Presented by Tableau 

Marketers have gotten the message: data matters.

Yes, we’ve gotten data-savvy, but many marketers still aren’t fully leveraging the value of their data. Let me tell you what I mean.

By now, we’ve all started using data to measure progress, spot opportunities, and reach new audiences. The problem is many marketers are doing so in their own corners of the building. That’s the baseline — the minimum viable set of marketing analytics, if you will.

Because marketing is a huge group effort, tracking the performance of just your own work doesn’t give you the whole picture. That’s why marketers should embrace a holistic approach to their data analysis. This involves connecting the data dots across functions and teams for a complete view of the entire marketing organization. That’s how you get to next-generation marketing analytics.

Why is this a better approach? Think of all the moving parts and stakeholders, and imagine linking all those pieces together through data. What if every marketer could explore the data to see the results of her work in the context of the greater effort? And what if the decision makers can see all of the data together to make strategic decisions quickly and move the business forward?

By pulling together all the data and empowering people to expand their analysis, marketing organizations can gain a full-picture view of their efforts. Here are some ways this integrated approach can maximize the impact of your work.

Capturing the full life of a lead

Many marketers have data snapshots of their leads’ journey down the funnel. These come in the form of metrics like email open rates, website visits, and web-form submissions. Sure, these metrics are valuable on their own, but when you stitch together these snapshots, you gain something even more valuable: the full life of a lead through the marketing funnel.

You can follow the data to see the person’s entire path — how you first reached the person, which content, channel, or activity triggered the highest point of engagement, when the person converted, what the resulting sale looked like, and what the customer’s journey has looked like since.

With all your data in one place, you start to see how the pieces fit together. Did A lead to B, to C, as you expected? If a prospect responded well to a free trial offer, what is the experience or content served up next? Is that an effective path? Where are the weak spots?

By looking at the entire journey, you can gain a deeper understanding of how customers and prospects engage with brand touch points — which are working, which aren’t, and which are sending people to competitors. Then you can refine your strategy to make sure your efforts deepen relationships, address needs, and improve your conversion rate.

Fine-tuning your media mix in real-time

The media mix is a huge part of the marketing budget as it plays a critical role in generating leads. It’s also an area that can benefit from an integrated approach to analytics.

Sure, data can be valuable in measuring the performance of each channel — whether digital ads managed to reach a certain target audience, for example. But looking at that single metric is only so valuable; it’s when you look at the performance of all the channels side by side that you start to see how to best reach your intended audience.

Let’s say your digital ads aren’t performing well for a certain campaign. If that’s the only metric you’re tracking, you’ll likely pause any spending on that channel and leave it at that. But if you’ve pulled together the data for all of your channels, that first metric can be your starting point. You can look to the data to see which channels are successfully reaching your intended audience. Then you can quickly reallocate your budget to those channels to maximize the reach of your campaign.

Your media strategy likely involves a dozen different platforms with different metrics. But that doesn’t mean those platforms have to work in silos. With real-time data and a comprehensive approach to your analytics, you can get the most reach out of every dollar you spend.

Empowering the sales team with full-picture insights

Having a 360-degree view of the data also helps you deepen your relationship with your internal customers, the sales team. For marketers, it’s crucial to build trust and partnership with sales, and transparency is a big part of that equation.

You can use data to demonstrate how they’re engaging with leads. One option is to create and share a campaign history dashboard so the sales team can easily see the prospect’s journey down the marketing funnel thus far. Share information like which activities occurred when, and which activities resonated with the prospect.

You can also create an activity tracker. Instead of making the sales team dig through rows of data to piece together history, offer a quick overview of activities that lets them click through to see what’s happening and when. With a real-time “who’s hot” dashboard, the sales team can drill down by territory and prioritize their lead queue.

Once you create these dashboards for sales, you can embed in a place the team frequents, like Salesforce or your CRM tool of choice. That way, they become a natural part of the team’s workflow.

Gaining a competitive edge with next-generation marketing analytics

Data-smart marketers are using data to move the needle in pockets across the organization. And now, it’s time to take the next step in your analytics journey. By bringing together all the data for a complete view of your analytics, you can leverage the full value of your data. You can connect dots and uncover broader actionable insights that can impact strategy at the organizational level. With next-generation marketing analytics, the entire organization can work smarter, innovate faster, and gain a competitive edge.

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