Why the Evolution of Marketing demands a Data-Driven approach
Of all disciplines in business, Marketing has to be amongst those which have evolved the most. An all-encompassing behemoth which ultimately culminates in delivering 'what the customer wants' (it's what keeps agencies like us on our toes and constantly striving for 'better'). An evolution which, in the case of 'survival of the fittest' means brands and businesses cannot afford to be left behind - the case for a Data-Driven Digital approach is strong.
The Evolution of Marketing:
This evolution has happened in line with (and has been a driving force behind) cultural, social, industrial and technological advances: from the mass targeting (if you can call it that) of public billboards, press advertising and postal direct mail of the 1960s; through the hybrid 1980s where direct marketing was used alongside newly developed computer processing to target somewhat specific segments of the population through direct mail and the invention of 'telemarketing'; into the mid-1990s where email marketing started to take-off and become the initial communication method for brands everywhere; and then the groundbreaking moment that smartphones hit the mainstream in 2007 (thanks Apple!), where device usage became part and parcel of everyday life, and we all became infinitely more connected (and digitally dependent) than ever before (we also became the world's biggest source of data and, ultimately, drove the growth in the world's biggest commodity since crude oil, but that's another story).
This digital evolution has now become such an integral part of everyday life globally. To give an example, there were a mind-blowing 4.39 billion internet users in 2019, an increase of 366 million (9%) versus January 2018, many of whom now provide a lucrative (and highly targetable) marketing opportunity. Gone are the days where brands have to guess and iterate to find out 'what people want'. Today, marketing is fuelled by customer information and driven by data-backed research which can easily and non-invasively be captured at every single step of the customer journey, through the marketing and sales funnels, and beyond into their post-sale experience.
In 2020, and beyond, marketing needs to be data-driven to be effective. This plethora of information goes beyond a user's socio-demographic positioning and can now uncover their needs, behaviours and challenges (often referred to as pain-points), enabling marketers to tailor products, services, brand and messaging to maximum effectiveness. Measuring this impact across everything from internet browsing behaviours, what ads they've interacted with, which CTA caused them to move along their sales journey, how they've interacted with the brand on social media, how long they watched that product explainer video for, which emails they opened, what their purchasing behaviour is and many many other metrics can all help to paint a three dimensional picture of the customer and their interaction with your brand (in some advanced cases, marketers are trying to digitise and quantify more qualitative offline marketing results to assist in building a fuller picture).
This demonstrates just how important it is to be gathering and collecting this sort of data to create strong foundations for strategic marketing effectiveness.
The Problem with Data-Driven Marketing:
Most business leaders talk-the-talk when it comes to being a digital, data-first marketing operation, but very few really understand what it takes to implement this holistically, and even fewer know how to use this to drive business growth. Just because you use digital channels, and log in to Google Analytics from time-to-time, does not mean you're practicing true data-driven marketing.
Business leaders and Marketing Teams often experience the same issues which can be summarised as 3 key problems:
- It is not easy to measure the performance of their website or digital marketing
- It’s not clear what results they should be getting
- It’s not simple to see if they are getting ROI or hitting defined KPI results.
How can marketing managers and business leaders simply and efficiently collate and present this data in a way that is meaningful, accessible and which empowers this business decision making?
After all, decision making without data is just guess work; and data without context is just numbers. Particularly when looking at your digital marketing strategy.
Taking this data and using it to make adjustments and optimisations enables you to grow your business by empowering brands to:
- Constantly enhance the customer experience
- Personalise content & campaigns
- Optimise and integrate multiple channels
- Choose the right channels and adapt collateral accordingly
- Increase customer engagement
- Improve quality and quantity of relevant content from your channels
- Hone in on your audience accurately and efficiently
- Find and talk to different customer sub-groups (existing, loyal, advocates...)
- Create and optimise marketing automation
- Keep your ego in check - whittle out weaknesses in your marketing from messaging to product features
- Take less-risky decisions
- Monitor ROI and stop wasting budget where it's not delivering results
- Benchmark against competitors
- Check market sentiment and steer conversations
- And much more...
All of this enables brands to tell data-driven stories, and ensure content and campaigns cut through the noise and talk to genuine customer demands, talk to the right customers, in the right time, at the right place, on the right channel, through the right medium... and so forth, strategically and with genuine impact. Well, that's the desire - but, a problem still remains: data without context is just numbers.
The Solutions to deliver true Data-Driven Marketing:
Most marketing managers, CMOs, and business leaders do not have the time to deep-dive into every source and platform to interrogate the myriad of available data. Information overload leaves people overwhelmed and under-informed, and whilst there are a range of digital reports available to marketers out there, they're often regurgitations from existing Analytics platforms, which offer little-to-no actionable insight (and you know there's a problem when, more-often-than-not, these reports need another report just to explain them!).
The solution is to make the data:
- Accessible: Source, aggregate, collate and combine multiple data sources, visualised beautifully, making it simple to understand.
- Relevant: Ensuring only relevant information is presented, and in a manner which makes sense.
- Meaningful: Aligning the data to key business objectives, within context, allowing it to tell the story.
- Empowering: Contextualising the data relevant to the business, delivering insights which facilitate meaningful change.
It's our mission at Wonderful to empower our clients with the tools, data and insight they need to make measurable, lasting, change.
Which is why we developed our own proprietary business intelligence tool: OmniBI.
“OmniBI turns data into insight, enabling us to focus on doing the things that will have the most impact on driving growth through your digital marketing”
OmniBI is the simple and intuitive solution that enables you to see exactly how your website and digital marketing is performing. This unique data and insight tool enables businesses to map out their future growth, set KPI’s and targets and demonstrate ROI, giving marketers the power to understand their data and watch their business grow. First of all, OmniBI brings all of a brand's data into one dashboard - Facebook, Google Analytics, MailChimp, Hubspot, Adwords data and more all in one place presented in a consistent format. Secondly, we only show what users need to see - curating the metrics which matter to their end goals and filtering out the noise - helping clients to stay informed at a glance.
Of course, this is still raw data and as aforementioned, data without context or interpretation is just numbers. So we’ve included the ability to add insights and actions to the charts through a collaborative in-built messaging system - effectively bringing the numbers to life and empowering businesses to facilitate change. From there, clients can set well-informed targets and track how well their channels are performing. OmniBI waves goodbye to monthly reports and paves the way for mobile friendly, instant access, intelligent insight.
OmniBI’s ability to demonstrate the effectiveness of marketing activities through a range of genuinely valuable metrics aligned to specific KPIs, goals and objectives means that CMOs and marketing managers can demonstrate genuine ROI on their data-driven marketing strategy. Click for Click. Pound for Pound.
Your opportunity to evolve:
Advanced data analytics and truly actionable business insight is at your fingertips. To find out more about exactly how OmniBI answers the issues and eliminates the problems with actioning data-driven marketing for your business, read more here or Book A Demo today.
[author] [author_image timthumb='on']https://www.bewonderful.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/James-Gray-Profile-HeadshotSq.png[/author_image] [author_info]Author: James Gray, Head of Digital: Experienced marketeer with a passion for all things digital. He nerds-out about data, using it to power the strategic thinking driving our online and offline campaigns.[/author_info] [/author]