Your Marketing Intelligence System Cheat Sheet

Make marketing intelligence work for your organization.

Data Standardization Worksheet

This worksheet begins with the standardization of your performance data. We’ll walk you through how to combine these mismatched data sets in a step-by-step process so that every metric is speaking the same, common language. With all of your data standardized, it’s easier to locate the strengths of each platform and hone in on ways to optimize campaign performance.

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Marketing Intelligence System

What is a marketing intelligence system? Marketing intelligence is comprised of all the data that organizations collect about their marketing campaigns. That includes their prospective customers, current buyers, and their buyer journeys. It includes all their major customer touch points and broader spectrum data such as their customer demographics.

Every year, marketing intelligence becomes larger. Companies find themselves hoarding terabytes of data that they can’t glean any actionable insights from. The more data there is, the harder it is to comb through it. The more difficult it becomes for any organization to try to direct their marketing campaigns in a reasonable fashion.

But that doesn’t mean that marketing data can just be ignored. It has to be analyzed. If marketing data isn’t analyzed properly, marketers can’t tell whether their campaigns are working, how much money they’re spending, what their ROI or ROAS is, or which strategies are working the best. They can’t identify when they’ve reached marketing saturation, when they need to try new strategies, or when their current strategies are failing.

A marketing intelligence system is a system that consolidates this information so that the marketer can use it. An advertising intelligence system is a system that’s able to ensure that the data is valid and allow marketers to customize how they use that data — so they can adapt their reporting to their current marketing campaigns.

Altogether, marketing intelligence systems are what actually make marketing data useful or usable. Otherwise, the data is there but it can’t really be analyzed or accessed.

Marketing Intelligence Example

Let’s take a brief look at a marketing intelligence example. A marketer is using both LinkedIn and their website to try to secure B2B customers. On LinkedIn, the data shows that their posts are gaining a tremendous amount of traction for users between the ages of 39 to 59. But on their website, the data shows that the people who are committing are aged 29 to 49. What’s happening?

Well, with the appropriate marketing intelligence, a marketer can see that the people from LinkedIn are crossing over in equal numbers to the website. But, for some reason, only younger users are actually committing. The answer could be very simple: the website is optimized for more youthful people. The marketing language on the website is targeted toward the young.

With this information, the marketer can try two strategies. One, the marketer could broaden the language on the website, to make it more appealing to older demographics. But that’s a little risky. The other safer strategy might be to increase advertising spend on promoting LinkedIn posts to individuals 29 to 49. This would increase the effectiveness of advertising.

Without being able to see data from LinkedIn and the website simultaneously, the marketer might never realize that there was a core mismatch regarding who was being brought to the website and who was able to commit. Because the demographic information that LinkedIn holds wouldn’t be passed on to the website. The marketing intelligence software system is what makes it possible to gain these realizations.

Marketing Intelligence Tools

What are some of the mar-tech tools that are often used to collect marketing intelligence? Every platform collects its own marketing data. LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter; all of it has demographic information. Without a single, consolidated system, many marketers find themselves importing this data into Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets, where they are able to consolidate and analyze it. This understandably takes time and doesn’t always yield the results that the marketers need.

Some marketing intelligence tools will consolidate this information automatically. They will give you a basic dashboard that shows you everything you need to know about how these different platforms are performing. Further, they may give you tools such as the ability to schedule posts, the ability to check posts for search engine optimization, and the ability to target posts to specific keywords or audiences. Marketing intelligence tools are targeted at collecting information and analyzing it.

There are marketing intelligence tools that consolidate information, correct it, analyze it, and make it possible for marketers to follow this information throughout their advertising campaigns. An example of this is Lumenad. Lumenad makes it possible for marketers to complete end-to-end data analysis on their paid advertising strategies, from channel to channel. This forms the basis of a type of marketing intelligence called Advertising Intelligence.

Having a reliable mar-tech stack is critical for companies that want to be able to gather the right insights from their marketing data. With more data available than ever before, it’s even more important.

