Data mining. It is the foundation of great personalized marketing, but it strikes fear into the hearts of many marketers. The reality is that this fear is unfounded since data mining is well within the grasp of any sized marketer.
Let’s break it down into three simple steps.
1. Find out what’s in there.
The first step is to understand the field headings in your database. Most databases have basic information like name, address and purchase history. Are you also capturing information such as age, gender and home ownership? What data do you actually have?
2. Ask questions.
Knowing what data you have tells you the types of queries you can run. Running queries simply means asking questions of the data. If you are a retailer you might ask, “Which customers purchased hardwood flooring last month?” If you know that these customers are also likely to purchase area rugs and floor conditioning products, this gives you a great start.
3. Look for relationships.
The next step is to run data sorts. Is there a relationship between hardwood flooring and gender? How about income? Are customers more likely to purchase hardwood flooring at different times of year than others?
Even basic software like Microsoft Excel or Microsoft Access provides sorting capabilities. Or you might want to purchase add-on data mining modules or third-party software. If you need to outsource, there are plenty of companies that specialize in this process for very reasonable costs.
So get curious. Take a few hours to run a variety of sorts just to see what you can find.
Once you know what’s in your data, you’ve asked questions of your data, and discovered relationships within the data, it’s time to act on what you find. That curiosity could make a big difference to the bottom line.
Looking for proof that personalization works? An InfoTrends study of the marketing communication needs (including printing and variable data) of various businesses finds that marketing efforts featuring a higher level of personalization complexity results in a higher return on investment.
The survey of over 1,000 large businesses across 10 different vertical industries found that more than 60% of respondents’ campaigns were personalized or segmented. Response rates went up as the campaigns included more channels and become more complex.
Print-only campaigns achieved an average response rate of 6.0%, while print combined with personalized URLs achieved an average response rate of 7.6%. Adding email increased response rates to 8.2%. Adding mobile increased them to 8.7%. Evidence that more channels = more results!
The report also found that conversion rates were higher in a multi-channel mix. Print alone achieved an average conversion rate of 16.2%, while the combination of print, email, personalized URLs. Mobile achieved an average conversion rate of 19.0%.
The takeaway? If you want better results, personalize your marketing message. If you want outstanding results, use multiple channels to sweep non-responders into the sales funnel and reinforce the message over time.
|Campaign||Response Rate||Conversion Rate|
|Print and Email||7.6%||18.3%|
|Print and PURLs||7.6%||15.3%|
|Print, Email and PURLs||8.2%||16.5%|
|Print, Email, PURLs and Mobile||8.7%||19.0%|
|Source: InfoTrends, 2012|
Quick! Name a soft drink. Chances are you thought of Coke or Pepsi. These beverage giants have spent millions in advertising with the goal of being top of mind among consumers from age five to ninety-five—and they have been very successful at doing it.
Top-of-mind-awareness, or TOMA, is a traditional measure of marketing effectiveness. It strongly correlates to brand preference, which correlates to increased market share. Here are a few ways to achieve “top of mind” awareness in your product marketplace.
Find your unique selling proposition. Consider what makes your company special. Is it market niche? Exceptional service? Highly targeted products and services? Clearly articulate this value proposition to your prospects, and make this value proposition simple and easy to remember.
Be proactive. While a one-time advertising blitz can get your message out quickly to a large number of prospects, TOMA requires a drip marketing approach — a consistent delivery of messaging over time. So keep it coming.
Use consistent branding. Everything from your customer literature to your e-newsletters should have consistent messaging and similar look and feel. One brand, one message.
Use multiple touches and multiple channels. Stay in front of your audience using multiple channels over time. Awareness is based on repetition.
Be useful. Frequency doesn’t have to mean being annoying. You want your customers to perceive you as a provider of useful information rather than an intrusive pest. Communicate information frequently, but give your audience genuine value each time.
Never before have consumers had so many choices. TOMA should be a top goal of your marketing efforts. It will help customers notice you in a noisy marketplace, increasing customer retention and response rates.
by: Al Urbanski, Senior Writer – Direct Marketing News
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