In order to create effective marketing strategies, you must understand both your company’s current sales and its future goals. Of course, there are many other factors to consider when building a marketing strategy as well, but a deep understanding of a company’s current position and where they want their marketing and sales to go in the future are certainly high priorities.
Ultimately, marketers help companies understand what lies ahead, and what strategies they need to implement to achieve future goals. These goals require tangible steps and strategies, which marketers create by building a data-driven marketing strategy. Data is a powerful tool for both digital marketers and companies, but data is only able to transform a company’s sales performance when the marketing strategies employ data-supported steps. In order to create effective data-driven marketing strategies, marketers must understand what data-driven marketing is and how data effectively advises their marketing strategies.
Data-driven marketing utilizes data to maximize the impact of marketing strategies on a company’s voice and sales. Marketers analyze customer data to understand a company’s current conversion rates and the impact of current marketing campaigns on sales. The marketers then use this data to create an informed, data-driven marketing campaign. This optimizes the company’s marketing efforts, since it makes decisions on proven customer behavior. These types of strategies remove the guesswork and assumptions about a company’s target audience by analyzing the tangible data about a company’s sales. Instead of relying on marketing trends and current studies about the company’s target demographic, data-driven marketing campaigns customize a company’s marketing strategy. This results in traceable, scalable progress and optimizes the company’s return on investment (ROI).
The most beneficial data-driven marketing strategies require careful research and planning, in order to fully optimize the available data and meet the company’s goals. To build the most effective data-driven marketing campaign, marketers must account for the company’s targeted buyer, the company’s goals, the marketing budget, and more. Marketers should consider the following elements when building an optimal data-driven marketing strategy.
A customer relationship management platform, or CRM platform is the platform with software that gathers customer data and manages how a business interacts with its customers. It is crucial for marketers to realize that CRM platforms help companies understand exactly where sales come from, how customers find their websites, and how often customers return to their site. A platform that provides data to companies is not necessarily performing the same functions as a CRM platform.
For example, Google analytics provides businesses with information about the traction on their posts and website within distinct time periods. However, the data from Google is not as detailed as the data from a CRM platform. For instance, say a customer goes to a company’s website one month and downloads information about their product or service but does not purchase their product, and then that same customer goes to the company’s website again the next month, and the month after that, but does not ever purchase the product. The data from Google would not inform the company that this traction is from the same person. Instead, the analytics would count each time that the customer went to the company’s website each month as a separate contact. This tells the company that there is traction on the site, but it does not provide the company with the critical insight about what is actually happening: a customer is repeatedly visiting their website and clearly interested in their product, but they are not purchasing from their company for months. This detailed data is crucial for marketers to have, since they could address this concern with a data-driven marketing campaign.
Since data-driven marketing campaigns seek to provide strategies that will optimize their client’s results, marketers must have comprehensive data. The importance of a CRM platform that provides marketers with detailed, thorough data cannot be overstated. One popular example of a CRM platform that you are likely familiar with is HubSpot. Among other use cases, HubSpot is a CRM platform that provides companies with detailed customer data. To return to the Google example, HubSpot would flag the contact as the same individual performing multiple activities over multiple months. This information would be much more beneficial to marketers. HubSpot also provides information about repeat customers and new customers, how new customers encounter the company, the company’s current sales performance, and the company’s ROI. All of this data creates a comprehensive picture of the business’s sales and marketing performance, which is vital in building a data-driven marketing strategy.
Part of creating a data-driven marketing strategy is understanding how modern buyers discover companies and purchase products. Traditionally, buyers spent much more time on the sales side interacting with salespeople, and marketing was only needed to raise additional awareness about businesses. However, modern buyers spend much more time on the marketing side, researching products and services before they consider purchasing. The modern customer changes how marketers must think about marketing, since they must ensure that the business appears as a competitive, valued option during a customer’s research process.
In order to establish the tangible goals for a data-driven marketing campaign, marketers must pull the available data and analyze how it influences current and future goals. Marketers must also establish which data is most relevant to the business’s marketing or sales goals. For instance, on your CRM platform, you can see follower counts, traffic conversions, and website impressions. All of these metrics are related to one another, but you might put more emphasis on one depending on the angle that you want to utilize in your marketing strategy.
Once relevant data has been collected, marketers now have to work with the business to establish goals. These will evolve as the data-driven marketing campaigns progress, but examples could include lead generation, increased conversion rates, or increased total sales. If a business wants to focus on improving conversion from a lead to a customer, then you might look at the data about website traffic. You might realize that you need to increase website traffic to improve conversions, and look for ways to improve traffic. This example illustrates how a company’s goals are clearly defined by data, and how in turn data-driven marketing informs the steps that marketers take to meet these goals.
After a careful collection and analysis of data and both the company and the marketers agree on the campaign’s current goals, it is time for the digital marketer’s skills to shine. This is when marketers develop data-driven strategies that will address the established goals. To continue the example of the goal of improving website traffic and conversion rates, the marketers might integrate transactional keywords, republish blog posts, and increase social media posts to drive organic traffic. In turn, this traffic should consist of quality leads and eventual customers for the company.
All marketing campaigns seek to maximize a company’s ROI for their marketing budget. Fortunately, data-driven marketing allows marketers to optimize their budgets by enabling them to make informed decisions. Creating the data-driven marketing strategies and working within the set budget always go hand-in-hand, since the budget informs the types of marketing materials that marketers can create.
For example, a new video campaign that connects with the company’s target audience is likely to drive traffic, but these advertising materials often require a significant budget. Marketers must reference the available data to decide which marketing strategies will be the most effective allocation of funds. If the budget does not support new video advertising materials, an optimal data-driven strategy will utilize the available resources to meet its goals. An example of a usually less costly alternative to video is using a pillar page, which is a long form piece of content that uses important SEO practices to direct traffic to the company’s page. The pillar page includes backlinks to previous blogs and ancillary content, and it can be a vital resource for generating website traffic. This resource uses data-driven practices by employing SEO keywords that attract the company’s target audience and maintain the goals of the data-driven marketing campaign. However, the pillar page optimizes existing content, making it align well with any marketing budget.
Since a key aspect of data-driven marketing is responding to data, the most effective campaigns use data to inform all steps of the marketing process. After the data-driven strategies are implemented, marketers must also review the data that is generated as these strategies play out. Marketers must ask themselves if the employed strategies are helping the business meet the agreed goals. At their core, data-driven marketing campaigns are marketers responding to data, so the strategies will evolve as new data is presented. This is where effective CRM platforms like HubSpot come in again, since marketers can address specific concerns and develop their strategies as the campaigns go on. For instance, CRM platforms allow marketers to view attribution reports, which tells businesses which sales are brought in by organic referrals, online traffic, or offline sources. Depending on the information about where sales are coming from, the data-driven marketing strategies might shift going forward.
At Knowmad, we understand that data is imperative to effective marketing campaigns. We have a proven track record of helping businesses optimize their website traffic and qualified leads with HubSpot. We believe in creating data-supported strategies that support your business and sales goals. If you are ready to optimize your marketing campaigns and use data-driven marketing strategies, contact us today.
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