Are You a Data Driven Marketer?
Are you a data-driven marketer? Yes? No? No idea? Well, it’s a love-hate relationship. While it is easy to proclaim that you are a data-driven marketer and to admit that data is your new master. In reality, data crunching doesn’t come naturally to marketers. Traditionally, data crunching was the realm of analysts in companies and marketers were the smart, innovative folks who launched and managed awe-inspiring marketing campaigns.
It was a tough transition for me as a digital marketer to start crunching data. But I must admit, while the transitional journey was painful, once I started seeing the gains, I became a big fan of marketing data. Unlike data scientists, I don’t live and breathe data but then I ensure all marketing decisions are based on data and less on hunch.
More than 2/3 of marketers admit that they will start making data-driven decisions within two years. But, how much data-driven are you? The reality about data is that its relationship with marketers and data is of a love-hate one.
The Fear is Real (But Don’t Worry!)
As a marketer, you can’t live with it, and you definitely can’t live without it. While on one hand, data can make you a more successful marketer, on the other hand, it can give you a headache and paralyzes your mind. This is where the love-hate comes from. Not only that, many marketers may be fearful of data. According to this report, 91% of marketers are worried about driving ROI from big data and 70% are concerned about making sense of all this data.
That’s not an encouraging sign. In fact, it says that most marketers still do not trust data the way they need to. It’s true that data comes with its own set of challenges. But if you want to be successful, you have to accept it as a necessary evil. And, once you conquer this fear you can empower yourself like never before. If you want to send the right message to the right audience at the right time, you have to become a data-driven marketer.
The Job Isn’t Easy
If you want to be a data-driven marketer, you have to adopt a new mind-set. You have to realign your goals with the goals of your organization and make the most of the tools at your disposal. Because, it’s time for data, big data. Big data is nothing but storage, accumulation and manipulation of large data sets. Their complexity renders traditional methods of sifting through data useless.
And, there is nothing you can do about it. As technology is evolving, data will keep on exploding. The bigger corporations have developed processes to synthesize this data already. In a couple of years big data will become norm and dominate the entire world. 64% of marketers strongly agree that data is the key to success while 49% think their biggest challenge is incorporating data in their strategies.
New tools have already started emerging. These will help you handle big data much more efficiently. The amount of information packed in these data clusters is simply breath-taking. Imagine if you could know the heart-rate while watching TV. Now, imagine correlating that to create an advertising campaign. Hence, the actual job is to harness this data and using it to your advantage.
Right Thing in the Right Place
As a data-driven marketer you have to put the right tools in the right place to collect the right data. For marketers whose analytics live in silos, it becomes difficult to compare data across channels. For example, your email marketing analytics and social media marketing analytics are in two places. You do not have your data integrated with your Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system either. You have to improve this and keep everything connected if you want to exploit the power of data.
A data-driven marketer should have data-driven goals. If you want your business to succeed in this day and age, you and your team need to establish this. You should not limit yourself to tracking and reporting. Push yourself to achieve specific marketing targets. It is the only way you can see your strategies succeed. Use data and manipulate it to succeed. After all, you have all the data you need at your disposal. All you need to do is use it to your advantage.
Measure the Unmeasurable
A true data-driven marketer will always find ways to measure the unmeasurable. It’s unconventional, but you should take it up as a challenge anyway. Take for example, branding. Can you measure it? Probably not. But you can use analytical tools to figure out how to measure it. You can combine different data collected from different channels, and effectively combine it to come up with something unique. There is no joy greater than figuring out a way to analyze the unmeasurable.
Incorporate Data in Content
Don’t limit the power of data. 92% companies use databases to store data. But how many actually use that data for good? Use that data to improve your marketing content. You can effectively create better blog posts, ebooks, white pages, etc. In fact, you will be surprised to see how much of an improvement it will bring about. Not only that, this will help you go a long way.
You will be creating high-quality content that will be credible as well as interesting. So, try to correlate as many points as possible. It will help you create relevant content that your leads will like.
It is a Mind-Set: Take Baby Steps towards Data
It’s all in your mind. You can become a data-driven marketer if you set your mind to it. As a matter of fact, unconsciously, you are already a data-driven marketer. Take advantage of all the underutilized data lying around you and turn a blind eye towards your fear of data (if you have any!).
One analytics tool which every marketer uses is Google Analytics. Start analyzing the data Google Analytics gives you, go into details, explore it in detail and you will be surprised by what all can be achieved from a free analytics tool like Google Analytics. Next, start looking at the CRM and marketing automation tool dashboards, these powerful dashboards will give you a complete glimpse of your Sales and Marketing processes.
So what are you waiting for? Go out into that digital landscape with your guns blazing!