They took some time to catch up to other lines of business, but marketing departments are now making data and analytics a huge part of what they do. A 2018 survey by Dun & Bradstreet, for instance, found that data quality was extremely important to 63 percent of B2B companies. And 2019 figures to be more of the same. With that in mind, here are our predictions for the biggest marketing data and analytics trends for the coming year.
Data clean-up projects
Often overlooked as a crucial piece of the marketing data ecosystem, accurate, up-to-date customer and prospect information is nonetheless crucial. Why? Because so many marketing tactics rely on it! For instance, email marketing campaigns require accurate email addresses to be successful. Account-based, targeted marketing requires knowing who the decision-makers are and what kind of targeted approach might work to open up a business opportunity. With data health on many marketers’ minds, expect to see investments in data cleansing projects in 2019, with a particular emphasis on CRMs and marketing automation systems.
Google Data Studio adoption
Anytime Google does…well…anything, marketers take notice. That is certainly true of the company’s rollout of Google Marketing Platform in 2018. The platform includes a number of useful tools, including Google Data Studio, which makes it simple to build dashboards and reports based on Google Analytics, Search Console or Ads information. As with many Google tools, Data Studio is feature-rich and it may take marketers some time to adopt all of those features, but the tool figures to provide great value as time passes.
Greater drill down on marketing ROI
For years, marketers have been under pressure to prove that their efforts were contributing to lead and revenue generation—that trend will continue in 2019. Increasingly, marketers have to justify their spending on a variety of marketing channels, from pay-per-click campaigns, to events, to targeted outreach. While this does increase accountability and perhaps pressure, it is ultimately a good thing for marketers because it forces a more strategic, data-driven approach. Additionally, if marketers can cut ineffective spending while increasing marketing-generated revenue, they will become indispensable members of any organization.
The ability to target customers and prospects based on narrow data parameters typically makes a campaign more likely to succeed. For instance, many marketers currently run campaigns based on what industry a company is in or how many workers it employs. But when you can get several layers deeper, you are better able to create messaging that speaks directly to the recipient. For instance, perhaps you might target companies that:
• Play primarily in the software space
• Employ between 50 and 200 workers
• Are based in the northeast United States
• Received venture capital funding in the past 18 months
• Have a CEO under 40
As you might imagine, micro-segmentation goes hand-in-hand with data health—you need accurate information to effectively do this granular level of segmentation.
So, what’re you waiting for?
Eric Lebowitz joined Critical Mention in 2018 as its Director of Marketing. A native New Yorker, he originally began his career in journalism and later moved to marketing, discovering a passion for branding and analytics. Eric brought a background in content marketing, marketing measurement and marketing automation, having previously co-founded and managed his own agency. In his spare time, Eric loves to play as much golf as possible at courses across the country.