For decades, marketing was essentially a crapshoot. Marketers would throw out a series of ad campaigns on TV, in publications, on billboards and buses, or wherever they thought their ideal audience would see it. And that’s the thing—a lot of marketing has been historically based on feelings that marketers have had. Which is risky as hell, and hasn’t always worked out for the team or agency responsible for the campaign.
Some marketing campaigns are just total flops. Anyone remember New Coke? For those who weren’t around for that disaster, picture this: Pepsi and Coke were having a literal war over cola, and Coke thought the answer would be to change its formula. Needless to say, it was portrayed as an admission of defeat and Coke lovers hated the new formula. They ended up having to revert back to the original formula, bringing them right back to square one. Coke never released information about how much they lost, but a number of sources estimate the losses to exceed $35M. Coke can afford the hit, but most companies couldn’t imagine losing that much on a single marketing campaign.
Other marketing efforts are entirely too successful, like the tattoo campaign launched by a small restaurant named Casa Sanchez in San Francisco. In 1999, owner Martha Sanchez decided to offer free burritos for life to anyone who got a tattoo of the Casa Sanchez logo, thinking that no one would ever do it. Much to her surprise (and chagrin) people started walking in with the tattoo. Sanchez quickly realized that if just 40 people got a tattoo, the Sanchez family would be out around $6M. She quickly walked back the campaign, proving that even small businesses take big risks with marketing initiatives.
Marketing has evolved exponentially in the last 20 years, and digital demand generation capabilities are expanding on a daily basis. While this is a boon for those who understand the digital marketplace, it can potentially create even more risk to those who aren’t as familiar with the nuances of digital marketing. While a whole team had to approve the concept of New Coke, it can only take one misinformed marketer to lose hundreds or even thousands on a cost per click ad with the wrong placement or guidelines.
The upside is that all of this technological advancement has also given us the gift of data. And that data can be used to reduce the inherent risks in modern marketing.
1. Predictive Analytics
Predictive analytics is a term that usually evokes thoughts of risk analysis in insurance and financial services. But the reality is that predictive analytics is used in healthcare and science fields, and even in retail and travel. Data is everywhere, and marketers also have the gift of predictive analytics at their fingertips.
In a 2016 survey conducted by Dimensional Research, 87% of respondents reported that predictive analytics improved marketing programs and drove higher conversion rates. That’s because predictive analytics can help marketers determine what, where, and when to market a specific product or service, or how to successfully deploy a campaign to a specific audience. Predictive analytics is changing the face of marketing, especially B2B demand generation, in a number of vital ways.
- 2. Hyperfocused Campaigns
Predictive analytics allows marketers to segment their audiences in a new way, with far deeper insights. It allows them to focus specifically on those most likely to be interested in a campaign, instead of wasting valuable marketing dollars on unlikely prospects. Furthermore, it gives marketers the ability to know exactly when and where to market to those interested parties, from specific times and days to specific channels.
All of this combines to create an incredibly effective demand generation strategy that removes a good chunk of the risk that marketers have historically become accustomed to. Buyer personas become a wealth of information, giving marketers a full behavioral model by which to set their campaigns.
- 3. Higher Conversions
Sales are the key ROI measurement in the marketing world, and there’s no better way to increase conversion rates than through predictive analytics. While saving money on the marketing side, a predictive model can also increase the revenue on the sales side of any organization.
By examining the behavior of a prospect and cross-checking that behavior with historical data and market insights, predictive analytics can determine which prospects have the highest chance of converting. This gives sales teams the ability to hone in on those individuals, while providing them with the ammo needed to engage directly with the prospect. It also opens a valuable lifeline between marketing, sales, and business intelligence.
A Bigger, Better Picture
Forecasting is everything in the modern business, and if your forecasts are inaccurate or if you’re not forecasting at all, then you’re at a severe disadvantage. Predictive modeling can help businesses determine the best places to spend their demand generation budgets.
In the bigger scheme, predictive analytics also opens the doors to the future for these internal teams. Forecasts can help marketers see a roadblock before it happens, or give them a better view of the next 5-10 years. Rather than heading down a path towards failure, predictive analytics can help marketers change course towards success.
To ensure success in digital marketing, data must be your foundation. From there, that data has to be used in a way that helps your sales and marketing teams obtain their goals, boost revenue, and reduce churn. Predictive analytics is one vital part of a recipe for marketing success. Find out how the Mobius Platform can give a predictive edge to your demand generation efforts and help you increase ROI. Want to see the Mobius Platform in action? Access our Mobius Case Study here.