Data is a Marketer’s Best Friend, But What is the Best Marketing Data for Your Business?
We recommend that every marketer have access to the following information, regardless of the kind of products or services you offer.
1) Google Analytics
Quite possibly the most important item on this list, Google Analytics provides an enormous amount of information that you can use to better understand the demographics of your audience and what convinces them to act.
If you haven’t already, get started with Google Analytics right away to start collecting and reviewing insightful data.
2) Google Ads
If you’re using paid advertisements, Google Ads can provide the data you need to figure out which keywords are actually bringing customers to you.
Digital advertising such as Google Ads and pay-per-click has exploded over the past several years. To achieve a solid ROI, engaging an agency to handle your digital advertising is a smart choice. A successful Google Ads program requires consistent monitoring and adjustments. When done right it can be an extremely valuable component of your marketing strategy and accelerate your chances of getting your message in front of your target audience.
A professional agency should provide you with timely, detailed reports of your Google Ad campaigns and offer recommendations to optimize your ads. Our recent article really spells out what you should look for in terms of a digital ad agency and its reporting.
3) Social Media Account Data
What kinds of people are actually following you on Social Media? If you use any of the network's paid marketing tools, chances are they're willing to give you access to whatever information users have chosen to share.
That said, remember that social media advertising isn't quite like advertising anywhere else on the web.
Your marketing data will tell you all about your audience, but you can't forget the context - most people on social media don't want to be marketed to all the time, so you'll need to think of ways to discuss other things, entertain them, and otherwise provide reasons for them to continue following you.
This is a great place to share blogs and offers, or shout out a question to your followers and get them engaged.
4) Email Marketing Data
Email marketing remains one of the most powerful forms of marketing that any company has access to - particularly because pretty much everyone has an email account.
With this marketing data, you can discover things like how often people are opening your messages, which links they click on, and which customers respond to your emails with frequency.
What kind of metrics should you be striving for with email marketing? It really depends on your industry. This HubSpot email report from 2020 is a comprehensive look at what kind of metrics are standard based on industry. If you're below these benchmarks, you have some work to do - if you're above them, keep doing what you're doing.
Remember, a click-through rate of less than 4% is completely normal for most industries, and not everyone who clicks through will become a customer.
5) Sales Reports
Your marketing data should include your company's sales reports (or, for nonprofits, donation reports), tied to both individual user accounts and overall demographic data. This helps you draw useful conclusions from your reports.
For example, you'll definitely want to separate any repeat customers into a separate group you can market to. Similarly, you'll want to know things like the age, gender, and interests of your customers so you can see which of them are the best to target with future marketing efforts.
Finally, your sales reports should clearly indicate how people came to your site. If the majority of customers come through paid ads, for example, you'll want to do more of those. The same goes for any other method people might be using.
6) Historical Revenue Reports
This isn't quite as important as the others, but it's still good to know how much money your company has made in the past so you can compare it to your current efforts.
This is also one of the most useful tools for persuading your company's executives to improve your budget - when you can show exactly how you increased the company's revenue, they're often willing to give you more of the support you need.
7) Annual Plans and Budgets
It's important to know how much money you actually have to spend throughout the year - and remember, you don't need to spend it evenly throughout the year. Instead, focus it on the time(s) each year where you're likely to see the biggest return and spend the rest of the year preparing for those times.