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As Big Data disruption upends corporate decision-making, it also exposes organizational anachronisms in marketing groups little changed for decades. In response, companies pioneering in advanced analytics are reinventing how marketing organizations operate. Included in these organizational re-thinks are fundamental changes to key executive relationships – especially between CMOs and CFOs; sometimes with help from a Chief Data and/or Analytics role.
As a result, new marketing/finance partnerships are emerging that promise the biggest changes in a generation, sparked by something that never existed before: The ability to show clearly, convincingly and quantitatively how marketing and advertising activities contribute to revenue and profit. Analytics has become a Rosetta Stone, creating common language between (in particular) marketing and finance. Connecting marketing and finance through analytics has broken down walls and is creating an entirely new level of visibility into marketing’s impact on financial performance.
In his Harvard Business Review article “How Big Data Brings Marketing and Finance Together”, Wes Nichols, Co-founder and CEO of MarketShare, examines this game-changing trend through the experiences of several MarketShare clients, including MasterCard, Intel and Mattel. Nichols’ article is part of an HBR Insight Center on The New Marketing Organization that examines how the rise of global marketing and digital technologies have profoundly changed what the marketing functions does. It features best-practice companies and leaders who are redesigning marketing for the global, digital age.
“Companies that fail to update their marketing organizations and continue using antiquated measurement solutions are at risk of being left behind,” writes Nichols. “New marketing-finance relationships combined with advanced analytics technology are increasing efficiency and delivering ‘found’ dollars to the bottom line. Short of creating a killer new product or service, there are few ways a big company can move the needle quite so dramatically.”
Download the full HBR article to find out how key companies are gaining a competitive advantage through advanced marketing analytics.
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What’s Missing From Your Technology Marketing Action Plan?
Attribution is a hot topic among marketers. But most attribution is ineffective if not outright broken. The consumer journey can be exceedingly complex. How do you accurately assign credit for each ad or marketing effort so you know what’s working, what’s not and how each effort and investment interacts with the others? If you view digital in a silo you are potentially missing important offline and non-media influences – including long-term brand effects for example – that impact consumer purchase decisions. The key is a holistic “cross channel” approach that combines digital attribution with mix modeling. In this Podcast interview with Crimson Marketing CEO Glenn Gow, Daniel Kehrer, VP of Marketing at MarketShare, discusses this and other marketing analytics and technology topics.
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Big companies are increasingly using advanced analytics technology to improve marketing effectiveness and generate more revenue per ad dollar spent. As a result, they are delivering tens, and sometimes even hundreds of millions of “found” dollars to their bottom lines. Short of creating some killer new product or service, there are few if any ways a big company CEO can move the needle quite so dramatically.
Companies that are getting it right, however, are often reluctant to talk about their success because it generates a competitive advantage they want to protect. As a result, the most successful CEOs are not necessarily letting other CEOs in on the secret.
In a recent article published on Forbes, MarketShare’s CEO, Jon Vein, provides a helpful “cheat sheet” on traits that are common to companies that are achieving success with marketing analytics. A few key takeaways for CEOs from Jon’s Forbes article “An Advanced Marketing Analytics Cheat Sheet For CEOs” are:
- Do no harm – use context and business judgment in conjunction with good math and analytics.
- Look ahead – transform insights from past data into simulations and optimizations for the future.
- Don’t live in a bubble – true insights require outside data.
- Track the entire purchase journey – account for all of the different touch points that influence purchases.
- You need a “top down” and “bottom up” approach – start at the top and drill down to see big trends and individual purchase behavior in both the online and offline worlds.
- Have a “right brain/left brain” view to more closely approximate what is happening in the real world.
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"Digital attribution has plenty of technical jargon, too, such as predictive models, sample errors and selection bias, to name a few. These technical terms are meant to help describe a consumer reality. How, for instance, did multiple touch points in a sequence of events influence a consumer to buy a product or perform some high-value brand interaction? The challenge for our industry is that we are too wrapped up listening to MP3s and have forgotten what music should really sound like. The value chain is being crippled by weak links.
Consider two examples: offline factors, like TV, and view-through display banner impressions."
Part of a regular series from AdExchanger, “Data-Driven Thinking" is written by members of the media community and contains fresh ideas on the digital revolution in media.Add a comment