Over the past decade there has been an unfathomable surge in the amount of consumer data potentially available to marketers – with more being created every second of every day.
This substantial increase in consumer data has been the driving force behind the term ‘big data’ becoming one of the hottest buzzwords among executives.
However, the time is long overdue to shift the conversation away from big data and instead toward smart data.
Smart data, at a basic level, refers to accurate, granular-level data that enables a retailer to build a relationship with its customers and also provides the retailer with the necessary information to improve the overall customer experience.
This shift is necessary as far too often, retailers get overly focused on the “big” aspect of big data – believing that if they have a lot of customer data, the insights will be readily apparent.
However, given the complexity of the data landscape, particularly in regard to marketing, and the importance of using the data correctly in the eye of the consumer, this simply isn’t the case.
The fact of the matter is, just having data is worthless.
Customer data only becomes valuable when retailers know how to structure it and how to use it – not only to benefit themselves, but also to benefit their customers.
You see, while finding and amassing the information is one thing, revealing the insights necessary to prosper is another thing entirely.
That’s why marketers and decision makers need to stop focusing on the endless amounts of data and concentrate on asking the right questions of their data.
When they begin to ask the right questions of their data, they can then turn those mounds of data into the answers they’re looking for – the answers that will allow them to understand their customers, understand how their best customers want to interact with their brand and products and build a marketing ecosystem of connected data that puts the customer first.
Without that proper insight into your customers, it becomes nearly impossible to optimize marketing programs and ensure that other activities drive a positive return.
The Bottom Line
Marketing budgets are not endless. Consequently, focusing resources on improving the channels that are most aligned with the behaviors of your customers is necessary to ensure that your budget delivers the greatest ROI.
Because when a retailer is able to deliver an experience that meets their customers’ expectations, customers are happy. And when customers are happy, they spend more and become more loyal.
But, if a retailer gets it wrong, that customer will be only too willing to take their business elsewhere.
Therefore, to win and retain customers, it’s imperative to have a real understanding of what your customers want and how they behave as opposed to what you think they want and how you think they behave.
Yet, achieving the type of understanding that reveals the specific values, needs and expectations of your customers is nearly impossible to do without the proper analytic solution.
If retailers use customer analytic solutions in the right way, it can provide a sharper perspective of your customers that can be used not only for targeted marketing, but also to guide everything from site selection to relevant product offerings, promotions, store designs and other elements of the overall brand concept.
If you want to learn more about Buxton’s analytic solutions and how they can help you put your customer at the center of your growth strategy, then we should talk.