Data analysis tools have been around for many years. Rarely do marketing tools like social distribution platforms, content management systems or email marketing software exist without intelligence built in. While access to data is not a new concept, the way data is being analyzed and acted on is improving, thanks to more comprehensive tools that tie together facts and numbers with tangible marketing solutions.
Historically, data was used to deliver a snapshot of present happenings to get a sense of “where things are today,” without much follow-up action. It was also used to prove results from historic activities from a defensive “this is what our campaign efforts did” angle. However, most companies did not use this information to create data driven marketing strategies.
These trends are changing. Now, inbound marketers are using data to come up with a perspective on the future and proactively make strategic decisions in the now. Data is helping inbound marketers to:
More quickly understand buyers and improve messaging
Adding simple questions into forms helps marketers get to know prospects immediately and quickly move them into the appropriate communication path. For example, adding a “when do you want to get started” field into a request a consultation form helps salespeople know which leads to focus on first and which should be put into future follow-up. Learn how to help your salespeople leverage other content to convert customers.
Improve content planning to deliver more relevant information
Data gathered on content engagement like blog post views, heatmap tests, A/B testing and click through rates helps marketers decide what content topics are most relevant to prospects. This information helps plan content assets like eBook titles, blog post subjects and even social media content. And, if you’re practice agile marketing, as we do, the power of the combined methodologies of agile and inbound enable you to plan your content in shorter increments, based on current data. So the data you learned from last month can help drive the next month’s content strategy and topics. Agile empowers you to market in the now, and leverage what’s working and what’s not, to continually adapt and improve your content marketing.
Enhance customer retention based on interest
All marketers know it’s easier to keep a client than get a new one. Data learned from targeted approaches, like customized email campaigns to current customers, are very telling about the types of products, services and news current clients are interested in hearing more about. Surveys, polls and quizzes are another great way to get fast, actionable data that tells you more about your customers and what they want and need. Other trackable customization options like adding personalized SMART content to your website or calls-to-action can help you learn how to keep customers engaged, happy and increase loyalty.
Better plan for growth and capacity needs
Data is also helpful beyond marketing tools to make sure team capacity and resources are available so all of the great ideas stemming from analysis of marketing data can be implemented. Data collected in project management tools like TeamWork and agile workflow tool JIRA are essential to getting a granular look at what content deliverables are scheduled, completed or stalled, which team members are progressing or stalled by an impediment, and where inbound efforts are making the most impact.
In fact, data is now the core driver of future marketing strategies, and the future can now mean just a few weeks (or days), not months or longer. Analyzing data from inbound marketing identifies the most valuable deliverables and tactics to help make important decisions about how and where to spend marketing dollars. The ability to track results with real time data is expected and required, which is why we include it in all inbound marketing strategies.
To learn more about how to use data analytics to drive your marketing strategies: