How Data-Driven Marketers Can Find Insights to Fuel Success

What Data-Driven B2B Marketers May Be Missing? Insight

Data is Commodity; Insight is an Asset You Need to Act On

There’s little doubt that B2B marketers are swimming in a deep and tumultuous sea of data. You’re tracking and collecting more data than ever before. But the truth is, despite all the data at your disposal, you’re likely using less and less of it.

Why? As bestselling author and in-demand keynote speaker, Andrew Davis, says: “It’s getting harder and harder to tell which data is the most valuable. We’re overwhelmed.”

So, the question is: How do you unlock data potential to accelerate your marketing and sales?

The answer? Insight.

In the video below, watch and learn as Andrew unpacks the difference between data information and insight, as well as details a data-driven marketing success story made possible by finding and experimenting with just one insight.


Video Transcript

I’m about to show you the one thing brilliant B2B marketers use to accelerate their marketing and sales. It’s the same secret I’ve seen massive brands and tiny little startups leverage to generate more leads and close more business.

This simple piece of advice will help you get out of your audience’s eco-chamber and stand out with your competition. And it all hinges on answering this deceptively simple question:

What’s the difference between data information and insights?

Well, there’s a massive difference. And understanding the nuances will make all the difference in accelerating your marketing and sales. That’s what we’re addressing today on D&B Perspectives.

We live in a data overload world. Yes. A big data world. But just because there’s more data available, doesn’t mean we can consume more or leverage it. In fact, we’re swimming in a sea of data. So much data that it’s become a liability.

Why? Well, it’s getting harder and harder to tell which data is the most valuable. We’re overwhelmed. And while we’re tracking and collecting more data than ever before, we’re actually using less and less of it.

Data is a commodity. Everyone has it, but very few really know what to do with it.

Now, this pile of rice is your client data. And no matter how much of it you have, it’s a very one-sided perspective of your clients and prospects.

Now, I know we live in a B2B world. But let me share an amazing story of data-driven marketing from the B2C world to get your mind moving.

Marina MacDonald had data. Tons of data. As the CMO of Red Roof Inn, she had tens of thousands of opportunities to reach out to her existing database with offers to stay at any one of their hundreds of hotels around the United States.

But remember: Client data alone is a commodity.

One day, as the snow came down outside, Marina turned on the television to find a news story about all the stranded travelers in airports around the country.

“What if we could find a place for all of these stranded travelers to stay? What if we could target them specifically and invite them to stay at a Red Roof Inn?” she thought.

But how?

Now, canceled flight information is readily available. In fact, there’s more than one third-party data provider that provides that kind of flight information. Here’s the thing: Everyone has access to this kind of information.

You see data is a commodity. And information like the list canceled flights, is a liability. Why? Because if your competitor uses it and you don’t, you’re immediately at a disadvantage.

So, Marina and her team went to work, connecting their historic data for hotels near airports on bad travel days. And boom, there it was. A simple correlation the team could leverage to book more stranded travelers on travel days that were bad.

But how would they find these travelers?

Marina’s team started connecting the dots. In fact, they built their very own flight tracking technology that processed thousands of pieces of data, which then updated paid search campaigns in real time.

And bam. When enough flights were canceled at O’Hare Airport, for example, a series of triggers increased their paid search bids and even personalized their ads instantly.

And what happened? Their ads secured the top position in 75% of all last-minute hotel searches for 400,000 stranded travelers a year, which increased their bookings by 60%.

What Marina and her team did was truly amazing. But elegantly simple. In fact, everyone had access to essentially the same data and information. What did Marina have that no one else did? Well, she had the insight.

That’s right. Insight is the asset. It’s not the data — that’s a commodity. It’s not the information everyone has access to — that’s a competitive liability. It’s the insight you glean from the world around you. The insight gives you a deep, intuitive understanding of the people or businesses your targeting or serving, and it’s the insight you act on and experiment with.

But here’s the thing: Insight is a three-legged stool. You need deep and rich client data. You need access to accurate third-party information. And you need an insight, just one, that you’re willing to experiment with.

So, how does a B2B marketer embrace the same idea that Marina embraced?

There’s no one-size-fits all prescription, but that doesn’t mean it’s not easier than you think. I’ve seen B2B brands transform third-party data into insights that shed light on purchase intent. I’ve watched startups use really simple insights to increase active demand for the products they sell. I’ve seen marketers use simple browsing data from third-party sources to make their inbound insights more actionable.

But you must experiment. If you do that, you can exactly what people like Marina do. You can deliver much better, predictive targeting, accelerate your growth and deliver deep digital engagement.

But what you’re really missing today is that one piece of insight to act on. What’s your “Marina Moment”?

That’s my perspective. What’s yours?

What’s Your “Marina Moment”?

As Andrew so artfully explained: Data is a commodity and public third-party data is a competitive liability. But insight is the asset — the asset you act on.

“Insight is a three-legged stool,” he says. “You need deep and rich client data. You need access to accurate third-party information. And you need an insight, just one, that you’re willing to experiment with.”

So, along with Andrew, we ask: What’s your insight? What will be your “Marina Moment”?