What drives your marketing?
Creativity, skills, wisdom, hunch? All combined or none at all?
No correct answer of course, but at least one word all marketers should utter at this point is data.
Data becoming information, transformed to knowledge and finally a hunch. Heaps of data are generated every day on the most varied of channels: from your stores, your subscriptions, sales, manpower and a zillion others. Online, it's even easier to get access to audience behaviour: clicks, tweets, likes, conversions, popular sites and landing page funnels. There’s actually a great abundance of data at our disposal many obtained free that can help in tweaking and optimising online presence in virtually any business you’re in. Here’s a really cool infographic on how others are using it. The fancy word for this is data-driven marketing.
Data driven marketing covers all aspects of the marketing process from target analysis, through personalisation to measurement and optimisation. Data weave themselves into every step and turn and help in reassuring that what you are doing works and provide insight into how you can do it better. Or in case it doesn’t they can tell you bluntly that you need to change asap.
It’s not all numbers though; marketing is still on that thin line of science and art and much of the success is dependent on how you interpret the numbers and what you do with the information at hand. It’s never been so easy to tweak as today, trying out new ideas in your strategy and messaging and receiving instantaneous feedback on it.
Videos in the data universe
Being one of the best performers in terms of ROI you definitely need to pay a lot attention to your videos and the data they generate. Here’s our take on most important KPIs to still very important but resource-dependent.
- The basic data you start off with are of course number of views, plays, loads, and viewers. If you stop there though it can be a bit misleading and we definitely advise to go a few steps deeper.
- How long? Do viewers turn it off after a few seconds, browse away after a minute or stay attentive throughout?
- Where does the attention rate drastically drop? Check out the heat maps many video performance analysing businesses offer showing viewing habits per viewer.
- Where do they come from? Are viewers arriving from social media, a video hosting platform, Google, e-mails?
- Who are they? Gender, geographic location, possibly age: the physical attribute of your customers and the base of your persona.
- What platform? Obviously mobile optimisation goes without saying, as more and more online content including videos are viewed on smartphones but it can always give some extra insight to figure out what devices your viewers prefer.
- How do they share? If at all, do they share on social media, forward your mass mailers, like it, hate it, embed it?
- Where does it lead them? After viewing your video what do they do? Does your CTA work? Do they stay on your landing page or surf around the website, try to get in touch or leave without ever returning?
- What’s the big picture? Videos don’t’ stand alone, they’re part of a grander marketing strategy complementing your efforts. So it’s clear the data though should be analysed separately you should also find the time to look at it from a bird’s view.
Exploit your edge but don’t get overwhelmed
By receiving data in real-time and making sense of it, marketers have discovered a new battleground for gaining competitive edge. The better analytics you conduct the higher chance you can break through the mountain of data and find your path. It can be quite overwhelming though.
With so much data at your disposal it seems like you can always hire one more full-timer to crunch the numbers. A lot of times you might feel this is what you should achieve, possibly due yesterday:
Marketers need to weigh the sources; separate good data from bad data; make sense of the information; produce an overview and finally make decisions based on the results.
If there’s one thought you take-away though I hope it’s this: finding a way to best use data will be more and more valuable in the years to come, and one of the most sought after skills a future marketer could have is the ability to crunch the numbers and see the bigger picture. Relying on single sources or limiting your decisions based on randomly picked attributes will give a false picture and shake your grounds. Try to diversify but also be careful not to conduct too shallow analyses.
When it comes to data, they don’t lie.
Header image source: JD Hancock/Flickr