Peruse any article on Google about marketers who are making the most of their data and the mainstream “laggards,” who serve as a stark contrast and cautionary tale, and you’ll soon see why it pays to pursue better data-driven campaign performance. According to Think With Google and Econsultancy, the best marketing leaders are:
- 3 times more likely to make being data-driven a priority
- 7 times more likely to improve targeting, personalization and budget spend through increased automation
- 4 times more likely to exceed business goals and increase market share and revenue
How do you ensure you and your team are on course to collide with success instead of being labeled a laggard? You set goals and take steps. To help you get started, we’ve gathered three steps you can begin implementing, today.
Step 1: Fully Automate Your Approach to Campaign Personalization
In a recent study of marketers who exceed revenue goals, it was found that 83 percent of these go-getters use personalization. The same study found that businesses that use data-driven personalization are able to deliver up to eight times the ROI on their marketing spend. That’s a pretty decent return. Even if the size of your database is comparable to the population of Canada, it is possible to provide each and every person in your database with a uniquely personal experience. More importantly, you won’t need to hire a marketing team equal in size to Canada’s population. How is this possible? One word: automation.
Assuming you already have a marketing automation platform (MAP) like Eloqua, Marketo or Hubspot, the next tool your stack needs to pull this off is a content automation tool (CAT). These tireless workhorses integrate with your MAP and empower you to deliver data-driven campaigns on demand by fully automating the process of personalizing campaigns. A CAT makes campaign personalization scalable by dynamically pulling relevant content from connected sources (CRM, data warehouse, etc.) throughout your organization, and then matching it with the appropriate data attributes and campaign channels before sending it. Your CAT can pull and send campaigns automatically based on triggers, or allow your team to say when campaigns are good to go.
Step 2: Rethink Your Marketing Segments
It’s tempting to profile a selection of top customers when creating your marketing segments, declare it your sweet spot, and call it a day, but this is laggard behavior. Like email addresses, people’s preferences, wants and needs change with alarming frequency. If your campaign results have become a little stale, take a good hard look at your segments and ask yourself:
- Are there micro-segments within larger segments you should be addressing?
- Do your segments account for all the different people and roles involved in decision-making?
- Are you reaching every possible contact in your Total Addressable Market (TAM)?
In addition to A/B testing your campaigns on a regular basis, it’s good to make a habit of continually testing new variations on your marketing segments. Begin by choosing a few micro-segments from your larger pool. Next, address their specific needs through personalized content (see step one). Targeting and monitoring the campaign performance of your new micro-segments will produce fresh insights into different types of customer behavior. Armed with that knowledge, you will be on course to continuously improve your campaign performance with each send.
Finally, as you continue to improve your segments and lists, be sure to compare them with your TAM. Doing so will allow you to know for certain whether or not you are reaching every possible contact within your TAM. Your customer data platform (CDP) should be able to help you do this. A good CDP is integrated with top data providers. This equips you with the ability to see every contact in your TAM and compare your database to the universe of customers you could and should be reaching.
Step 3: Demand Your Data Clean Up Its Act
According to research, “54 percent of companies say their biggest challenge to data-driven marketing success is a lack of data quality and completeness.” What’s crazy about this remarkably high number is that improving the quality of your data is not only an easy fix, it’s also an economical one in many ways. Improving data quality has both tangible and intangible benefits. Among the tangible are a reduction in bounce-backs, an improved sender score and reputation, and the assurance that your campaign dollars are optimized because you are reaching the right people with the right content. As for the intangible effects of better data in campaign performance, there is a direct correlation between correctly personalized content and increased brand loyalty and lifetime values in customers.
If you would like to join the 46 percent of marketing gurus, who have overcome the challenge of poor data quality, you will need to add a CDP to your stack. An invaluable tool, your CDP should be able to integrate with all your other martech and monitor the data quality of connected data sources throughout your enterprise. A good CDP also centralizes your access to data via a dashboard and enables you to quickly and easily monitor and address incoming and outgoing data quality. In short, these indispensable tools give you 20/20 data visibility and 100 percent data accountability. Connecting one to your stack enables you to confidently send campaigns knowing your data is being kept perpetually clean, complete, enriched and campaign-ready.