7 Easy Ways to Keep Your Data In Check

When navigating through mounds of new customer data, it can often be unclear what direction you should turn. In an effort to help marketers make smarter decisions, here are seven simple ways to keep your data clean, in order, and most importantly, useful.

1.) Follow top security best practices. Initially, you might feel like Scrooge McDuck just swimming in rich amounts of customer data. But CMOs need to be extremely careful when it comes to data collection. Be sure to cross check whether or not the tools your marketing team is using is compliant with all necessary security standards and data is being ethically collected. While advertising and smart campaigns can help create a large following, all of that can collapse in seconds if security best practices aren’t being applied. Make a list of your data collection tools and double check whether or not they have the appropriate certifications.

2.) Unify your data. Messy data and an overflow of data sources makes an already confusing process even more murky. Find a solution (like Umbel) to unify all of your customer data sources so that as data comes in, it feeds seamlessly into one centralized location, allowing you the headspace to focus on strategic campaigns.

3.) Don’t lean on data at the expense of creativity. Just because you rely on data to prove several aspects of your marketing efforts, don’t become so data-driven that you don’t look expansively at new opportunities.. Carve out time for creative brainstorms and nix the “working backward” approach. Don’t just use data to power marketing formulaic campaigns, use it to inspire creativity.

4.)Take a ‘before’ and ‘after’ picture. Your team is probably actively A/B testing most of your campaigns with new images and new copy. However, CMOs need to take this one step further and create a clear “before data” and “after data” picture so that the rest of your organization has an understanding of how data impacts marketing efforts.

5.) Ask the right questions of your data. By understanding what metrics matter the most to your organization, these goals can serve as a compass for what you need to extract out of your data. Take a close look at that list and see how data can help offer solutions to help meet those goals.

6.) Keep your data sets growing. While your organization may already be collecting data from things like social or in your CRM, your marketing team should be thinking about new ways to grow your data set so that you can have a more robust picture of your audience. Whether it’s using social authentication tools to run giveaways on Facebook or using beacons at your next event, there are several ways to get more information about your audience with little effort. Think about ways to complete the entire profile of your audience and what types of data sets and tools your team needs to do this.

7.) Monitor ROI. ROI might not be the only way to measure the value of your data, but for most marketers this is probably the most important metric. While your data tools might be useful in helping to grow your data sets or visualize information you already have, make sure the findings are implemented in a way that helps increase ROI.

While data is a top priority for most marketers, navigating the data space can be tricky. Follow these simple practices to ensure that your data efforts are fruitful.