March 15, 2022
11 mins read
What Really Matters in Data-Driven Marketing
11 mins left
Today, customer data is more accessible to marketers than ever before. It’s practically — and sometimes, literally — at their fingertips, and the marketers who know how to leverage these data-driven insights will drive the best results.
And it isn’t a secret. 87% of marketers say that data is the most underused asset at their companies, and that’s a huge miss. With 40% of companies looking to raise their data-driven marketing budgets in the near future, you could almost call data-driven marketing the new black. Almost. The truth is that data-driven marketing isn’t the new black… it’s the OG. Because data-driven marketing, like black, is always en vogue. And revenue orgs know this. Companies that use data-driven strategies drive 5-8x more ROI than businesses that don’t, which is exactly why you don’t bring hunches to a data fight.
With the right data-driven strategy, marketers can use the data they’ve acquired through customer interactions (and a little help from third-party insights) to create a personalized experience that delivers the highest possible ROI.
Just because it’s the way forward doesn’t mean that data-driven marketing is without its challenges. It has become a crucial part of the B2B market, and 64% of marketing executives strongly believe that data-driven marketing is crucial to the success of their business.
Don’t worry, I’m not going to leave you hanging. I’ve put together a list of my most influential tactics for planning your data-driven marketing strategy.
With regulations like GDPR and California Consumer Privacy Act, marketers’ abilities to capture and use third-party data have seen their fair share of restrictions. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg: Google has decided to ban third-party cookies by 2023 and companies like Firefox, Safari, and Bing are following suit.
So what does this mean for marketers? It’s time to turn to first-party data. Yeah, all that data you capture from your website, landing pages, etc. First-party data will be worth its weight in gold — or something close to it as far as we’re concerned — and increasingly more valuable as third-party data continues to sputter out. That’s why it’s necessary for you to find a vendor who offers true third-party data from an authentic, verified, and reliable source while simultaneously focusing on strengthening your first-party data game and expanding your database.
A Google survey found that the customer journey has between 20 to 500 touchpoints that shift based on the complexity of the purchase, and the pandemic has fractured the customer journey into even more steps.
With so much of the world using smartphones these days, the internet has become a quick and easy tool. It’s literally at our fingertips. This easy access to the internet means that customers can do their own research and with that easy access to information, their expectations have become higher. Because of this, it’s essential that your data-driven approach unifies diverse channels and creates a cohesive brand experience; otherwise, consumers won’t be impressed.
It is absolutely necessary that you (1) align your marketing channels so that they’re all gunning for the same goal and (2) focus on each touchpoint. With multiple brand interactions happening throughout each stage of the customer journey, it is super important that you isolate marketing programs that truly move the needle, impact revenue, and invest heavily in them.
As the buyer journey continues to add touchpoints, customers are coming to expect highly-personalized marketing that will grab their attention. Research states 80% of customers often buy products or opt for services from a brand that provides personalized experiences, which is why it’s so important that marketers have a unified data-driven approach across all of their channels. That creates a smooth, hassle-free brand experience.
In 2022, you can’t rely on brand loyalty alone. Marketers are expected to deliver a seamless experience to every one of their customers across all channels; otherwise, prospects and clients are only a click or call away from choosing a competitor. In fact, a survey by PWC found that 32% of customers quit doing business with their favorite brands because their experiences with those brands were subpar. Yikes!
One of the experiences that can make or break your brand loyalty is the call-in experience. No one wants to be bounced around a call center or helpline, so connecting the customer with the person who can solve their issues and help them with their queries right out the gate will absolutely help put you ahead of the competition for their business. And it should go without saying that making anyone wait an eternity to connect with someone who can help them out might have an adverse effect. Best case scenario: you piss them off most likely scenario, though? You could lose them forever. Believe it or not, I’m not exaggerating. 74% of customers disconnect a call within 10 minutes of waiting. (And I’m one of them!)
With third-party data restrictions looming over the not-so-distant horizon, marketers are redirecting to first-party data sources. If you’re one of them, you aren’t alone. A recent survey shows that 88% of marketers are planning to increase first-party data usage in preparation for 2023’s cookieless world.
If you aren’t sure where to start, take a look at this list of some of the most valuable sources of first-party insights that data-driven marketers can leverage in 2022.
CRM platforms gather customer interactions into a centralized location across all channels. And they can offer powerful insights — just think about Salesforce! With data stacked in the CRM, you can split audiences based on all of their past interactions with your brand and even take things a step further to customize their experiences so that they align with both their journey and buying intent.
Web analytics tools like Adobe and Google Analytics glean customers’ behavioral and intent data based on their interactions on your website. With the help of this information, you can personalize experiences based on the pages a customer has visited and their completed online goals.
