blog post

Anomaly Detection in Marketing: Key Insights and Best Practices

Rohit K
Rohit K
November 17, 2023
8 min read

Anomaly detection empowers marketers to unearth rare occurrences that are different from the regular trend pattern of behavior. It makes it easy for marketers to predict trends and make timely interventions where needed. 

For instance, marketers can spot deviating patterns when monitoring KPIs like conversion rates, click-through rates, customer churn, and more. This allows them to optimize campaigns to achieve the best outcomes. 

What’s more? 

Spotting outliers or deviations in marketing data allows marketers to take prompt action. This can save them from expensive marketing blunders, thus bolstering their efforts.

This post will throw light on data anomaly detection and how marketers can leverage it to improve their campaigns and drive revenue growth. 

What Is Anomaly Detection? 

In marketing, anomalies refer to unexpected or unusual patterns, behaviors, or outliers within marketing data. They can deviate from standard data patterns in various aspects of marketing activities. 

Spotting anomalies in marketing data requires defining the norms. Once they are established, it becomes easier to determine data anomalies.

An unusual drop in customer retention rates or abnormal click-through rates on several marketing channels compared to historical data - all these instances reflect anomalies in marketing.

Anomaly detection is the application of several techniques and artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning-powered tools specifically defined to identify anomalies in marketing activities. It helps you gain crucial customer insights, detect potential challenges, and optimize marketing strategies. 

The result? Improved marketing campaign effectiveness, high customer acquisition, retention, and revenue outcomes.

Here are a few crucial examples depicting anomaly detection use cases in SaaS marketing.

  • Sudden Drop or Increase in KPI movements: This occurs when a marketing campaign or specific channels experience abnormally high or low deviation compared to the benchmarks.
  • Unexplained Traffic: A sudden spike or drop in website traffic unexpectedly usually indicates an anomaly.
  • Unusual Customer Behavior: Unexplained surge in purchases from new customers or an unexpected drop in customer retention reflects an anomaly. 
  • Fraudulent Activities: Fraudulent customer actions, such as suspicious transactions, click frauds, and more, can be anomalies. 

Here’s when you can use anomaly detection in SaaS marketing:

  • Campaign Optimization: Identifying anomalies in customer behavior can help you understand their preferences, thus boosting the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns.
  • Predictive Analytics: Anomaly detection can help you discover early warning signs or predict future anomalies, thus helping mitigate risks. 
  • Fraud Detection: With data anomaly detection, you can spot bot-generated clicks, fake sign-ups, or unauthorized access to customer accounts.

How Does Anomaly Detection Work?

Built on the technological framework of AI and machine learning, anomaly detection tools require initial training to define standard data. 

This enables the tools to define, identify, and pinpoint irregular or abnormal data.  

Here’s an example depicting its working principle. 

Step #1: A SaaS company provides training data in a sample set. 

Step #2: The system builds a robust algorithm to detect anomalies by leveraging the data.

Step #3: Once the tool establishes standards for what the marketing data looks like when it’s operating appropriately, administrators can differentiate and create alerts for anomalies stating “anomaly detected.”

You can approach real-time anomaly detection through two methods, namely - supervised and unsupervised anomaly detection.

Here’s how these methods work.

  • Supervised Anomaly Detection

This anomaly detection method uses labeled SaaS marketing data with anomalies and standard (regular) instances for training.

The model learns the patterns and characteristics of standard and irregular data points.

During the testing phase, this anomaly detection model identifies anomalies based on the learned patterns. It points out data points deviating from the expected (usual) behavior.

When to Use: This method is suitable when you have labeled data and information on particular types of anomalies. These data points can help train the model successfully.

  • Unsupervised Anomaly Detection

This real-time anomaly detection method does not require labeled data for training.

The model learns the inherent patterns and structures within the dataset without any information on anomalies. It identifies anomalies as data points that deviate from informed patterns.

When to Use: This method is suitable when you don’t have any information on anomalies and labeled data.

Both methods empower SaaS marketers to identify outliers impacting marketing performance and decision-making.

Why Do Marketers Need Anomaly Detection? 

SaaS marketers face the below-shared challenges in their quest to optimize marketing efforts. With anomaly detection tools, marketers can overcome them all, thus driving better performance.

Here’s how -

  • Streamlines Efforts and Saves Time: SaaS marketers often spend significant time and effort analyzing marketing data, metrics, and industry insights. 

With an anomaly detection tool, they can automate the entire process. It helps identify unusual patterns or deviations in data with a few clicks. This saves time and allows marketers to focus on strategic decision-making rather than manually analyzing data.

  • Offers Enhanced Accuracy: Manual monitoring of marketing metrics can leave room for errors. Marketers might overlook anomalies that can impact marketing campaign performance. 

On the other hand, leveraging anomaly detection tools can empower them to detect even subtle deviations from standard data patterns, ensuring that no vital insights get overlooked.

  • Provides Protection from Glitches: Revenue-damaging glitches, such as payment processing issues, website downtime, and others, can hurt a business’s image and growth in the long term. 

Anomaly detection helps identify such anomalies in real-time, empowering SaaS marketers to take proactive measures and minimize revenue loss.

  • Shares Real-time Insights: Traditional analytics tools like Google Analytics count on static data. They provide a retrospective view of performance, which is inadequate to help a SaaS business thrive in the ever-evolving marketplace. 

However, anomaly detection tools analyze data and offer insights in real-time. This allows marketers to unearth emerging customer demands and industry trends and capitalize on growth opportunities.

