5 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
You’re reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.
Using insights gathered from data to create stories and determine direction is nothing new for today’s marketer. Data is a fantastic foundation on which to start building your story; however, in its raw form, how strong of an account is the data telling? According to a CMO Survey, analytics and intelligence continue to dominate how online sellers rate their marketing knowledge quality. Business intelligence and predictive analytics are the closest measures we have to a crystal ball that shows us how well new strategies and campaigns will perform. Proper analysis and implementation of these resources determine which organizations are winning and making the right decisions regarding their marketing strategies.
The data has reached an astronomical level
There is no shortage of consumer and behavioral data to be used for predicting how your efforts will transpire. Over the past couple of years, nearly all of the world’s data has been collected and created. That is over two quintillion bytes of data that are created by humans every single day. Marketing investments must be justified, as 93% of CMOs claim that they are under more pressure from executives to produce measurable ROIs. Now, more than ever, it is imperative to utilize reliable, predictive analytics to substantiate marketing decisions and strategies. Aside from the obvious benefits, many compelling reasons explain why marketers can’t ignore the importance of data.
Just look at a few of the stats:
- 53 per cent of marketers agree that data-driven marketing produces more relevant communications and allows them to be more customer-centric
- 64 per cent of marketing executives believe that data-driven marketing is imperative to the success of their companies in the competitive global economy, and
- 87 per cent of marketers consider data to be their companies’ most underutilized asset
Any great marketer knows the intrinsic value of data and its role in today’s marketing. However, there is still much to learn about utilizing the data from artificial intelligence and predictive analytics to create insights that tell compelling stories to consumers.
Using predictive analytics to drive your strategy
Less than half of all CMOs use quantitative data to support their strategies and decision-making. By leveraging artificial intelligence, predictive analytics, and machine learning with data, algorithms, and models, we as marketers can communicate more effectively with our audience. Through predictive analytics and business intelligence, CMOs can better understand consumer behavior, optimize their resources and investments, and retain customers—so why are more than half of today’s companies underutilizing this resource? They likely still don’t fully understand the capabilities and resources associated with predictive data analytics.
A few examples regarding how to implement predictive analytics include:
- Audience segmentation through cluster modeling
- Using identification modeling to acquire new customers
- Scoring leads through propensity modeling and predictive scoring
- Using collaborative filtering to recommend advertisements and content
- Using augmented segmentation to personalize experiences
Netflix is a vital example of a marketing team that uses its data to produce analytics that predicts what their users want to see and how they search. Netflix collects data from search keywords, ratings, dates watched, preferred genres, and even when a user hits pause. Through data collection and complex analytics, models can discover human behavior and buyer patterns, so much so that Netflix bases 75 per cent of viewer activity on personalized recommendations. At over 151 million subscribers, that is a massive dataset; however, Netflix knows what shows to renew and which shows to recommend to its users based on past behavior and expected behavioral patterns. This strategy has consistently led to win after win for Netflix, and at no surprise to their executive team.
Using Artificial Intelligence to Forecast Your Wins
Business intelligence empowers marketers to obtain comprehensive consumer insights that can shape their marketing and communication strategies with their target consumers. However, many US and UK marketers believe that their companies lack the resources to analyze copious amounts of data. How can these companies utilize business intelligence to make informed decisions? Choosing the right tools is not a simple task.
Before considering which business intelligence or predictive analytics resources to invest in, marketers must determine the features they consider beneficial and useful for their goals. Practical business intelligence tools should include dashboards, various forms of analytics, technology integration, unified consumer data, and marketing KPIs. There are a number of business intelligence tools that are well-suited for any marketer’s budget.
Marketers that utilize business intelligence in forecasting and decision making see a greater return on their marketing investments. Artificial intelligence helps marketing professionals design better campaigns, target a more responsive audience, and generate better results. Companies and marketers need to ensure that they are employing the right team and business intelligence resources to accurately manage, organize, and interpret massive amounts of raw data.
There is little need to worry about available resources as the demand for business intelligence tools grows at an astonishing rate. Cloud and mobile business intelligence services are, by far, the fastest-growing segment, with the market for them growing by 42% in the last year. Furthermore, small businesses realize the value, as over 46% of them currently use cloud services as a tool for their business intelligence strategy.
The Bottom Line
The future for companies that refuse to implement predictive analytics and business intelligence into their strategy development and marketing plans will suffer greatly. As more marketing professionals utilize these resources, their outreach and marketing efforts are going to reach levels of customization unseen in the past. Those who can’t keep up will lose their audiences to those who have spent the time and resources to understand them better.
As we move forward, predictive analytics and business intelligence tools are becoming further integrated into the tools already used and respected by marketers, demonstrating a demand within the industry that is as strong as the demand from consumers to receive personalized advertisements and content. Marketing professionals who optimize their strategies with these resources will experience more wins and know when they are on the right path.