Data driven marketing gives your customers more of what they want.

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It’s a strategy that can be implemented by virtually any business. Correct usage and implementation will increase customer loyalty, sales, referrals, and has the potential to create brand ambassadors. Data marketing hasn’t always been easy, but as marketing practices evolve, B2B marketers lead the charge for using big data to improve productivity and increase profitability.

Data driven marketing is a relatively new concept because the marketing landscape overall is evolving, but those who have begun to embrace it, have even seen an improvement in their ROI. But where to begin?

To start data marketing, in an extremely simple sense, you can use a spreadsheet to track all of your marketing qualified responses.

Beyond that, and if you want to really utilize your data points, you can deploy data driven marketing initiatives by using the tools that will collect that data for you. That’s right, we said it. We are 100% sure that you’ve heard of these: Google Analytics, Facebook Insights, Marketo, and Twitter Analytics, but do you know what they can do for you?

We lied before about the programs doing everything for you (sorry), because it’s just not enough to let these programs do all the heavy lifting—you must understand the data as well.

We’ve actually mentioned before how data has improved marketing, but how does data collection actually do marketing? Here is a list of 9 ways you can start using data in your next marketing campaign.

Let’s get to it, shall we?
#1 – Improve Facebook Advertising with Custom Audiences

Facebook is always a great place to start because they will hold your hand and walk you through their advertising system. Identify your audience, increase your reach, and so on.

If you have a decent marketing team you will already have most of this in place, but Custom audiences allows Facebook advertisers to target more people who look like your established customers, especially if you don’t have the resources to do so.

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This is exactly what you need to acquire higher quality leads when marketing your product, and that will prompt an increase in product adoption and sales. A custom audience uses several kinds of data points, either by email addresses, Facebook UIDs, phone numbers, app user IDs, Apple’s Advertising Identifier (IDFA), or Android’s advertising ID. More data equals more opportunities to acquire leads.

#2 – Create Content your Audience Wants and Needs

With the many changes that Google does each year to its algorithm, data driven marketing will allow you to keep up with those changes and improve your content ranking in their SERPs. Keyword research tools house search data that will help you determine what kind of phrases you should be including in your content, as well as what kind of topics you should be writing about.

Using search data when creating content doesn’t only help you in search rankings, but it helps you in creating better content that is targeted to your audience’s needs. If no one is searching for it, then no one is going to read it. If you can generate highly usable keywords, then you will likely drive that much more traffic to your site.

#3 – Track Coupon Redemption Rates

Retail marketers know very well that a key to a consumer’s heart is through a coupon—everyone loves a deal.

Consumers who receive customized coupons or offers have a higher tendency of spending more; this is basic marketing. This is why marketers rely heavily on data that captures past consumer behavior to drive their offer strategies.

Using this kind of data driven marketing can predict a consumers preference today, their actions tomorrow and influence their future buying behavior. In the past, tracking coupon redemption was almost as hard as finding a needle in a hay stack.

Now, retail marketers are able to measure the effectiveness of their coupons by tracking redemption rates due to the rich data trail that e-commerce has to offer.

In the case of Pretzel Crisps, they used their Facebook page to launch a $1.00 off coupon and it paid off because their fanbase nearly tripled. But it’s what they did next that really drove their sales.

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They released a “Buy One Get One Free” Coupon on their page but didn’t push it to their followers. Everyone found it anyways and their followers went from 14,000 to 29,000 and is now over 300,000. The data on the redemption rate on the first coupon was 87% and the second “hidden” coupon was 95%. Overall sales showed an increase of 93%.

#4 – Use Display Ads Over TV, Magazine, and Newspaper Ads

Display advertising, aka: banner ads, are graphical advertisements online that can appear next to content on web pages, IM applications, email, and many more.

Display advertising has a huge advantage over magazine, newspaper, and TV ads because of its demographic and behavioral targeting options. You also have the ability to effectively track the performance of your display ads using metrics such as impressions, clicks, and conversions, so you can prove your ROI.

Typically marketers will use an A/B test to determine which banners are working better and reaching their consumers. Basic tests will compare “random” information (colors, button shape), but take it further by changing the language to analyze the data points on your consumers, to see what they like and what they don’t like beyond the graphics.

For Example, Sony tested these two variation banner ads and there was a huge discrepancy in clicks and ultimately, check-outs. It wasn’t because of the aesthetics, it was the language that was being communicated to the user.

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They found that variation 1 had a 21% increase in visitors that reached the shopping cart and a click through rate increase of 6%. Variation 2 increased click-throughs by under 2% and actually seen a decrease of almost 3% in reaching the shopping cart.

This tells them a lot about what their users will and will not respond to.

