One of the greatest benefits of the recent internet and data revolution is the massive amount of data we now have at our fingertips. Data is affecting our lives in ways we never would have imagined, influencing our purchasing, driving habits and even what we think about. Fortunately for business owners, it also gives them a chance to improve marketing and better determine how to get your goods in front of customers. So here are three ways you can use data to substantially improve your marketing strategy.
Understanding Your Target Audience
According to PointVisible, there are countless ways in which data can be used to understand who you should be marketing to, and what their interests are. For example, you can take a small census of your customer’s zip codes and purchase data that will give you a better idea of your target market and key demographics within that market, such as age, education levels, interests, motivation for purchases and more. Using that information, you can craft a more effective marketing message or target potential customers.
Understanding Your Competition
Data is for more than understanding your business and your audience – it is also necessary to better understand what competitors your customers may spend their money with, instead of you. You obviously won’t get that information as easily as you can get your own data, but using data firms or publicly available information on social media, you can analyze your competition’s customer base and get a better idea of to whom you should be marketing. Remember, this information is very important to your success. According to MX, understanding where consumers are going for similar services and why can help a business fine-tune their marketing campaign.
At Offix, for example, we use a host of data to understand where business are located, their size and the type of “vertical” they represent (law firms, real estate companies, etc.) We then cross-reference this information with data about products like multifunction printers or copiers in the Washington DC metro area, or in Virginia. We analyze that information within specific areas, so we can get a better picture of where opportunities are located.
Finding the Optimum Channels
Many businesses use their limited marketing dollars on social media, but not on social media networks are created equal: There are countless differences in advertising effectiveness based on the social media network that you use. What network is most effective will depend on what kind of business you operate and who your customer base is, and the only way to determine that is to collect the appropriate data. For a company like Offix, which focuses on business to business relationships, efforts on LinkedIn are more effective and efficient than efforts on consumer-focused platforms like Instagram (though we have an Instagram profile!)
Data presents business owners with incredible opportunities, but it can be so massive that it also creates challenges. If you are incorporating data into your marketing strategy, don’t overwhelm yourself. Determine what information you need and what data you need to get to answer that question, and go from there.
Read more on this topic: 8 Marketing Ideas for Law Firms to Attract New Clients