Marketers are used to allowing intuition to override everything else & many times they have to. No amount of market research or testing will guarantee success for a 30 second advertisement. New technologies & the ineternet based consumer now allow you to test each element of the marketing mix & drive a huge amount of incremental ROI through a smart "Design of Marketing experiments" platform. I guess it isnt easy telling the boss that she is wrong but if you get your Testing platform correctly set up, you could in fact allow data to override intuition. So data may help democratising decision making!!
But Marketing is changing & in many businesses the marketer is talking 1 to 1 with her consumers. It is here that using concepts such as “testing” have the highest impact. And even higher impact is possible in Digital businesses where in the online world you can set up 1000’s of tests & check each intuition out with hard facts. Apparently, Google insiders have a derisive term to describe a decision making system that fails to put data at its heart: HiPPO—”highest-paid person’s opinion.”
Gary Loveman, CEO of Harrahs Casino has this interesting comment: “There were three ways to get fired at Harrah’s: steal, harass women, or institute a program or policy without first running an experiment “
-- Gary Loveman, quoted in Hard Facts
And yet data based experimentation should not stop you from making larger measured jumps because you are waiting for incremental tests.
Yes, Google has built its empire by listening to data, but we reserve our awe for the sort of vision that Steve Jobs brought to Apple, and we nod along at the famous answer he gave when asked how much market testing he did for the iPad: “None,” he said, echoing Henry Ford. “It’s not the consumers’ job to know what they want.”
Have a look at this interesting article which tells you how even Obama used experimentation in his campaigns!