This data does more than help you understand customers’ online interactions, it also helps you learn how customers engage over the phone. This can be critical in determining whether or not the caller was a sales lead, their buying intent, their urgency, whether or not the caller is converted into a customer, etc. When you don’t know what happened on all of your (or your teammates’) calls, you end up with blind spots. By collecting and paying attention to this data, however, you can tailor your customer journey and individual experiences based on the inputs you received over multiple conversations from a specific buyer or from multiple buyers who had similar needs, concerns, and goals. You can also integrate analytics and call tracking data with web analytics platforms (like Adobe and Google Analytics), CRMs, and other tools from your martech stack for best results.
Marketers depend on AI and marketing automation to enhance personalization efforts. They can leverage AI for everything from optimizing ad bidding to targeting audiences, personalizing web experiences, and capturing customer behavior insights. It’s a powerful tool. AI even filters all the data obtained from various methods to gain valuable, actionable insights so that you don’t have to go through it manually. Together with marketing automation, AI can help you extract a lot of high-quality data from the database. With this data, you can target high-potential clients who show high buying intent, increase sales conversion, and boost ROI on your campaigns.
This winning-marketing automation combo can also help you segment your clients which can help you adapt the best approach to drive customers toward a purchase.
You know how once you’ve Googled something enough times suddenly all of your ads are — for better or worse — targeted toward that thing? We all do, and when these ads are poorly targeted with irrelevant offers, they disrupt and annoy us (the intended buyer) and push us away. More than that, these spammy ads are a complete waste of ad spend, especially when blown on people who don’t even work at your target accounts.
To avoid these mistakes and ensure that you’re targeting only customers who display high intent, you should capture all your customer data and make sure to channel it in the right way. This way, you know that you’re targeting customers based on the touchpoints they’ve engaged with as they moved down-funnel. When you use all of your customer data, you end up with a 360-degree view of each customer — their intent, wants, goals — you can target them on a more personable level and avoid serving irrelevant ads.
By integrating website analytics data into your strategy, you can target individuals based on the content they’ve searched for and the pages they’ve visited. You can retarget a prospect who has shown interest in a product but didn’t convert with ads for that particular product. Or, if they’re already a customer, you can target them with ads for an upsell or exclude them from seeing ads to save on spending and to keep from spamming them with unnecessary ads.
Prospects engage with your website in different ways depending on their stage in your funnel. And each time a prospect visits your home or product pages, they should receive a personalized experience based on their past interactions and the requirements you now know (based on data!) they have.
If, for instance, a prospect’s browsing history shows that they’re in the market for a used Subaru, don’t serve them with ads for a new Toyota. It can be easy when you just look at the data to forget that behind all of those numbers and insights, you’re marketing to a person. Make sure that you’re offering custom recommendations that tackle their pain points and requirements because we all know when we’re being treated as just another number or a means for a salesperson to meet their quota.
Reaching out to prospects in their time of need with the right product or solution builds trust. Next time they are looking for a solution, your brand and the wonderful personalized experiences you provided are the first thing that comes to mind.
A personalized customer experience means smooth sailing for clients and prospects, which increases the likelihood that they’ll become advocates who could refer and recommend your product or solutions to their own network.
Marketing and sales teams tend to find themselves in hot water when revenue goals aren’t achieved. It’s a tale as old as time: the marketing team says they’re driving quality leads while the sales team says that if the leads were quality, they’d have been able to close more of them. As a marketer, I admit that I’m a bit biased, but there’s one thing that I think we can all agree on here: in order to improve cross-team collaboration, sales and marketing teams need to be aligned.
But alignment doesn’t just happen overnight. Businesses need to work hard to create or find a solution that helps sales and marketing teams get on the same page. That solution is data.
Marketers can use data to quantify the number of leads their campaigns generate and the quality of those leads so that they can see if the leads are actually reaching their standards. Then, marketing can share that data with sales to ensure both teams are chasing the same, high-quality leads with improved transparency and accountability. This helps marketing and sales teams to have a unified goal to drive strong collaboration, better conversion rate, and, ultimately, increase revenue.
If you’ve been worried that a data-driven marketing strategy is out of your reach because your company lacks the resources to build a complete data infrastructure, a data-driven marketing strategy isn’t out of your reach. Even with the different needs and niche specifics of every business, you can implement a marketing strategy with technology that will blow hunch-based marketing tactics out of the water.
With high-quality data and predictive models, you can better understand the customer requirements, offer better service, and improve customer retention.
For more on how you can launch independent self-operated campaigns that make the most out of your budget and lead to superior outcomes, then do we have a solution for you.
B2B Go-To-Market Suite, Demandbase
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