The Four Biggest Data Integration Challenges for Marketers

by | 2 Nov 2020 | Data

Data Integration

Achieving complete data integration is the holy grail for any marketer. Connecting and ultimately attributing all the data dots available is the key to transforming marketing data into marketing intelligence.

All too often, however, data becomes trapped in silos. These silos makes data integration difficult to achieve, as it’s impossible to accurately interpret results and draw meaningful conclusions without access to the complete picture.

In a recent report, Fivetran identified the following four data integration challenges:

1. Data silos as a result of manual processes

Sadly, in many organizations, attempts to centralize and manage data result in manual processes through shared spreadsheets and other tactics. This ‘spreadsheet hell’ results in many problems, including a) far too much time spent collecting (and not analyzing) data and b) stale data.

2. Inaccurate data

If your data is coming from all sorts of sources, and not centralized, you run into issues with accuracy. For example, if your data is only being pulled once a month — because it takes so long to do so — and you use that data to draw conclusions, you are already a month behind in your trends.

3. Building & maintaining reliable pipeline syncs

If you do have a team capable of building and maintaining your pipeline for you — the tool used to centralize all your data — you are ahead of the curve. But that team is going to have their hands full maintaining the pipeline, updating it and ensuring you are getting the data you need when you need it . It’s likely someone’s full-time job, which is a lot of resources and money for something that can easily be outsourced.

4. Mitigating the rising cost of centralizing growing sources of data

The more tools & services in your marketing stack, the more expensive your costs can be. You need a way to centralize everything which can scale with you, and your data.

As a general rule, the larger the company, the larger the marketing stack as campaigns and efforts are multiplied. But as that stack grows, so too does the challenge of centralising, integrating and analyzing the data – essential if you want to understand what is truly moving the needle for your business.

For example, a demand generation leader may think that a LinkedIn ad was hugely successful — and make an argument for more budget on ad spend based on a high click-through rate on the latest campaign. But it turns out none of those clicks converted into marketing qualified leads. Now add in the data gathered from Facebook Ads, a marketing email that went out simultaneously and a press release and you have a more complete picture.

Advances in automated data integration means there are now different solutions available which centralize all marketing data and improve analytics outcomes, regardless of how many sources you have. A good data automation programme can help improve analytics outcomes and allow you to make data-driven decisions.

Where next?

Click here to download Fivetran’s CMO’s guide to Automating Your Marketing Analytics and more information on resolving those integration challenges.

Click here to share your views on data integration in the FSMarTech community.


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