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Data analytics create opportunities for focused outreach efforts

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September 5, 2023

During a presentation I recently attended, a presenter shared several slides relating to attendance at ArtFest in downtown Green Bay.

Slides showed where the event attendees went within the community during their visit and where they originated from – many were from outside of the area, including from Milwaukee and Chicago.

All of this is valuable information, and it can help you understand your audience for the purpose of targeting them for future outreach efforts.

Big data collection
This type of data is compiled by companies that specialize in tracking cell phones that have location services turned on.

Bluetooth technology in phones and in newer vehicles can also be tracked.

I’m not writing about this to scare you with the idea that “Big Brother” is watching.

We are way past that and we willingly, albeit often unknowingly, agree to it, when accepting the numerous terms and conditions agreements placed upon us.   

The reality is, in today’s high-tech world, we leave a digital footprint just about everywhere we go.

That footprint is being amassed with others’ footprints in what’s termed, “big data collection.” Once collected, it is sold for use by companies seeking a better understanding of who their customers are, the types of activities they participate in, the businesses they frequent and, equally important, where they reside.

This is one form of big data collection.

Other forms include tracking credit card expenditures, monitoring the sites you visit when surfing the internet or tracking your use on any number of apps on your smartphone.

This explains why when you research a product online and then go onto an app, such as Facebook or LinkedIn, ads pop up promoting the thing you were researching.

The apps track and collect your search history data and use that information to sell messaging that’s directly targeting you.

The same applies to internet search engines. 

Don’t believe me?

Test it out for yourself.

Go online to your favorite store and click on some items you like to look at.

Then close out and go to another website, such as your favorite news organization.

Ads will appear on the news site highlighting the items you were looking at previously.

Another way data is collected is via your company website and social media platforms.

Ensuring your website is set up with Google Analytics, or a similar tracking application, allows you to view detailed information about visitors to your website and what they are doing while there.

Your social media platforms can also provide critical data on who’s liking and following your platforms, including demographics: such as age, gender, hometown, etc.

Focused-lens analysis
Each platform provides varying degrees of information, but when analyzed and combined with other data, it provides a treasure trove of information about your audience or customer.

The key to using data is to not only collect it but to also perform the critical step of analyzing it with a focused lens.

What you’re seeking to learn from your analysis can vary depending on the type of business you’re in.

One company might be focused on learning about customer demographics, while another may be more concerned with geographic information.

Ultimately, insights derived from big data should be the decision-making driver for company leaders regarding the types of products and services offered and the development of strategic marketing campaigns that laser in on current and potential customers. 

That’s why big data is such a big deal and why it’s important for companies to collect it and utilize it to their advantage.

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