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Data-driven acquisition marketing tips for 2020

Author's avatar By Expert commentator 11 Nov, 2019
Essential Essential topic

How can you supercharge your analytics system to increase your acquisition?

If given extra budget, 32% of marketers would spend more on data and analytics. That’s more than those who said they would spend on search, social and additional headcount! 

Where marketers would invest extra budget

Modern marketers love data for so many reasons. Why?  

  • Data helps optimize businesses from acquisition all the way through customer purchase and reengagement.  
  • It helps them achieve high ROI Facebook and Google Ads campaigns.  
  • It helps them compete against other increasingly data-driven marketing teams.  
  • It gets them a seat at the leadership table.  

Data is more available than ever before. Silicon Valley startups and Shopify store owners alike have data visualization tools. If you are a marketer working in today’s world, it’s pretty likely that you have your own analytics system working at the moment. How can you supercharge that system to increase your acquisition? Let’s take a closer look.  

Understanding your funnel data to improve performance marketing campaigns 

Is it my ad creative? Is it my website? Is it my sales team? Is it my email marketing? You may never know unless you look at your business like a funnel.  

So what is a funnel? It is the process by which your customer comes into contact with your business, and it looks something like this: 

Marketing funnel

That being said, every business is different, and every business has its own unique marketing funnel that contributes to the success of its conversions. 

CRMs like HubSpot allow you to visualize funnels, which is incredibly helpful. They’ve built this into their capabilities because marketers love funnels. Funnels help us understand where we need to optimize, double down, and cut back our efforts.  

Even if you don’t have HubSpot, it's worth thinking about where your customers are coming from from a funnel perspective.  

  • Where do they first engage with your product?  
  • How does your business engage back with them?  
  • And how does that first touchpoint eventually lead to a sale? 

For example, consider a startup that sells meal kits. They advertise in a number of different ways: they put out billboards, they run podcast ads, they do direct mail marketing, and they do more traditional digital marketing.  

To understand where their customers are coming from, you need to start at the “top” of the funnel - those first initial touchpoints. From there, you need to look at how that customer engaged with your business - did they go to the website? Call your salespeople? Enter their email address? And then what? Did they get an offer via email that convinced them to try the meal kit? Did a particular Facebook Ad lead directly to conversion? 

This path is exactly what your funnel should tell you. Just to be clear, the path of your customer can look a number of ways, but the funnel itself should capture those big ideas and distill them down, so you can look at the big picture of your customer journey. 

Understanding customer LTV to inform your channel mix

The best marketers know that not all channels and customers are created equal. All things equal, customers that spend $1,000 are better than the ones that spend $100.  

Using analysis and data cuts, you should be able to begin segmenting your customers by tiers. Figuring out commonalities among the highest value customers can help inform your channel mix.  

  • Are your best users coming from search?  
  • Are they male or female?  
  • How old are they?  

The list could go on.  

In search businesses, certain keywords may even drive better customers. Take a tax business like PicnicTax. My work with that client yielded huge results because we were able to quickly dissect that more complex tax returns were more valuable. In other words, someone searching for “K1 taxes” or “investment property tax returns” yielded higher lifetime values than someone simply searching “online accountant.” This enabled us to more profitably shift our acquisition mix for the client.  

Understanding all of this will allow you to choose marketing channels that work for the people that offer the highest LTV for your business. Knowing this information will allow you to allocate your budget more efficiently and ultimately, optimize return on ad spend.  

Use data from one channel to inform another

Your data is valuable, not just in one channel, but across channels.  

For example, I use learnings from email marketing creative to understand the value propositions that drive highest click-through-rates. This data translates, and I am able to use it in optimizing my Facebook and Google advertising as well.  

Another great example lies in SEO: Understanding your keyword conversion from search engine marketing (SEM) can help inform your SEO strategy, because your conversion on paid keywords will likely translate to your organic keyword strategy as well.  

These are one-off examples of how cross-channel data comparison is useful. When it comes down to it though, the absolute best way to execute this channel comparison is by using a data analytics software that puts all of your marketing campaigns into a dashboard. A marketing dashboard will allow you to see all of your data in one place to make these cross channel marketing decisions that much easier.  

Use your data to drive PR  

Neatly packaging your company’s data can be a boon to PR. I’ve used sales data, customer surveys and customer demographic data to create infographics and other fun, shareable assets to garner press. Companies like Zumper have done an incredible job of using data to drive awareness and press.  

For example, say you had 1,000 new customers buy your product last month. That is a huge feat, particularly if you are launching a new consumer product or selling a larger-investment product. Putting out a press release is a great way to harness that accomplishment and drive your acquisitions even further. Announcing how well your company is already doing is a surefire way to make others want in. 

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Predictive account-based marketing 

Account-based marketing (ABM) means knowing your market. Do you fully understand the accounts you already have? Who are these people? Why did they choose your business? How old are they? Which are your most successful accounts? Use your data to paint a very complete picture of your customers, so that you know who you’ve already won over.  

Knowing information like this will allow you to strategize what comes next, whether it is expanding to new types of accounts by experimenting with new messaging, or gaining a greater market share of the people that already seem to love you.  

If you are going with the latter option, you can actually use your customer information to create a couple of customer profiles, which can outline the three or four basic profiles that your customers fit. Using that, you can identify other companies that do not use your service but *do* fit the profile. This will absolutely improve your conversion and acquisition rates.  

Tools you should be using   

Great. So what tools can you use to do all of this? I can recommend a couple of great ones: 

  • Google Analytics: For local data analysis. Google Analytics will tell you the basics of what you need to know. Where your traffic is coming from, which ads are performing most effectively - all that good stuff can be done with this tool. It is a great top-level way to understand which messages appeal to your consumers. 
  • Heap Analytics, Mixpanel or Amplitude: These tools are great for a more complex view of your customer. Heap, Mixpanel and Amplitude will all allow you to execute funnel analyses and data slices, which will give you a much fuller picture of your customers’ journeys.  
  • Your CRM or email platform’s native data: This is essential to understanding your customers. A CRM should be aggregating all of the data that you need to understand about your customers. It's also worth considering a Customer Data Platform as well, which can help further parse your CRM data and create customer profiles. Your email platform’s native data also holds key information about your customers. This is how they interact with you online, which is very helpful information for supercharging your acquisitions. 


If you are looking to improve your acquisitions, data is really the only path forward. Understanding your customers, your successes, and your failures is an essential part of growing as a company. Hopefully this article provides you with a roadmap moving forward.  


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