry, it’s easy to take control of your data and analytics without having to spend time learning how to manage it all. The growth marketing experts at Growth Marketing Genie have the tools to help you transform your marketing strategy into one that brings guaranteed results. Make the most of your marketing today by getting in touch.
Book in a Free Consultation