Everywhere around the globe, across all markets and industries, data truly matters.
In a recent global research study done by the The Winterberry Group and Global DMA, 80 per cent of the marketers, technologists and service providers surveyed said that data is crucial to the deployment of their marketing and advertising efforts.
Data for businesses has evolved from merely providing information, to giving answers and driving actionable insights.
Increasingly, businesses are moving towards a smarter, more consumer-centric approach, and this can only be done by gathering insights from data. But in order to be truly data-driven, what are some of the key trends that marketers need to consider?
1. It’s all about the consumer
As consumers increasingly expect better targeted and personalised communication, moving from a Channel-Centric approach to Audience-Centric marketing just makes good business sense.
For evidence, the increased usage of ad blocking technology is a direct reaction of consumers being delivered irrelevant and inappropriate advertising messages.
To meet this expectation, businesses rely heavily on their marketers to know all they can about their customers, and to be able to interact with them effectively.
The demand to deliver more relevant communications is one of the most important factors driving the use of data in marketing today.
Data helps businesses deliver better-crafted messages, delivered to the most appropriate members of an audience population, and also improves the customer experience across media touchpoints.
2. Digital channels are the new POS
Consumers from all demographics are now spending more time online.
With almost half of the world’s internet users sitting in Asia and the Pacific, there is a huge opportunity for digital channels here to lead the pack in terms of touchpoints with consumers. Marketers are tapping on this by bridging the gap between traditional and digital in their media mix.
Web and e-commerce content, social media, mobile, paid search engine marketing and online display advertising all make up today’s marketer’s arsenal to achieve the holy grail – reaching the right customer at the right time with the right messages.
In fact, the study by The Winterberry Group and Global DMA found that digital channels posted the most substantial performance gains compared to other media channels in the past year (prior to October 2014).
Marketing has gone digital, because that is where the consumers are – and therefore, that is where the insightful data is.
3. Have you got the talent?
Going digital requires expert talent who can unlock and generate more value from data-driving marketing efforts. Many business managers are known to look across the globe for professionals with data analytics experience, demonstrating a clear demand (and scarcity) for these talents.
Within organisations, employees with data analytical skills, at all levels, across all functions, are valued today more than ever before.
A recent study by IDC found that organisations with a strong analytics culture, supported by upper management, see significant improvements to organisational performance.
With the right people and the right attitude towards data use, businesses can really reap the benefits of better, more actionable insights.
The task of navigating more complex data, several media channels, increasing customer requirements and higher expectations from business leaders for better insights creates a challenge – there is much more information to manage, even for the data-savvy marketer!
For example, on an average, MediaMath sees over 150 billion online advertising opportunities per day. For a marketer, managing these opportunities across multiple marketing campaigns every single day is unthinkable; there is too much data behind these opportunities that cannot be made sense of by the ordinary human mind.
Synthesising these data points across a few million consumers and intelligently delivering personalised content can only be done through advanced technology powered by algorithms.
The solution – digital marketing technology that enables meaningful insights to be derived from massive, complex data sets.
With these insights, digital marketers will be able to execute across many areas of digital including (and not limited to) programmatic advertising, data management, audience analytics, marketing automation and creative management.
The more intelligent the technology, the better the consumer insights, and the more targeted the marketing approach – eventually leading to better business decisions and results.
Saurabh Dangwal is the Vice President for APAC at leading programmatic marketing company MediaMath.