No digital marketing strategy is complete without big data analytics. Learn about the five ways analyzing data can best support your marketing strategy.
You can no longer afford to make marketing decisions based only on a hypothesis and past experience. Today’s influential marketing decisions are now determined by big data and analytics. With past data and predictive analytics, businesses can now produce a better return on investment (ROI) while also providing insights that can lead to effective business strategies and decisions within an organization. These changes can be enacted not just in the marketing department but across teams.
So, how exactly can big data analysis support your digital marketing plan? Read on for the answer!
What exactly is big data? According to InfoWorld, big data is characterized by the three Vs:
Data analysis gives meaning to the data collected. Without analytics, which involves examining the data to discover patterns, correlations, insights, and trends, the data is just a bunch of ones and zeros with limited business use. By applying analytics to big data, companies can see benefits such as improved customer service, greater efficiency, increased sales, and an overall boost in competitiveness. Data analytics involves examining data sets to gain insights or draw conclusions about what they contain, such as predictions about future activity and trends.
By analyzing information stored in data lakes using big data analysis tools, organizations can make better-informed business decisions such as when and where to run a marketing campaign or introduce a new product or service. Analytics can refer to basic business intelligence applications or more advanced, predictive analytics such as those used by scientific organizations. Through data management and technologies like machine learning, organizations can unlock enormous potential. Among the most advanced analytics is data mining, where analysts evaluate large data sets to identify relationships, patterns, and trends. Analysts are often reliant on open source data, which are large datasets that are available to you, me, anyone with an internet connection.
Data analytics can include exploratory data analysis (to identify patterns and relationships in data) and confirmatory data analysis (applying statistical techniques to find out whether an assumption about a particular data set is true. Another distinction is quantitative data analysis (or analysis of numerical data that has quantifiable variables that can be compared statistically), which contrasts qualitative data analysis (which focuses on non-numerical data such as video, images, and text).
You probably know that having accurate data is necessary for making effective marketing decisions. However, it may come as a surprise that having too much data an actually harm your marketing strategy if not utilized correctly. Forbes recommends starting with your key performance indicators (KPIs) and work backwards. For those unfamiliar with the concept, KPIs represent measurable values that give an indication of a campaign’s performance. Some examples of KPIs for marketing initiatives include visitors to the site, landing page visitors, email collections, registrations, and click-to-calls, among others. Whatever the goal you made, your KPIs should be helping to support the objective.
The best part of having data is being able to know who you should be targeting in your marketing campaigns and who exactly you are talking to. By tracking the type of visitors who come to your site, you can build personas around those who engage. Then, you can target other people similar to your current customer base. Data can be used to determine what things your audience interacts with on your site and in your campaigns such as ads and email marketing. One pro tip: when deciding on your target audience, you need to determine their intent. This approach also relates back to having set KPIs to make content decisions (like blog posts) that are fitting for your audience. One example of an important data set to take into account is your traffic sources from devices. After all, different demographics use different methods of accessing online marketing information, so having the correct channels to reach your audience can make a huge difference in your digital marketing campaigns. In fact, in 2018, 58 percent of site visits were from mobile devices. Therefore, knowing which devices are most fitting for your audience can help you optimize your content to reach them more efficiently.
Data can reveal what your audience is searching when looking for your product or service. As a result, it can help you target those keywords and drive traffic to your channels. With the amounts of data provided by the Google AdWords Keyword Tool can help you determine your potential keywords. This tool can also be used to see which keywords your competitors are targeting while also determining which ones are worth bidding against and which ones are missing. Using these keywords in more than just ad targeting can drive your business forward by inserting them into social media marketing, content marketing on the website, a call to action, and other digital entities to fully handle your SEO initiatives. In addition to bidding on keywords, monitor and analyze the results continuously so you can optimize your strategy.
Past data can be used to predict future outcomes of your campaigns. By studying the performance of your past campaigns and ad-targeting efforts, you can pinpoint what has worked and what may have not been your best methods. For instance, if your Facebook ads are out-performing your Google ads, it could be a sign that you should allocate your budget more toward Facebook. Further, you can optimize toward different demographics within your audience. You can also target to different personas if you optimize a variety of products or services offered.
Stakeholders want to be aware that their marketing spend is working. With digital marketing, you can use data to show exactly how the spend is being utilized and the effect it is having on profit. In a data set, every actionable item, such as a form or a click-to-call that you are driving traffic toward needs to be accounted for. To know which channel is driving the most traffic, you can add tracking parameters to URLs to relocate digital spend. When phone numbers are listed on the site, make sure you have some way to track those interactions through customer service or a system. The equation for determining digital marketing ROI is: (Your Total Revenue Attributed to Digital – Your Total Cost of Digital Marketing)/(Your Total Cost of Digital Marketing). Without doing these essential things with your data, you can be collecting information for no reason at all. When used correctly and efficiently, data can drive your marketing efforts forward quickly.
At the end of the day, customer analysis and customer data analytics can better guide your business goals, product development, and marketing strategy to engage and retain customers today and tomorrow — and capture their loyalty for the long term.
Use insights from data captured in real time to create value for your customers and enjoy a stronger ROI. It is more important than ever before to make decisions that are grounded in facts and connected to revenue. Effective use of data and analytics can help marketers stay anchored to their customers’ changing reality and focused on their moments of truth.
At Stefanini, we are focused on strategy, data science, media, and advertising, using data intelligence to boost business, connect people, and create experiences. Using our expertise, best practices, and statistical techniques, we provide actionable business insights based on data mining and predictive models. We provide these insights through research, analytics, and social insights.
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