“What’s past is prologue,” said Antonio in Shakespeare’s The Tempest. We see this quote accurately reflected not only in daily life, but also in marketing: past prospect and customer behavior often predicts future behavior.
In fact, current prospects’ and customers’ behavior can also predict what future prospects/customers will do. You can use this to your advantage in marketing. Big time. All it takes is predictive analytics.
Predictive Analytics Defined
In brief, predictive analytics is the practice of using recent as well as historical data to predict/forecast future behaviors as well as trends and events. This is a great boon to digital marketing because it applies analytics and machine learning to both structured/unstructured data sets, resulting in predictive models. Translation? It will help you see which of your strategic digital marketing efforts actually work!
For example, imagine being able to:
- See when the most actionable activity by your prospects (activity that eventually results in purchasing) occurs.
- Discover which of your CTA buttons get the most clicks, and which then get the most desired actions.
- Discover the types of banners and promotions that receive the most clicks.
- Ascertain which of your site’s pages and features receive the most use.
- And so on.
Using Predictive Analytics: the Nitty Gritty
Qualifying and prioritizing leads.
Your digital marketing no doubt has produced bountiful leads. Predictive analytics will help you see how many are really, definitely qualified leads: the kind most likely to take action (download a free report, give you a call, purchase, etc.). You will be able to identify and land prospects that have attributes to your existing customers. (This is important because if a prospect acts as a current client did when they were a prospect, the newer prospect has a much better chance of becoming a client too.) With this information, you can prioritize following up with and courting these leads.
Creating laser-focused personas.
Now that you know which leads tend to become customers, you can create personas for those leads. No more guessing what types of prospects become customers; you will know exactly who does and you’ll create personas that help you target these truly perfect prospects. You’ll use the right content marketing, promotions and offers at the absolutely right time within their buyer’s journey.
Making truly strategic digital marketing plans.
Let’s say you find that your current prospects no longer buy from you at the same point, within the same digital venue (mobile, website, social media), or in the funnel as your previous buyers (changing buyer behavior). Predictive analytics can help you figure out if a mobile campaign would work better than one focused more on social media or vice versa.
With incredibly focused analysis comes complexity in its execution. Predictive analytics, in other words, is not simple and it’s not easy to build a model for use within your digital marketing strategy.
Because of this, we hope you’ll contact us here at Ingenex Digital Marketing to discuss using predictive analytics and/or schedule a chat with Jeff Hays, our director of client services. We look forward to hearing from you.