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What is Data-Driven Marketing?

Data-driven marketing is a marketing methodology that requires marketers to collect, analyze, and integrate data from external and internal sources, such as competitive intelligence reports, global market research, onsite and offsite consumer activities, and social interactions. Data might come from either primary sources, such as online, direct mail, and telemarketing surveys. Or the data may come from secondary sources like tracking online social interactions, web browsing behavior, and/or online search behavior. In a nutshell, data-driven marketing is the task of compiling data gathered from specific groups of people, and the science of analyzing that data to find ways to measure behavior, combined with the art of implementing those measurable behaviors into strategies that focus on building better and more meaningful interactions with a target audience.

Why is Data-Driven Marketing Useful?

Ultimately, the real thrust of data-driven marketing is the expansion and capturing of value that comes from focusing customer engagement more effectively. Big data analytics enable marketers to use assets like consumer mailing lists to send customer communications that are more personalized than ever before, which market research shows, generates more conversions. But the task of creating personalized marketing messages from large sets of data can be a very complex process that requires marketers to implement five basic steps. Those are.


  1. Integrated Marketing Management

IMM is an established system for tracking end-to-end marketing processes, from strategy, to implementation, to customer experience measurement. The objective is to focus on simplifying the complexity of data, processes, interaction channels, and insights. By determining the necessary tools to streamline internal workflow, and also to interact with customers and prospects in personalized ways across the full spectrum of communications channels, IMM helps maintain focus on the wants and needs of customers while leveraging today’s state-of-the-art technologies that are accessible to everyone.

  1. Internal and External Analysis

Understanding the effectiveness of processes with both customers and employees reveals where the biggest obstacles exist. The integration of marketing and big data insights across the entire enterprise is the key to capturing the value big data helps to identify.

  1. Best Practices

The complicated process of unifying marketing operations with customer interaction management into an overall end-to-end marketing strategy may be an enormous endeavor, depending on the size of your company. We recommend taking things one step at a time. As with most other tasks, begin with the end in mind. Visualize what you want your marketing operations to look like, and what results you want to achieve, then pay careful attention to hitting every touchpoint between point A and point Z. You may even wish to consider consulting with experts in the industry to guide your data-driven marketing goals, which brings us to the next step.  


  1. Learn from the Efforts and Experience of Others

Data-driven marketing may be a new marketing methodology, but that doesn’t mean you have to reinvent the wheel to establish your own data-driven marketing strategy. Marketing itself is not new, and there’s nothing new about the concept of constant evolution and change in the industry either. With that in mind, reach out to your network of peers, listen, talk, and read about how to avoid the landmines others have already stepped on.

  1. Manage Complexity

There’s no question big data is complex. Some marketers describe data-driven marketing, with its jumble of interactions, applications, and processes, as an endeavor to untangle a giant hairball. It is one of the biggest challenges marketers face today, and because of a few reasons inherent to the previous four steps, some think it’s only going to get more challenging, although that seems somewhat debatable. In any case, access to data will become more robust moving forward, so it is absolutely critical to know what type of data will serve your goals, and what processes will help you convert it into a focused, and on-point marketing campaign. Management then, will involve more consultation, especially with your own in house IT staff. By planning in advance to eliminate complexity wherever possible while adopting simplicity, you give yourself the best chance at unraveling the big-data hairball.

Once you have implemented these steps, consider starting with small pilot projects. That way you will be able to test the viability of your data, your new processes, and your communications channels with fewer resources at stake. Starting small is also a good way to keep from feeling overwhelmed by the enormity and complexity of data-driven marketing.

Who uses Data-Driven Marketing?

Marketers of every stripe, from in-house marketing departments at enterprise corporations to small, private marketing agencies, in both the business-to-business (B2B), and business-to-consumer space, are finding customized ways to integrate big data into marketing strategies and measure performance markers that were once unmeasurable. Any business looking to boost sales, drive brand awareness, and engage meaningfully with their target customer base — which is every business — stands to benefit from data-driven marketing. In fact, 78 percent of the 1,500 marketers surveyed by Teradata for its 2015 Global Data-Driven Marketing Survey claimed that data-driven marketing is either a primary focus currently, or is expected to become a major focus within the next couple of years.

How can BB Direct help?

One of the major challenges of data-driven marketing is the reality of obsolescence, including the lag time between when data was acquired, and when the database is used. Because the most effective mailers require experience-backed consultation, not just a salesperson with a list industry vocabulary, our mission is to provide those kinds of services to help you create actionable data, and positive results in your direct mail marketing, and email marketing campaigns.

BB Direct is a provider of direct marketing data like business mailing lists, email lists, as well as data related consultation services. But even more so, we are a group of highly proficient professionals who know our product and our industry. Our company was born from our passion for making a difference in data efficiency. We keep things as simple as possible by resisting the temptation to be all things to all people. Instead, we remain focused on what we do best.


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