Big data has ushered in the era of data driven marketing. Massive volumes of data, streaming in at lightening speeds from a variety of channels, is rich with raw customer information containing valuable insights marketers can use to create more personalized, relevant and effective campaigns.
McKinsey studies show that companies that factor data insights heavily into marketing and sales decisions can boost their marketing return on investment (MROI) by 15 to 20 percent. However, the challenge for marketers is that these insights are hidden deep within the data, which is where big data analytics tools come in.
Like all tools, big data analytics only works when it’s used correctly. To that end, here are 6 big data tips marketers can use to make their data driven marketing strategies more effective.
1. Look beyond collection and analysis
With so much data available today, it’s easy for marketers to fall into the revolving door habit of collecting and analyzing. To avoid falling into this trap, marketers need to first ask themselves one important question, “How will having all of this customer data impact future marketing strategies and initiatives?” From the beginning marketers need to understand that it isn’t just about data. It’s about the insights gained from the data that can be used to make better marketing decisions. In order to generate these insights, marketers must first have a clear picture of what they are looking for and make sure that they are asking the right questions of the data to begin with. In short, they need to understand how and where to make changes in their marketing campaigns as a result of the insights gained.
2. Break down the silos
Customer data is often partitioned off in “silos” that limit the ability to access and share data between departments such as marketing and sales. Companies that adopt big data strategies need to understand how all of this trapped data fits together, and that means breaking the silos down. Analytics platforms allow organizations to integrate customer data silos into a single data set, delivering a unique holistic view of customer interactions, preferences and purchases. The insights gained through the analysis of integrated customer data can then be used to drive advanced segmentation and more relevant and targeted campaigns to better engage and motivate consumers.
3. Conduct virtual marketing campaigns
Traditional marketing campaigns of the past were primarily the product of talent, creativity, and educated guesses based on in-market testing. While there is still no substitution for creativity and talent in today’s marketing world, adding big data insights to the mix eliminates much of the guesswork. Utilizing cost-effective and risk free big data simulations, marketers can test, refine and retest their ideas in a virtual marketplace, long before they ever see the light of day in the real world. When the campaign has been sufficiently fine-tuned and launched, post-marketing analytics can be employed to determine its overall effectiveness.
4. Capitalize on competitor weaknesses
Big data gives marketers powerful insights into what consumers really want and need. And companies that can fulfill those wants and needs better, faster, and more economically than a rival company can gain a competitive edge. To accomplish this feat, marketers first need to understand their own company’s strengths and weaknesses in the area of customer fulfillment inside and out. Then, to fully capitalize on the power of big data, they need to research in order to gain a deeper understanding of the competition’s capabilities and weaknesses as well.
Armed with this information, marketers can connect the dots and find the gaps between what customers want and what the competition offers. Then they can strategize new marketing campaigns that exploit competitor weaknesses.
5. Get C-level buy-in
In order to carry out meaningful data driven campaigns, marketers need to make sure that all C-level leaders support them in their big data initiatives. The best way to gain C-suite support is to look at data from their point of view. Showing leaders how data driven marketing programs can support their own individual programs and drive the business goals that matter most to them should get them on board with big data.
6. Choose your big data vendor wisely
Successful big data marketing strategies are all about selecting the right tools for the right job. Marketers will need to do their homework to make sure they select vendors who offer high-quality tools and are fully committed to helping them achieve their data driven marketing goals. It’s important not to limit yourself to just one or two technologies when selecting a vendor since not every problem can be solved the same way, and various technologies work better on some workloads over others. Look carefully at the type of data you are generating, storing and analyzing. How much is it total, how much does it change per day and where is it located? Also look for a vendor that can avoid complicated data migration and synchronization requirements where possible.
Learn how Insightera, a B2B targeting platform, was able to accelerate its time to value with big data.