Unlock the power of marketing data with active metadata and lineage

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Marketing teams today face a data paradox. Customer data constantly pours in from websites, social media, email campaigns, online ads and countless other channels. This goldmine of information — especially first-party data — holds immense potential to provide insights and guide marketing strategy and tactics. But catalyzing that potential into action requires data accuracy and visibility that most marketers lack. Understanding how data flows through systems via metadata management and automated data lineage can help bridge this gap.

Marketers’ data challenges

Critical customer knowledge remains siloed across channels, trapped within platforms. Further complicating matters, martech stacks have become dizzyingly complex. Assembling a unified view of customers in 2023 often requires integrating data from an average of 18 sources.

Even once aggregated, marketing data suffers from accuracy and completeness issues, meaning marketers can’t always trust the information or insights they receive. Outdated or partial customer records limit teams’ ability to create targeted segments and personalize engagements. A recent survey found the top challenges marketers face in using their data for actionable insights include:

  • Costly manual data science.
  • Unorganized/unstructured customer data.
  • Limited technical knowledge within marketing teams.
  • Insufficient or outdated data.
  • Data siloed within disconnected platforms.

The result? Most (84%) marketers agreed that “despite all the customer data my company gathers, it is still difficult to make day-to-day data-driven decisions and take action.”

Moreover, data regulations have tightened, demanding meticulous data governance: 86% of marketers told HubSpot that data privacy changes impacted their marketing strategies in 2022. This confluence of aggregation, quality and compliance challenges means even marketing departments striving to become data-driven face an uphill battle.

Unlocking the potential of marketing data

Marketing teams stand to gain tremendous strategic benefit from solving their data challenges. Integrated, accurate data illuminates the customer lifecycle, empowering marketers to optimize campaigns, pinpoint effective channel strategies and align with changing customer expectations.

Insight into data quality also enables personalization at scale. Accurate, consistent customer records allow for fine-tuned audience segmentation and messaging tailored to individual needs. When marketers can understand data dependencies — how purchase history and demographics details feed into email marketing personalization, for instance — they’re one step closer to meeting privacy regulations — and building customer trust.

With trustworthy data and data pipeline visibility, marketers can optimize their current processes and pursue innovations like predictive modeling and dynamic content creation to drive insights and revenue outcomes.

Bridging the data divide with active metadata and lineage

Transitioning from data-overloaded to data-optimized requires closing the insights gap between information and action. Active metadata management and data lineage enable this process by providing context and traceability.

Metadata — data about data — provides the top-down context by tagging data with definitions to organize information and reveal relationships.

Marketers collect but don’t actively optimize passive metadata — like customer schemas and workflows. Conversely, active metadata uses real-time analysis of data usage patterns across marketing to enable automated improvements in campaigns and experiences. It offers interconnected insights to help marketing teams increase automation, system integration and overall efficiency of their martech stacks.

Automated data lineage uses metadata to trace the path of information the same way package delivery tracking gives customers a view of an online order’s journey from purchase to porch. By mapping data’s transformation steps, lineage validates data quality and reveals dependencies. Tracking the trail of data handoffs establishes the reliability and factual accuracy of downstream analyses while also highlighting broken handoffs that lead to inaccurate data.

Together, active metadata and automated data lineage give marketers an interconnected view of their data ecosystem, empowering precise audience segmentation, personalization at scale and nuanced modeling.

In a data-driven world, marketers who can successfully navigate the data paradox gain a competitive advantage. By solving the challenges of data aggregation, quality and compliance, marketing teams can leverage their data to create personalized experiences, optimize campaigns and drive revenue outcomes. Active metadata management and automated data lineage provide the insights necessary to bridge the data divide and confidently execute data-driven strategies.

Nancy Louisnord
Nancy Louisnord is the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at Manta, responsible for global marketing initiatives and product marketing strategy. She brings over 15 years of international leadership experience in the B2B IT SaaS industry, expanding numerous companies into new markets and driving exponential growth through business transformations. Before joining MANTA, Louisnord held executive positions with EasyVista, TOPdesk, and Daffodil Consulting.

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