Marketers, Time To Tame Your Data For Good

Marketers, Time To Tame Your Data For Good

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As marketers, you already know the value of data. It’s a powerful tool for any organization to understand its customers, guide its strategy, and make informed business decisions. But, just like any powerful tool, if you don’t tame your data, it will do more harm than good.

The conversation around marketing data tends to focus on acquisition. How to clean, organize, sort, analyze, segment, and activate that data is less discussed but equally as important. After all, the quality of your data-driven marketing strategy will only ever be as good as the quality of your data management.

Until recently, effectively managing, analyzing, and activating your data was easier said than done. Assembling a martech stack that synchronized together and delivered timely insights was a challenging, seemingly impossible task. The promise of CDPs has never been fully realized.

If the last few years have shown anything, it’s that the most successful businesses will be the most agile. Organizations need to respond and react quickly to change audience behavior changes. And that requires an end-to-end analytics system built for marketers.

Why Data is Still Not Working for Marketers

When it comes to data, many of the challenges that marketers face boil down to the inefficiencies of the martech stack. Or, more specifically, the inability to pull together data sets from different sources due to complex implementation and process demands.

A 2021 Forrester survey found that customer data is stored on an average of 5.5 different systems within a single organization. If these different systems can’t ‘talk’ to one another, then valuable data is stuck in siloes, and a huge opportunity is being missed.

And it doesn’t stop there. If your team knows that they are working with incomplete data, they know it can’t be fully trusted. If it’s not fully trusted, it becomes less relevant to decision-making. If that happens, less investment and time goes into managing the data. And then you really do have a reason to throw that data marketing strategy out of the proverbial window.

Getting customer data into a centralized system should be the key priority for marketers of any organization. Not just to make more informed business decisions but also to provide customers with a better experience. To give a specific example, 56% of customers now expect offers to always be personalized — no matter the channel. To successfully meet demands like these, a joined-up approach to customer data is required.

Why Marketers Should Expect More

During such a prolonged period of inefficient solutions, marketers have had to settle for ‘good enough’. But now it’s time to expect more – a lot more.

Collecting a constant stream of data is only valuable if you can wrangle insights and actions from it. 40% of marketers are struggling to glean any useful insight from their customer data which shows the size of this ongoing issue. The best approach is to return to the fundamentals.

Marketers need to regain trust in their data and its ability to inform key decision-making. The downward spiral of trust mentioned earlier can be easily reversed when marketers get the fundamentals right. Create a centralized system to clean, organize, sort, and segment your customer data from all sources. You’ll then have an effective foundation to build an impactful marketing strategy.

If marketers use the data and see improvements, they’ll be more likely to trust it. If they trust the data more, greater investment in time and budget will go into it, and the greater the efficiency will become. It’s that simple.

To take this up a notch, non-technical marketers should be given the keys to get hands-on with customer data. Remove the reliance on overworked data teams and empower campaign managers and marketers to interpret data, identify insight, and take action as a result.

In the increased uncertainty of our post-Covid world, marketers need to be faster at identifying and reacting to changes in audience behavior. This agility can only be achieved by creating a martech system that provides complete data to the entire organization.

Conclusion: empower your marketers

It’s time to expect more from your data. Unifying its ingestion, transformation, visualization, discovery, and fulfillment will revolutionize your marketing team.

Marketers are all too frequently hindered by shifting budgets, reliance on technology and development resources, and overly complex processes. Companies that successfully make their data clean, organized, and accessible to the whole company in an end-to-end system will get ahead of the crowd.

In our increasingly uncertain world, businesses need to be more agile and quicker to respond to changing customer behaviors. This can be achieved by empowering marketers to understand their data and take actions to activate it with the right end-to-end data system.

Keith Scheer is the SVP, Product & Innovation at Allant Group, and has had a successful career building products and supporting teams in the marketing technology space.