4 ways to power paid media engagement with life cycle data

Leveraging first-party data to drive engagement isn’t new. But the first-party data many brands use for paid platforms isn’t as robust or reliable as the data available in life cycle marketing platforms, Tinuiti’s Kellie Collins, associate director of life cycle marketing, said during a recent eMarketer webinar.

Life cycle marketing platforms are used to create audience segments so marketers can deploy emails, push notifications, and SMS messages. These platforms are unique because they rely on event-based data like search, cart, or purchase history—not site pixels—and offer a full historical context of a user’s relationship with a brand.

Life cycle marketing’s primary focus is to communicate with individuals who are actively subscribed to or opted into a specific channel. If a user hasn’t subscribed or opted out, brands can still target customers from their paid channels to foster a deeper relationship.

Here are four ways marketers can apply life cycle data into paid media efforts:

  1. Awareness: If a “window shopper” has been on the site in the last 90 days without making a purchase, life cycle data can be used on paid channels to remind the shopper why they should make a purchase or engage with the brand, driving them further through the funnel.
  2. Consideration: Life cycle data can be leveraged to retarget indecisive customers with a promotion or a reminder to complete the purchase. A women’s shoe retailer, for example, retargeted its cart abandoners with search ads and saw a 39.8% return on ad spend (ROAS) versus non-life cycle audiences, Collins said.
  3. Convert: Once converted, the available user data increases, as does the opportunity to target. In another example, a women’s fashion retailer used life cycle audiences by retargeting individuals identified as “repeat purchasers” or “high-value buyers” on social media. Doing so resulted in a 75% higher ROAS compared to its social account’s average.
  4. Advocacy: Loyalty members are a brand’s most engaged audience, and can be used to develop similar audiences on paid channels who are also likely to become loyal. A men’s health retailer, for instance, leveraged its loyalty members and those who engaged with emails within 90 days to drive traffic back to its site. The audience resulted in an 1,060% increase in purchases, plus a 5% higher conversion rate than its account average.

Powering paid channels with life cycle data is not without obstacles, though. They include:

  • Uncertainty about how to best leverage or access the data available within an organization
  • Underestimating how life cycle data can help improve channel KPIs and lifetime value, something paid channels don’t often take into account
  • Overcoming existing data silos within the tech stack, as well as team silos within an organization

“Your customers or prospects are multidimensional, and the overall life cycle of that individual user is not linear,” Collins said. “[Life cycle marketers] are able to combine multiple data points together to build out this really robust audience.”

Watch the full webinar.

This was originally featured in the eMarketer Daily newsletter. For more marketing insights, statistics, and trends, subscribe here.

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