We’ve been told all our lives that knowledge is power.
This is why we subscribe to blogs, can’t be separated from our phones, and leave TweetDeck open all day. The more information we can ingest, the better off we’ll be. Or so we think.
Recent research by Princeton and Stanford University psychologists suggests that all of our obsessing over information actually reduces the quality of our decisions. The study, titled “On the Pursuit and Misuse of Useless Information,” indicates that making decisions is about having the right data, not the most data.
The Deluge of Data
This is bad news for the modern marketer who is beset on all sides with data from industry reports, analytics suites, and a whole host of disparate marketing tools. As we become more reliant on data for our decision making, it is becoming harder and harder for marketers to focus on the data that truly matters.
So what data should marketers prioritize? Marketers need to be focused on determining the accurate ROI of marketing initiatives, creating transparency in their sales cycle, and understanding campaign and content performance, not pageviews and social shares.
With so much data clouding a marketer’s vision, it is more important than ever to have a marketing automation platform to provide clarity in these areas.
Failing to accurately track ROI has always been the bane of marketers and has kept marketing on the sidelines of budgeting and strategy meetings for years. Marketing automation closes the loop on your reporting, attributing each closed deal to the campaign or conversion point that sourced them.
Added Clarity: Accurate ROI raises the accountability of the marketing department, providing insight into how campaigns are truly performing. This clarity also better positions marketing within a company to make decisions and obtain a larger piece of the budget.
B2B sales cycles often tend to be longer and more complex than those of consumer products. This leaves the lifecycle of a lead hazy and ambiguous for many marketers. However, marketing automation solutions can provide a complete story of how your customers move through the sales cycle, how long they spend at each stage, and whether or not your sales funnel has any holes.
Added Clarity: A better understanding of a lead’s lifecycle allows you to structure your campaigns and initiatives to be more timely and can help you identify and shore up any holes in your sales funnel.
Create Most Effective Marketing Mix
The real strength of marketing automation comes from the integration of multiple marketing channels. With all of this data in one place, it is easy to compare performance and effectiveness of your marketing channels. This allows you to structure your marketing mix to maximize your lead generation. Marketing automation solutions go beyond the number of conversions generated by each channel and provide detailed information about the quality of those conversions.
Added Clarity: Knowing which channels are providing the highest quality leads allows you to better balance that channel in your marketing mix.
In a business environment quickly becoming overcrowded with data, marketing automation can be an indispensable tool for cutting through the extraneous information to the data that truly matters.