5 Steps to Navigate the Data Tsunami

By Adam Turner • October 17, 2019

The internet is a treasure trove of valuable data and analytics. But with so much data to comb through, even finding a starting place can be a daunting task. Luckily, Sarah Bond, the senior director of marketing at the analytics company Lucky Orange, had some advice on how to avoid being swamped by the data tsunami at Digital Summit Kansas City.

  1. Stop using antiquated measurements.

Traditionally, marketers use what Bond calls “vanity metrics” to evaluate their engagement. Numbers like last click attribution, blog post page views and search engine page rankings all served as the measurement of success for marketing initiatives. These, however, are outdated modes of measurement. Studies by Salesforce show that the highest performing companies don’t focus on vanity statistics but on the impact to the customer service and experience. It is far more important to know about the user experience than the numbers themselves because the longevity and growth of the service depends on continued customer loyalty.

  1. Segment your analytics.

After gathering all the different analytic statistics it comes time to decide what to focus on. Well that depends on your group! Data can be broken down and viewed in a myriad of ways from traffic sources to markets to life cycle stage. One example that Bond gives is viewing the analytics of people who accessed a store’s website through Facebook. Using analytics, its owner was able to track their behaviors and found that his Facebook activity was not driving high returns despite the number of people who may have visited the website from Facebook.

  1. Know what impacts the bottom line.

Even though a company or organization may have focused on particular analytics and data in the past, it may not be generating the same revenue it had. Bond spoke with one of her company’s partners, the CEO of inbound marketing agency Web Canopy Studios, about what does and does not matter to him in 2019. He said, “At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter how many visits we’re getting to a customer’s website, none of that matters if they’re going down, even they don’t care as long as we’re focused on marketing qualified leads and we’re able to show them that we’re growing that.”

It’s here that an organization can do the math to figure out the minimum number or new members or clients it needs to stay in operation. Use whatever analytics shows are the most successful marketing strategies to deliver the leads to increase recruitment. Marketers can then target those potential clients through the researched methods the analytics suggest.

  1. Build a dashboard.

In most organizations, marketers will have to deliver their findings to a variety of people on a regular basis, and dashboards are the best way to cut down on time and improve consistency between those presentations. There are a number of online dashboard building tools available for use, and Bond specifically mentions Tableau and Databox as two of the most useful ones. Use the dashboards to organize the analytic segments from earlier that are most likely to generate marketing qualified leads in an easy to understand format. Then, meet with the stakeholders who will be using the dashboard to make sure they understand the various pieces of information available in each time period, whether weekly, monthly, quarterly or yearly.

  1. Create a trend line.

The last and one the most important of Bond’s steps to managing data is creating a trend line to visually represent important data. How are an organization’s numbers faring when compared to their competitors? How do marketers expect numbers to change over time? Trends lines will show this information and more in an easily explained format perfect for those who may not have a background in marketing.

By considering the value of various metrics, marketers can successfully organize and utilize the mountain of data compiled each day. Then they’ll really be equipped to navigate the data tsunami!

Digital Summit has teamed up with Association Adviser to bring you access to videos and content that offers insight to association marketers. Access this content at https://dsum.io/association-marketing-videos.

About The Author

Adam Turner is a content strategy intern with Naylor Association Solutions.