How Successful Analytics-Driven Marketers Stand Out

. August 18, 2017

Brands are making major moves, upgrades and expansions into marketing measurement and analytics. For some, results have been stellar, with major boosts in marketing effectiveness, a clearer vision of how to use insights for decision-making and quantifiably prove marketing’s impact.

But others struggle, due in part to a wide range of problems dealing with data, defining the right questions to answer, choosing measurement methodologies, integrating analytics across the company, and many others.

Here are some best practices for building an analytics driven marketing organization from companies that have earned recognition for analytics excellence in the marketing world.

Gaining organization buy-in is vital.

Gain internal buy-In at all levels of the organization

For example, the analytics team at one major tech company provides clear and simple presentation materials in customized packages targeting one senior marketing and finance execu­tive at a time. In addition, the team reaches its internal marketing community by integrating key insights gained through analytics in executive keynotes, short videos and training sessions. Also, the team engages with key marketing stake­holders to ensure their questions are addressed as analytics models evolve.

Know what answers different stakeholders are looking for

For a fast-growing insurance carrier, a key win was understanding what Finance wanted from the analytics project. That agreement up-front laid the foun­dation for cooperation and joint planning. The insurance company’s analytics team invites ques­tions and challenges, which builds confidence in the model and leads to broad support.

Ask smart, precise and tough questions

Asking the right questions means being more exacting about how measurable your market­ing analytics questions really are, and braver about what you’ll do with your learnings. Two quotes from award winning marketers:

  • “Keeping our analytics in a cycle of model/test-learn-pivot gives us the confidence to challenge ourselves even if we are uncomfortable.”
  • “If you can’t measure the outcome, you need to ask yourself if you should be doing this at all.”


Video Above: Jim Trebilcock, Chief Commercial Officer, Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, describes the importance of building a high-quality analytics team in order to build out internal capabilities and demonstrate the value of analytics across the organization.

Buy and build your technology carefully

Think through the marketing analytics technology you are using, or plan to use. Key areas include:

  • Business fit: Can it handle complex product portfolios? Can it advise on next dollar investment across media, marketing, product and service opportunities?
  • Data Integration: Can it pull in and analyze both internal and external data from all online and offline channels?
  • Tool functionality: Is the software accessible and useful across different groups and decision-making levels? Can users easily share results with others, from managers to the C-suite?
  • Optimization approach: Can your analytics tech predict results from different scenarios?

Validate results with stats and sensibility

It’s not enough to get interesting insights — you need to validate learnings to know if you’re right. The most successful companies combine “stats and sensibil­ity” to validate learnings. Top analytics-driven brands strike a balance between marketing sensibility and statistical fit. In checking the sensibility of the results they do the following:

  • Check for acceptable measures in marketing contribu­tion, source of volume change, and relative effectiveness of each touch point.
  • Conduct sanity checks against known business truths and existing knowledge.

Establish new cross-functional connections

One commonality among many analytics-driven brands is the ability to make connections from one business group to the next—or one business to the next. One tech leader looks at halo effects. Another considers the impact of ingredient brands. A telecom firm carries marketing insights across multiple depart­ments, including customer service and sales.

Gain insights quickly to enable faster pivots

The obvious example is using digital insights to guide programmatic buys. But it’s hardly the only one. Rapid, an­alytics-based insights allow for pivots in traditional media buying as well. As the CMO of one successful firm says, “We literally make decisions week over week based on performance. For example, we have created the agility to shift dollars from national TV to local markets when a specific designated market area is outperforming.”

Demonstrate impact

  • Nothing speaks louder than results to draw attention to the data-driven organization you’ve built. With results comes new resources – and credibility. Here are samples of impact top firms are seeing:
  • The insurance company’s Applied Analytics team surged from selling 9% of its products from marketing invest­ments to 29%
  • Incremental marketing investments in 2013 generated more than $100 million in revenues for one tech company. The mar­keting mix optimization that it drove generates from 1% to 3% increase in sales contribution from marketing.
  • Within six months of its new analytics program, another tech firm saw a 5% lift in sales and a 465% return on its investment.
  • The telecom firm increased the effectiveness of retention campaigns by 50%. Additionally, the integration of predictive upsell cam­paigns delivered the equivalent of an additional 3% of sales with no additional distribution costs or employees.



Category: Adoption, Articles, Strategy

About the Author ()

Daniel Kehrer is Executive Editor of the ANA Data Analytics Center (DAC), a leading voice of thought leadership and education in marketing measurement, data and analytics. He is also the Founder of BizBest Media Corp. and previously headed marketing at MarketShare LLC, an advanced marketing analytics technology company.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *