With constant improvements in technology, there are an increasing number of methods being made available that enable organisations to gather invaluable data about their customers. Whether it is primary data; asking those all important questions through a direct survey or sign up form, or whether the data is secondary; analysing online behaviour or tracking social media interactions, data driven marketing is becoming easier to do than ever before. Surprisingly though, a recent study conducted by Econsultancy and Adobe entitled ‘The Pursuit of Data-Driven Maturity’ has shown that only 1 in 4 companies are actually putting it into practice.
Put the technology in place
The first step in a data driven marketing strategy is to ensure you have the technology to be able to capture the information you need. The survey has shown that out of those companies questioned, only 19 per cent had the right technology and processes in place for this.
Sophisticated CMS platforms with online marketing tools, such as Kentico EMS, will track the digital footprints of your website visitors to see what they’re looking at on your site. This information, along with any primary data gathered through sign up forms and so on can then be channelled into user personas so that you can build up a picture of your potential customers and determine what they’re looking for. Once you’ve got that in place, it’s a case of personalising content to suit them in order to move them through the sales funnel.
Too much information
It can be daunting when you consider the sheer amount of data that is available to companies now and the way that this is only increasing with mobile and wearable technology learning all sorts of things about us. It’s important to focus initially on the data sources that are clear indicators of customer value to your organisation. Once you have these mapped out they can be added into your online marketing software and used with tools such as lead scoring, which enables you to identify your most valuable leads.
Once you have the analytics of your website traffic down to a tee, you can look to social media platforms for further insights on your audience. Facebook and Twitter are the go-to channels for customers to voice opinions on brands and products and organisations are using them to their advantage more and more. There are tools available which enable companies to track their social media engagements, such as Twitter Analytics and Facebook Insight. It’s completely normal for people to broadcast their whole lives on social media, so the data is there for the taking!
Be customer-centric, not business-centric
All of the data you gather will allow you to provide content that achieves customer goals first, which will in turn enable you to achieve business goals. It’s important to bear in mind that consumers now expect a personalised experience. Through the use of personas, customers are seen as individuals with unique needs and you can ensure that the content you deliver is relevant rather than generic.
With constant competition between companies to reach customers across multiple touchpoints and devices, it will be the brands that effectively use the increasing amount of data available to them who will speed ahead of the competition.