B2B marketing analytics plays a pivotal role in how marketing professionals optimise their strategies and improve campaign success.
According to a study by McKinsey & Company, B2B companies that use analytics for marketing and sales performance are 50% more likely to achieve growth above the industry average. The study also concluded that 61% of companies are now able to effectively harness analytics, a significant increase from 43% in 2016.
This article delves into the compelling world of B2B marketing analytics and its role in shaping modern marketing strategies. It will explore the benefits that can be derived from using marketing analytics, how organisations can utilise it, and the various tools and metrics that should be taken into consideration.
What Is Marketing Analytics?
Marketing analytics refers to the process of collecting, analysing, and interpreting data related to marketing activities. It involves the use of various metrics and statistical models to gain insights into marketing performance, customer behaviour, competitor tracking, and sales trends. Marketing analytics encompasses both quantitative and qualitative data analysis to uncover patterns, correlations, and actionable insights that drive decision-making.
Understanding B2B Marketing Analytics
B2B marketing analytics refers to the use of analytics techniques to measure and optimise marketing efforts specifically targeted at business-to-business (B2B) customers.
It helps B2B organisations gain insights into customer behaviour, lead generation, conversion rates and ROI. B2B marketing analytics allows businesses to track and measure the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns targeted at other businesses and make data-driven decisions to optimise their B2B marketing strategies.
It employs various types of analytical tools and methods which will be mentioned later in this article. But in general these analytic tools provide insights into customer behaviour, market trends, campaign performance and most importantly enable marketers to make informed and strategic decisions.
The Benefits Of B2B Marketing Analytics
In today’s data-driven world, B2B marketing analytics is increasingly viewed as a necessity by marketing departments. This is because the benefits it brings can’t be ignored:
1) Improved marketing budget ROI
By identifying the most effective marketing tactics and channels, B2B marketing analytics can help companies maximise their return on investment. This translates to more efficient use of marketing budget and increased revenue for the business.
2) Data-driven decision-making
Gone are the days of intuition-based decision-making. With B2B marketing analytics, businesses have access to concrete, reliable data that can drive smarter, more strategic decisions.
3) Optimised marketing strategies
marketing analytics allows marketers to better understand the effectiveness of their existing strategies, and clearly identify strengths and weaknesses. No matter if it’s paid ads, e-mail marketing or SEO, marketing departments can now access valuable insights and fine-tune their campaigns if necessary.
How Organisations Use Marketing Analytics
Organisations across various industries utilise marketing analytics to inform their decision-making processes and optimise their marketing strategies.
By leveraging B2B marketing analytics, organisations can gain a competitive edge and make data-driven decisions. Here are some instances where marketing analytics are readily employed:
A) Product intelligence
Marketing analytics enables businesses to understand customer preferences, market trends, and demand patterns. By analysing customer data, businesses can identify market gaps, optimise product development strategies, and tailor marketing campaigns to target specific customer segments.
For example, a company may use marketing analytics to identify the features that resonate most with their target audience, determine the optimal pricing strategy, and identify the most effective distribution channels.
B) Customer trends analysis
Marketing analytics helps in examining customer behaviour, purchasing patterns, and engagement metrics. By analysing customer data, businesses can identify trends, preferences, and patterns to personalise marketing campaigns, improve customer experience, and enhance customer retention and loyalty.
For instance, an e-commerce retailer may analyse customer browsing and purchase history to recommend personalised product suggestions, send targeted email campaigns, and create tailored marketing messages based on individual customer preferences.
C) Competitor tracking
Marketing analytics provides insights into competitors’ marketing strategies, pricing, and promotional activities. By monitoring and analysing competitor data, businesses can identify market opportunities, differentiate their offerings, and adjust their marketing tactics to gain a competitive edge.
For example, a company may use marketing analytics to track competitor pricing trends and adjust their own pricing strategy accordingly. They may also analyse competitor social media campaigns to identify successful tactics and adapt their own social media marketing efforts accordingly.
D) Sales analysis
Marketing analytics aids in assessing sales performance, conversion rates, and customer acquisition costs. By analysing sales data, businesses can optimise pricing strategies, forecast sales trends, identify bottlenecks in the sales process, and allocate resources effectively to maximise revenue.
For instance, a retail company may use marketing analytics to analyse sales data across different locations to identify top-performing stores, optimise inventory management, and allocate marketing budgets to the most effective channels.
How Marketing Analytics Differs from Marketing Intelligence
While marketing intelligence and marketing analytics are closely related, there are some distinct differences between the two:
Marketing intelligence primarily focuses on collecting and organising market-related data from various sources. On the other hand, marketing analytics involves analysing the collected data to derive insights and measure marketing performance. Marketing analytics goes beyond data collection and aggregation by applying advanced analytical techniques to gain actionable insights.
Marketing intelligence provides information for strategic planning, market research, and identifying opportunities. Marketing analytics takes this a step further by providing actionable insights that drive decision-making and inform marketing strategies. It helps businesses identify specific actions to take based on the analysis of data, allowing for more targeted and effective marketing efforts.
Marketing analytics utilises statistical models, algorithms, and data visualisation techniques to uncover patterns, correlations, and trends in data. Marketing intelligence focuses more on data aggregation, reporting, and providing a holistic view of the market landscape. Marketing analytics employs advanced statistical models to analyse data and generate insights that support decision-making.
Tools For B2B Marketing Analytics
There are currently a handful of widely used B2B marketing analytics tools and platforms can assist in tracking, analysing, and visualising marketing analytics.