#5 – Use Twitter Advertising to Target the Reach of your Tweets

Twitter has an abundance of social media data that can help social advertisers improve their reach. Using the data available via Twitter Analytics provides information on your audience’s engagement with your Tweets, so that you can take note of what works and what doesn’t work, specifically with your Twitter audience.

When advertising on Twitter it’s always best to test your content organically first, before you spend money to improve the reach of that content. When you test organically, you’re able to track which Tweets garnered enough engagement.

Twitter Analytics enables you to track your Twitter engagement, like retweets and favorites, and then use that data to decide whether or not you’ll be spending money on Twitter advertising to boost the reach of that Tweet.

COBS Bread and Rukes are just some of the companies that have effectively utilized their Twitter feeds to increase engagement and drive sales.

COBS targeted people who they thought would be interested in their baked goods (who wouldn’t though, seriously their stuff is delicious) by using promoted tweets. They linked to different campaigns and had followers download a coupon.

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With this campaign they doubled their followers, had way more engagement than they’d ever seen before and had a conversion rate of 37% on their coupon downloads.

#6 – Remarket to your Audience to Boost Sales

Have you ever felt stalked by an ad, anywhere you go on the interwebs? That has a name and it’s not stalking, it’s called remarketing.

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Have you ever silently cursed when people leave your website, and you have no tangible ways of redirecting them back to your product? (or at least haven’t yet identified what drives people back). Well, remarketing allows you to stay connected with the people who recently visited your website but did not make a purchase.

You can show them custom ads that are tailored to their behavior on your site as they browse other sites that are part of the Google Display Network or as they search for related products on Google. Remarketing is a form of data marketing that allows you to place code on your site so you can create remarketing lists for any of your webpages.

For example, if your website sells Sony TVs you can create a “Sony TV list.” When people visit a the Sony TV page, their cookie ID is then added to the “Sony TV list” and is ready to receive remarketing ads with a specific message that can persuade them to come back to your site and potentially purchase.

#7 – Use Email to Improve Customer Relationships, Build Trust

Many question the need for email due to the rise of social media and mobile marketing, and generally people consider it a nuisance. But, the truth is, marketing your product through email is here to stay, and can be super effective.

Email provides marketers the opportunity to maximize data quality by expanding the depth and breadth of data about their existing email subscribers and leveraging that to maximize customer engagement; it also contributes to increasing the lifetime value of a customer. You have the opportunity to add layers of data about your email subscribers beyond their purchase activity.

Tracking your email responses allows you to continuously profile your subscribers, understand what messages resonates with them (in other words, don’t annoy them), and use that data to personalize and refine content.

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Email subscribers are also an excellent source to test your branding, positioning, voice and tone, and more, when you’re trying to define what resonates with existing customers before executing a larger marketing campaign to a wider audience.

Although the inbox is a battlefield, data driven marketing through email enables brands to gain useful knowledge about their customers to help strengthen customer relationships, and yet again build that trust which increases your ROI.

#8 – Buyer Personas for Marketing your Product

Eventually you’ll transcend beyond defining your target audience and get into the beauty of creating buyer personas to unlock the ability to create better marketing campaigns to a more engaged audience.

Using social media data, search data, and website data, you can create your buyer personas. This task isn’t simple, because the market and your client are always evolving, but when done right, you’ll be more effective and efficient at marketing your product to your existing customer base and potential new customers.

Putting effort behind creating buyer personas will provide better understanding of your audience that has huge potential gains. When your audience feels that you understand them and feel that you are listening, they’ll pay more attention to what you say (market to them) and you’ll increase engagement and drive more business.

#9 – Best Time for Social

Social media tools like SocialBro and Hootsuite allow social media marketers to find the best time to tweet. Using these kind of tools provides you the opportunity to optimize when you Tweet so you get the best ROI on Twitter.

The data collected by these social media tools will guide you into the right direction when the majority of your audience is present online and when you should be engaging to improve customer relationships through social media.

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When you Tweet at the most optimal time you’ll receive optimal coverage, and therefore increase Twitter engagement, improving your social media marketing efforts. Ultimately, all marketing exists to boost sales, so in this case Tweet timing can be the difference between a potential lead or a bust.

To Conclude

At its core, data driven marketing propels the value of engaging customers more effectively. It may seem straightforward, but it takes work to understand the data and transform it into tangible dollars. You need the right tools to collect the data, you need the right people to analyze the data, and you need to execute the right marketing initiatives to effectively use the data. The outcome is worth the input, because when you embrace the power of data driven marketing, the complex world of digital marketing will slowly unravel, and you’ll be better suited in marketing to your audience more effectively.

Do you know of more ways you can use data for marketing? We’d love to hear them in the comments below.