Content That Builds

Don't Get Derailed by Data

October 03, 2017 | Trends

As an industry focused heavily on logistics and measurements, data seems to have exploded in popularity as a “marketing strategy” over the past decade. With the access and use of technology, companies large and small are not only capturing more and more data on their current and potential customers themselves, but they’re also relying on outside data providers to fill their databases and spreadsheets. Savvy marketers are now turning to those same data points to create campaigns, discover trends, and pinpoint their audiences.

Advancements in artificial intelligence has companies like IBM, SalesForce, Adobe, or Google (to name only a few) churning out sophisticated software programs that rely on complex algorithms to automate processes, capture leads, or display the most appropriate banner ads. However, computers can hardly understand the intricacies of human behavior, desires, or needs, which are the heart of any strong marketing strategy. The usefulness of data is up to the people deciphering and taking action based on it, not the data itself.

For example, if a building materials company relies solely upon BIM data to create and/or market a product to architects, they may be missing the key human element of design. While the availability of data can help determine larger trends or issues, it lacks what we as human beings contain that not even the most expensive machine can create. Empathy and emotion.

The most miniscule or finite piece of data can’t predict how someone will feel, react, or interact with a building because everyone is different. Every experience we have from one moment to the next can potentially influence our mood or decision-making, and it’s unrealistic to expect a computer to full comprehend the intricacies of human nature. Psychographics, not demographics, are what ultimately cause an individual to take action.

We’re not claiming to be experts on data, but we know people because we are people. In the end, that’s whom you’re trying to target as well. Architects, designers, contractors, and everyone else in the AEC community are all people, and we should remember that. That automated e-blast you’re sending out might be a nice reminder of your brand or companies position in the market, but it’s not what sets you apart. Architects want manufacturers to make connections and build meaningful relationships.

The next time you’re using data to build or create a product or campaign, remember how important the human element can be. Instead of pressing send on that email to thousands of customers. Try picking up the phone or grabbing lunch with them to collect your own data.


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