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Marketing Alchemy: Turning Big Data into Big Insights

Tuesday, March 08, 2016

 “Big data really isn’t the end unto itself. It’s actually big insights from big data. It’s throwing away 99.999% of that data to find things that are actionable.”

–       Bob Borchers, Chief Marketing Officer for Dolby Laboratories

Data and knowledge are two very different things. Data without knowledge is about as useful as having petrol but no car – you’re not going to get very far and you’ll end up with a real headache.

Fortunately, there are some quick and easy ways to add context in Google Analytics, deriving knowledge from your data. User behaviour flow is one such feature – it shows the paths followed by customers on your website creating a visual map of the user journey.

So rather than just looking at a list of pages; it’s more about understanding the user journey, from a marketing touchpoint through your website. Where do they end up? How many leak out and where? What are the most popular pages? All of these questions can be answered quickly and simply with user behaviour flow.

Sounds good, right? But there is one major disadvantage: the data does not show any patterns. It shows many parallel flows of users going in different directions.


User behaviour flow

Tip! – User behaviour flow is also very useful to create visibility of customer behaviour on AJAX sites where all pages are tracked with events


User journey

But what use it the tool if it’s incapable of providing insight? The answer is simple: until you view the data through the lens of your marketing funnel and marketing personas, you’ll see averaged, uncleaned data, blurring any insights about your customers’ behaviour.

At Ambergreen, we know the danger of drowning in a sea of data, when even the sharpest minds can feel overwhelmed without easy-to-spot patterns. Fortunately we’ve developed an approach that’ll keep you afloat even in the most tempestuous of seas.

First, we start with a workshop to examine the existing perception of the marketing and sales funnel. Where do you think your customers’ journeys start? What sits at the top of the funnel? What touchpoints exist on customers’ paths? What pattern is more relevant to each stage of the marketing funnel?

Having both domain experts and data analysts in the same room gives us the opportunity to collect qualitative data about marketing and the product lifecycle, while backing this us with hard data. The result of this workshop is a framework of your sales funnel with marketing touchpoints and KPIs at each stage.

Persona workshop

Which persona do your customers fall in to?

Then, we create personas of your perceived customers. Who are the people who will be looking at your website? Are they the same people who will make a purchase decision? What do we know about these groups and what can we assume?

Our persona workshop walks you through the who, where, why, and how of your main customer segments, fleshing out a complete picture of your likely customers. When used alongside your sales funnel, the customer personas act as a sort of crib sheet, helping you identify who the potential customer is and where they are on their buying journey. With this insight at your fingertips, targeting a user with the right information in the right format at the right time becomes easy.

Finally, we analyse the data. At this stage, we are fully armed with the rules to segment customers by the marketing funnel and by personas. This makes it possible to filter out the noise in the data and boil it down to pure insights, e.g. what different personas do on each stage of the funnel, what the marketing touchpoints are, what format and tone of voice work best for them, and what support they need to convert more effectively.

Thus, applying the segmentation rules we derive during the funnel workshop and personas development, we make the data speak for itself. The only thing left to do is to combine the data about customers and their journey into one big picture.

This big picture view helps visualise a complete customer-centric marketing strategy, as well as guiding acquisition and retention strategies and optimising conversion rate going forward.

And there you have it! A handy customer journey canvas with KPIs based on a thorough understanding of customer behaviour at each stage of the funnel. This empowers your attribution modelling for the customer journey, helping you improve results for every marketing channel.

If you’d like to understand your customers behaviour, get in touch to arrange a call.

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