Are You Keeping up with the Pack?

24 Mar 2015  |  by Melanie Davis

Compare Yourself Against 5 Key Data Driven Marketing Trends. Find out what FastStats® users are really doing...

As the marketing manager for a company that targets other marketers I am often wondering what everyone else is up to and whether I’m keeping up with the continual fast pace. So when we held our annual user conference in November last year, not only did I think a survey of 250 delegates would be useful for our development team, I also thought what a great opportunity it would be to learn what stage everyone else is at with their data driven marketing strategies. I was keen to learn:

  • How much is everyone else using social media and are they managing to track engagement levels?
  • Is everyone still focussing on email as their main channel and what type of messages are they using it for?
  • What data sources is everyone else consolidating and using for insight?
  • Am I sending out enough communications and keeping up with the automation of key marketing processes and campaigns?
  • How much should I be worrying about data volumes?

I was reassured, inspired and somewhat relieved when working through the results of the “quick-fire” survey. In some cases I seem to be up there with the rest of the pack, others where I’m doing OK, but in some cases I’ve identified areas that need more focus. But surveys like this make you realise that everyone is in the same boat. There are those who are steaming ahead in some areas, such as marketing automation, managing huge data volumes and sending vast volumes of highly targeted communications. Then there are those who don’t analyse their social media response at all, aspire to automate their marketing but haven’t managed it yet and those expecting huge rises in data volumes that they need to cope with over the coming months.

Here are 5 key data marketing trends. How do you compare?

  1. It’s no surprise that everyone is focussing on social media – but are you measuring your social media response? The majority of our survey respondents use social media nearly 80%) within their organisations. Rather comically 33% of respondents selected the “…all we do is tweet, post & comment!” option. Only 1 in 7 respondents are using specialist social media software to measure activity. A quarter of respondents manually track social media engagements and nearly 25% of respondents don’t analyse their social media response at all.
  2. Email is the dominant marketing channel – but what are you using it for? Email was the dominant marketing channel for 63% of respondents during 2014, followed by direct mail for less than one third of all respondents. Retention and upselling was the overwhelming dominant purpose of email marketing for the majority of respondents (68%), followed by acquisition (15%) and customer service (7%).
  3. Campaign & response data are key data sources - but what data sources are you using for analysis and campaigning? When asked what data is held within their FastStats® data analysis and campaign management systems, most respondents cited campaign data and response data, 36% and 32% respectively. This was followed by website visitor data (16%) and smaller numbers holding cookie, social and advertising data.
  4. The most popular number of campaigns sent per week is 5 or less – are you an occasional or frequent communicator? The most popular number of campaigns sent per week by 28% of respondents is five or less. Interestingly 12% of respondents send over 50 campaigns a week, perhaps due to the increased use of automation. A third of respondents have already implemented marketing automation software within their businesses and half plan, or aspire, to do so. 13% of respondents run less than 1 campaign per week.
  5. Many expect their data volumes to grow dramatically this year – are you steadily growing or do you need to plan for more dramatic changes? 27% of respondents expect their data to grow by 10% over the next year, however almost half of all respondents expect more dramatic increases of 50% (21%), double (14%) or many fold (12%).

I shall take inspiration from those who are steaming ahead with their data driven marketing strategies, but I’m also aware that every business needs something slightly different. For some organisations sending over 50 campaigns a week is essential, for others one a week is appropriate. I hope you also feel inspired by the findings and use the knowledge about other marketers to create and shape your own unique marketing strategies.  

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Melanie Davis

Group marketing manager

Since 2007 Mel has led the Apteco marketing team in driving the Apteco brand. She has been a B2B marketer in the data and marketing technology sectors for over 20 years. Her aim is to ensure that Apteco is a trusted and respected brand that is the first point of call for all data driven marketers.

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