Using the power of data for intelligent customer targeting


Having an effective marketing plan can be a crucial part of building a successful business.

Whether you run a small restaurant or a multinational corporation, the digital era can be described as ‘hypercompetitive’ and knowing your customer should involve more than an age range.

These days, a sound marketing initiative can include effective messaging which in turn relies heavily on precise customer targeting.

Want to better understand your business's prospects? You can embrace the power of data and increase conversions by leveraging on the growing capabilities of technology.

Big data can help you gather important details about your customers so you can transform campaigns, optimise results and reach business objectives. However, collecting, interpreting and implementing data effectively can be a tricky process. Here are a few customer targeting strategies that could help you rise to the challenge.

Acquire personal information

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Marketing strategies often fall flat without substantial personal information on the customer so logically, the first step should be to collect as many details as you can. The more data you have the more accurate your conclusions can be.

There are plenty of good ways to collect personal information. You can opt for the conventional tactic of frequently conducting surveys aimed towards customer experiences or general feedback, requesting the basic details of participants at the same time. You could interview existing customers or alternatively, develop ‘calls to action’ that request personal data. If you look hard enough, there are plenty of ways to effectively gather data out there. Strong restaurant POS systems, for example, can automate the acquisition of personal information and organise it in a way that’s efficient and easy to digest.

Develop accurate customer personas

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Create buyer personas (or customer personas) that are as accurate as the actual customers you have. The persona strategy has long been a staple of marketing but the vast amounts of data that we now have at our disposal can enable more effective results (if done right). You should create personas that properly represent the characteristics, qualities, preferences and personalities of your intended audience.

These can range from physical qualities like age and gender to more detailed areas like demeanour or past experiences, lifestyles and education levels. The more in-depth your customer persona blueprint is, the better it can be. Gradually, a solid compilation of all these traits can lead to a clearer picture of the target audience you’re after, which, in turn, can lead to more effective messaging (almost as if you were addressing the audience members directly). Bear in mind, however, data is what holds this strategy together and without it, you’re probably just shooting in the dark. Be sure to use data in order to build accurate and heavily-detailed personas.

Have a good grasp of key social channels

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You should also understand the ways in which people consume your content and how they hear about your business. If you’re running a restaurant, you should know how many customers come to you through word of mouth and how many of them show up after seeing your ads online. Keeping your eyes on key social channels can help you adjust the way you market your business, based on your customers’ preferred platforms.

Focus on your customers’ behavioural traits

Mindset, Stimulus, Response, Emotion, Reaction

You could say that humans are heavily driven by their habits and, because of this, behaviour can be a great premise on which to base your customer segmentation.

You can filter your audiences and gradually eliminate disinterested customers by analysing the engagement rate of email campaigns (for example). This can also help you market more heavily towards those who have higher engagement levels or have expressed interest in your business.

Whichever way you do it, understanding behaviour can help you collect data and turn data into something that makes sense to you and is relevant to your business.

POS systems can enhance this by measuring exactly which promotional campaigns have brought in the most (or least) guests. Integrated servers can track when emails from campaigns are related to guests arriving and discounts can be applied and tracked, giving your company the ability to precisely measure the revenue attributed to each campaign.

Utilise past purchasing patterns

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Similarly, past purchasing behaviour can indicate how you should or shouldn’t market to a certain group. By slowly collecting data on how customers purchase, you can engage with different sets of people based on the relationship they have with your business. Your segments can be based on their buying patterns or even the types of purchases they make. Eventually, you may have an idea of what products/purchases they would like before they even know.

Finetune customer experiences

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Cloud-based POS solutions now have the ability to recognise customers at various touchpoints. This can create a consistent brand experience that's in-line with your restaurant's identity.

Consider retargeting

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Along with applying data-driven customer targeting, today, businesses have the ability to retarget potential customers that may not have initially been interested.

Sometimes people don’t open emails or don’t opt for a specific promotion and you should understand why. This can help you resolve that issue and reacquire their loyalty. Remarketing techniques should be used as a part of a broad spectrum of strategies and, combined with various other marketing tactics, they can help you deal with conversions across multiple platforms.

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