Having an intuitive decision making ability in digital is good, but having an intuition backed by relevant data is even better. The same holds true for digital marketing as well. Once considered an intangible science rife with hit and miss tactics, digital marketing has now evolved into a quantifiable, data-driven function. No decision making and planning should be carried out today without collecting, integrating, and analysing data from external and internal sources – competitive research reports, audience interactions, click rates, digital industry trends, etc.
Utility of quality data in digital is pervasive, affecting each element of the system. One thing to note is that data is not the ‘be all end all’ of this dynamic; data alone cannot achieve the desired results unless it is augmented with data intelligence. Using smart analytics to utilize the said data can do some truly amazing things for you. Here are some of the positives you can achieve by combining big data with effective intelligence:
1. Consumer Analysis - As its foundation, data-driven digital entails shrewdly analysing the needs of the consumers, and crafting solutions to fulfil those needs in a timely and cost effective manner. Effective use of data in digital media marketing can help marketers profile, segment, and target the different sets of customers and address them through the best means possible. It also helps in anticipating how the consumers are going to react to a certain offering or piece of communication.
2. Planning and Strategy Formulation - Data can assist in evaluation of possible routes of action for a particular goal, and selection of the best route possible according to feasibility and other metrics. It can then help in strategy formulation to carry out the selected route of action, one based on facts and statistics with a higher likeliness of providing expected ROI. Also, when the whole process is streamlined through data, digital resource management also sees an upside as they can be assigned in a meticulously strategic manner without any spillage of resources, or overlapping of efforts.
3. Benchmarking and Baselining - Marketers can set the goals and objectives based on data and benchmark their performance according to the desired levels of productivity. Post the execution, this data then helps in measuring up the performance against these standards and benchmarks and point out what the strong and weak areas are.
4. Reporting and Optimization - Data analytics can assist in optimization of digital processes and bring them to the desired level of competence. The weak links can be removed and procedures to prevent such deficiencies from recurring can be implemented in a timely manner. Also, reporting is now not based on subjective judgements but on objective metrics which helps in better cost-benefit analysis of various strategies and resources.
5. Clarity of Thought - Digital media decisions have a tendency to become hectic, with so many variables involved in the equation, especially when dealing with external forces which are not in your control. There are also many relatively less important aspects which digital marketers at times spend majority of their time addressing, while they should actually be focussing on more important things. When things are administered using data techniques, it helps in focusing your efforts towards areas that are most crucial and require maximum attention.
Data should be considered the essence of every digital strategy, something which can help even the smaller players carve their own niche in the market. Its potential can allow us to gain a better understanding of our customers, as well as better productivity and revenues. Businesses that are not employing effective data solutions in their digital model will be the ones who will lose out to more data-ready entities in the future. Which side will you be on?