Business Intelligence in Marketing

Business Intelligence in Marketing

Business intelligence is a tech-driven process which leverages software and services to transform data into actionable and meaningful insight that acquaints an organization's strategic and tactical business decisions. Due to various number of tools that enable all-sized businesses to analyze metrics and large amounts of data in real-time, BI is becoming a routine for marketers.
In the organizations, marketing and sales teams can take advantage of this information, organizing campaigns that more precisely target the right audience, and gain a better understanding of which initiatives generate the utmost revenue.

Marketing: An increasingly data-driven industry
It's an inescapable truth that marketing is becoming an increasingly data-driven industry. With many marketing tools – as well as both consumer and business audiences – existing online, everything is more measurable. Marketing as an industry is moving swiftly away from the shadowy arts of 'gut feel' towards evidence-based spending. Most aspects of modern marketing can be tracked and analyzed – from click-through rates on banner ads, to SEM marketing and PPC campaigns, the open rates of eDMs, tracking the movements of prospective clients around websites, monitoring visitor interaction with downloadable content, or social media engagement and reach.
However, rather than be daunted by this new status quo, marketers should view the movement towards measurement as an opportunity to hone their skills, perfect their campaigns and prove their worth. Data aggregation and analysis should always be treated as an ally and impartial guide.

Marketing analytics for social media
Social media marketing provides perhaps one of the best sources of real-time marketing and target audience feedback, offering a great way for companies to interact with customers, understand their preferences and gain direct response. But, while social media platforms produce a large amount of data, how can marketers collect, collate, analyze and act on that information in order to derive valuable insights and drive smarter decision-making?

Business Intelligence (BI) solutions – which deliver API connectors for third-party Web applications – offer marketers the capability to analyze data captured and generated by popular social media platforms, such as Twitter, LinkedIn or YouTube. This analysis provides a quick and cost-effective way of understanding the impact of social media marketing activities.

Proving ROI
What's more, BI software with such capabilities can be an incredibly useful way for time-pressed marketers to demonstrate the ROI of their social media campaigns. Furthermore, integrating such data with other data sources and types, within a BI platform, can also assist marketers to understand the relative value of social media activities compared to other tactics and campaigns.
Using BI in social media marketing can also help improve resource management, increase conversion rates and predict future trends and issues. Social media is an ever-changing environment that needs a reactive and flexible marketing strategy cemented by data-based insights.
By enabling users to automatically connect to third-party Web applications and analyze the data produced, BI software is empowering marketers to gain a holistic view of multiple social media platforms. In turn, this ensures quick and reliable decisions can be made based on myriad of data sources.

Point and click technology
But, while marketing as a profession is becoming increasingly technology driven, that doesn't mean most marketers possess the technical know-how of a professional data analyst.
For example, a marketing manager doesn't want to have to construct a new chart or dashboard within their BI solution in order to track the performance of the company YouTube channel. It's for precisely this reason that Yellowfin's development focus has been on the delivery of pre-built charts and dashboards, which provide the typical 'views' of data that most marketing specialists seek. That's why Yellowfin 7.2 ships with a range of API connectors out-of-the-box, including pre-built reports and dashboards, for applications such as LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube and more.

The democratization of data
A few years ago, this kind of comprehensive data analytics was reserved for corporate giants and heavily guarded by the IT department due to technical inaccessibility, cultural rigidity and sheer cost. However, we're now seeing the democratization of data, and increasing demand for BI software, throughout the enterprise and from much smaller businesses – including those without specialist IT departments.

With that uptick in, and broadening of, demand for BI software, which has been driven by the lowering of technical and financial barriers, it's likely that the easy analysis of social media applications will see an even greater number of smaller companies invest in BI software – emboldened by the ability to quickly garner customer insights and feedback.

Making the most of marketing analytics
Market research on the use of social media analytics shows the extent to which the technology is already being used. Demand Metric and Netbase surveyed 125 marketers and found that 60 percent of respondents used social media analytics for campaign tracking, 48 percent for brand analysis, and 40 percent for competitive intelligence.

