Is ‘knowledge’ really power, as the political philosopher Thomas Hobbes once wrote? After all, the more you learn, the more you discover you don’t know. At least that’s what Einstein thought.

Psychologists have also found that knowing too much or possessing too much expertise in a particular field proves to be a serious drawback when it comes to communicating and sharing knowledge. And bear in mind, knowledge alone does not guarantee success or influence.

It is all about how you use what that knowledge.

Of course, the same can be said of data.

In modern business data is key.

Yes, it is all easy to become overwhelmed with that data but it is a tool that can help you enhance and optimise your marketing strategy.

In the retail sector, some businesses can be brand-led… others can be campaign or trading-focused. All need to be customer-led – as ultimately gaining a deep understanding of customers must be the goal. They you can overlay a customer lens in every department enhances decision-making across any business.

Personal data can help tell you the gender of your customer and where they live, as well as IP addresses, web browser cookies and device IDs (which both laptops and mobile devices have). This will help you identify and recognise real people and therefore better deliver loyalty messaging, email and relevant SMS.

Engagement data details how consumers interact with a business’s website, mobile apps, text messages, social media pages, emails, paid ads and customer service routes.

Behavioural data includes transactional details such as purchase histories, product usage information (e.g., repeated actions) and qualitative data (e.g., mouse movement information).

Attitudinal data encompasses metrics on consumer satisfaction, purchase criteria, product desirability and more.

All of this can help you ensure that CRM and engagement is focusing on the right messaging, tactics and goals.

Someone wrote a book—and then a musical—about How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying. It was a prescription for what an ambitious person without skills, talent, or brains needs to do to succeed. It was a matter of being in the right place at the right time and saying the right things to the right people. Flippant? Maybe. But remember the old adage of how to get ahead: it’s not what you know, but who you know.

Know your customer inside out. Be who and where your customer is. Map your users’ journeys and personalize that journey, not just through your website but further onto platforms like YouTube, LinkedIn, Facebook or on to any other website. When you analyse your customer’s behaviour, along with reviews and feedback, you can nimbly modify say your digital presence, goods or services to better suit the current marketplace.

Data is a tool to enhance and optimise strategy – and be more agile. If you’re unsure how to start building (or rebuilding) a customer-centric marketing approach, reach out to us at [email protected], and we’ll be happy to chat with you.