3 Data-Driven Steps to Build Brand Engagement

Written by Erick Mott, Cassie Lee  | 

3 Data-Driven Steps to Build Brand Engagement

No matter what you sell or how you engage your customers across channels, your team has more information at their fingertips today than your e-commerce and retailing forerunners ever did. The growing amount of data that companies capture not only can help optimize marketing program strategies through measurement, but also act as a valuable resource for branding and media relations. We lose great opportunities if we’re unable to create meaningful interactions with all our target audiences, and proprietary data is an excellent source of information on trends in an industry and the value of a product or service for customers.

But your organization faces a big challenge: How do you best manage all that data and convert it into valuable insights to drive engagement and brand assets?

What Does A Data-Driven Brand Look Like?

Today, we’re beginning to figure out how not just to gather the data, but also use it to serve both our customers and our companies. Take the Fitbit, for example. You might have one of these personal wellness tools on your wrist right now. It captures data every second of the day, from the steps you take to the pace and distance you run, your heart rate, how many stairs you climbed and how long you slept. Then, it packages and displays that data in ways you can understand and apply to alter personal behavior and improve lifestyle outcomes.

So, what we need is a Fitbit-style perspective for our businesses that sorts through all of the data streaming in from online checkouts, customer feedback forms, and other sources. Then, display it so that businesses can personalize their messaging to improve engagement.

Through some simple analysis and data visualization, you can turn your data into a narrative that will benefit your brand by building authoritative credibility as an expert in your industry, boosting social and web engagement, and improving customer experiences.

3 Steps to Build Your Brand With Data

Let’s look at three steps you can take to turn your data into a content goldmine.

Evaluation: Uncover and Analyze Data From Various Sources

If you’re collecting data on customer behavior through product marketing and sales performance, you can use analytics to gain useful insights on your industry as a whole. For example, you might recognize your customers are more often converted through mobile ads than marketing email campaigns. This data provides a compelling commentary on user behavior, which may be relevant to your industry peers, too.

“Data drives the personalization of marketing messages, which in turn builds customer engagement and creates a better experience,” says Drew Neisser, founder and CEO of Renegade LLC and author of "The CMO's Periodic Table: A Renegade's Guide to Marketing.”

Storytelling: Construct a Narrative That Relates to Your Brand

Once you have a list of data findings, it's time to develop an outline of your story. The ability to own the narrative is one of the biggest opportunities of leveraging proprietary data for marketing. By using multiple data points from a single, trustworthy source — as opposed to gathering and repackaging potentially conflicting data from myriad sources — you’re able to build a cohesive story leveraging accurate and powerful insights. This enables marketers to create a consistent narrative that integrates seamlessly with their brand. For data-driven storytelling, I like to use infographics, not just because of its highly visual format, but also because it serves as a good foundation for developing secondary content. I recommend creating an infographic that illustrates  the challenge, the business opportunity the solution presents, and the steps to finding the solution — setting the framework for additional pieces.

When building an outline from your full data set, keep in mind the amount of information you want your readers to absorb by keeping your story short and concise. Pull out the top insights you want to get across to your audience and either toss or save the other insights for another time.

Building Authority: Repurpose Data Insights into Digital Assets

By using your own data, there is a great opportunity to become the authority in your industry around a particular topic. Eric Tunquist, former vice president of customer feedback for the restaurant company, Jack in the Box, was successful in helping operators understand and act on customer feedback. He advises that the data should be presented in a way that is actionable, timely, and ties to business results. Marketers can make more money from acting on the information provided by  creating several assets from their insights that are all linked together to maximize searchable content and engagement.

For example, you could start by publishing an infographic, since it’s easily digestible, and then expand upon specific insights in blog posts, white papers, and case studies.

To increase the number of people sourcing your company as an expert, make it really easy for people to share your content and cite you. Put your infographic on visual platforms like Visual.ly and Pinterest on the infographic landing page, create different options for embed codes and tweetables. Not only will external use of your data and content drive enhanced search ranking via inbound referral traffic, it can also establish you as an expert on the subject matter, unveiling new opportunities you never knew existed. By creating a rich story and several assets based on proprietary trustworthy data, you can have a significant impact on your reputation as a thought leader in your industry.

Header photo by Scott Graham on Unsplash

About the author

Erick Mott is a co-creator, blogger and speaker @Creatorbase. He shares ideas and insights about creator competency, digital transformation, customer experience, modern marketing, and workforce success. Mott is based in the San Francisco Bay Area and has 25 years of experience in creating value for agency, enterprise, media, and startup companies.

Written by Erick Mott, Cassie Lee  | 


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