The most effective marketers make decisions based on data. In fact, research a few years ago by Gartner found that nearly 70% of marketers expected data to soon shape nearly every aspect of their strategy.
The right data can help you improve prospect profiling and targeting, personalise your campaigns and tailor your content. In short, it can help you find out what works for your brand and what doesn’t.
But there’s also such a thing as data overload, or data fatigue.
Researchers at Qualtrics asked over 260 UK marketers about data, and found that 35% had more data on their customers than they could ever effectively analyse. A further 11% collected a large amount of data that didn’t actually help the company understand anything new about its customer base.
We have access to more data and analytics information than ever before, but not everyone has the time or expertise to make proper use of it. It’s all well and good to have tools for gathering data, but it takes skill to turn statistics into insights.
If you’re drowning in data, here’s what to do.
Start small – choose just one goal to focus on
If you try to track and analyse multiple things at once, you’ll get overwhelmed by the data ‘noise’. Unless you’re a trained data analyst, it’ll be too hard to pick out patterns or make any conclusions.
Instead, start off with just one goal. What do you need to know that would help improve the effectiveness of your marketing? Pick one target and a timescale for achieving your goal, then identify the KPIs that will tell you how much progress you’re making. Approach it scientifically and make sure you write everything down to make sure that the goalposts won’t shift mid-way through.
Don’t collect data you don’t need
If your default is to collect and store absolutely every nugget of information from every customer, stop. This could be a monumental waste of your time, especially if you’re not actually doing anything with that impressive-looking database.
Think about what information you really need, and get rid of (or at least archive) the rest. you’ll be able to streamline your databases, hopefully allowing the insights that matter to emerge. This is also an excellent piece of advice from a GDPR point of view.
Keep your data clean
Have your email marketing subscriber lists got seriously out of hand? If your database is huge, messy and littered with gaps and duplicate contacts, it’s time for a clean-up. If you want to make use of the data you have, make sure it’s clean, organised, accurate and up to date.
No time for any of this? Whether you’re just too busy for the basics, or you want to really make the most of your data, the Future Marketing team can help. We have 20+ years of experience in data-driven marketing, so we know just how to turn statistics into actionable insights. Get in touch to find out more.