The Wonderful World of Data

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However, in today's rapidly changing environment, business owners, communicators and marketers representing companies and brands can no longer count on tradtional marketing techniques to reach intended audiences. Marketer's must now reach potential consumers and other members of their ‘community’ via targeted, personalized and meaningful messages. But the question remains, how?

Enter the wonderful and often perplexing world of data. The very first step in formulating effective messaging begins with a basic understanding of modern data. Now we’re not talking about mega-data or crunching big sets of numbers over long periods of time to identify purchasing patterns and other outcomes; we’re talking about understanding basic data to gain insight into who is interested in your product or service and how to reach them.

At Perfect we are often asked to analyze data sets on behalf of our clients to help them determine the best way to reach their clients via printed material. However, we recently looked inward to gain a better understanding of our own customers in an effort to communicate with them in a more targeted specific manner and this is what we discovered.

– The average age of our contact and decision maker is 36 and predominantly female.
– Our top thirty customers fall into one of four vertical markets including: Finance, Academia, Non-profit (both philanthropic and associations / professional societies), or Healthcare.
– Additional and emerging clients can be found in the Retail, Apparel and Entertainment space.
– The overwhelming majority of our top customers have both creative and in-house marketing teams.
– Turnaround time, consistency across platforms, variable data and strategic insight are considered to be the main benefits in working with Perfect.
– The majority of our customers are located within 45 miles of our facility (although we support global efforts for several clients)
– The majority of our clients are either employed by, or have an understanding, of design, communications and marketing concepts and methodologies.

These and other findings have helped shaped our communications to our client base in fun and interesting ways. For example, each and every year we print a deliver a Perfect calendar for our customers. This year we hired a local designer for the layout and an illustrator from Philadelphia to design the artwork for our gift (Click here to see illustrations). His renderings included illustrations of Ben Franklin riding on a Vespa, scenes from the Jersey Shore and a reference to the Pocono’s, all regional hallmarks that our audience could identify with.

We are also in the process of joomla_4eloping an additional campaign that speaks to our customer’s professions but that hasn’t launched yet so you’ll have to wait to learn more about that program.

In the end, it doesn’t take a scientist to cull through your data and identify opportunities for messaging. In most cases, the real work is obtaining the information in a way that makes sense (we simply identified buckets of information including addresses, industry, staff, purchasing history, etc.) in an effort to create what we call connection categories.

Once the gathering of the data is complete a few identifiable trends should rise to the top and help you gain a better understanding of what your audience may want to see in your communication to them.

For an article on understanding the intersection of consumer behavior and big data

 

Photo credit: http://www.pronq.com/
 

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