Planning a Data Strategy for Sweeter Results

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What does your data tell you about your customers? How is it stored to ensure customer privacy and security? Can it be easily accessed, processed, used and managed? Can you get actionable insights from your data in real time?

Do you have answers to all these questions? If you don’t, here’s how to start planning your data strategy today for sweeter results.

Data Strategy Definition

Planning a Data Strategy-Definition

A data strategy is simply the strategic plan you set and follow at your company to get your data in shape so you can leverage it to the fullest. It includes deciding who will be involved and the methods and processes you’ll implement to capture, identify, enhance, manage and activate your raw data so it can become accessible, usable, and shareable across your organization – and become one of your biggest assets.

Data Strategy Components

Your data strategy should include these four parts:

1. Talent.

Be sure you have the right people up for the task who are well-versed in advanced analytics and who know and understand the latest platform integrations and data processing privacy compliance best practices.

2. Process. Include specific processes that address data governance, ongoing maintenance, ad platform management, future innovation and cross-functional insight sharing.

3. Infrastructure.

Access the right tools that can ingest large amounts of data, build and activate audience segments and analyze impact and learnings. Foundational infrastructure, for example, can be access to third-party data providers, a data management platform (DMP), etc.

4. Data Content and Sources.

Determine what data is valuable to your business and marketing objectives. Then evaluate your available data and look for gaps and how to fill them.

Data Strategy Planning

Of course, setting a data strategy isn’t a one-time task. It requires ongoing work, vision and a lot of effort to make successful. Think of your data strategy as a road map to achieving your short- and long-term goals, crafted in such a way that it’s capable of meeting your existing needs and future ones too as your business changes, evolves and grows.

Unfortunately, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to setting a data strategy. Finding what works depends on what your company does and its maturity and corporate culture, among other things.

But no matter the situation or circumstances, anyone can successfully start here. Answer these questions first to lay a solid data strategy foundation:

The Data Strategy Planning Questions To Ask Yourself

Goals & Objectives

  • What are your goals?
  • What do you want to learn about your customers?
  • Do you know who your customers are?
  • What does success look like to you?


  • Who will oversee your data strategy?
  • Do you have a legal compliance and consent process?
  • What is your auditing process to ensure data quality and accuracy?
  • What type of platform do you need to unify, manage and segment data?
  • Does your infrastructure allow data to integrate with other systems?
  • Do you have the technical expertise to handle these data integrations?
  • Do you have a plan for sharing data across departments?
  • What reporting capabilities do you need?

Data Collection

  • What data do you need to measure business impact?
  • What data can you access now?
  • Do you need to enhance your data sets to fill any gaps?
  • Is your data aggregated holistically?

Segmentation and Modeling

  • How will you segment your audiences for activation?
  • Do you want to use look-alike modeling or offline modeling?
  • Can you use propensity modeling based on your data?


  • Where will you activate your audience segments?
  • Does your DSP enable search, social dynamic creative and more?
  • How can you use your data to optimize your campaigns?

Planning a Data Strategy-Benefits

Answering all these questions upfront in the planning phase can make creating and implementing a data strategy more efficient and much easier down the road. And once you have your data strategy, with the right reporting tools, you can reap a lot of benefits. Here are just a few:

Data Strategy Benefits

  • Get actionable and meaningful insights you can apply to future campaigns.
  • Share your data across your organization for cross-departmental learnings.
  • Gain a greater understanding of your customers.
  • Measure well and know what advertising efforts are giving you the best results.
  • Use the tools you need to tie your online and offline advertising efforts together.

Even knowing these benefits and the value of having a solid data strategy, does creating one at your organization still seem overwhelming? Then craft your data strategy by the book, our data strategy playbook, that is.

When you download our data strategy playbook, you’ll learn:

  • the seven fundamental steps to designing, creating and activating an impactful and effective data strategy,
  • all the data types you need to be successful,
  • what to do after you capture your data and how to deal with any gaps,
  • how to generate insights as you launch your data strategy,
  • and more!

In fact, “more” includes two bonuses inside:

  • a helpful data strategy assessment quiz: Are you crawling, walking or running when it comes to your data strategy? Quickly gauge the stage you’re in. Know your data capabilities and just what to do next.
  • a data management checklist: Get the steps you should take to get your data in order once and for all. Then as you go, tick off the items on the list so you can chart your progress.

Download and flip through our playbook and get the latest data strategy research, insightful infographics, and all the essentials for building an audience-first data strategy.

As you map out your organization’s data strategy, please reach out if we can offer support. We can walk you through how to build a custom data strategy that will last the long haul, one that will be flexible, adaptable and effective both now and later, no matter where the future takes you.