It’s easy to understand why data is being called the new oil. Data has become one of the most vital resources due to the way it is being used to power much of the business world and technical transformation that we see around us. The way oil needs to be refined before it becomes truly useful, similarly data needs to be processed and analyzed before its true potential can be unlocked.
From Artificial Intelligence to Predictive analytics, data is the resource that is fueling all these emerging technologies. In manufacturing terms, data is the raw resource as well as the finished output. Interestingly, once data is processed, it usually reveals even more applications and usability.
Role of Marketing Analytics in Driving Business Growth
When it comes to marketing data, the role of the marketer becomes pivotal. Just the availability or collection of data is not enough. Marketers need to extract deeper insights from the collected data to drive better decisions and improve marketing effectiveness. This is only possible to the tools that he has at his disposal.
The expectations from a modern CMO are ever-changing and the role faces disruption at an amazing pace. The role calls for a wide range of skills, from understanding markets, evolving tools, detailed data analytics to new emerging technologies and its impact on marketing strategy. The need to align marketing goals to business metrics like revenue and conversions prompts marketers to prioritize attribution and data analytics while allocating budgets.
Marketing Measurement is a Top Priority, but…
Studies have shown clearly that marketers believe measuring their impact on pipeline and revenue is a critical priority. However, while over 90% of marketers agree that marketing measurement is a priority, about 40% believe that their measurement needs improvement (2017 Marketing Measurement and Attribution Report). Showing ROI on marketing spend, tracking their marketing investments by channel and improving sales and marketing alignment are some other reasons cited by marketers in favour of Marketing Measurement.
Still, the fact is that most marketers are still using insufficient measurement tools like only web analytics, their CRM data or Excel spreadsheets. This kind of single-dimension data will provide only activity-based metrics which will not help in acquiring intelligence on how each touch-point has contributed towards a goal conversion.
Vanity vs. Actionable Metrics
Vanity metrics refers to those metrics which look great on paper but don’t really translate into a successful campaign. Metrics like number of site visits, page views, time on site, followers, likes etc. are meaningless if they do not tie back to metrics like customer lifetime value, social media engagement, conversion funnel, customer acquisition cost and ROI analysis. If a metric doesn’t tell you what you can do to improve your conversions, then why should we even be tracking it?
It takes more than just clicks and views to measure an engaged audience. It’s important to view the full conversion funnel to understand what is compelling your customers to take an action. Measuring and comparing campaigns and channels will allow marketers to come up with a better marketing strategy.
A recent report by eMarketer predicted that by 2021, almost 50% of total ad spending would be on digital media. This will make marketing effectiveness more and more measurable.
Without an effective marketing attribution and measurement tool, marketers can only spray and pray that their approach works and translates into business growth. Correctly measuring the impact of your marketing activity can lead to better decisions, effective customer acquisition and overall growth.