Data-driven marketing refers to the utilization of market research, statistic, surveys, and public data in order to inform and develop a successful digital marketing strategy. Data can provide you with insights regarding trends currently dominating the marketplace, as well as with opportunities to take advantage of in the future. With it, you can determine individual market segments and reach a better understanding of your target audience with specific parameters including age, sex, location, income, education, browsing and consumption habits, shopping preferences, etc.
Data-driven strategies also take into consideration the existing analytics to determine the exact type of content and marketing tactics that best resonate with your audience. You can use metrics such as top referrers and your most-viewed pages to gauge the popularity of your content and use this information to further improve upon your content creation efforts.
Without actionable data, you’re relying solely on assumptions instead of hard facts necessary to create insightful and valuable content and establish the proper distribution strategies. Here are five steps for creating and deploying a data-driven marketing strategy.
Determine your goals
You can collect all the data in the world, but all that data is pretty much useless unless you have a clearly defined marketing goal. Your marketing goals will determine the type of data you need, metrics to look out for and help you adequately establish your marketing strategy. Tracking data is one thing, but it’s important that you use it selectively, or else you risk sidetracking your goals, developing inefficient strategies and ultimately, hurting your bottom line.
Gather your data
Data can be gathered from a number of different sources, whether its customer browsing behavior, page analytics, social media interactions, etc. Google Analytics is a good start, but not the only information-pool offered by the tech giant, nor is it the only source of data available online. You can gather data using:
- Google consumer barometer
- Google display benchmarks
- Google trends
- Think with Google
- Facebook audience insights
- Facebook IQ
- YouTube trending and so on…
You can also use competitive analysis to see what type of content they’re promoting and which media channels they’re using or perform keyword research to determine core keywords and later turn them into long-tail keywords to adequately describe your products and services.
Evaluate your data and take data-driven actions
Having terabytes-worth of data means nothing unless that data can be turned into actionable insights. This is why it’s so important to evaluate your data and plan your actions in accordance with your marketing goals. Browsing behavior data can help you find out exactly when, where and why your customers are clicking our and dropping their carts.
Content analysis data can help you single out the top-performing content and help you increase engagement by providing your audience with a more tailored experience. Some of the most reputable digital agencies in the world rely on data evaluation and data-driven actions to remove existing and anticipate future content obstacles in order to create the best possible user experience.
Identify your metrics
Knowing what your goals are and what data you need to accomplish them will tell you exactly which metric to follow. You can measure traffic through different channels and sources, including direct visitors, refers, organic and search or even social media visitors. The number of new visitors will tell you how good your targeting is, while return visitors describe the efficiency of both your retargeting efforts, but also the quality of the user experience you provide. You can also measure the number of interactions per individual visit, as well as the time spent on site. All these metrics should be monitored in accordance with the data you’re using and the goals you’re trying to accomplish.
Test, tweak, rinse and repeat
Effective digital marketing relies heavily on extensive testing and tweaking. Do you think a specific strategy will be successful in accomplishing your goal? Then don’t think about it and simply test it out. What’s truly beautiful about digital marketing is that every action can be analyzed and measured, allowing you to single out underperforming areas and tweak them to generate better results.
What most marketers fail to realize is that some strategies simply won’t yield positive results, no matter how many times you tweak them. What separates novice marketers from seasoned professionals is knowing which strategies should be abandoned and which need to be pushed forward no matter what.
Accompanying users along their purchasing journeys requires a relevant strategic decision based on hard facts and data. This is the only way you can turn product and service discovery into brand loyalty. A data-driven approach to digital marketing is the only way to develop a successful marketing strategy and determine which strategies require tweaking and which need to be abandoned altogether.