The concept of data-driven marketing promotes the idea that more information leads to better results. But while data is certainly crucial to informing impactful marketing strategies in the digital age, focusing on the wrong numbers is deeply counterproductive. And with nearly 329 million terabytes of data being created every single day, sorting through that amount of information to pull out strategically relevant intelligence is simply impossible.
This leads to what we call “analysis paralysis,” or the inability to derive insights from the information available to marketers due to the sheer volume of data being presented. We need to reckon with the fact that truly effective data-driven marketing strategies are not powered by simply having the data at our disposal — we need the right data to reach customers early in the buyer journey.
Let’s explore the phenomenon of analysis paralysis and how go-to-market (GTM) teams can pare back the noise to focus on the information that really matters.
Quality Over Quantity
For years, we’ve been operating in a world where we believed more data meant better insights. As the current artificial intelligence (AI) craze has given algorithms and AI-powered tools a vast array of data sources to pull from, it’s emerged as a strategy to combat systemic data bias. This is why AI exists in the first place: To process extensive amounts of data more efficiently than humans ever could.
But now that data-driven strategies have become the standard and most business is conducted digitally, it’s well past time to pivot to a quality over quantity mindset. More data does not necessarily mean more accuracy or better insights; if anything, it leads to the potential for more conclusions being drawn, all of which are up to interpretation, and many of which may be ineffective or irrelevant.
There’s no value in capturing anonymous behavioral traffic because that information isn’t indicative of a future purchase. Ambiguity won’t get you anywhere — data-driven insights will only be as valuable as the data itself. When there’s too much data to consider, marketing teams wear themselves out trying to craft a compelling story, but this uncertainty and guesswork can lead to imprecise conclusions.
The right tools will limit the number of different interpretations teams can make from the data available by using only the most viable authoritative sources.
Today’s B2B buyers are heavily influenced by their peers. As such, some of the most vital information marketers can tap into lives within prospects’ online interactions with their trusted colleagues and professional counterparts.
These conversations can prove even more valuable than third-party content analytics, as buyers are more likely to dive into specifics like their unique pain points and the solutions they’re considering with their peers. Forums like social media groups, review platforms, virtual conferences and more are a gold mine for teams looking to develop a keen understanding of their audience.
By leveraging tools that grant visibility into a potential buyer’s peer influences, revenue teams can hone their strategies and serve up the right information at the right time. This ultimately leaves them better equipped to deliver highly personalized and relevant content that’s more likely to resonate and lead to conversions.
This information also helps teams segment their target account list, devote energy and resources to leads most likely to convert and predict future purchases — an absolute must for those striving to scale reliable strategies in our persistently turbulent economic climate.
Today’s GTM teams have mountains of data at their fingertips. But that doesn’t necessarily mean they have mountains of quality insights to guide their campaigns. Instead of trying to interpret every single click and keystroke a prospective buyer makes, revenue teams must zero in on the behaviors that actually matter — namely, prospects’ online interactions with their peers.
The right technology will eliminate analysis paralysis by identifying true signals of buyer intent from only the most viable sources, taking guesswork out of the equation and ensuring teams are able to meet prospects where they are in their unique buyer journey.
Kevin Green is the President and CMO of Truent, a revenue intelligence platform. He is a growth-focused marketing leader with more than 20 years of experience building and leading diverse teams across marketing, product and sales at companies like Dell and T-Mobile before Truent.