How Data Can be Better Used in Business Marketing

The internet is heavy. How heavy is anyone’s guess, but IBM suggests that the world creates 2.5 quintillion bytes of new data every day. Learning how to manage this information is essential for smarter marketing through technology; and a good starting point for online retail would be to implement rigorous and reliable customer analytics. The advantage of customer analytics tools is that they not only provide you with actionable data, they also offer detailed insights into customer behaviour, such as buying trends and “boom” periods.

Small pieces of data, if gathered using an effective data management system, eventually build a large mosaic of the products and services people are most likely to view and buy from your website. Remember also that online customer behaviour can reflect offline behavior, customers are likely to view your products online before they enter a shop.

We are only at the beginnings of discovering what the internet can do. Marketing has undergone a seismic shift, away from broad, expensive, top-down marketing campaigns, to a customer-focused, “grass roots” form of marketing. Buzzwords, internet memes, word-of-mouth, events organised by potential customers … all of this data, travelling faster than ever, requires more complex statistical tools to analyse properly. Multidimensional scaling, crowdsourcing, behavioural and predictive analysis, multivariate tests and other extensive practices are the becoming necessary. Luckily, there are tools an organisation can procure in order to gather and utilise big data, and in doing so can produce detailed reports on any marketing campaigns taking place on any internet platform.

The ultimate challenge for any marketing department is creating a campaign that is both wide-reaching and personal, without being prohibitively expensive. Using smarter marketing tools allow a user to segmentcustomers by location, item preferences (e.g. “customers who bought this item also bought…”), customer behaviour and a multitude of other, progressively more niche metrics. This leads to more focused, cost-effective campaigns.

Furthermore, segmentation leads to greater opportunities for social marketing. Identifying repeat and influential customers becomes easier, and businesses can easily strengthen loyalty by rewarding them. Fostering and getting to grips with an individual’s relationship towards a brand has never been easier. You can not only gauge how your customers feel about your brand, but their feelings towards your competitors.

Smartphones have also added to the amount of available data. The phone has become a multi-sensory tool rather than just an audio one, but also possesses a number of key differences to home computers. Smartermarketing suggests that campaigns should be readable on all platforms, as well as targeting them according to which platform is used. Is most of your website traffic coming from smartphones and tablets? Why is this and how can you use this data to create new opportunities? Knowing where and what platform most of your data is coming from is essential for effective marketing.

Lastly, data can be used more effectively by visualising it properly. Representing data effectively, and finding ways to gather new and unusual data, can spur discussions and discovery amongst both employees and customers. Plus, there really is nothing better for marketers than a comprehensive map of your market. After all, you can only analyse what you see, and better tools help you see in greater detail.

Vijayraj Reddy
Vijayraj Reddy is founder & editor-in-chief of, a financial blog which helps people to earn money, invest money and save money. You can find him on Facebook & Twitter or send him email at [email protected]

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