Want to Be a Good Marketer? Stop Fearing Data
Have you ever thought (or spoken) anything along the lines of:
- “I’m a marketer, but I’m not comfortable with data.”
- “I’m a marketing creative, not a data analyst.”
If you’re a marketer who has come down with a case of “not my job” syndrome regarding data and analytics, this post is for you.
At 9 Clouds, we believe that in order to be a good marketer, you must stop fearing or ignoring data and embrace becoming a data marketer. In fact, you can’t be a good marketer otherwise.
Hear us out.
Why Should You Care About Data?
These days, working in marketing isn’t only about running online ads or crafting a beautiful email. It’s also important to be comfortable with Google Analytics, your marketing software’s analytics tool, your customer data, and more.
As the customer journey becomes increasingly complex, with so many marketing touch points in this digital age, all marketers must become data marketers in order to perfect their marketing goals and put their dollars where they’ll see the most return on advertising spend.
Below are just two compelling reasons why you should care about collecting and analyzing data in your marketing role.
1. Your Data Directs Your Dollars
You likely have a limited marketing budget, and it’s difficult to know how to spend it if you’re not comfortable with analyzing data. But, if you embrace your role as a data marketer and are willing to learn a few things, you’ll become more confident in your strategy (and you’ll look like a rock star to your boss).
For example, consider the following two conversations with your supervisor.
“Hey boss, we’d love to double our Facebook advertising budget this quarter. I know a lot of dealerships are doing it, and I want to have a leg up on the competition. Everyone is on Facebook, so hopefully it will bring in more sales.”
“Hey boss, we’d love to double our Facebook advertising budget this quarter. This past quarter, we saw a huge return on investment. Our Facebook campaigns brought in 5,400 qualified leads and contributed to 680 vehicle sales — a total value of more than $500,000. Additionally, paid Facebook traffic has been our number-four source of website traffic, with nearly 2,000 vehicle description page views in one quarter. Based on this data, I’m confident this money is well spent.”
It’s obvious which plea for additional budget is more compelling.
But, being confident with marketing data won’t only help you talk your boss into increasing your department’s budget. It will also help you know where to best allocate your existing resources.
For example, you may be spending an equal amount of money on two different third-party auto listing sites. It seems easiest to split the budget evenly between the two, so your dealership is visible on both sites. But what if, over the past year, vendor A was responsible for 25% of your sales, and vendor B was responsible for only 4% of sales?
Of course, in this situation, it would be wise to reallocate the budget from vendor B to vendor A, but you couldn’t come to that decision without analyzing the data.
Is it becoming more and more tempting to rebrand yourself as a data marketer with each passing paragraph? 😉
2. Your Data Helps You Reach the Right Customers
Above, we discussed why you should be comfortable analyzing the data from your marketing results. Now, we’ll discuss another type of data: your customer data.
Your customers and leads have given you something very valuable: their information. If you can confidently and responsibly take advantage of the plethora of data in your customer relationship management (CRM) system, you can put your marketing dollars toward the people who are most likely to give you business.
Additionally, you can reach your contacts with the right message. For example, you may be sending a monthly email of vehicle lease offers to your CRM leads and past customers. But, if you’re using your CRM data strategically, you can take this a step further with segmentation.
Here are two examples of how this scenario could play out.
Marc is a marketing manager at Good Dealership. He is a little bit comfortable with using his CRM data. Each month, he sends one email to all contacts in his CRM, highlighting all current vehicle specials.
These emails are not personalized to the customer, and his results seem okay. He isn’t sure, because he isn’t comfortable using Google Analytics to report on key email statistics, like the number of website visitors who came from email, how long they spent on the site, which pages they visited, and more. He doesn’t know how many of his emails have contributed to a vehicle sale.
Marvin is a marketing manager at Better Dealership. He is very comfortable using his CRM data and knows that he must embrace his role as a data marketer to achieve optimal results.