  • Helps Optimize Marketing Strategies: By detecting anomalies, marketers can gain in-depth insights into consumer behavior, campaign performance, and market trends. 

This can help refine SaaS marketing strategies and allocate resources and budgets more effectively, thus optimizing campaigns.

Why Do Sales Need Anomaly Detection? 

Anomaly detection tools can boost sales professionals’ working effectiveness, thus helping them drive revenue growth and achieve sales goals.

Here’s how -

  • Helps Close Deals: Salespeople need to sift through colossal volumes of customer data to identify the right sales opportunities. This process consumes time and is draining.  

Anomaly detection tools allow salespeople to find valuable insights into customer behavior. By identifying deviations from standard patterns, sales teams can gauge customer needs and prioritize their efforts. This boosts the chances of closing the deal.

  • Detects Sales Performance Anomalies: Several anomalies, such as sudden spikes or drops in sales, can impact sales performance. 

With anomaly detection tools, sales teams can effectively and efficiently identify these anomalies and take appropriate actions. This helps in reducing revenue loss and optimizes sales performance.

  • Predictive Sales Forecasting: Accurate sales forecasting is crucial for strategic decision-making and requires correct data analysis. 

With anomaly detection algorithms, sales teams can analyze historical sales data, discover abnormal customer patterns, and find insights into future sales trends. This empowers the team to create the most effective sales strategy.

Examples of Anomaly Detection

Let’s explore a few crucial anomaly detection examples. 

  1. Google Ads 

Anomaly detection in Google Ads ad groups can help determine the key KPIs that might be impacted. 

Observe how Revlitix highlights unusual fluctuations in clicks, average cost-per-click (CPC), and impressions. This can help marketers take corrective measures to optimize ad spend.

Google Ads Alerts on Revlitix
  1. Google Analytics

Anomaly detection in Google Analytics offers valuable insights into optimizing website performance, improving user experience, and maximizing conversions.

Here’s an example depicting how Revlitix Alerts analyzes key metrics and detects anomalies in the website.

Google Analytics Alerts on Revlitix
  1. Search Console

Anomaly detection in Google Search Console allows marketers to monitor and identify unusual patterns in their search performance. 

Observe how Revlitix Alerts points out SEO score, accessibility score, and overall performance score. This allows marketers to detect anomalies and take proactive steps to improve search visibility, user experience, and overall website performance.

GSC Alerts on Revlitix
  1. Salesforce

Anomaly detection in Salesforce allows marketers to detect outliers in their sales data. Observe how Revlitix helps marketers discover anomalies in sales data.

Salesforce Alerts on Revlitix

Opting for the Best Anomaly Detection Tool

Choosing the right tool is pivotal for effectively identifying and addressing unusual patterns and irregularities in marketing data. This enables timely intervention to mitigate risks, thus improving decision-making and optimizing marketing performance. 

On the other hand, the absence of a powerful tool can lead to inefficient marketing processes with errors, resulting in potential delays in correcting initiatives. This can impact your overall performance and hinder SaaS business growth.

Count on Revlitix to stay one step ahead of the game!

Revlitix is an all-in-one advanced analytics platform offering features that can effectively identify and resolve anomalies and minimize risks, thus helping you unlock untapped opportunities. 

With its “Alerts” provision, you can receive early warnings and take proactive measures before a situation escalates.

Revlitix Alerts

Getting notified in advance allows you to identify and address potential challenges, such as performance drops or anomalies in KPIs, before they negatively impact your ad spend or overall marketing campaign success. 

What’s more? Tracking the most significant KPIs can help you make data-driven decisions and optimize your strategies in real-time. This can maximize the effectiveness of your efforts.

Besides, Revlitix allows you to build a feedback loop that enables effective management of critical alerts within your company. 

It empowers you to assign alerts to the appropriate team member. This ensures that the relevant stakeholders are promptly notified and can take necessary actions proactively.

Moreover, you can dismiss alerts that are deemed irrelevant. 

Revlitix’s Dismiss Alert

This helps prevent unnecessary distractions and allows your team members to focus on vital tasks. 

Furthermore, you can “snooze” alerts for a specific timeframe. This provides flexibility to teammates, ensuring that urgent matters get addressed while managing the workload. 

In short, implementing a feedback loop enhances responsiveness, minimizes disruptions, and boosts productivity.

That’s not all! 

Revlitix has a lot more to offer to the marketing teams.

Revlitix’s Unified Interface for Marketing Teams

Revlitix - 

  • Allows you to build customizable and user-friendly marketing ROI dashboards. These are designed and vetted by experts with > 15 years of experience.
  • Offers 100+ pre-designed, compelling drag-and-drop dashboards with a 30-second set-up - Not kidding!
  • Effortlessly integrates with key Martech platforms, thus streamlining business operations and enhancing data management. 
  • Helps save efforts involved in coding. Revlitix is a total no-code platform, not low-code! This means you do not have to write a single line of code!

All these powerful features make Revlitix your best bet when it comes to anomaly detection.

Summing Up

Anomaly detection in SaaS marketing is crucial for identifying and addressing irregularities, mitigating potential risks, and accelerating business growth. 

It empowers marketers to timely intervene and ensure that marketing campaigns run and achieve desired results seamlessly. 

With tools like Revlitix, you can stay ahead of the curve by automating data analysis and streamlining marketing processes. 

So, don’t let valuable insights slip through the cracks - deploy Revlitix for the best business outcomes

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