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The Right Data for Your Digital Marketing Efforts: Part 1

Everyone is talking about “data-driven marketing” today, and every marketer is trying to understand what it is and how to do it effectively.  In a study from earlier this year by the GlobalDMA and Winterberry Group, over half of respondents said they increased their investments in data-driven marketing in 2016 compared to the previous year.

If you're just getting started in your approach to data-driven marketing, here are some types of data to consider in your digital marketing initiatives:

  • Demographics: At a high level, do you know who your customers are? Do you know the geos where the most sales occur? Are they men or women? Old or young? Affluent or middle-income? In order to market effectively, you really need to know who your customers are. In the worst-case scenario, you’re marketing muscle cars to soccer moms. In a nearly-as-bad scenario, you’re marketing European SUVs to soccer moms in the market for American minivans.

  • Transactional data: Do you know what your customers are buying from you? You should have a solid understanding of what your customers like about your store, what they buy over and over and, perhaps most importantly, which products they’ve shown interest in but haven’t yet purchased. You should understand which customers buy which items seasonally, what you sell more of on Saturdays and which customers stock up before the Super Bowl, the Oscars or the Fourth of July. Which customers spend a lot at the holidays, and which ones stock up when everything’s on clearance just after the holidays? All of this knowledge is going to help you understand and market to your audiences more effectively---and it can help you segment audiences that are activated during other seasonal and promotional events.

  • Loyalty data: Taking transactional data one step further, who are your best customers? Which ones use your store credit card or loyalty card, and are incented to come back time and time again to earn discounts on still more merchandise? Understanding these customers, what they love about you and what drives them to purchase could be the key to finding more customers just like them.

Understanding your customers will help you understand how to engage them and motivate them to love your brand and your store even more. Coupling that data with data from your analytics programs will give you deeper insight into what’s engaging customers now -- and how you can drive even better results moving forward. In the next post, we will talk about the different types of analytics data at your disposal.

Photo from Creative Commons

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