Creating meaningful connections with your customers means turning data insights into engaging stories
Big data is now a major player across industries. For marketers, data continues to provide new insights into what their audiences care about most and what they’re looking for in the brands they support. But turning those insights into stories that connect with the people you’re trying to reach takes another set of skills: Those of the storyteller.
Data visualization tools like dashboards can help marketers learn the story of their customers and the journeys they take to convert based on real-time facts. This is how you can start turning the numbers into stories. Data provides the necessary context through which a storyteller can see why a customer is shopping or trying to find information.
Use these six insights to understand the stories your customers are telling you. When you can do that, you’ll be able to make more emotional connections that will spark greater interest and brand loyalty.
1. Find the narrative that already exists
It can be tempting to view data with an already-conceived story in mind. We know what we want to say, so we often adapt insights to fit that narrative. But this does not always tell a true story or one that will connect with your audience.
Instead, pay attention to what they’re showing you in the data. Try to forget the notions you’ve told yourself and approach the data ready to learn. What’s actually there? What truths exist for your customers that can’t be argued with?
Make sure you’re not avoiding data points that don’t fit the preconceived story. Adapt your thinking so you’re open to accepting the data as it is. Only then can you create more meaningful messages based on the stories your data is telling you.
2. Utilize simple data visualization tools
You need a data visualization method that’s simple and straightforward. You should have the ability to decide what kind of data you want to track and how you want it presented — whether in charts, graphs, etc.
Think about who else will be looking at this data. What would be the easiest way for everyone on the team to view and digest its insights?
Avoid unnecessary complications by using the right visualization tools. Many data platforms offer simple dashboards that are customizable to your needs. When you’re able to view data the right way, you’ll be able to better process what it means about your audience’s desires and goals.
3. Know your audience
After you’ve gathered and presented the data, think about who comprises your audience. While the data will tell you what drives them and what their common behaviors are, you still need to know who it is you’re trying to reach. Think about key demographics like age and location.
When you’ve pinned down specifics, you can craft more relevant stories that recognize who your customers are while the data helps you understand trends and patterns in their behavior.
4. Segment your audience
Another strategy to integrate is audience segmentation, which allows you to assign certain characteristics to certain groups within your larger customer base. You can then cater your messages to each segment and provide more relevant storytelling. According to Campaign Monitor, email campaigns that were segmented saw a 760 percent increase in email revenue.
Your customers will be more satisfied and engaged when you can provide more personalized messages — stories that were created specifically for a certain group within your audience.
5. Use stories to pull in customers right away
When you’re pulling together the stories your customers are telling you, think about how to retell them in the most compelling and engaging way. You need to grab the attention of your audience right away, with a good headline or phrasing on your ads. Even if your message is relevant and interesting to your target audience, they won’t engage unless you pull them in from the start.
Writing an engaging headline, email subject, or advertisement involves pushing the right buttons:
- Ask a question they want to see answered.
- Create intrigue with phrases like, “This one secret will help you X …”
- Point out how you’re different than competitors.
- Entice them with a list: “5 ways to see the results you want …”
Start your messaging strong by focusing on the meat of what you learned from the data. What is the most interesting and appealing part of the story? Start there.
6. Track data across channels
For a holistic view of your customers, it’s crucial to track data across channels. Customers may interact with your brand via social media, email, TV ads, mobile, and more. By understanding their behavior on these different platforms, you can better understand where they’re coming from and what they’re looking for. This helps you tell better stories from the data.
The BDEX Data Exchange Platform (DXP) gives you access to real-time insights from hundreds of sources, helping create a fact-based timeline of a customer’s journey and desires. You’ll be able to grasp customer intent and interests, like their hobbies, as well as their purchase histories.
The BDEX Identity Graph helps you identify each customer behind the data point by matching signals to the ID. This allows you to track and identify your customers across multiple channels, giving you a better picture of the story behind the data.
Contact BDEX to get started with our data solutions, which power more meaningful connections with your audience.