With all of the technology that is available to quantify previously immeasurable statistics, it is a wonder that more marketing professionals are not taking advantage of analytics. Although there is no study to truly understand how much more relevant analytics, a modern data dashboard and big data can make a marketing campaign, any professional that you ask will definitely sing its praises.
Furthermore, with the ever increasing amount of data based tools at marketers’ fingertips, there really is no excuse for data to be the main driving point in just about every decisions. Not only are there a myriad of data visualization tools to make parsing and understanding data easier, but data integration tools are becoming quite powerful. Combining tools like BI and Hadoop with other platforms along with visualization tools, what used to take a team of data experts to procure now is possible for your everyday layman.
Here are just a few of the ways in which analytics equals higher marketing performance for your business.
– First, analytics allows you to quantify more data.
Without new big data analytics and the quantification of metrics such as bounce rate, marketers are stuck dealing with the terrestrial tools of the 20th century. Many of these tools such as focus groups are hopelessly outdated because they rely on self-reported behavior from subjects. There are simply too many factors in group psychology and cognitive dissonance to take the word of an individual when you have access to his actions. This is the main shortcoming that modern analytics allow the marketer to overcome.
– Second, analytics is much more precise than any other type of reporting.
The precision with which marketers can create profiles for clients or entire demographics is now unmatched. The ability of modern analytics to showcase the true behavior of an individual or a group set is unprecedented, and many marketers are actually scared of the ability to monitor a group so closely. Some old-school marketers actually believe that “going from the gut” will provide additional productivity that cannot be found in hard data; however, many younger marketers know the truth about this viewpoint.
Although there is something to be said for understanding the ins and outs of human psychology, there are very few things that hard data does not cover when it comes to this psychology. 10 years ago when analytics was a relatively new discipline, the ability of the tools available to properly monitor human behavior was simply too crude. In today’s professional marketing environment, however, this is simply no longer the case.
– Third, analytics allows marketers to predict behavior rather than react to it.
There is a great deal of traditional marketing attention put on emulating past campaigns. This is because data was not available that could accurately predict how a group of people would react to a new campaign. However, this traditional thinking led to campaigns such as New Coke, widely considered one of the worst business moves ever made by of blue-chip stock company.
Because trends move so quickly in the modern world, prediction of the future is a much better skill to have than emulation of the past. Modern analytics gives even the newest marketer the ability to accurately predict the movements of demographics. Marketers today can also drill down into the individual movements of social taste makers. This is where traditional marketing is best used in order to connect personally with an individual, but only after targeting and analyzing the behavior of these trendsetters.
– Fourth, today’s analytics allows a marketer to personalize a campaign while using automation techniques that can actually speed up the process.
Any marketer that has ever participated in a direct-mail campaign can tell you the benefits of automation tools. However, these tools tend to have a decreasing rate of success the more that you use them. Only when they are combined with analytics that can create a group oriented personalization technique are they really of any use in today’s world.
Consumers today are a highly savvy and self oriented bunch. Automated techniques do not work with people who are familiar with these kinds of plays. The beauty of using analytics with automation is the ability to personalize a message without having to actually create a personal message for every customer, although this is what they want you to do. Basically, you can meet the untenable expectations of the market without having to spend all your time doing so.
There are many other advantages to using analytics in the correct way. One of the most effective techniques that today’s marketers are using is hard evidence to prove the viability of marketing analytics. Conduct a study of your marketing performance with analytics against marketing performance without these analytics. You are sure to find that analytics will equal higher marketing performance regardless of the industry that you are looking to infiltrate.