Interestingly, the same research found the majority of respondents (66 percent) considered audience 'engagement' scores to be the most valuable insights gleaned from social media analytics tools.
More broadly, API connectors can assist marketers to quickly analyze the impact of a raft of marketing activities to demonstrate return on investment. Research indicates that analytics is set to play an increasingly important role in marketing departments and organizations across the globe.
The CMO Survey of 2015 – sponsored by the American Marketing Association, Duke University's Fuqua School of Business and research firm McKinsey & Company – found that spending on marketing analytics will increase 83 percent over the next three years. Another 2015 study, The State of Marketing Analytics: Insights in the age of the customer, predicted a 73 percent increase in spending on marketing analytics over the next three years, with big B2C companies increasing spend by around 100 percent over the same time period.

Best ways Business Intelligence can be applied to marketing:

Identifying Customer
Business Intelligence can integrate a company's entire business into one centrally managed solution, along with customer insights too. Customer data from CRM, email marketing, social media campaigns, and website engagements can be tracked in the company's data management platform. Even, organizations can practice BI software to list customers by the size and frequency of their orders, and their profitability. These all have become very significant for all business market areas because customers have now started interacting with an organization across multiple platforms and channels using companies' website, social media channels, live chat tools, among others.

Personalized Sales Strategy
It is always vital for marketing and sales team to comprehend other's business they are trying to work with. For a salesperson, it needs to learn every aspect of a company before pitching them. So, Business Intelligence here will make a company's sales strategies more composed and effective. BI tools can offer all the data required from the target company's turnover, budget plans, future expansion plans, sales numbers, competitors, among others. This research can provide the sales and marketing team more information that can help assess and prepare sales pitch on that basis.

Predictive Analytics
Predictive Analytics and other Business intelligence tools have transformed the way organizations yield, analyze, and harness data. For marketers, the best BI application is envisaging the behavior of individual customers. As it notifies the sales team's automated email campaign, they easily send out the right marketing messages for their stage in the sales pipe. It also enables marketers to send discounts and coupons to those who are close to walking out on their shopping cart, so they can attract shoppers into making a repeat purchase.

Enhancing Competitive Intelligence
Business Intelligence can assist companies to improve and enhance their competitive edge with the effective use of data and turn data into actionable insight. BI solutions make data accessible for accredited users and enable them to interrelate with competitive intelligence from one secure, centrally managed data warehouse. This allows organizations to make more strategic decisions by leveraging information quickly and accessing information in effective ways. It is also vital to have a grip on what the data collected is telling them, as this leads to better business decisions and better ROI.

Making Effective Business Model
Since a company's marketing team has all the data – market insights, customer behavior, competitor market strategy, they will work more on making their company's business model more enduring and result oriented. Like enhancing competitive intelligence and improving market intelligence, BI tools help the sales team to scrutinize the company's own data and consider all the external business information.]

Conclusion :
To achieve and sustain business success, every organization must define and manage marketing objectives with a complete understanding of how these objectives will support the overall strategy and goals of the enterprise. The cost of marketing to existing and prospective clients must be justified by actual customer acquisition and retention. Without accurate, dependable information to support the proposed marketing strategy, marketing directors and professionals will find it difficult to sell the executive team on the strategy and even more difficult to sustain a successful strategy over a period of weeks, months or years.

Marketing strategy has always been at the heart of enterprise success. To succeed in any industry, the business must first understand its customers, its enterprise capabilities and capacities, market and product demographics and trends and patterns in the market in which the company is engaged. To build upon that success, the enterprise must actively work to acquire and retain customers. Every customer has a buying behavior and it is imperative that the enterprise understand that behavior if they are to encourage sales.

The marketing strategy of any organization must be based on solid market research that clearly defines the market segment, target customer, demographic, required service levels, product and service requirements and trends and patterns in buying behavior. Without this critical feedback, no organization can accurately plan for product offerings or marketing techniques or campaigns.

To adapt to the changing competitive and market landscape, the organization must monitor changes in buying behavior based on demographics, geographies, psycho-graphics and behavioral buying data. True marketing business intelligence requires a concise data mining process using data from existing enterprise data bases and systems. However, many organizations find it difficult to leverage and understand this data, because the information they need resides in disparate locations and is difficult, if not impossible, to integrate and summarize.

Today's marketing professional needs a single view of data with the capacity to quickly and easily analyses this data, predict and forecast trends and analyses the root cause of issues before they present critical challenges to the enterprise strategy.

Author: Likitha Y

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