Why data is key for a marketing campaign’s success
In the past five years, there has been a marked change in how data analytics is used for marketing campaigns. We’ve seen it change from a “nice to have” to a “must have”. Majority of marketers are using various data tools to plan and execute their campaigns. Analytics has a significant influence on marketing right from developing a campaign and channel distribution to metrics calculation.
Brands have come to realize that marketing works better when marketers can make data-backed decisions. The relevant data coupled with creativity could be the potential magic potion that produces great marketing campaigns. However, it is important to note that data to establish customized benchmarks and metrics of success, can only be built over a period of time.
Greenroom conducted a survey to understand how present-day marketers use data to plan and execute influencer and content marketing campaigns.
Data and Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing has been rapidly gaining popularity since 2016 and has become something of a buzzword today. Digital marketers are allocating an average of 2% to 10% of their digital budgets for influencer marketing. However, a question that still remains unanswered in the Influencer Marketing space is how to study the success of a campaign quantitatively. To understand how many marketers are using data to plan influencer campaigns, we asked our respondents questions about their influencer marketing methodologies.
A majority (65%) of the marketers have already used influencer marketing in their campaigns over the past year
Around 65% of the marketers have already worked with an influencer effectively for their brand campaigns. One of the key complaints by marketers to perform an influencer marketing campaign has been deriving strict parameters and metrics (Refer: Greenroom’s Influencer Marketing Report 2018). This could have had an impact on why most (57%) of the marketing professionals have shifted to a model where they use a blend of both qualitative and quantitative data to implement a campaign. A formidable 37% of the respondents still follow the marketing or the research team’s advice on being and form definable KPIs.
While data is being used to plan influencer campaigns, it becomes important to understand at which stage of the campaign to start using it. And this led us to our next set of questions about when to use data and how to use the data.
At which stage of the campaign is data most used for?
Data gathering can start well before the planning of a marketing campaign. At the planning stage, a simple genre based match or demography based match can help identify potential influencers for a particular campaign. In addition, one may even get to identify which influencers are used by competition and how well they fared. Entire campaign directions can be planned if data can be used optimally.
One key error that the majority of amateur marketing professionals make is that they assume that metrics and data are solely reserved for the last stage of the campaign execution, i.e, campaign success measurement. It has been proven repeatedly that while data does play a key role in setting KPIs and measurable success factors, it has also become critical in the planning stages of a marketing campaign.
Parts of the influencer marketing campaign where a platform/tool is used by marketers
The reporting stage of the campaign leads the charts in terms of tool usage
The majority of the experts still use data mainly in the result measurement. While data to understand the results of a campaign is a must, our observation is that data is extremely useful in the planning stages to increase the success probability of the campaign.
However, only 7% of the professionals still measure campaigns solely on a qualitative basis and this number is only decreasing.
While the importance of data is spoken about a lot today, many still grapple with how it can be used effectively. Let’s look at a few ways data can be used to plan campaigns all the way up to studying post-campaign results.
How can data be used in the various campaign stages?
Campaign Content – With thorough research, a brand can first figure out the most discussed topics on social media before generating campaign ideas. While Google Trends gives ample information, it could be important to get content insights for your specific brands and markets. This could help to create a larger plan to create a content plan. Hashtag selection is also something that can be done effectively using the relevant date.
In influencer marketing, active data analysis on trends can help create new relatable content. What increases the chances of success of a campaign is if the content is tailor-made for your audience.
Influencer selection – When a brand decides to go ahead with an influencer marketing campaign, this is the first big decision. Here are some questions that a brand should ask itself where data could definitely play a role.
- Which influencer do I pick?Look at data such as followers, audience demographics and engagement.
- Is the influencer’s image relevant to the brand?Yes. The brand should use past content data of the influencer to analyze topics and genre.
- Will the influencer successfully manage to project the brand image that the company wants to?Again, using past data to analyze how previous content in a similar space has performed will be a good indicator.
- Are the audience relevant and are they engaging with the influencer’s content?Straightforward data can be gathered here including influencer’s audience engagement, follow-unfollow rate, the average age of the audience, etc.Campaign Execution – How does data help with the execution stage of a campaign? Continue listening to the audience when the campaign is on. Monitor mentions of the brand name, analyze the information available to the public about the brand. This could even help in picking out any negative mentions or a bad reaction to your brand’s campaign. And if the campaign is extended over a period of time, necessary course corrections can be made along the way.
We also asked about some of the metrics that marketers use to pick influencers to understand the kind of data that generally drives a campaign.
A lot of the respondents and marketer’s key pain point in implementing an influencer marketing campaign is to determine success metrics. Here are some metrics that marketing professionals use and what they deem to be the most critical for measuring ROI.
69% of the respondents chose that they measure success by the increase in followers on the respective brand’s social media accounts and a close second with 54% was clicks on a trackable link. Something derivative from this answer is that brands majorly use influencer marketing to increase brand awareness, create a buzz, increase online conversations and drive sales.
Fake followers: A pressing issue?
A not-so-openly talked about obstacle of influencer marketing is the rising problem of fake followers. We all agree that social media platforms need to do more to combat fraudulent activities. Vetting these influencers and getting transparent numbers can be tedious and this is when technology helps. 31% of the marketers suggest that it is better to work with agencies who have a defined process or technology to vet fake followers. Alternately, using a platform that is built for this purpose could also come in handy.
Over the years, data-driven decisions have transformed marketing significantly. Marketing has not always been data-dependent but the outcome could be boundless when data-driven decisions are made. A marketing campaign’s success rate increases when it is carried with the help of data. Investing in campaigns that have been influenced by analyzed data can go a long way over time.
In a digital-friendly era, where information is available in plenty, it is very critical to use the relevant apps and software that will help us make sense of the countless data points available. Quant by Greenroom is an end-to-end influencer analytics platform that helps marketers with their entire campaign lifecycle – from influencers discovery with accurate data, through to campaign planning, tracking, and reporting.