How to Use Data Driven Marketing Results to Know Where to Advertise - dummies

How to Use Data Driven Marketing Results to Know Where to Advertise

By David Semmelroth

Your overall marketing presence is most effective if it’s coordinated. Using your data driven marketing results is a good way to coordinate those efforts. You want your company and brand to show a consistent face to consumers, regardless of how you’re communicating with them. In part, this means keeping the messages and offers that you’re communicating through database marketing campaigns consistent with messages and offers being advertised through other channels.

But there’s another way you can help to optimize your company’s marketing presence. One of the big challenges for advertising is figuring out where and how to advertise. In a nutshell, this amounts to deciding what types of media to buy, when, and how much. Your customer profiles are very useful in this process.

Traditional media

Traditional media is an umbrella term that refers essentially to non-electronic channels. The typical examples are television, print, radio, and even billboards. The term old media is often used to distinguish these channels from new media like the Internet and social networking sites.

The cost of advertising in any given channel depends, quite simply, on the number of people that you can reach. The pinnacle of television advertising is the Super Bowl. The problem is that at a million dollars plus per minute, that air time is out of reach for most marketing budgets.

But for a million dollars, you can get a great deal of advertising done. Super Bowl commercials work because virtually everyone sees them. But, your target audience is usually not everyone.

The companies that sell advertising in these traditional media generally have a pretty good sense of the audience they’re reaching. Television stations, for example, get a lot of viewer demographic information from the Nielson surveys that have been run for decades. Magazines have demographic profiles of their subscribers.

The trick in purchasing advertising is to match up those audience profiles with the profiles of customers you want to reach. This is where you come in.

There are a number of ways to profile your customers. Among them, demographic profiles and geographic profiles tie most closely with the way advertising audiences are segmented. By profiling your past customers based on the types of data that define advertising audiences, you can help to get advertising in front of the consumers for whom it is relevant.

Television networks are just that. By definition, these networks have local affiliates. Advertising can be purchased selectively by geography. That means you can help focus this geographic exposure by segmenting your past purchasers based on their place of residence.

Demographics, particularly age and gender, play a huge role in TV audience profiles. But they also play heavily in describing the subscription base for print media, such as magazines. Put your marketing hat on and page through any periodical. You’ll find an amazing uniformity in the types of ads that appear in it.

This uniformity is a reflection of demographic profiling. More specifically, it’s a reflection of the matching up of demographic profiles. The periodical has developed subscriber profiles. The products that are advertised in its pages are targeted at consumers with profiles that are similar to those of the subscriber base.

“New” media

Customer profiles play a similar role in the purchase of online and other electronically delivered advertising. But in the case of these new media channels, the profiles can be significantly more robust than those used in offline channels.

A tremendous amount of surfing data can be used to analyze consumer behavior online. For this reason, transaction-based customer profiles are central to deciding which ads to serve up and where. But this doesn’t mean that more traditional demographic profiles don’t have their place.

Getting your website to pop up on search engine pages is a major component of online marketing. Search engines are getting ever more sophisticated about serving up content based on more than just search terms.

In particular, many search engines build consumer profiles based on past search behavior and which websites were actually viewed. They then serve up search results selectively based on a user’s profile as well as what terms the user searched for. And you can buy sponsored search-result placement based on these profiles.

Social media websites are doing the same thing. They sell advertising placement based on customer profiles. These profiles are built using data from both user registration information as well as site usage.

Here again, you can be of assistance. The marketing done via Internet and other new media is done largely independently of offline marketing databases. That’s largely due to the rapid evolution of new media channels and the need to adapt quickly.

To the extent that your marketing database contains information that’s not available online, you have an opportunity to help out your online partners. Profiles that you build based on offline transactions or demographics can still be useful in new media marketing efforts. Offline profiles are used more and more frequently to drive online prospecting.

The idea is to look for new customers online who fit the offline profile of a profitable customer. And in most cases, it’s beneficial to keep profiles consistent across channels. It facilitates a seamless customer experience with your brand.