An effective marketing plan must include data in today’s digital world. Good marketing affects the buying process by making it more accessible. For that to work, marketing campaigns must be targeted to the ideal customer and monitored to ensure every asset provides a return.
The question is, what data matters because there is a lot of it? Where do you find it, and how do you make the best marketing decisions? Successful marketing drives growth, and data drives successful marketing.
What Is Data-Driven Marketing?
Data-driven marketing is building marketing strategies based on data. Without it, marketers can’t make informed decisions. Instead, they are back to the days of the Mad Men of Madison Avenue, trying to come up with catchy tag lines based on nothing but intuition.
Using data takes the guesswork out of marketing because you make decisions based on numbers that tell a story. You know who buys what, how they make their buying choices, and even why. Today’s marketing campaign isn’t simply flooding the market with your brand name and hoping for the best.
Thanks to big data, it is more like a precision strike. You target the right buyer at the right time and help steer their journey toward your brand.
What Are The Benefits of Data-Driven Marketing?
Data-driven marketing helps you better understand your target audience. You must get inside their heads to influence their buying choices. Data provides insights into the journey they take right before they make their purchase. What social media sites do they visit? What kinds of searches do they do?
It also tells you more about their personally. Demographics is a large part of the data necessary to make smart marketing decisions. What age group does your brand appeal to, and do you want to broaden your scope, for example?
What Are the Types of Data Marketing?
There are many different categories of data marketing, but you could break it into three key ones:
- Sales data – This is the metrics analysis of the sales and how they change due to the current marketing strategy. For example, what was the sales growth for the previous year? How about net revenue?
- Customer data – Customer data is about finding that target. It allows you to improve your target market segmentation and drive leads to your front door.
- Competitor Analysis – Evaluating how your competition does things can tell you about the current market. What are their strengths? How about their weaknesses? You can use that information what developing your own strategies.
These three data categories will tell you a lot as you work to build effective marketing campaigns. They are pivotal in growth marketing.
What Is Growth Marketing?
Growth marketing takes traditional marketing strategies to a new level because it is purely driven by data. Each year, the U.S. welcomes 500,000 new businesses to what some might say is an already saturated marketplace.
That means brands must look for innovative ways to bubble to the top. Otherwise, they just flounder at the bottom of the last page of search results.
Using data-driven growth marketing approaches, even small companies can start at the top of the customer funnel and steer the buying process. When done correctly, growth marketing provides the customer value at every stage of their buyer’s journey. Marketing isn’t about just making a sale anymore. It is about building lasting relationships that loyal customers want to talk about with others.
Word-of-mouth marketing still tops the list of ways customers get recommendations for products. The Better Business Bureau (BBB) reports that 85 percent of consumers rely on word-of-mouth referrals.
Many get those referrals from social media. A survey from Hubspot found that 71 percent are more likely to buy based on a referral they get from a social media channel.
The Data Behind Growth Marketing
Growth marketing focuses on precise data to drive results.
This refers to performance analytics primarily for websites. Which pages have the highest bounce rates? That means people are not spending time on these pages. As a result, that space might be better used in another way.
You also want to know how visitors are coming to your website. Is it through an organic search? That would indicate your SEO efforts are effective. What about a pillar page? That means one marketing asset is working well. They might also get there via social media.
Social Media Data
Social media plays a significant role in marketing, but it is not enough to have a presence on a social media channel. The channel needs to engage potential customers and help generate traffic for the website.
Measuring your social media data is how you know if that is working or if you need to try new things. For example, you may be focusing on the wrong channel if you do not see many new followers on your Facebook page or get likes and clicks. If your audience is younger, that is likely the case.
The problem might not be the platform but your posts. To engage with customers, you must be consistent. They expect to see regular posts. If they share your information or ask a question, they want acknowledgment.
Some critical data you can get from social media includes engagement rates and reach. Engagement rate refers to interactions. How many people visit your Facebook business page, for instance? Reach is how many people see your content. If you see these numbers going up, it is a sign of growth.
Email Marketing Data
It is too easy to let email marketing drop by the wayside. However, it is still an effective marketing tool when handled right. It is an excellent way to draw in prospects and open up those lines of communication.
