Data-driven marketing – How data can improve your marketing strategy

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Your customers expect you to understand what they want. Not only this, they expect you to know when they want and how they want it.

Today, the modern marketer has no reason for not being able to deliver on these demands.

The reason? Data.

Data is everywhere, and marketers are well placed to utilize this to drive customer engagement and smash their KPIs.

In this sense, data is the most critical part of any marketing strategy. But, it can be challenging to move from a marketing strategy that under-utilizes data to one that places it front and center.

Over 40% of marketers plan to expand their data-driven marketing budgets, and that’s why it’s essential to adopt a data-driven strategy.

This is where this post comes in – let’s look at some of the most effective uses of data that marketers can implement instantly.

Types of data

One thing that is very important for marketers to understand is the different types of data available to them.

First-party data

First party data is data that you or your company have collected from your customer or your audience, including:

  • Data that is already inside your CRM
  • Behavioral data generated from customer or audience interaction (website, app, shops)
  • Data around customer subscriptions
  • Social data such as likes, interactions, and following data

Second-party data

We hear more and more about second-party data. It often causes a little bit of confusion, so let’s clear it up. Second-party data is somebody else’s first-party dataset.

The reason that this term exists is that third-party data sets can be invalidated and inaccurate, or may have crossed hands several times. Examples of second party data are location data.

Third-party data

Third party data is usually purchased from outside sources where the seller is not the direct owner of the data. Usually, they have bought it and aggregate data to resell.

This data can be useful as it is usually available en mass, but issues with accuracy and validity can harm your data-driven marketing strategy.

What you can do with data

The benefits of utilizing high-quality data into your marketing strategy are plentiful.

Using data to segment your current audiences

Data helps paint a picture of how your audience behaves. Segmentation is a concept that has existed in the marketer’s toolkit for a while. But today, much better data is available to understand how your audience interacts with your business.

Segmenting your audience based on this is a fantastic way to drive engagement and personalization with your audience.

For example, segmenting your email list based on data around which pages of your site they have visited could allow you to restructure your newsletters to prioritize content that they are more likely to enjoy.

Segmentation can also help you to improve your conversions and ensure that your marketing strategy is engaging with your audience when they interact with your business. This helps you to visualize your sales funnel and how every marketing medium helps to move your audience toward becoming a paying customer.

Data as a tool for identifying new audiences

Maximizing conversions in your current audience is important, but data can also help you to identify new segments that are right for your business or proposition.

If you are using any paid media, you can fine-tune this to target more relevant users. This can be done with first-party datasets (importing matching emails from your CRM) or by using second and third-party data sets to target new customers that are relevant for your campaign.

For example, if you are a clothing company, you can use store visits data to target users who have recently attended a clothing store.

These data sets are incredibly valuable when targeting intent and lead to an increased conversion rate when done correctly.

Using data to attribute marketing spend and measure your campaigns

A big issue in the world of marketing is attribution. Understanding ROI is a crucial part of any SaaS B2B marketing strategy. Using data to see which strategies are working best helps you to adjust and optimize campaigns to get better results and waste less.

A great example is using conversion tracking across your digital infrastructure, seeing how your audience uses your site and what converts can help you to optimize your marketing strategy in the future.

Another method that is a little more out there is the use of real-world movement data to attribute the store uplift generated by digital marketing impressions or clicks.

Whatever your business, it’s clear that data is vital for attribution and measuring the effect that your strategy is having.

Using data to understand trends and be predictive in marketing

Adopting a data-driven marketing strategy will provide you with more insights and give you a better understanding of your customers and their behaviors.

This naturally leads to making better marketing and broader business decisions. Your new found love for data will help you to improve across all elements of your marketing strategy.

For example, the insight you receive from the above data-driven activities can help you understand which audience is best to market to, what kind of content or incentive is best suited to your audience and what you should be doing to maximize engagement with your product or content.

These can help to understand broader trends that are happening in your industry. Combining data with your marketing strategy helps you to become a predictive marketer, engaging customers, maximizing conversions, and driving new business with the right message via the right channels.

Some more tips to help you become a great data-driven marketer

Make sure you are always collecting data, especially first-party data in your properties and through customer engagement and interaction.

Unifying data is one of the most critical challenges for data-driven marketers. You’ll likely be utilizing data from multiple locations, combining this into a centralized place where you can create a holistic view is vital for success.

Focus on how to automate this process to maximize the ROI from data-driven marketing.

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