Do you know where to look for data? Right now, it’s everywhere. Companies are using data right now as I type to create better decisions and taking actions that have been proven to work. Since this data is so accessible why aren’t you using it to grow your business? And how do you turn all of this data into action? Furthermore, how do you turn your data into revenue?

Data is a small four letter word that carries so much weight. It’s commonly referred to as a body of facts. So it could be facts about how people are reaching your site, seen through Google Analytics, or the demographics of your followers on Twitter. Data is everywhere and can virtually be anything. It’s a limitless supply of information. The creator of the World Wide Web, Tim Berners-Lee stated, “It’s difficult to imagine the power that you’re going to have when so many different sorts of data are available.” With the access to so much data, you as a business have been given so much power. Let’s look at ways to leverage it to your advantage.

Getting a Glimpse of Your Customer

Do you know who your true customers are? If you could describe your typical customers’ profile, what would you say? If you’re not exactly sure or if you’re just guessing, good news your data can help. Social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter Instagram etc. all include analytics that can tell you exactly who your audience is. Let’s take Facebook as our example.
Facebook’s out-of-the-box data analytics (what they call “Insights”) give you a glimpse of those who like your page. For this, we’ll take a look at our partners at Swings-N-Things in Olmsted Falls, Ohio. When we look at who likes their page we see that their largest audience is women aged from 25 to 34 years old -, 65% of their collective fan base. So what does this tell you? It tells you that you need to cater your message to reach these women. For Swings -N -Things, our primary message is to focus on mothers who are seeking an outlet of play for their children, based on the park’s offerings. So that’s what our strategy is for this client. We use the data given to us to create the strategy that makes the most sense.

Proactive Data Analytics 

Another tool that we use to turn the power of data into revenue is Google Analytics (GA). Now varying from Facebook’s “Insights”, Google’s analytics gives you so much more data that it can be a little overwhelming. Once you are able to read and understand the data, it leads you to understand your customers’ actions better. For example, where are your users coming from? Do they come from your social media accounts, Ad Words or simply through organic search?  Or you can use the data from Google Analytics to find the reason why your bounce rate on your homepage is so high. When you’re able to proactively read this data, it gives you the insight to make accurate decisions. Things such as the behavior flow, give you a perfect look into the movement of activity on your site. You can see where you have the most users dropping from your site. From there you can make the inference of what you need to do to keep them on board.  This is isn’t something that you can use leave at the bottom of your list. You need to be proactive when looking at this data. That’s how you turn data into revenue.

Social Media Data for Optimizing Ads

Now, we talked about looking at our Facebook “Insights” and Google Analytics. Next we’ll talk about using this data to create social media ads that will connect and convert. Continuing with our current example, Swings-N-Things, let’s venture into how we would optimize our ads with the data that we have access to. When you go into creating an ad, if you’re not familiar, the first thing you’ll need to do is to select a targeted audience. We know already that we want to make sure we target women aging from 24-35 years old. If we look at where most of users from G.A. come from we see that it’s Cleveland, Ohio. So to optimize this ad, we’ll target Facebook users who live in Cleveland, Ohio and surrounding areas, based on their current organic reach. Next, we move to our detailed targeting section. This is a place to specify which users you want to target that have these said interests. Switching back to our G.A. screen we can see the affinity categories that fit our users the best. It looks like we have movie lovers, TV lovers, shoppers, news junkies and travel buffs. So to translate that to our ad, we’ll enter movies, maybe some area malls and local news stations. This is gives us that holistic view of what our typical users looks like. From there you’ll go ahead and add your budget, schedule and creative components.
Yes, we used data to create the ad, but remember we need to still be proactive with this data. The great thing about online advertising is that you can go in and view how your ad is preforming in real time; see the data associated with your ad, and make proper adjustments. It’s best to check on your ad at least once a day or maybe even twice, that way you get the most out of what you are spending.

Hopefully this taught you a little of what data can do for you if you use it correctly. At WDD, data is one of our key components when building a strategy. From seeing where our clients lie and how we can reach them better to focusing on areas to improve on sites to keep the users there longer, data helps. But remember, data is useless unless you take action. Let’s use the power of data to increase your revenue.