Invoca, an enterprise call tracking and analytics platform that uses AI technology to tap into actionable conversational data, recently published The State of First-Party Marketing Data report.
Invoca surveyed 500 B2C marketers within a range of industries, each of whom oversee a budget of over $1 million, to gain insight into how they view first-party data and what they’re using to access and collect data.
The report also marketers integrate and leverage offline data such as in-store interactions and phone conversations with digital data such as web analytics, purchase history, and web forms.
Content produced in collaboration with Invoca.
Invoca asked marketers about the type of data they have access to, their confidence in different sources of data, and the top three source of data they use to inform their digital marketing strategy.
Data confidence is highest with purchase history, with 90% of respondents indicating they are confident or very confident in this source. Company website data came in second at 86%. Confidence in phone calls, though still relatively high at 73%, was lowest on the list of data sources that inspire confidence.
In terms what type of data sources marketers have access to, the top one was company websites, with 73% of respondents listing this source followed by mobile apps and in-store interactions at 66%, then purchase history at 62%. Phone data was listed at 56%.
When asked what source of first-party data most informed digital marketing strategy, marketers indicated that websites were the number one source, followed by mobile apps and purchase history. Phone calls fell at the bottom of the list, with just 26% of respondents listing this source as one that informed their digital marketing strategy.
One of the key takeaways from this line of questioning was that brands aren’t using the full slate of available first-party data.
Another finding was that in-store data, while accessible to 66% of marketers, only provided value to about 38% of respondents, indicating there is some difficulty with integrating this type of data into the overall first-party data ecosystem in order to make it actionable.
The Invoca survey revealed that most marketers plan to invest in more offline data sources, including call data.
Per Invoca, “While it’s a newer form of analytics to many marketers, call data is gaining as much investment as decades-old offline data sources. Therefore, it makes sense that 26% of marketers think it’s a mistake that their company doesn’t prioritize phone calls as a first-party data source.”
Investments in offline data include a variety of sources with in-store interactions at the top of the list at 56% and phone calls at the bottom at 47%. Other offline sources include direct mail, radio/TV, outdoor, print, and events.
Quality and accuracy of data were listed as the top challenges marketers faced when optimizing ad performance, followed by privacy and security concerns.
Fully 31% of respondents also indicated there was simply too much data to analyze, while 28% indicated that integrating data from siloed sources presents a challenge.
The level of marketing experience impacted how marketers responded to the challenges of leveraging data for ad optimization.
Marketers with 11+ years of experience showed significantly greater trust in all data sources versus those with 3-5 years of experience, as shown in the following chart.
The key takeaway, per Invoca: “Marketers know that high-quality data is a priority for optimizing ad performance, but they need reliable access to such data and tools that allow them to analyze and apply it at scale.”
About a quarter of respondents said they would like to improve their data analysis and implementation skills. 50% of the respondents who indicated they’ve taken data analysis training had this training paid for or organized by their employer, 51% took an outside course on their own and 42% indicated they will take data analysis training in the next year.
Even so, most marketers don’t have a clear vision of how to leverage data across channels.
Writes Invoca, “Only 28% say they have a fully unified strategy, and again we see a gap in experience level. Investment in more training and advanced analytics tools may help close this gap.”
Invoca’s survey revealed that marketers who use call tracking are more confident in their data skills than those who don’t. 74% of respondents who use call tracking were confident in their skills to apply data when using it to personalize marketing campaigns, compared to 61% of those who don’t use it.
Since call data can provide deep insight into meaningful customer interactions (versus digital interactions), respondents who use call tracking were more likely than those who didn’t to invest in both online and offline conversations.
Marketers who use call tracking were significantly more likely to coordinate closely with offline data sources including contact center support, contact center sales, in-store sales, and in-store support.
Writes Invoca: “The phone-online chat combination particularly makes sense for marketers in considered-purchase categories like finance, insurance, healthcare and telecommunications. When there’s plenty at stake, going from an online chat to a phone call is a natural progression of a conversation.”
As a bonus to the first-party data survey, Invoca included questions aimed at marketers who are already using a call tracking tool. Some key findings from this section of the survey include:
Per Invoca, “While the statistics show that marketers value call tracking and are investing time and money in it, the following data reveals a massive opportunity for businesses to become more efficient at extracting insights from phone conversations.”
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