From the outside looking in, the words “creativity” and “data” may appear to be at different ends of the same spectrum. But, in marketing, they are more closely tied together than one might think.
What is “creativity” as it relates to marketing? A well-composed design? A sharp new commercial? A catchy display ad? These come to mind immediately when you think of creativity. But they are merely the design – end-products that the consumer experiences.
Creativity in marketing is the generation and execution of unique ideas that lead to those original, stand-out end-products. The process needs to begin and evolve with – you guessed it – data! While creativity fuels the ship, data steers it.
Here at Storm Cloud Marketing, we think of marketing as problem-solving. When our customers have problems or needs, we find creative solutions that get customers to engage. You need both design and data to solve these problems.
Design and data cannot be isolated from one another in marketing. Both are parts of the creative process. Data inspires, directs, enforces, and evolves creative ideas. The end design gets the customer to engage, but data analysis directs your creative effort.
So, how do you use data to steer the marketing ship? Let’s dive into that!
Use Data as Your Jumping-Off Point
Consider how the end-user is already interacting with what you are doing or what you have done so far.
- What has worked and what has not?
- What are some basic statistics for your industry?
- How many people are searching for what you offer?
- How are they finding you?
- What are people saying about your business?
- What is the competition doing, and who are they reaching?
These are all valuable questions that require data to answer. Once you have the answers, you can develop a strategy based on tangible evidence.
Use Data to Develop a Creative Strategy
There has never been as much data available for better targeting, segmentation, and personalization as there is now. It’s reachable by everyone, even the smallest businesses and marketers. You can analyze data that you’ve gathered and use it to spark new conversations, new ideas, create actionable insights, and unlock new opportunities for your business.
Marketers will use this data to focus on all the creative elements that formulate an entire strategy.
Collaborate with Your Creative Team
Take the data to your creative team. They are often left out of the strategic process but are the closest to your human element and can provide invaluable insight from another perspective.
Providing your design team with all the data helps them better understand your target audience. They’ll use the information you’ve gathered and the strategy you’ve developed to create end-products that don’t just gain the attention of your market, but catch it, hold it, and keep them looking for more!
With data, your team can create more relevant stories and consistent, personalized customer experiences. Those who merge data with the design process are more successful and see a higher return on their investment.
Use Data to Experiment
That’s right! We’re going in a circle. Periodically, you’ll need to re-evaluate the data. You can use the new information to make tweaks and adjustments to your strategy, targeting, and creative assets until you find the combination of data and creativity that gives your customers the most engaging experience possible.
When combined, creativity and data can be the secret weapons that allow you to outsmart (instead of outspend) the competition. Use the wisdom of everyone on your team to create a pool of ideas. Then, follow through with that creative idea to make a lasting impact in the marketplace.