Most of the B2B Marketers feel their current online marketing mix is falling short to meet the sales demand, and that they’re under immense pressure to be able to measure the online campaign effectiveness and also being productive. We often hear that the concept of the marketing mix isn’t so useful any longer in this era of customer-first. But I believe it is still highly relevant today as a framework to develop digital marketing strategies.
These days, technology is critical to improve marketing performance and processes and deliver more relevant, more integrated campaigns with higher ROI. Why? Because it allows us to track and measure so we can learn what our customers expect and what resonates with our audience. B2B marketers must learn to adopt a customer-centric approach in this customer-first era and deliver messaging that’s compelling, customized and consistent across all touch-points. In order to accomplish that task, marketing needs systems in place for data collection, data analysis and targeted distribution –each of which increasingly depends on IT expertise, particularly as campaigns become more and more centered on customer insight and real-time analytics.
B2B marketers can use Big Data to drive more targeted and effective campaigns, but few are taking advantage of all today’s technology has to offer. Marketing has always been, to a large extent, data-driven. Big Data simply offers unprecedented opportunities to understand prospects and customers in ways that were not possible until recently. “What is Big Data?” has been explained in many of our previous blog posts, so let’s not get into that conversation here, instead find out how Big Data can help B2B marketers help increase focus and optimization.
Marketing data adds up pretty quickly when you consider every click to the website, page view, ad impression purchased/served, email sent, direct mail piece sent, transaction data, etc. . Big Data is also important for marketers because it adds an important new dimension to the Holy Grail quest for delivering measurable (and acceptable) social media ROI to the C-Suite.
By themselves each data source, like log data from websites, Social media, paid sources (e.g. Google Adwords) etc., provides some critical information about your customer, but not enough to produce any significant insights or breakthroughs. But if you can link and correlate these sources; and maintain them with real-time updates, you can easily change the scenario. Two very popular uses of Big Data are customer insights and predictive analytics. They help to answer these kinds of questions:
- What real-time offers do prospects prefer?
- What are the best web pages to serve based on an identified prospect’s interests?
- What is the probability of closing a sale with a potential customer who just filled in a web form?
- What promotions work best at particular times of the day?
- What is the probability that a prospect targeted by a nurturing campaign will make a purchase in the next six months?
Once these questions are answered, companies can take concrete actions to assess whether the opportunity is real or not and if pursuing it makes sense.