These days, marketers are so familiar with utilizing digital marketing campaigns they can practically employ them with their eyes closed. That’s not to say that digital marketing campaigns have become passé. It’s simply an acknowledgment of how ubiquitous they’ve become.
Organizations rely heavily on the valuable data gleaned from such campaigns; creating customer profiles, developing personas, assigning marketing attribution, and understanding which steps are more necessary than others during the buying journey.
As critically important as these things are, we must remember there is no “one right way” to develop and implement a digital marketing campaign. As a result, I’ve identified 5 tactics that marketers can utilize to maximize their data-driven digital marketing campaigns.
1. Use data that already exists
The key objective of a digital marketing campaign is to gather data. Thanks to technology, data about your target audience’s preferences and habits can be derived based on how they interact with an online or offline campaign. While no one would dispute the value of data gathered this way, what marketers should not overlook is data that already exists prior to the campaign.
To really refine a target audience down to who’s likely to take the buying journey all the way to its successful conclusion, marketers can obtain first-hand or third-party data chock full of demographic information. For example, if a company sells high-end men’s dress shoes starting at $800 a pair, a campaign certainly wouldn’t include young women in their early twenties.
Marketers should target men representing a certain age and within a certain socioeconomic group, perhaps making $150,000 or more per year, living in affluent neighborhoods, and having at least an undergraduate degree.
In addition, identifying older women who have been married for more than 15 years and live in an affluent neighborhood might be just as valuable. This information can be gathered by either leveraging existing lists (and there are ways to engage non-opted in audience members in an outreach campaign), conducting market research to understand their characteristics, and setting PPC criteria based on that market research.
Because this data already exists or may be easily mined, it can be leveraged to help focus digital marketing campaigns to ensure greater return on ad spend (ROAS) and improved allocation of resources.
2. Leverage chatbots to gather more data
More people are becoming familiar with chatbots that attempt to engage website visitors. What visitors may not know is that these chatbots are AI tools that work to gather additional information. While answering visitor questions, especially if it’s after hours, a chatbot can be a marketer’s best friend.
Website visitors looking for specific product or service information are often willing to share additional details with chatbots. This can lead to improved profiling and, in turn, refinement of audience messaging. This additional information can then be incorporated into other digital and non-digital marketing campaigns to better tailor solutions for an improved buying journey and greater ROI (ROAS).
3. Get very personal with highly targeted Facebook ads
Facebook regularly changes the criteria marketers can use when targeting audiences on its platform. While this can be somewhat frustrating, the platform still offers one of the best opportunities to narrowly target a specific audience. To that end, it’s worth experimenting with personally tailored ads for specific audience groups, even if it’s as few as 25 or 50 individuals at a time.
An example: a marketer might target individuals who actually clicked on a particular link but did not complete the buying journey. A message can be tailored specifically for them due to their interest but unfulfilled conclusion. It’s true that some may view this as an invasion of privacy, but those fears are overshadowed if the click-through rate jumps above 60% with a conversion rate above 30%.
This approach is less about invading someone’s perceived privacy and more about capturing highly convertible prospects where they currently are. Plus, the marketer is giving the consumer what they want.
4. Don’t forget digital and traditional market research
Although today’s digital marketing campaigns allow marketers to capture a lot of valuable data through web analytics tools, it’s often difficult to ascertain the intent of prospects within a particular buying journey until the very end. Because information of this nature is historical (a person clicked on an ad, downloaded an eBook, attended a webinar, then made a purchase), you can only look backward and determine why someone may have made a purchase.
In addition to that necessary component, it’s also worth investing in real market research that gathers data beforehand, creating a profile that can lead to understanding someone’s intent based on certain characteristics. Technology exists today that allows digital marketers to determine the intent of prospects based on their browsing behavior. Companies such as netFactor and its VisitorTrack technology marries anonymous website visitor identification and B2B intent data to provide a powerful profile of prospect intent. While there is no crystal ball involved, it’s darn near close to being able to tell when and why someone will make a buying decision.
Once your marketing campaigns are up and running, it’s equally if not more important to examine those campaigns for effectiveness. How are customers traveling through the sales funnel; what channels are they interacting with and acting on; and what mix of those channels is being most effective in getting customers through and out the bottom of the funnel as conversions?
That’s attribution, and it’s another key tool in any enterprise marketer’s tool belt. Companies such as LeadsRx provide impartial multi-touch attribution insights to marketers and marketing agencies so ad spend is properly optimized and consumers accurately targeted.
5. Leverage influencers
Many companies may initially scoff at an opportunity to engage a Kardashian to help them brand and position their product. Nevertheless, influencer marketing is just as valuable today as it was 10 years ago – perhaps even more so. Influencer marketing is no longer solely dominated by those individuals with a large social media following but no other discernible talent.
More companies are leveraging celebrities and other well-known people who also have social media followers numbering in the millions. An expertly placed influencer as part of a digital marketing campaign can realize a significant increase in opens, clicks, leads and sales, primarily because the audience trusts that influencer.
An ideal example is the use of adventurer Devin Graham and his partnership with Subaru. The car company leveraged Graham’s 5.8 million YouTube subscribers to develop a video of him and his friends taking a 500-foot jump off a cliff before climbing into a Subaru and driving away. So far, the video has garnered 1.2 million views and more than 20,000 likes. This continues Subaru’s push to marry its brand and vehicles with millennials and authenticity.
None of the methods discussed above are the result of rocket science, secret insight, or genius level thinking. Rather, these are practices that any organization can incorporate in order to maximize data-driven digital marketing campaigns. If used properly, some of these overlooked methods just might be what your digital marketing campaign needs.