Must do Marketing in 2016: 2. Love your data

Good decisions depend on good data

Are you gathering good data and using it to inform your content strategy, not just your online advertising tactics? Make it a resolution for 2016 to make a date with your data and learn to love it.

While many look at data in media performance terms – and certainly channels like social platforms and programmatic advertising put data at the centre of your marketing activities – it’s also essential that data and research inform your content strategy and delivery.

Relevant content – proven relevance, not just surmised – builds ROI and makes engagement with your brand more positive and memorable for your audience or consumer.

From your digital channels you should already have plenty of information at hand: what is the split between mobile/tablet and desktop on your website and what time of day is it usually accessed? Where are your visitors coming from and where do they go to? What proportion of visitors are local, vs national or international? What content are they most engaged with?

Likewise, you can learn much from your social media channels and by examining your email data. It doesn’t even need to be your own activity: look at the output of your competitors and the media in your audience’s lifestyle profile too.

You will have this information, so when did you last review it and have you incorporated it into a plan for the next year?

Once you’ve done this don’t just let the data insights live in online channels, use it to inform content decisions in print, in store, and in advertising too.

And don’t miss the opportunity in 2016 to do primary research via your website or email if you have a representative opt-in database. Although don’t underestimate the time it takes to not just create, but moreover, analyse and cross-reference the results of a survey with what you already get from other sources. Outsourcing can often be a cheaper option unless you have dedicated resource.

One of the services Dialogue offers to clients is a suite of secondary sources of research including national demographic and lifestyle surveys such as TGI, competitor site/audience analysis using tools like Hitwise and social profile building and sector/competitor analysis using Brandwatch. In this way we can combine analysis of the primary sources you already have with these to create a strategy that enables you to deliver really relevant content on relevant channels, at the right time.

Get closer to your consumers in 2016. Data is everywhere: Resolve to use it.

How are using your data to shape your marketing strategy in 2016? Let us know over on Twitter.

Read more Marketing Musts:

Must do Marketing in 2016: 1. Control the Controllables

Must do Marketing in 2016: 3. Know your customer better

Must do Marketing in 2016: 4. Re-evaluate Your Marketing Spend

Must do Marketing in 2016: 5. Putting Content First