Written by 5 tips on getting the most out of your B2B marketing data (and on putting up curtain poles)

5 tips on getting the most out of your B2B marketing data (and on putting up curtain poles)

On the face of it putting up bay window curtain poles and B2B marketing don’t have a great deal in common. However, in my recent DIY attempt, and late into the night, there seemed to be some similarities between the two. Hopefully the connection is not too tenuous.

The x5 tip areas of commonality are all centered around numbers; how we prepare, how we interpret, how we formulate actions, and how we adjust. Are all based on numbers.

Layout the tools – every screw, joint, pole, bracket has its own function. As does the reporting from always on activity – website, emails, social (paid and organic), through to CRM. By doing this you can truly see where the necessary connections points are, what might be missing, and formulate your data strategy accordingly.

Tweet this: More than 66% of records were missing revenue and industry data, two critical components to lead scoring. (DNB, 2015)

Beware the instructions – no one window frame is identical (or certainly based on my measurements that seems to be the case). Just because another company reports in one way, does not mean you should follow suit. As they’ll have different focuses, and priorities. From ‘laying out the tools’ you’ll see where the data is coming from and in what format, to then decide how best to structure for different stakeholders, with the fundamental importance of providing agility.

Measure three times and then cut – once the pole is cut there is no going back, not without a trip to the DIY store to get a replacement. When setting up the report it is important to identify all necessary data points that need to be tracked, as shoehorning in at a later date may be complex/impossible. The data open to us and our businesses, provides the opportunity to create real 7 strategic insight; who to target, how to engage, stages of the buyer journey, suitability to pass to sales based on lead scoring their digital body language right the way through to leads that are then accepted/rejected as they venture down the sales funnel.

Tweet this: “Customer journey analysis is now the most valuable conversion rate optimization method, coming in above A/B testing.” (eMarketing)

Misalignment – the DIY novice’s worse nightmare. All the holes have been drilled, poles cut to length and during the assembly it doesn’t fit. The same can be said with data that flows through the business and marketing functions through to sales. Each team and area of the business will have their own focus around data, but what’s important is the accessibility and ability to share. The possibility for business misalignment could prove catastrophic. Particularly when it comes to engagement with the audience, a harmonised approach is critical for maximising the buyer journey experience.

Tweet this: Only about 22% of businesses are satisfied with their conversion rates. (Econsultancy, 2016)

Step away from the lintel – after x6hrs of measuring, drilling, assembling and aligning it can become all too easy not to take a step back and check progress. The sheer volume of data we have access to is astronomical. It is easy to become too focused on data from a certain area. By having clear reports providing top level information to help inform decisions, any requirement for data interrogation can then happen, without sapping too much time, and preventing agility.

Personally I’m all for using data (the right kind), to inform decisions before setting out on a B2B marketing journey. It can help prove, or even disprove points that we thought were important, preventing us getting hung up on the wrong things. However, there is the very real possibility of becoming too bogged down in the available ‘big data’ that our actions become sluggish. By taking a systematic approach to how data is collected, reported, shared and used, marketing will become positioned differently within the businesses’ mind-set.