How to Prevent Data Fragmentation From Eating Your Lunch

How to Prevent Data Fragmentation From Eating Your Lunch

Data Activation


November 22, 2017 - By Ginna Hall, Senior Writer, Visual IQ

How to Prevent Data Fragmentation From Eating Your Lunch

Experts say that data fragmentation may be the single biggest challenge facing marketers today.

That’s because most of us are trying to optimize the impact of our marketing and media across channels and devices and against multiple success criteria. Are you trying to boost brand engagement? Online sales? Mobile app conversions? In-store transactions? How can you know which tactics are working best?

You need the data. But given the fact that most marketers use more than 12 different tools (on average) to manage campaigns and data, the quest for a unified view may be taking its toll on your day job (you know, as a marketer).

Success or failure now depends on having access to accurate data that can be mined for past performance and future scenario planning.

Consider these statistics:

  • 63% of marketers say generating traffic and leads is their top challenge.
  • 42% of marketers state that a lack of quality data is their biggest barrier to lead generation.

Do you see the issue here? Success or failure now depends on having access to accurate data that can be mined for past performance and future scenario planning.

Today, brands have an almost endless supply of adtech and martech platforms to choose from, yet despite the obvious overlap in disciplines, these technologies have traditionally operated in their own separate silos. These silos make it difficult to connect the audience insights and related marketing and business performance data needed to deliver relevant consumer experiences and drive business results.

Marketers are left seeking the answers to these questions:

  • What are the attributes of the consumers being exposed to my marketing and advertising?
  • Which channels and devices do consumers use to interact with my brand?
  • How do I measure the performance and impact of my marketing and advertising by audience?
  • What’s the best way to allocate spend and optimize budgets within and across channels?
  • How can I create coordinated, relevant, personalized customer experiences?

The current era of advertising and marketing is fueled by technology. Data has become the point of connection between marketing activities. The challenge for most marketers is that the data you need lives in silos, housed in separate adtech and martech platforms that offer greater or lesser degrees of usefulness. As a result, marketers managing multiple channels and tracking online and offline brand interactions can’t connect effort with outcome. You simply don’t know if what you’re doing is working.

Data as a Connection Point

In the not too distant past, advertising technology and marketing technology were distinct industries, with little connection between the two. Over time, adtech evolved into data-driven advertising and martech into data-driven marketing. Now, adtech and martech are converging, with platforms sharing datasets and sometimes even functionality—data management platforms (DMP), customer relationship management platforms (CRMs), and demand side platforms (DSPs), for example.

But even with this convergence, marketers still lack a unified view. The problem is that when you use multiple technologies, you see multiple reports from each. Your systems may use different metrics and taxonomies. Even if some data flows between platforms, you’re still not seeing the whole picture. Without a single system of record, you can never get a comprehensive view.

Every marketing team must wage the good fight against data fragmentation and find ways to unite the whole marketing stack at the data layer.

Marketing Intelligence Reduces Data Fragmentation

The martech ecosystem now offers a new weapon in this struggle. Emerging marketing intelligence platforms let you take control of your marketing data instead of having it held hostage inside all the tech you use. This approach reduces fragmentation by seamlessly integrating, de-duplicating and normalizing disparate audience and performance data to establish a single source of marketing truth.

By combining audience insights with multi-touch attribution, these platforms provide a single interface where marketers can understand how consumers are being exposed to and interacting with their brand, assess tactical marketing and advertising performance by audience, and leverage that insight to optimize budgets and experiences for customer and prospects across all touchpoints.

A New Era of Marketing

The ability to consolidate data from disparate adtech and martech solutions is becoming a marketer’s greatest asset. With marketing intelligence, you can win the battle against data fragmentation.

Marketing intelligence is much more than just measuring clicks and opens, it’s about measuring the impact on pipeline and revenue. It’s about understanding what works best for each target audience, and achieving one-to-one people-based marketing in ways that haven’t been possible before. When you can do this, you’ll be able to make important, strategic decisions that optimize consumer experiences and business results.

Marketers must embrace the new era of marketing intelligence, so you can keep data fragmentation from eating your lunch.

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