Data-driven marketing: what does it really mean?

Larisa Strunz
What is all the fuss regarding one of the currently most used buzzwords, and what is the data-driven approach?

More data is being collected than ever before. By mid-2020 the online retail sector experienced 10 years of growth within 6 months. During March and August, every 5th customer became brand disloyal, and every 6th customer attempted new digital shopping channels. To put this wealth of new data into context – users conduct 5.7 million Google searches, share 240k Facebook photos, and stream 452k hours of Netflix content every 60 seconds. For more surprising insights, read the “Data never sleeps” report by Domo.

A glimpse of 2020s “Every Minute” data collection

Now, what does that mean? Well, the swell in data gives marketers a bunch of new customer insights and thus a competitive advantage. This is where data-driven marketing comes in! It’s about using the collected customer data to develop personalized marketing strategies in order to achieve the highest possible return on investment.

How to use customer data to your advantage?

At TheVentury our work is driven by data simply because everything that can’t be measured isn’t worth doing. Data helps to make transparent decisions that deliver fast and positive results. It’s not the data by itself that delivers results. It’s much more the data transformation process that carves and cultivates your business’s competitive advantage. Therefore, you should use your data in the following ways:

Determine target audience

To create reflective audience content, it’s vital to first understand your target audience. Any customer information gained allows you to get a better understanding of your customers’ needs & wants and, therefore, target your audience with the right message at the right time.

Understanding your target audience

By understanding your customers, you can build a much stronger 1-to-1 customer experience on a massive scale. Regardless of your business size, by leveraging your data adeptly you can create a tailored customer experience with a million customers as easily as with a dozen. The result: A campaign that matches your customer’s expectations continuously.

Reach your target audience

After understanding your audience’s needs and building a strong connection, your data also provides insights on the best performing marketing channels to best engage with the customers today, as well as in the future.

When following these key insights, your data-driven marketing approach will be rewarded with:

  • A higher customer loyalty
  • An increase in new valuable customers
  • More satisfied customers
  • Recognizing trends
  • Prediction of customers’ interests
  • A higher return on investment

What types of data are Important?

Firstly, there is hardly any data that isn’t important however, the importance for you depends on your organizational goals. These goals guide you on what KPIs to measure and how to use them. Secondly, because of the immersive amount of data, only collect the data you will use.

The graphic below from Triggerbee, illustrates the most common types of data used in marketing, categorized by how useful they are and their amount of availability in that area.

For a better understanding of the graph is the data differentiated into “Hard Data” and “Soft Data”. While hard data like email address, phone number, and job title, will hardly change, soft data like behavior, activity, interests, and interactions will constantly change. Behavioral data is of high importance as e.g. by analyzing the website behavior of visitors you get insights into how people interact with your pages and their experience during their visit. The gives you the opportunity to direct visitors to targeted content.

To analyze your dataset, use the hard data for basic groupings and the soft data to personalize your marketing activities.

Where to get insightful data from?

As you already know, in data-driven marketing we work with a large amount of data. This data needs to be analyzed but also linked. Since this is a very complex task, there are certain tools to collect, structure, and evaluate your data. Thereby it is vital to consider the right KPIs depending on the channel.


One of my favorite and probably best-known online analytic tools is Google Analytics. Google Analytics analyzes the user’s behavior on your website and records certain KPIs like website traffic, number of page views, and length of stay. Another plus for Google is their Google Analytics Academy where they provide plenty of thoroughly explained online courses which cover everything you need to know.

Social media

To optimize your communication on social media, tools such as Brandwatch and Sysomos help to measure relevant KPIs like interactions, mentions, and shares. Furthermore, these tools analyze your post’s tonality and identify trends.

Marketing automation

At TheVentury we use HubSpot to combine our web analytics across our different marketing communication channels. By collecting our client’s data, HubSpot enables us to plan, set up, and analyze tailored marketing campaigns. Additionally, it helps our sales team with their lead management and our whole team to manage our customer relationships.

These tools will help you collect data and efficiently manage your digital communications. With data-driven marketing, you interact with prospective customers at the right time, through the right channel, and with content tailored to their needs.


For us marketers, data is an important decision-making tool in order to analyze and improve performance. By using data strategically, you will be rewarded with a higher return on investment.

However, data-driven marketing involves major challenges. To overcome those, you need the right tools to correctly manage, analyze and integrate your gathered data. Use your data to its full potential and constantly optimize your marketing content as well as online campaigns. Make sure you align your offers and products to your customers’ needs.

Looking for real measurable performance?

Get in contact with us to make the most out of your data and create a competitive advantage together!


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