Google Analytics is a powerful web analytics tool that provides insights into website traffic, user behaviour, conversion rates, and audience demographics. It offers a wide range of features to track and measure marketing performance. Businesses can analyse website data, set up conversion tracking, and gain valuable insights into user interactions. 90% of marketers consider Google Analytics primary analytics tool for marketing campaigns.
HubSpot is an all-in-one marketing automation platform that offers analytics features. It allows businesses to track leads, measure campaign performance, analyse customer journeys, and gain insights into marketing ROI. HubSpot provides a centralised platform for managing marketing activities and analysing the effectiveness of different marketing campaigns and channels.
SEMrush is a suite of marketing tools that enables competitive analysis, keyword research, and performance tracking for search engine optimization (SEO) campaigns. It provides valuable insights into competitor strategies and helps businesses optimise their online presence. SEMrush allows businesses to track keyword rankings, analyse backlinks, and monitor competitor advertising campaigns.
WatchMyCompetitor is the complete competitor intelligence platform. It uses AI to track the global digital footprint of an organisation’s competitors in real-time. Market analysts then curate the most relevant, actionable insights. The platform’s dashboard is able to display marketing analytics intelligence according to users’ requirements.
Tableau is a leading tool for data visualization, allowing users to create detailed and interactive dashboards from complex data sets. It’s useful for businesses looking to delve deep into their marketing analytics and present findings in a visually engaging format.
Marketo is a marketing automation platform that includes sophisticated analytics capabilities. It enables marketers to track and measure the effectiveness of their campaigns across multiple channels.
Marketing Analytics Metrics
Marketing analytics encompasses a variety of metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) that provide valuable insights into marketing effectiveness. Here are a few examples of marketing analytics metrics and their applications:
A) Conversion rate
Conversion rate measures the percentage of visitors who complete a desired action, such as making a purchase, filling out a form, or subscribing to a newsletter. It helps assess the effectiveness of marketing campaigns and website optimisation efforts. By monitoring conversion rates, businesses can identify areas for improvement and optimise their marketing funnel to increase conversions.
B) Customer lifetime value (CLV)
Customer lifetime value calculates the total revenue a business can expect from a customer over their lifetime. By understanding CLV, businesses can segment customers, implement targeted retention strategies, allocate marketing budgets effectively, and optimise customer acquisition efforts. CLV provides insights into the long-term value of customers and helps businesses prioritise their marketing and customer relationship management efforts.
C) Return on investment (ROI)
Return on investment evaluates the profitability of marketing campaigns by comparing the cost of marketing efforts to the generated revenue. It helps businesses allocate resources, identify high-performing campaigns, and optimise marketing spend to maximise ROI.
ROI analysis allows businesses to measure the financial impact of their marketing activities and make data-driven decisions to optimise their marketing budget allocation.
D) Social media engagement
Social media engagement metrics, such as likes, shares, comments, and mentions, provide insights into the effectiveness of social media marketing efforts. By analysing social media engagement data, businesses can gauge audience interest, identify popular content, and optimise their social media strategies.
Social media analytics also help businesses identify influencers, monitor brand sentiment, and track the effectiveness of social media advertising campaigns.
Integrating B2B Marketing Analytics Into Your Team Strategy
Successfully integrating B2B marketing analytics into your strategy doesn’t happen overnight. Aside from choosing the right tools as mentioned earlier, it also requires careful planning and continuous refinement. Here are some important steps that you need to take into consideration to streamline this process:
1) Set clear goals and objectives
Before you can make use of marketing analytics, you must clearly define what you aim to achieve. Your objectives might be to increase lead generation, improve conversion rates, enhance customer engagement, or boost return on investment (ROI). Setting clear, measurable objectives will help focus your analytics efforts and allow you to measure success more accurately.
2) Collect relevant data
Once you have your tools and objectives in place, the next step is to start collecting data. This might include data on website traffic, social media engagement, email open rates, click-through rates, customer behaviour, and more. Be sure to collect data that aligns with your set objectives.
3) Analyse and interpret your data
Collecting data is only the first half of the journey—making sense of this data is where the real work begins. Use your chosen analytics tool to dissect and understand your data. Look for patterns, trends, and insights that align with your objectives.
4) Make data-driven decisions
The insights derived from your analytics should inform your marketing decisions. For instance, if your data shows that a particular type of content generates more engagement, focus on creating more of that content. If a specific marketing channel yields a higher ROI, invest more resources into that channel.
5) Monitor and adjust regularly
B2B marketing analytics is not a set-it-and-forget-it process. You must consistently monitor your data and adjust your strategy as necessary. Market trends, customer behavior, and industry dynamics are always changing, so your marketing analytics approach should be flexible enough to adapt.
Concluding Thoughts About B2B Marketing Analytics
B2B marketing analytics is an essential process for understanding and optimising marketing performance. By leveraging tools, analysing data and utilising metrics, B2B organisations can gain invaluable insights into customer behaviour, competitor strategies and industry trends.
Understanding the nuances between marketing analytics and marketing intelligence enables organisations to make informed decisions and achieve marketing success in a data-driven world.
According to a survey by The CMO, only 1.9% of companies believe they have the right people to fully leverage marketing analytics. This means wasted investment and missed opportunities, not to mention being at increased risk of competitors being able to harness marketing analytics more effectively.
By embracing marketing analytics, businesses can unlock valuable insights and gain a competitive advantage in today’s dynamic marketing landscape.