Prior to coming to the SJ Team, I worked in hotels, in many positions, but my last positions focused on reporting and analyzing data. In this case it was room rates, commissions, even looking at weather patterns as a cause and effect. The point I am making is data is all around, in every business, and more and more we are hearing the term “data-driven results” – it is time to embrace the data and use it to propel the best conclusions.
Here in marketing with the shift to digital advertising, we have the opportunity to get trackable results, in real time, where that was not an option in print, tv, or radio. Of course, numbers on a page, are well, just numbers on a page, do you know how to tell a story? And that my friends, is what we are here to help with at SJ Marketing.
Here are three basics to get on the data train (toot, toot):
- Have a clear objective. This could be the same reasons why you reached out for our assistance. Brand awareness, marketing for an event, community outreach – there is data out there in the form of demographics, impressions, and conversions to name a few. In the broad sense, there is a lot of data out there to get your measurement; however, without a goal, it is difficult to use the numbers to tell the story.
- Pictures are worth a thousand words, so I have one word to describe a thousand words – infographics. No one wants to see tables of a bunch of numbers, it makes our heads hurt, and takes too much time to analyze. What do you think when I say USA Today? Most likely, you are thinking USA Today Snapshots (one of those random surveys that is always in the bottom corner). One graphic that is quick, to the point, and shows how results correlate amongst each other. The number one reason why most businesses do not embrace data is because lack of communication; therefore, here at SJ we present the data with dialogue, not show numbers.
- Correlation versus causation. This is a big one, and definitely a point of contention. The more I dive into digital marketing, and even in the data world in general, the more I find that data can find correlations to optimize your brand, but to pinpoint A caused B is a whole different story. For example, we can gain customer insights, and put figures behind it. Want to know which keywords gain the most traction for you in search, or find correlations in time of day/week and engagement on social media that can produce a better ad quality and value – we can do this and correlate with ad performance based on historical results.
Bottom line, the data is available to improve the decision making process. It is available to learn more about your customer base, discover trends, and improve your targeting to optimize your brand. Just think if your strategy was Lake Tahoe, and data was the mountains, and you were taking a panoramic of your business – wouldn’t you need both to enhance the picture?
– Julie Sabor, Account Coordinator