How To Start Data-Driven Marketing For Your Small Business
Data-driven marketing is now acknowledged as the most valuable marketing technique of the 21st century. It has been made possible by the huge volume of data that can be tracked in real time through digital connectivity. Even a decade ago, this type of marketing approach was considered as a mystery to mainstream business. Now the major executive and strategic decisions are all based on the interpretations of Big Data using business intelligence and analytics tools.
A Brief Intro to Data-Driven Marketing
Data-driven marketing is the most actionable form of marketing strategy. It is the process by which marketers gather insights through different KPI analysis of company operational or market data. These findings are mostly quantifiable and based on them, you can plan major marketing decisions. One of the targets of data-driven marketing is to help organizations to optimize their operational process and strategies by utilizing a large set of active data. By asking smart questions, you can make your data speak about many crucial aspects of your customers and products.
Benefits of Data-Driven Marketing
The best thing about data-driven marketing is that it helps you to minimize the risk of gut-based decisions. Still now, there are companies that make completely gut-based decisions. And then there are other companies that blindly replicate the successful marketing plan of other companies. One thing is common between these two types- none of them has any substantial idea on how the customers interact with their products.
Data-driven marketing can help you exactly on this. Some of the major advantages that you can gain through data-driven marketing are:
- Receive personal, professional, behavioral, demographic data of your customers
- Target your audience more effectively through web channels
- Understand the performance of your online and offline communication materials
- Gather conclusive idea about which promotional channel is giving you maximum outcome
- Optimize customer experience through the customer interaction data
- Use reliable historical data to prepare marketing campaigns
How To Build A Solid Data-Driven Marketing Approach
You have to keep in mind that data is going to be in the driving seat of all your marketing activities. Therefore, your primary responsibility is to set up a system that tracks all the data of your business operations and store them in one place. Once it is done, you need to decide on your performance metrics and success benchmark. Based on that, you have to plan, execute, test, analyze, monitor and re-plan everything according to the results.
Now we are going to discuss the major steps you need to go through in order to build a data-driven marketing approach.
Track Every Single Data from Their Source
Not tracking your operational data is a costly mistake these days. If you are an online business, you can track all the customer interaction and web traffic data from Google Analytics for free. Not having a substantial budget is not a legit excuse for this anymore. Besides, all advertising platforms including social media offer analytics dashboard to the advertisers. As a marketeer, it is a must to monitor these data and find out what is working and why it is working for you.
Data flow automation is crucial because you would want all the data to be stored in one place. Otherwise, how are you going to correlate them with one another and make them answer your questions? There are thousands of integrated reporting and analytics solution that you can choose for this purpose.
Set Key Performance Indicator for Respective Operations
Selecting KPI for your major operations such as marketing, sales, finance, accounting is a vital step. Because you will have to find out how these KPIs works with your data tracking & analysis process. For example, churn rate might not mean the same thing for different companies. You need to define your KPIs and create a reliable system to analyze it.
Keep on A/B Testing to Level Up the Game
A big issue with many marketers is that they do not want to do A/B testing. Or worse, they are prone to making assumptions based on previous experience. As a result, the company cannot perform up to their level best. A cart abandonment rate of 40% might sound great to you, but unless you do more A/B testing, you will never know if that is the best you can achieve. The more you scale up, the bigger improvements you can achieve through testing your hypothesis.
Report Your Outcomes Smartly & Redeploy
Too many reports from different teams can make these fuzzy for you. One way to tackle it can be giving attention to things that have the maximum impact on your business results. This way you will be able to prepare meaningful reports that will act as the guideline for future growth. Find out the process that produced best results, replicate them in your next campaign and re-optimize them for better results.
Today's consumer needs change rapidly, the product lifecycle has become way shorter than it used to be. This is why marketers are bound to get the expected result without a data-driven strategy. To sum up, a data-driven marketing strategy gives you the scope to collect complete operational data in every point of interaction. Also, it lets you take advantage of analytics and reporting platform for better insight generation. The entire process is action-driven so you can assess the result of your activities- all in real time.
Data-driven marketing does not stop. Like we said before, you should bring all marketing channels under this strategy. This way you can discover what helps you to achieve your business objective in the best possible way.