Some critical data you want to monitor during an email campaign are open and click-through rates. Open is how many people get your emails and look at them. Click-through-rate tells you how many people open the email and click on a link to find out more.
Email data can alert you to a downturn in business, too. For instance, if you are bombarded with unsubscribe requests, the bounce rate, or emails not being delivered go up you know something is wrong with your design or application.
Blog and Content Creation Data
Like social media, a regular blog is a way to communicate and engage with your perfect buyer. In addition, blogs help to improve your discoverability because they can push you up on organic searches and build your reputation in the industry.
Some data to watch for during your content creation includes page traffic, how long viewers spend on your pages, and how many visits lead to conversions.
Lead generation metrics help you see if your marketing investment is paying off. More leads mean more customers and revenue.
Some critical data you can get from leads includes customer lifetime value – how much a customer is worth to you in revenue. Also, the funnel conversion rate, or how many leads continue to move down the funnel.
Customer feedback isn’t qualitative data you can measure, but it is valuable information. It’s a report card that lets you know how you are doing as a brand. If customer feedback is more and more positive, it is a sure sign of growth.
Are Data-Driven Companies More Successful?
The data shows they are more successful. For example, a study conducted by Harvard Business School and MIT Sloan School of Management found that data-driven companies had better financial performance and were more innovative, according to a report on LinkedIn.
Another study conducted by the McKinsey Global Institute found that data-driven brands were 23 times more likely to get customers and six times more to keep them. So let’s look at some examples of brands that put data to work to grow.
Grammarly is a prime example of data-driven marketing in action. The company has a 200 million dollar marketing budget they use to produce SEO-driven content with podcast advertising and targeted pay-per-click ads. In addition, their blog posts use high-intent keywords to draw in their target audience of writers, students, and business people. As a result, they have seen a 35 percent increase in organic traffic.
Rothy’s is a footwear brand that makes shoes out of recycled plastics. It uses personalized journeys to pinpoint its messaging along with keyword research. The result is a whopping 479 percent increase in organic traffic.
Ways to Use Data-Driven Marketing to Grow Your Brand
Data clearly has value, but what can it do for your business?
Serve Your Customers Better
The key is reaching the right consumer, B2C or B2B, and giving them what they want. Of course, you can’t do that unless you know what they want in the first place. Data can show your preferences and give your resources to learn more. One example is figuring out the proper social media channels to use. If you use the wrong one, you could be talking to people who are not interested in what you offer.
Get Insight Into New Business Opportunities
Data may also help you see what your ideal customer needs that you might not offer them. That may be a chance to open up new avenues of revenue and drive your growth in a different direction.
Improve Your Lead Generation and Sales Process
Data can shine a light on the things that don’t work. For example, slow sales growth indicates issues with either marketing or the sales process. Analyzing the data may help you find where it is breaking down and make changes.
Data can also show you how other companies do it right. You can learn from the data you see from other companies and retrofit some of their processes to work for your brand.
Gain Insight Into the Market
Data analytics can allow you to respond to changes in the market faster. It is a way to predict trends and use them to benefit your business. It can show shifts in customer behaviors and create an advantage that your competitors miss.
Creating Your Customer-Driven Marketing Strategy
Data gives you a roadmap for creating a customer-driven marketing strategy. It allows you to shift your marketing focus from the product or services you provide to the customer who helps your business grow. Here are some tips to get you there:
- Start by analyzing your market and creating detailed buyer personas. This puts everyone on the same page about the ideal customer so you can reach them.
- Pay attention to customer feedback. If your customers take the time to tell you something, listen. It can help create products that might otherwise pass you by. You might even take a few moments and ask them what they need. They will appreciate your attention and might provide valuable insight.
- Take advantage of word-of-mouth advertising. If you treat your customers right, engage with them often through your various marketing touchpoints and keep their needs at the forefront, they will pay you back in spades by telling their friends and followers. The key to growth is expanding your customer base. Word-of-mouth advertising does that.
- Prioritize data when making business and marketing decisions. The days of flying by the seat of your pants are over. Today, data can tell you precisely what you need to know to expand your sales and grow your business. It’s there; all you need to do is put it to work for you. It can only help your marketing efforts.
If you struggle to make sense of the data, let us help. Our data analysis experts at Vinci know how to use those numbers to promote business growth. Contact us today to book your free strategy.