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A Guide to Finetuning Your Marketing Engine

Maximizing the value of your marketing resources is the key to achieving lasting performance in your online campaigns. Yet without the tools to drive this the process, your team are likely working in the dark with only a small glimmer of light to guide their way forward. It’s time to illuminate the path to marketing success, using data points and precise tracking as your tools. In this latest guide, our marketing experts will explain how to ensure marketing results through tangible, proven-effective steps. We’ll explain how to hone in your most important data points and how to optimize your future campaigns based on a clear set of guidelines. You’ll learn how to:

  • Harness the creative power of your brand and its marketing partners
  • Improve your media spend ROI
  • Make continuous strategic choices using the most current data
  • Empower data driven insights

Overcome the 3 Marketing ROI Challenges

  1. Imprecise Targeting

By embracing the chaotic and ever-changing nature of your campaign performance data, you can track your audience effectively throughout their market journey. We know that driving ROI from a marketing campaign means serving ads directly to those who are most likely to convert, with little margin for error. Simply targeting specific buyer personas with a set number and style of ad is unlikely to yield long-term returns.

Data shows that 20% of a marketing budget should be allocated to the testing process, which involves trying out new techniques and experimenting with directing content towards different audiences. Taking on the testing process regularly will help to open up your campaigns to potential avenues for growth.

The most important asset for any marketing manager is the ability to optimize their targeting to ensure their media budget is continuously being used to target the most responsive audience.

Here’s how you can finetune your audience tracking:

Closely examine the trends in performance

With data from mobile, desktop, social media, PPC, and other online marketing campaigns separated into silos, there’s no end to the metrics you can use for analysis and reporting. The sheer amount of data available can be overwhelming, particularly for smaller marketing teams. To complete precise analysis of this vast swath of data, it’s important to isolate the points you wish to understand better. For example, “Why did your PPC campaigns perform better last week than they have in months?”. Did you make a recent change? Are your keywords seeing a higher search volume?

Develop your hypothesis based on the data revealed and then complete an A/B test with clearly defined variables to test the hypothesis. Now, once you have the required testing data to form a conclusion, you can go back and form a new hypothesis. Keep repeating this process to extract full value from your tracking work. Marketing intelligence software can help within this process. The software works to analyze data, and then visualize the results for you. It can help you gain insights about your marketing data sooner, so you can then capitalize on potential targeting opportunities for superior results.

Invest in tools that surface the ideal metrics

By investing in tools that offer a precise insight into campaign performance, you can quickly pinpoint challenges and opportunities within your campaigns. Consider for example the Velocidi marketing intelligence platform, which harnesses AI to highlight the dimensions that matter most. It can help you to identify the actions that tell you the most about a particular audience. Since it’s based on the latest AI technology, it learns with you and becomes more attuned to the type of metrics that bring the most value to your marketing process.

Commit to the testing process

While you might now have a clear idea of your target audience, you may not be able to maintain engagement with each piece of content you roll out through your ad server. This highlights the value of continual testing. Even if you’re seeing immediate and significant returns from your targeting, testing can help to ensure you’re not missing out on potential revenue streams. There is no end to the data you can uncover on a potential audience, and testing will ensure your insights don’t become stale as your audiences evolve.

  1. Unreliable Ad Data

The research shows that $12 billion in ad spend was wasted in 2016.[i] If you look at the figure on a global scale, it represents about 20% of worldwide digital advertising. But while organizations such as the Association of National Advertisers and White Ops have predicted a 10% decrease in fraud related financial losses for 2017,[ii] those committing fraud are devising new techniques to fool advertisers. So, what can your team do to combat the problem of ad fraud?

In addition to investing in the latest tools and technology to stay informed on evolving threats, it’s important that your teams also learn how to identify potential signs of fraud within the data. To help you during this process, here are a couple of tips for identifying unreliable data:

Beware of inconsistencies

In some cases, even sources of high levels of traffic produce no conversions. While this might lead you to believe there’s a problem with the creative or offer, the issue could be related to invalid bot traffic. One of the best way to detect bot activity is to check for unusually high bounce rates from one particular source. Compare bounce rates between sources and look for rates that are far above average. This is a good indicator that your data is unreliable.

Working with an AI-powered marketing intelligence platform can help provide you more information on the data within your system. The platform can provide you with clear visualizations, to show you point-by-point the trends that are being impacted by outliers. This information can then be used to better manage your spending and isolate sources of suspicious activity.

Look down the supply chain

One additional area of focus to help isolate ad fraud is to look down the supply chain at publishers and agencies. With all parties having a stake in the performance of ad campaigns, it’s important to enter into data sharing agreements with your partners. All stakeholders should be able to gain visual confirmation on the numbers to ensure their authenticity. This is supported by using a marketing intelligence tool such as Velocidi, which allows for seamless sharing of important campaign data downstream and between stakeholders. The tool allows for all partners to gain insight into performance data without the need to disseminate Excel documents and undertake data analysis via email.

By gaining access to clean data, and building a data-sharing connection with other stakeholders, you can then move forward in targeting your prospects more effectively.

  1. Delayed Data

Gaining access to data can help your marketing team make strategic choices about its campaigns moving forward. It’s critical to make the connection before you’ve spent all of your campaign budget.

A recent study by eMarketer looked at the length of time it took users of analytics tools to gain insights from their data[iii]. The study showed that less than a third obtained their insights in fewer than 24 hours, 37% had to wait 1 to 5 days for insights. While another 36% said they gained insights only after somewhere between 6 and 30 days. Making sure that you’re a part of those who gain insights in a few days or less can help you extract maximum value from your campaigns.

Your company should be making your data a part of your everyday decision making. Rather than simply looking at the post-mortem of a campaign and using that information to hone data practices moving forward, the analytical process should be completed in real-time, using live, actionable data. It’s why it’s now so important to choose the right marketing tool for the analysis process.

Empower data analysis with the tools for success

AI-based marketing intelligence tools helps surface buried insights on a daily basis, and present these insights in the form of charts and daily alerts. You’ll then have the opportunity to probe the data and delve into trends within your campaigns. These AI tools won’t be able to help you to analyze each element of your campaign, but they will be able to hone in on the data that is most important to the campaign’s success. They’ll tell you immediately which data is most important and how to maximize the use of this data when reaching out to prospects in your various segments.

The AI tool learns with you and reacts to market and audience trends based on the data you act upon. This process not only makes your marketing campaigns more efficient, but it can help you become a more skillful strategist. You’ll become more adept at asking the right questions, testing ads against hypotheses and reviewing the results from all the angles. In the process, you’ll have the foundation for setting up campaigns for long-term ROI.

In Summary

Make your marketing intelligence platform the hub of your data collection apparatus. You’ll learn alongside the system what works and what doesn’t when interacting with audiences, and you’ll also discover which audience members can deliver the most value to your company over the coming years. This process of incremental optimization can help bring your brand to the forefront of the industry while driving revenue growth from one campaign to the next.

[i] https://www.axios.com/nearly-20-of-digital-ad-spend-could-be-fraud-2318152243.html
[ii] https://adexchanger.com/ad-exchange-news/anawhite-ops-ad-fraud-will-actually-go-2017-7-2-billion-6-5-billion/
[iii] https://www.interana.com/blog/state-data-insights-can-solve-2017s-biggest-data-problems/

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