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What Is Data Planning?

Running a data driven marketing campaign is crucial for regular monitoring of performance. Marketers must tap into data collected to gain insights on behaviours, preferences, tastes and habits of their target audience before making changes that will improve their conversion rates. This is where data planning comes in.

What is data planning?

Data planning involves projecting the need for specific data, the sources, method of data collection and storage, data processing, presentation, distribution and data security. Data planning seeks to establish:

All these questions are important if you want to make the most out of data planning. Even then, capturing all these can be a challenge in the absence of a data management plan.

What Is a Data Management Plan?

A data management plan (DMP) is the formal document that outlines how you’ll organise, manage, share and preserve the data you collect before launching your research project. Data management plans a beneficial to data planning in many ways:

Equally important is a data collection plan that is a well thought out approach to collecting data as it describes the exact steps you must follow when gathering data while ensuring everyone is on the same page.

Benefits of Data Planning

Data planning presents an opportunity to explore data management at the start of a project. Here, you get a chance to balance long term and short term goals so the decisions you make early in the project don’t have a negative impact on the ability to not only find but also use the data you collect in the future.

Here are some advantages of data planning:

Steps to Effective Data Planning

Although most marketers underscore the value of data driven decisions, they don’t know where to start. A report by Experian found a top priority for marketers is using data to understand the needs and attitudes of customers. At the same time, it’s also a challenge.

You will agree with the fact that every brand strategy should be data driven and customer focused. Thus, data planning offers the opportunity for marketers to transform their wealth of data to a meaningful executable strategy to promote better decision making and building long lasting relationships with customers.

If you don’t know where to start with data planning, here are 5 steps to help you create one:

1.  List all decisions you’ve made based on opinions

Are there any decisions though made based on opinions as opposed to data? Break it down and categorise them according to department and job position for easy management. It’s good to brainstorm this list with the help of your sales and marketing teams. You can add new items over time.

2.  Rank the decisions according to their importance

Not all decisions carry the same weight. Attach a value to each decision and relate this value to your business, then prioritise them. Pay attention to all costs involved like technology, labour and opportunity cost. Though you need to be careful so you don’t get caught up in exact numbers instead work with estimates.

3.  Identify all the data sources though need for each decision

List three to five most important decisions though need to make and map out data sources that help solve them. Check if those sources are accessible within your organisation. This is another opportunity to brainstorm with your team so they all share their ideas especially regarding solving your decisions. If the data that is available isn’t analysable the build processes to transform it.

4.  Identify gaps to be filled

Think must also identify any gaps that require to be filled to make a decision or decide if you can do without them. Assess if you need to reach out to third party data vendors or make an educated guess and carry on with the analysis

5.  Create your data collection plan

When you’ve got key decisions that must be data driven and gaps to be filled, you need to create an appropriate execution framework. You’ll need to identify:

Summing it Up

Data is powerful since it minimises guesswork when making crucial marketing decisions. The rise in the use of data analytics and reporting platforms means anyone can manipulate data and interpret the outcome. Businesses and marketers who use data planning to inform their planning and prioritisation of strategies will certainly have better outcomes in their job performance, resource management and their bottom line.

Need support with your data? Contact Growthonics today.

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