Marketing Intelligence Sources

There are both free marketing intelligence sources and paid ones. And there are also differences between them.

Some free marketing intelligence sources include Google Analytics, Facebook Insights, and other per-platform suites. But these suites generally only relate to a single platform. Google Analytics can tell you where traffic is coming from (such as social media sites), but it’s not going to be able to tell you in-depth information about the activity on those platforms. Similarly, Facebook can forward users to your website, but loses track of them once they have left the platform. (There are some exceptions through pixel-tracking, but these are likely to soon become defunct.)

A free marketing intelligence platform is a great way to see the performance of a single channel. But it falters with multi-channel campaigns. Most organizations today are running multi-channel campaigns and they need to be able to see how these campaigns are interacting with each other. If they can’t, they aren’t going to be able to make the right decisions regarding their strategies and their spend.

Better are paid marketing intelligence sources. Though they do require payment (usually as a subscription service), they are far more robust. Most commercial marketing sources (though not all of them) can use multiple platforms at once. They will bring in the data from multiple platforms and give marketers reports that include these platforms. They will also try their best to untangle the interactivity between these platforms, so marketers have a better picture of the buyer’s journey.

Not all paid marketing intelligence resources are multi-channel. There are also intelligent resources that focus on a single channel, but still try their best to help with analyzing data. Marketers need to have a marketing intelligence system that can bring in all their data. Otherwise, they will find themselves spending more time than they need to managing their advertising campaigns.

Steps To Improve Marketing Intelligence

How do you improve your organization’s marketing intelligence? By taking it step-by-step. There’s a lot of marketing intelligence out there. A lot of it is complex and interrelated. The best way to improve it is by creating a mar-tech stack and structuring and analyzing your data appropriately.

Every company is different. So every marketing campaign is going to be different, too. But Lumenad has developed four steps to Advertising Intelligence that can be extended to improve marketing intelligence, as well.

  • Connect. You will need to connect to multiple platforms in order to ensure that you’ve received all your data. There’s a lot of marketing data out there; if you aren’t connecting to all your platforms, you could have gaps in your knowledge.
  • Transform. All the data from each platform has to be transformed in a way that apples-to-apples comparisons can be made. Is each platform gauging traffic the same way? These are adjustments that have to be made.
  • Organize. Users need to be able to organize this data effectively to meet their own marketing strategies. Because marketing strategies can significantly differ depending on the organization, industry, and size of the company.
  • Apply. Once the marketing strategy has been applied, it’s critical that the user be able to track the strategy in real-time through a centralized, consolidated dashboard.

Together, these steps should make it far easier for a company to manage its marketing strategies.

What Makes Up A Marketing Intelligence System?

At the end of the day, what makes up a marketing intelligence system? First, the marketing intelligence system has to be able to collect a lot of confusing data. It has to be able to aggregate this data and then analyze it. It has to allow users to modify this analysis and configure it for their own strategies. And it has to be able to produce reports that are easy to read. These are the key components of what makes up a marketing intelligence system.

But along with that, the marketing intelligence system should be user-friendly. It should be robust. It should contain everything that the marketer needs, including every platform. It should be able to integrate with these platforms or even push information to them, as well as pulling data. A marketing intelligence platform should give marketers everything they need to meet their own key performance indicators, regardless of what those key performance indicators might be.

Benefits Of Marketing Intelligence

While marketing intelligence may be complex, the benefits of marketing intelligence are very clear. The core benefits of marketing intelligence are that they save the organization money and that they save the marketer time.

In terms of marketing, marketers are able to consolidate their information and analyze their information much faster, because they have all the information they need at their fingertips. In terms of the organization itself, they are able to make decisions that benefit the organization because they have better data regarding the marketing campaigns that are or aren’t working.

Marketing intelligence makes the entire process of marketing easier, faster, and more effective. It’s a key technology today. Without marketing intelligence, marketers have access to data they cannot use. Multi-channel campaigns become very confusing and difficult to optimize. And companies end up throwing dollars at the wall and seeing what sticks.