Each month, he sends three separate emails to three segments of his CRM: a truck email to truck leads and past truck customers, an SUV email to a similar SUV audience, and a sedan email to a similar sedan audience. Using CRM data, Marvin also sends automated workflow emails to his customers six months after their purchase date to check in and remind them to schedule a service appointment.
His emails are personalized to the customer, and his email marketing performance is consistently above the industry benchmarks. He knows this because he’s comfortable analyzing the data in Google Analytics. He also knows how many vehicle sales to which his emails have contributed and can claim a specific ROI from his emails.
Are you a Marc or a Marvin?
These examples are just the tip of the iceberg of how you can use your CRM data strategically to improve your dealership’s marketing results. Want to dig deeper? No problem — we have an eBook for you!
What Data Is Available To You?
There’s a lot of data available to marketers, and it can be overwhelming. Maybe that’s why you’ve shied away from it. Here are three helpful ways to start familiarizing yourself with analyzing data.
1. Start with Google Analytics
In Google Analytics, you’ll be amazed by how much you can learn about your website, the sources bringing traffic to your site, and the people browsing it.
Don’t try to learn it all (at least right away)! But there are some beginner metrics that you’ll want to keep an eye on:
- Sessions: The number of website visits made by users
- Pageviews: The number of website pages they visited
- Users: The number of people who viewed your site
- Avg. Session Duration: The average time spent by a user on your website
- Bounce Rate: The percentage of visitors who navigated away from your site after viewing only one page
Who knows — after you get started with Google Analytics for your dealership, you might even have fun doing it!
2. Learn About Facebook’s Offline Events Tool
Facebook Offline Events is an offline conversion tool that allows advertisers to see how many customers made a purchase or became a lead after seeing a Facebook ad.
Once you set it up, Offline Events is pretty easy to use. You’ll import your CRM list of recent purchases and leads, map the data to Facebook, and then measure your success!
At 9 Clouds, we find this tool extremely valuable for showing our automotive clients exactly how many dollars’ worth of conversions to which their Facebook advertising spend contributed. We report on Offline Events monthly, which gives the marketing managers at our client dealerships confidence about the ROI on their ad spend.
Ready to get started reporting on Offline Events? We’ve got a handy step-by-step post for you right here.
3. Dig into Your CRM
Depending on which CRM you use, there may be a lot of tools you’re not aware of. For example, perhaps you can analyze the conversion rate on all your lead sources. (And then wave goodbye to the subpar-performing ones and reallocate that money!)
Do you know how to create reports showing from which cities most of your customers are coming? Do you know which vehicle models have been the top sellers in the past six months? Can you easily identify those trends in your data? Do you know who your most profitable customers are? By mapping out this kind of information, you may discover an opportunity for targeting a nearby city or promoting a certain model.
If you’re not as familiar with your CRM as you’d like to be, you may need to get on a call with a member of its support team and ask them your questions. They’ll be happy to help!
4. Use a Third-Party Multi-Touch Attribution Tool
A customer interacts with many touchpoints before walking into your dealership and purchasing a car.
A multi-touch attribution tool calculates the impact of each touchpoint on every key performance indicator (KPI) in near-real-time to produce metrics that reflect the credit each channel and tactic deserves for its contribution.
With this data at your fingertips, you can see the return on ad spend (ROAS) from each of your marketing channels, and this can help you make strategic decisions when allocating your marketing budget.
You Are a Data Marketer
Call yourself a “creative analyst” if you need to — but your creativity needs data to flourish.
Without embracing your role as a data marketer, you’ll struggle to achieve a full marketing skill set, quantify your work, create a better customer experience, or help your clients.
So, friend, are you excited about your new title as a data marketer? If you’re not, that’s okay — that’s what we’re here for. Explore our data-backed case studies, or even schedule a personalized digital marketing assessment with us.
We’re happy to help you become an even better marketer!GET YOUR DIGITAL MARKETING ASSESSMENT »