Math Marketing is the intelligent use of metrics so we snipe for fruitful leads with unerring accuracy. It has probably been around as far back as the souk markets of Ancient Egypt, although their math was basic. However, the arrival of Big Data made things possible of which they only dreamed.
Let’s dive in, and examine the eight math marketing steps available to 21st Century business.
1. Intelligent Customer Acquisition
Acquiring new customers is an expensive, time-consuming thing we have to do to stay ahead. We can improve our marketing performance by tailoring marketing messages so they are relevant to the types of leads we want. Surprisingly, just 36.6% of companies use analytics to analyze how effective these messages are.
If we have a centralized database within the company, then everyone has the same information about where each lead is in the funnel, and can direct their actions accordingly. Knowing their purchase history, consumption, and social media profile is powerful medicine indeed. Searching out signals of intent to transact, adds a rich layer of deep meaning to the data. This information is often in individual demographics. Are they planning a one-off purchase, or appointing a sole supplier? When we know the difference, we can respond accordingly. The keys are often in existing customer records. This information opens the door to scientific Math Marketing.
2. Goal-Directed Data Collection
When we look around intelligently, we discover we already have a wealth of data about how our market segments behave. What we need to do is sort it into categories of personal demographics, personal interests, purchasing patterns, loyalty card use, and social media behavior. By comparing this with customer history, we get a clearer idea of what each lead is likely to do next. Here are some focus points to consider:
- Where our customers are, and what their metrics tell us about their preferences as consumers
- What day of the week, and what time of the day are they active on our website, and clicking
- How they discovered us in the first place, and how we acquired their contact information
- Their personal demographics, that could point us to their preferences and interests
- Their choice of social media platform (s), activity profiles, and how engaged they are
3. Data Cleansing and Segmentation
Data collection provides a pile of interesting facts, hypotheses, and ideas.
Right now, it is like a pile of bricks waiting to become a useful house.
We start by discarding the information that is of questionable value. Next, we digitally file the rest so we can store, manage, and periodically re-cleanse it. Now we can sort the information logically, so we can extract different angles on our leads that confirm, or refute pursuing them further. The actual structure depends on the nature of your business. There is no cookie cutter, but you may find it useful starting with these metrics:
- Google analytic reports of on-page activities on our website, including views, clicks, and downloads
- The extent we reach the market through our website, on social media, and other digital efforts
- Whether or not these strategies are producing leads, and which we should pursue in future
- How many of these leads convert to cash.
This information enables us to score our initiatives. The next step in implementing a Math Marketing strategy is finding trends in our cleansed and segmented data.
4. Identifying Patterns of Audience Behavior
We begin to use the power of Big Data to interrogate the information and find correlations between audience profiles, and consumer behavior. Providers like Google Analytics, HubSpot Marketing & Sales Reports, Kissmetrics, and Social Media Insights have tools on the cloud for us, and dashboards we don’t need a math PhD to use.
Once we get our minds around the technology, we soon start discovering nuggets of patterns and trends. We can also differentiate, and synthesize various market segments, as we move towards a goal-directed, sniper-accurate Math Marketing plan. We might for example compare the behavior of leads against the total traffic to our website.
This may lead us to uncharted waters we never expected, yet which make complete sense in hindsight. Seasonal and time-of-day trends yield valuable clues to when to reach out to whom, and regarding which products. As the pieces fall in place, we begin to wonder why it took so long to stumble over the benefits of Math Marketing.
5. Identifying Probabilities and Statistics
While statistics is the process of collecting and analyzing large volumes of numbers, probabilities are the likelihood of things happening. Math Marketing uses information about leads, and their collective demographics to predict which leads are most likely to do business. We can only touch on this intriguing science here. If I stimulated your interest to know more about the topic, I achieved my goal.
Excel has useful tools to check frequency distributions, determine the spread of values, correlate two variables, and cross-tabulate between certain behaviors and particular demographics. We can also do qualitative analysis with word-cloud generators like Wordle. If we do a survey with open-ended questions to determine market preferences, we can load the responses to it, and get a visual of comparable word use among subjects. None of this would have been so easily possible a few years ago.
6. Uncovering the Essential Buyer Persona
At its heart, Math Marketing develops the ideal buyer personas we should chase. They are collective descriptions of sub-consumer groups we build from our raw data and ethnographic research results into cultural behavior we can buy. After we define a segment, we can enrich our results with surveys of community groups through social media mapping.
As we move to complete this step, these artificial personalities acquire their own identities. Naming them is an idea well worth doing. Then we can summarize the nature of a lead among us by saying ‘she’s a Susan’ or ‘he’s a Harry’. ‘Harry’s’ or ‘Susan’s’ personas will contain their demographic profiles plus, importantly, what they hope to achieve by engaging with our industry. Finally, in order to avoid overlaps, duplications, and confusion we need a statement that discriminates a particular collective persona from all others in our set. This could be a demographic such as age, or a behavior such as social climbing. The final touch should be which of our products they will likely target.
7. Predictions and Benchmarks for Success
A Math Marketing dashboard enables us to forecast likely outcomes of marketing initiatives sniping particular personas. This allows us to justify our strategy financially before we begin. Here we use historic data from past marketing efforts as guideline, overlaid by our own objective view of what changed subsequently since then. In return, we obtain a profit or loss estimate, or a return on investment (ROI).
We calculate profit or loss as follows:Estimated total revenue generated by a particular campaignLESS Cost of goods to produce and deliver the product or service = Gross ProfitLESS The accountant’s best-guess apportionment of overheads = Net Profit
We calculate marketing return on investment (ROI) differently:Gross Profit MINUS marketing investment
Cost of the Investment
We use this information to prioritize opportunities in terms of likely profitability, before we go ahead and deploy our Marketing strategy.
8. Automated Deployment of the Data
We have done well so far when we reach this stage, for we have a marketing campaign based on statistics, and probabilities we calculated. While we may appear to face a daunting task and a mountain of work to climb, the plans we have mesh perfectly with HubSpot customer relationship software-on-a-cloud.
HubSpot empowers us to manage our pipeline, by automating our digital marketing effort through parameters we set on its dashboard. We don’t need to know how to code, or even how it works in the background. We tell it what to do in terms of our personas and tagged email lists, hit the proceed button, and wait for the leads to come in.
HubSpot also gives us remarkable insights into how well we are doing after it sends conversion-rich email messages using its templates. These go off in terms of personalized parameters we set, and we receive notifications when a recipient opens a message, or clicks a link. With that knowledge in hand a real person takes over, for we have a lead with the right profile knocking at our door.
In Conclusion, and Wrapping Up
Math Marketing is a fact-based, logical tool to understand our markets better, and deliver goal-directed messages to people our statistics inform us are most likely to engage positively. However, this does not take away the genius of creative marketers. It simply allows them time and freedom to do what they do best: creating the words and situations that sell.