For decades, businesses have been keeping track of customer data.
In times long gone, this data was kept within folders in something called a “filing cabinet.” Often organized haphazardly by multiple people every year, these files were usually incomplete and smelled like your local library.
Welcome to the future.With modern technology, we can compile data to help us plot our marketing efforts with the push of a button. This technological renaissance has led to the rise of data driven marketing.
In this resource, you’re going to learn exactly what data driven marketing is as well as how you can grow your business with accurate, actionable data.
What is data driven marketing?
Data driven marketing is a form of business marketing that utilizes gathered data to dictate your marketing tactics.
The major benefit of data driven marketing is that there is no guesswork involved with anything. Instead, everything is backed by hard numbers.
That’s why 67% of marketers say that the main benefits of data driven marketing are speed and accuracy.
Through data driven marketing you then have the opportunity to target these customers on an individual level, usually in a personalized manner.
When running data marketing campaigns, you have the ability to create automated marketing tasks.
For example, if you were to use gathered data to identify buyer personas, whenever someone from one of those groups requests information, you can have the proper messaging sent out right away.
As long as you have access to that data, you’re able to customize their specific marketing, personalizing it to their wants and needs instead of just sending the same information to everyone.
Why should your business use data driven marketing?
Data driven marketing is hugely popular in the modern business world because it makes the life of today’s marketer easier and produces better results.
The single biggest benefit having a data driven strategy is that you’ll never have to make a business decision based on a “feeling” or hunch ever again.
For instance, rather than guessing, you can determine your ideal customer personas based on data gathered from past customers.
You can see where you’re generating customers with the highest CLV (customer lifetime value), and who they are. You can prove that your software does best with middle-management CMOs at SMBs who are leads generated from webinars.
Knowing this means you can double down on webinars and rate CMOs as more valuable leads than lower-level employees. This enables segmentation and personalization, as well as an improved marketing ROI.
This is just one example of how data can take the guesswork out of marketing and help your business identify the best opportunities for growth.
What data should your business collect?
There’s a slew of information that you can collect from your customers, your website, and your ad and marketing campaigns.
Let’s break down the most valuable data you should prioritize:
1. User data
There’s a wealth of data that you can gather right from your users as you interact with them.
Right from the first touchpoint, you can get…
- IP address, to tell you (geographically) where a visitor is coming from
- First page visited, which can help you identify their interests
- Whether they visited your homepage, pricing page, about us page, or contact us page, all of which help you identify their buyer intent
As these visitors continue to interact with your website they should (if you have a marketing funnel in place) also be submitting contact information via lead forms.
Then, if you’re using a CRM, you can collate all this information to give you not just an understanding of who they are as an individual, but also who your average prospect is and the customer journey they’re most likely to take.
You can use that data to create buyer profiles, showing the characteristics and behaviors of your ideal customer.
2. Website data
A lot of valuable and actionable insight can be obtained through your website and how people interact with it.
For instance, a heat map is a still image of a page from your website that shows you the effectiveness of your links, calls to action, and overall layout by highlighting the areas your visitors are interacting with most frequently:
Different analytics tools enable you to check the amount of time people are staying on your site, where those people are coming from, and even recreate video of browsing sessions:
- Hotjar (heatmaps, clickmaps, recordings, surveys)
- LiveSession (session replays, clickmaps, heatmaps, dev tools)
- Tableau (site analytics)
- Woopra (funnel analytics)
- ClicData (website, social media, email, surveys, funnel analytics)
3. Marketing data
If you’re running a pay-per-click advertising campaign, that’s another amazing place to gather data on your audience.
You can tell a lot about your prospective customers by running more than one ad at the same time and seeing which one has the greatest level of success. This is also called A/B testing.
It will also tell you a lot about search intent surrounding the various keywords you’re trying to rank for and target.
Of course you’re not going to get all of this information at once. Remember, it takes both iteration and optimization to gather data — meaning you have to repeat the process over and over again and then optimize according to your findings.
However, implementing an iterative marketing strategy driven by data (particularly with advertising) enables you to stay ahead of shifting trends.
How can you succeed at data driven marketing?
Gathering data is great. It’s like a massive sundae — covered in chocolate sauce, whipped cream, and sprinkles with a couple of bananas and piles of vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry ice cream.
Great, but so damn frustrating if you don’t have a spoon (at least if you don’t want to make a horrible mess of yourself and the table).
Data by itself is the first piece of the larger data driven marketing puzzle.
You have to be able to take action in order to succeed at data driven marketing.
Here are a number of actionable strategies for using your data to improve your marketing campaigns.
1. Use tools that interpret and visualize data for you
10 years ago this article would talk about strategies for compiling and interpreting data with Excel spreadsheets and a thousand hours of mind-numbing number crunching.
Luckily, it’s 2020, so there’s an app for that.
There are so many wonderful platforms out there that can gather and compile data for you at the click of a button, in real time.
One of those tools is monday.com’s campaign tracking template, which enables you to see your various digital marketing initiatives in one place, as well as review (and visualize) actionable data from their success or failure which can be used in the next campaign.
2. Turn user data into strategies for growth
In looking at your user data, let’s say you’ve uncovered that a large section of your audience is centered around a specific geographic area. If you then increase your advertising efforts in that area, you’re likely to see growth.
Looking at this from another angle, after a certain conversion (say, “booked but unattended demo”) you’ve been waiting a period of 3 days before touching base with your customers to see if they want to make a new purchase. You’re seeing a 19% success rate with this.
Then, you try something new. You get in touch with your customers immediately after their missed demo, and that gives you a success rate of 25%.
By examining these data insights in your CRM, you can easily find the trend and determine that your users are more likely to re-up their purchase if you follow up with them faster. You can use monday.com’s CRM template to help:
3. Turn website data into strategies for growth
What is your website trying to tell you?
Let’s say you’re reviewing your funnel analytics and noticed that your pricing page conversion rates have plummeted.
You run a heat map on the page. Nothing seems to be amiss, except people are bouncing far more frequently than normal.
Then you review traffic sources to the page, and notice that the drop in conversion rate seems to coincide with a particular top-of-funnel blog article moving from page 2 to page 1 for a high-volume search term.
Boom, there’s your explanation: you’re getting more low-intent visitors. Now, the data driven marketing strategy here would either be to change the primary CTA on that blog article to something more top of funnel (like a product or feature page), or you could add an exit-intent popup with the message “Have any questions? Book a chat with one of our team!”
4. Turn marketing data into strategies for growth
Take a look at the data you can gather from your marketing campaigns.
Let’s say that you believe that your primary buyer persona will respond well to video advertising.
You roll out an aggressive video campaign through social media and YouTube ads. Then, at the same time, you’re also running search text ads through Google Ads.
It turns out that your video marketing plan was a total bust, bringing in a negligible number of clicks and an even smaller number of conversions. But the search ads did wonders for you.
This valuable data is now telling you that by and large, your audience is more responsive to search ads than they are to video. Going forward, you’ll be able to increase your ad spend on Google and either decrease or eliminate the video advertising all together.
By basing your next marketing campaign on data, you take all the guesswork out of the equation.
Numbers don’t lie.
And in the marketing world (where everything changes every 5 minutes or so), that’s a comforting fact.
To get the most from your data, consider using one of monday.com’s templates to visualize and keep track. For marketing professionals, we recommend the CRM template and the campaign tracking template.