By Jessica Carneiro, Senior Director of Analytics & Insights
Each day, there is new research and articles written about the changing behavior of consumers. Here are just a few recent examples:
- “How Digital Behavior Differs Among Millennials, Gen Xers and Boomers” from eMarketer
- “The Female Consumer Is Changing Her Online Behavior” from Huffington Post Tech blog
- “Mobility Reshapes Consumer Device Spending” from eWeek, based on a Gartner study
Despite these constant behavior changes, the key questions for marketers are the same: how do you plan a marketing strategy that addresses the right groups of consumers whether it’s a generational group, a particular lifestyle or interest group? And how do you continue to tweak your strategy as consumer behavior continues to change?
A good starting point to answer these questions is with another question: do you know what consumers are doing on your site and how they are interacting with your brand and product? If the answer is no or just somewhat, how can you find out?
One of the primary benefits of the digital world is the abundance of data. Marketers can leverage the massive amount of data that exists online to better understand who their customers are, and create programmatic marketing plans that are driven by data.
So here are a few places to start:
1) Create demographic and psychographic profiles of site visitors using third party data segments
By overlaying third party data segments against site visitors via cookie syncing, not only can marketers better understand the profiles of their visitors but they can also act on the data, by purchasing targeted ads online against the third party segments that resonate with visitors, or tailoring messaging and creative to speak to specific target audiences.
2) Use web analytics to understand how consumers are interacting on your site
Marketers can find synergies across products or features by looking at the user footprint on their site. They can then develop messaging or package their offering to address these product synergies.
3) Work with partners that can help identify other content and sites that customers are visiting online
Leverage online cookie trails to look at the type of content that resonate with customers. Are they avid news readers or movie aficionados looking at movie and entertainment content online? This information will help decide which publisher to invest in for premium placements online and even offline sponsorships and marketing programs.
If marketers are able to execute on all three approaches outlined above or even just one or two, the benefits of their efforts will clearly be visible in marketing returns. Instead of creating marketing strategies that rely on assumptions, they can use actual, real segmentation backed up by data. Leveraging data aggregators will provide more insights on multiple dimensions in one place (i.e. not just demographics but lifestyles, interest, in market and purchase propensity). Using online data also means that the insights are continuously updated so marketers can stay in tuned with their customers to monitor how audience profiles change over time and create a feedback loop to inform overall marketing strategy.