CQY_TEST

FALL/WINTER 2017

MARKETING MEASUREMENT THE VALUE OF STANDARDIZING

Standardizing the measurement of customer data is crucial to success in the fast-paced world of modern marketing. Streamlining your data processes is the only way you can quickly and accurately compare the successes and failures of each tactic, leading to better-informed decisions, more effective optimization and a maximum impact on your overall marketing spend.

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By Jane Moran, VP, Analytics and Insights, AIR MILES Reward Program

an effort to improve efficiencies and the ability to scale, as well as to increase speed of learning. Many marketing departments may have once thought that the required creativity of the field kept them immune from the order and rigor of standardization, but the advancement of data procurement has been a game-changer. Standardized measurement is not only critical but also allows marketers and the businesses that employ it to make better-informed decisions and deliver more effective optimizations, both of which result in more efficiently allocated marketing dollars. ›

Today’s marketers have an ever-growing customer data set at their disposal, as well as more channels to reach consumers than ever before. And while gathering unique data sets on each tactic or campaign is helpful, developing a full marketing strategy for a modern brand requires the use of standard formats and collection processes to properly integrate that data. Standardizing processes is not a new concept. It has been widely used through a multitude of other industries — manufacturing, sales, operations — for de- cades (or centuries, in some cases) in

Standardized measurement is the onlyway to accurately compare the successes and failures of each tactic.

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FALL/WINTER 2017

reviews it through a business-oriented lens. The language and communication barriers prevent some of the best analysis of the data from being acted on by the market- ing team and others who could use it most effectively. To combat this, the silos need to be removed – both analysts and marketers should be involved in the decision-making process early and often. As a strategy is developed with regards to what data to report on, business objectives must be clear to all parties and must have agreed-upon definitions. For example, if the goal is to increase engagement, different departments may understand that phrase differently. Instead, teams need to specify what metrics will be measured to determine engagement — more digital touchpoints, increased transactions, improved customer satisfaction scores or a number ofother possibilities. Unclear criteria begets ambiguity. ›

USING DATA EFFECTIVELY Customer data can be used to improve process, better engage an audience, increase lead generation and otherwise improve the bottom line. That process starts with the ability to confidently assess all available data, which can become more and more difficult to do as the data becomes more complex. Standardized measurement is the only way to accurately compare the successes and failures of each tactic. Once you are able to compare apples to apples, it’s possible to truly determine which assets and media investments are providing the most value. It isn’t enough, however, to standardize the process. It is imperative for all teams to interpret the data equivalently and to clearly understand the business objectives. One of the places where this process often breaks down is at the interface of the analytics and marketing teams. Too often, teams work in isolation, with the analytics experts examining data through a diagnostic lens while the marketing team

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To succeed in today’s fast-paced marketplace, retailers must come to grips with the era of information overload and adapt their strategies to meet the challenges in front of them.

consumer. Automation frees up marketing time and resources for creative and strategic initiatives (that will later also be measured), and the automation process isn’t possible without effective, standardized data. To succeed in today’s fast-paced market- place, retailers must come to grips with the era of information overload and adapt their strategies to meet the challenges in front of them. And while the sheer volume of data at their disposal can feel overwhelming, standardizing and streamlining the collection and analysis process is a crucial step in putting all of that information to good use — for the betterment of their customers and their bottom line. ‹

STANDARDIZED DATA FUELS AUTOMATION The effectiveness of the metrics is determined by gathering the required information — that which will lead to sales opportunities and an improved bottom line — and enlisting it in the most practical and efficient methods. With the right standard- ized measurements comes the ability to effectively automate processes. This is extremely valuable to today’s marketers, who are now deploying automation and algorithms to make real-time decisions through an artificial intelligence (AI) process. AI can determine not only what ad a customer should see, but also which channel to deliver it through and how to track its effectiveness and relevance after it is seen by the

W W W . C O L L O Q U Y . C O M 47 Jane Moran is VP, Analytics and Insights, AIR MILES Reward Program. She can be reached at jmoran@loyalty.com.

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