You have a software product that you want to sell. Maybe you have some creative juices flowing and are ready to plan out a marketing strategy. However, you aren’t sure how to ensure your strategy will work. You need data. A data-driven product marketing strategy can help you take your business to the next level. Below are some useful tips.
1) Analyze the Market
Start by analyzing the market you will be entering. Gather some secondary research from sources such as Nielsen, Decision Resources Group and Wood Mackenzie. These data sets will give you valuable numbers on your market. This is one of the fastest ways to begin collecting useful data for your marketing efforts.
Also, conduct some primary research. Take a qualitative look at what your prospective buyers are doing and thinking. Use this to build some personas to guide your strategy. Then flesh these personas out with data gathered through surveys, focus groups, interviews and more. This is a great opportunity to validate some of your assumptions.
2) Scrape the Web
Take advantage of existing web data to help you gather useful insights. Web scraping tools extract data from web pages, file downloads, server backends and more to create a useful data set. You can scrape your own website as well as other’s websites. The goal of scraping is typically to gather data from a large number of web pages very quickly.
Much of the web is designed for human interaction but contains valuable data hidden behind the scenes. Scraping basically looks at websites and web resources from a computer-based perspective. It is a way for you, a web user, to understand websites from a more data-oriented mindset. This can be very valuable for efficiently collecting competitive data, for example.
3) Measure Your Competitors
Use your competitors to benchmark your strategy. Traditional marketing strategies should involve a competitive analysis and a SWOT analysis to help you understand your positioning in the market. Back these up with data.
Use scraping to find data on your competitors’ websites. Build a numbers-based understanding of what they are doing and how they are pitching themselves to customers. The more you understand about how your competitors operate, the more easily your strategy can target underserved customers in your market.
4) Set KPIs
Ker performance indicators should be at the heart of any and all data-driven strategies. They are the key to measurement and setting specific goals. Sales revenue is often an important KPI, but you likely want to delve deeper. For example, you could measure your conversion rate from page views to sales. Data points like this help you get a better picture of how your strategy is performing.
The best data-driven strategies include a scorecard of KPIs. This should highlight all your most important measurement points so that you can get a quick snapshot of performance. Comparing your scorecard results over time can begin to build a very clear picture of how your strategy is impacting your business goals. Not only will this help you improve, but it will also help you show that your efforts are meaningful.
5) Optimize and Refine
Use your metrics and KPIs to further refine your strategy as you progress. For example, you may notice that your conversion rate from landing pages to product pages is good but that your sales conversion rate is poor. This suggests that you need to improve your product pages to sell more effectively. Alternatively, you could eliminate your product pages and try to sell directing from landing pages.
These tweaks will help you turn a strategy based on research into a strategy based on performance. It will gradually become much more specific to your brand and your needs. Most marketing strategies don’t get things exactly right the first time. That is okay. The key to success is to learn what you are doing well and where you can improve. Then, use that information to optimize your efforts.