The process of data discovery begins when your business becomes involved with a digital marketing agency, and they have to learn everything about your business as quickly as possible. This means they will need to learn all about your company, specifically about the products and services you offer.
They will also need to collaborate closely with you to find out your views on content marketing, paid and organic searches, social media, search engine optimisation, and keywords. All this information will then be incorporated into any strategies they recommend for digital marketing.
This is one of the best examples of the relationship between data discovery and digital marketing. In this article, we’ll discuss some of the other links between the two business principles.
The Discovery Process
The great thing about the discovery process is that it avoids the need for you or anyone in your business to be an expert on digital marketing or even on the Internet itself. There can be several layers of complexity associated with marketing on the Internet, and any really good digital marketing firm will have experts on hand who know all about this.
That relieves you of the need for becoming an expert in those same areas. All that’s really necessary is for you to faithfully relay all the important details about your business to the marketing agency during the discovery process. Having that knowledge, the agency will then be able to represent your views and get your message out to the target audience you’re trying to reach.
That’s why the most successful collaborations between marketing firms and small business clients will always be the ones that start out with some number of intense, thorough meetings that constitute the data discovery process.
Having these meetings upfront can be the most effective component of the relationship. They provide tons of intelligence needed by the marketing firm in order to adequately represent your company.
Making Use of Discoveries
Of course, these meetings would have little value if the information gained from them weren't put to use in the most advantageous manner possible. In this sense, the data obtained from the data discovery meetings will become invaluable, because it will be used by the marketing agency to optimize customers’ experiences.
Customers enjoy being made to feel special and will often abandon any marketing pitch that they feel doesn't relate to their circumstances. Using data provided by a small business, digital marketers are always able to develop some kind of user experience that is highly engaging and more profitable for your business.
The more personalized the experience is for potential clients, the happier and more satisfied they will be. The detailed data gained during discovery helps a marketing agency to fully customize any sales pitch to the customers’ personal journey and their level of engagement. This helps to establish a bond of trust between the customer and the company, and could even have a long-term impact on customer loyalty.
Developing a Digital Strategy
The information which comes from data discovery meetings can be used to personalize communication content in the same way that is possible to personalize communications during the customer's journey. Each piece of content can be tailored to the customer's own circumstances. This will ensure it has a greater impact on them, and increase your conversion rate.
Digital marketers are able to use discovery data to analyze and anticipate the behavior of potential clients. That allows them to deliver appropriate messages at the appropriate time, using media platforms that the client typically spends a great deal of time on. It will also be possible to determine the appropriate posting rate for content, so you don't make the mistake of posting too much or too little.
Another way that data discovery information can be used to good effect is in understanding the type of digital content clients responds most favorably to. In some cases, it might be user polls, in other cases, it might be articles that are informative and interesting. It might even be videos that demonstrate product usage or information about company events.
When it comes to a digital communication strategy, there are endless possibilities that can be chosen. That being said, there are only a few specific strategies that will be effective for the target audience of any small business. A good digital marketing agency will understand this and will choose those strategies which offer the best chance of reaching potential customers. Strategies that resonate with them so much that they're inclined to make a purchase.
Finding the Right Digital Marketing Firm
It can be difficult prospect to find just the right digital marketing agency to work with your small business. Part of the reason for this is that there has been an enormous proliferation of digital marketing agencies during the past several years. There are literally hundreds at your fingertips!
That means you'll need to narrow down the field and choose one which you think has the best chance of accurately representing your small business via digital marketing. Here are some of the ways you can help to narrow down your choices and find the best possible partner to work with in digital marketing:
- Work examples - ask any candidate you have in mind to provide examples of their work because this will show you the level of quality and attention to detail they are capable of.
- Referrals - ask for referrals from clients they have worked with in the past. Even though you can expect that all these referrals will be positive, glowing commendations for the firm, you'll at least be able to ask questions to find out how clients enjoyed (or did not enjoy) working with that particular agency.
- Ignore size - you don't necessarily have to choose the biggest digital marketing agency in your area, because that doesn’t always translate to better service. However, bigger does usually mean higher fees or an increased hourly rate. Keep that in mind when you're considering the size of any marketing agency you work with.
- Previous experience - Ask any candidate marketing agency to provide you with examples of clients they've worked with on projects like search engine optimization, website design, pay-per-click and organic searches, performance metrics, and content writing.
- Content writing - try to obtain samples of any content written by your candidate marketing agency. Evaluate each for quality and for the directness of how it represented a particular company.
- Third-party validation - it's a good idea to find out about third-party validation and any backlinks that your candidate agency may have used in the past. This will show that they were able to establish a client company as an authority in their field and that they successfully increased traffic to that company's website through the use of backlinks.
Don't worry about having your company seen as over-demanding by asking for all these examples and references. Any good digital marketing agency should welcome these kinds of queries because they show that you're interested in working with them.
Beware of any company which shies away from such inquiries or hesitates to provide you with requested information. This may indicate they simply lack expertise in those areas, or that they will not be able to come through for you as a partner.
A Marathon, Not a Sprint
Even with the extensive information obtained through data discovery, you should not expect to achieve results overnight when working with a digital marketing agency. Any agency worth their salt will tell you this themselves, and they'll probably need to remind you that digital marketing is much more like a marathon than it is like a sprint.
It's also true that the digital marketing landscape is changing all the time. This means that there are constant changes and modifications being made to search engine optimization, content marketing, platform usage, and some of the other components involved with digital marketing. There are also a number of trends that might come and go, and you’ll need to adapt your approach to accommodate these as well.
Before you can reap the benefits of a really great digital marketing campaign, it will be necessary to make some kind of financial investment. Keep in mind that it will take a while for any changes you make in your digital marketing strategy to be noticed and to find your target audience.
That means you probably won't see significant positive results in the first month after implementation, but it becomes much more likely that you’ll notice improvements within six months. The bottom line is that you should not have unrealistic expectations for what you're able to achieve via digital marketing, even if you’re working with a top-flight agency.
For sure, after about six months following your changes, you should start to see an uptick in your website traffic and in your sales conversions. It's generally necessary to make some tweaks and adjustments to your marketing strategy in order to optimize results. If you've chosen the right digital marketing agency to work with, they should have no trouble recognizing where change is needed and then implementing those changes so that you achieve the best possible results.
Author’s Bio: Arnold Rogers
As an experienced business consultant, Arnold Rogers has advised businesses across many industries in areas of lead generation, customer experience, service development, and small business cash flow and financial management. He has experience in handling diverse industries, from fast-moving consumer goods to business-to-business hardware retailers.