Lizzie Vincent

Avoiding crunch points on data-led campaigns

Posted on 8th September 2016 by Lizzie Vincent

In B2B marketing, where our businesses’ similarities often outweigh their differences, we’re challenged to stand out from the crowd with the power of our ideas. To do this, we must deliver original thought leadership: ideas that not only push boundaries and capture the attention of prospective clients but that provide genuinely new insights grounded in robust analysis that can withstand the toughest scrutiny.

At Man Bites Dog, we are big fans of big data and big ideas. One of our key missions is to unlock the value of our clients’ data and turn their complex information into valuable insights. But with data crunching, comes crunch points, and best-laid plans can go oft astray.

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From designing research questionnaires to managing suppliers; analysing complex data splits to finding your crucial call to action, getting everything in place to meet your objectives isn’t easy. So, whether you are briefing someone to develop a research-led campaign, or you’re managing the process yourself – here are some useful tips that will help to ensure an effective process from start to finish:

Start with clarity: Know what you are aiming to achieve, have a detailed plan and stick to it. Be clear about your main objective. Are you trying to ignite sales conversations, are you planning a big BD launch with prospective clients, or are you focused on media and generating national headlines?

If it’s all of the above, you need to think carefully about how to structure your questionnaire to cover all the elements you need while ensuring it includes the right content, tone and angles to capture your varied audiences.

Know what you’re trying to prove: Having a clear hypothesis seems like a simple hygiene factor for developing a data led campaign, but it can easily get lost when you start getting drawn down different narratives.

Make sure that you continue to refer back to your hypothesis as you’re designing your questionnaire to ensure all of your questions are aligned to the central point that you are trying to prove. Otherwise you could risk losing your call to action.

Check your questionnaire essentials: To guarantee a really rich and robust data led campaign, you need to start by designing an effective questionnaire and ensuring you’ve not overlooked any of the details. This may seem basic, but the simplest factors can easily fall off the radar when there are so many aspects to consider.

Ask yourself some key questions, like:

  •    Do I have all the demographic splits I need?
  •    Do I need tracking questions if I am going to run this campaign again?
  •    Am I going to have robust sample sizes to split the data how I need to?
  •    Am I at risk of receiving average or ‘middle of the row’ answers’?
  •    Do I have all the questions I need to cross reference interesting data points?

Lastly, add your own insurance: Even if you conduct exceptionally thorough and in-depth research before planning your marketing campaign, you need to consider (the often difficult question), what if the results aren’t what I expect?

With field research this happens – it’s science but it’s not always exact. You need to ensure that you build in a few different story angles that could lead your campaign. This is your insurance policy to ensure that you’re not just left with a failed hypothesis and a big research agency bill.

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