Why do marketers no longer depend on educated guesses and experience to come up with marketing ideas that are likely to please your audience? Kayla Matthews, Blogger at Productivity Bytes, writes about how data can be used to attract more customers.
Tips to Make Your Marketing More Effective
Tips to Make Your Marketing More Effective
As a marketer, you no longer have to only depend on educated guesses and experience to come up with marketing ideas likely to please your audience. The rise of data-driven tools and processes let you tap into statistics to find ideation success. Here are five tips you can try:


Identity Resolution is central to customer data management in the omni-channel world. Enterprise marketers would be unable to create winning CX without it. But customer data itself is both- a challenge and an opportunity.

Download 1. Come Up With Topics Based on Past Social Shares
One easy thing you can do to drive content ideation through data is to incorporate social media sharing buttons into all or most of your online content. Then, measure which published items get the most shares. You may be able to identify patterns in the statistics, such as that sharing activity goes up for particular topics or types of content.

Once you identify those trends, use them to determine the kinds of ideas you come up with next. Bear in mind, though, that sometimes it's not the topic alone that causes people to share something. Maybe they liked the format of a piece or appreciated the author's unique voice. So, it's necessary to dig deeper and find out what likely made your audience respond favorably to some pieces versus others.

2. Rely on Users' Historical Behavior When Serving Them Content
Spotify is a leading brand when it comes to giving users content they can enjoy for any occasion. The playlists it offers range from the specific (Space-Themed Classical Music) to the broad (Ultimate Indie). And, those are just examples of Spotify's playlists rather than the ones users make themselves.

But, Spotify uses data in creative ways to determine what should go on those playlists. It then suggests that people listen to them based on their past actions. To get an idea of how extensive of a reach that can give a single song, a Wired article gave an in-depth look at how playlists can help some artists rise to new heights. It gave the example of a remixed song called "Call On Me." After Spotify added it to several playlists, the song achieved 360 million streams.

Spotify's representatives confirm that they depend on a detailed process to figure out which songs will likely make it big, and they start using it months before such a popularity boost occurs. But, figuring out the next biggest hits is only part of Spotify's process. It then delivers those tailored playlists to listeners. The service also recently began offering playlists customized to individual users and based solely on what they listened to before.

You can take a page from Spotify's playbook by digging deep into the data that helps you build a profile of user behaviors. For example, if a person typically likes to download your white papers and e-books about industrial robotics, give them a prompt that encourages them to look at similar content available on your site.

One way that Spotify measures the popularity of a playlist is by looking at the number of followers it has. Consider relying on a similar approach whereby you look at the areas of your website that people tend to spend the most time, then come up with new content based on those sections.

3. Try Process Mining to Improve Company Strategies
Have you noticed a disconnect between your company's ideal processes and the processes it actually carries out? If so, you're dealing with a common problem that you can move towards solving with help from process mining. Using process mining means that you use dedicated tools to look at event logs and other application-based user data and see how your workflow conforms to the ideal process.

Process mining might tell you that there are too many people handling ideation for your content and that the diversity of opinion from each person means it takes too long to reach conclusions. Or, it might show that the average time it takes for an idea to come to fruition through content is twice as long as you thought.

Since process mining identifies where you fall short of the mark, it could provide a basis for making positive changes to the steps you go through for ideation or any other company necessity.

4. Collaborate With Teammates on Surveys Sent Through Microsoft 365
A time-tested way to generate new ideas is to directly ask your audience what kind of content they want to see. If you use Microsoft Forms and Teams, there's the option to work together with colleagues to write anonymous surveys. Then, you can send the results to internal parties or anyone who has the link.

Think about creating surveys that add weight to your ideation decisions. Maybe you're stuck trying to choose between two topics to give attention to on your site. In that case, the results of user surveys could help you feel more confident about the ultimate decision regarding the new idea for content.

If you don't have Microsoft 365, it's still worthwhile to consider the value of surveys — internal or external ones — for better ideation. They could shed light on topics you wouldn't otherwise consider. Additionally, if you use a ranking system that asks people to give a numerical value that indicates their interest in a given subject, you may find that some ideas you were going to use aren't well-liked.

5. Use the Metrics Provided By Google Analytics
A survey from SEMrush and the Content Marketing Institute found that 33% of content strategists cited it was challenging to come up with ideas for content that resonate with the target audience. Overcoming that challenge could be as straightforward as closely examining your Google Analytics stats.

If you run Google ads, the Analytics platform offers a search queries report that tells you what users typed in to see pages that generated your ads. You could use those insights to make intent-focused content. Or, if you find that some pages have extremely high Average Time on Page statistics, explore ways to make new content based on the information those pages contain.

On the other hand, if a page has an above-average exit rate, that means that people had a higher likelihood of leaving your site after viewing that page and looking at several other ones before it. It could be advantageous, then, to compare the characteristics between pages with a high exit rate and those that perform better by encouraging people to linger on the page for a while.

You could use the conclusions drawn from that exercise to kickstart your ideation efforts from the beginning or to help get out of a slump that happens midway through the process.

Data-Driven Ideation Is Easy to Benefit From , As these tips show, you don't need to have a wealth of experience with data or a suite of complex and expensive tools at your disposal. Those things aren't detrimental, but they're not prerequisites for finding ideation success through data-based practices.