Customer Insights: Does Your Brand Need a GPS?
Let's take a look at a quick example to illustrate how customer insights can benefit a marketing program: Jane Smith, an online marketing manager for a sporting goods retailer, was working to develop a plan for the fourth quarter, her most important quarter of the year. To hit her overall revenue and return on investment goals for the year, Jane knew it needed to be a success. However, given the uncertain economic environment, she was concerned that performance might be down. Given that, she needed a new strategy that would help ensure she met her goals. But with limited funds and strict return on investment targets, Jane wasn't sure how best to spend her marketing dollars.
For a new approach, Jane turned to her historical data to see what consumer insights she could find that might help guide her strategy. Analyzing last year's paid search data, Jane saw that coupon and sale-related terms converted at an extremely high rate. Looking at her trends for this year, she noted that volume for those terms was on the rise. This data told Jane that her customers are very price sensitive and looking for compelling offers. That information would be important to factor into her new strategy. However, while coupon and sale-related terms convert at a high rate, they're highly competitive, so they wouldn't meet profitability targets due to their high cost per click.
So what did Jane do? She implemented an aggressive search retargeting campaign to target shoppers searching for sales and coupons. Retargeting allowed Jane to capture customers and prospects who were ready to buy and it enabled her to reach them at a much lower cost per click than paid search. In the end, this strategy helped Jane to drive incremental revenue and meet her fourth quarter ROI targets.
5 Ways to Leverage Consumer Insights
Data can help you better understand your audience and is critical to the development of an effective marketing strategy. Here are five tips for retailers on how to best tap into the value of consumer insights:
1. Prioritize. The assets and content you develop should be based on what's most relevant to your customer. Just because everyone is talking about Facebook doesn't mean the social media site is important to your audience. Make sure you understand the top destinations for your key search terms, what sites are visited before and after your site, and which of your landing pages perform best. This data will help you better understand which content is most relevant to your audience and in which stage of the purchase funnel.
2. Leverage. Fully capitalize on all the content assets you develop. Once you've determined which content is most relevant to your customers, research where else on the web they're spending their time and look to syndicate your content to those channels. It will be more effective to try and reach your customers where they spend their time online rather than trying to force them back to your website.
3. Learn. Find out how your customers are using different devices (e.g., smartphones, tablets), then tailor your advertising messaging and landing page experiences accordingly.
This knowledge will help you develop experiences based on how your customers shop and progress through the purchase path. For example, one of the main uses of tablet devices, according to Google, is shopping.
Tablets are being termed "couch companions" because they're typically used at home in the evenings and weekends to browse. Therefore, it's important to make sure your messaging targeted for tablet devices focuses on those consumers in the middle of the purchase funnel, and that the landing page experience provides the information and tools your customers need to learn more about your products or services.