often talk about the need to use data while taking key decisions. But Marketers
still seem to operate more from the gut . Why is that?
to some research from Accenture, nearly half (40 percent) of
major corporate decisions are based on
intuition or the “gut”. Accenture surveyed more than 250 executives in
July 2008 about their companies' use of and investment in business analytics to
Wailgum in News
captures the reasons why the gut still reigns supreme . Here is what he says:
“So why is the gut still so in vogue? Of those
respondents who said their companies still make decisions based on judgment
rather than business analytics, 61 percent said it was because good data was
not available, and just over half (55 percent) said their decisions relied on
qualitative and subjective factors. Other reasons related to workforce
challenges: 23 percent of respondents said "insufficient quantitative
skills in employees" were a main impediment at their company, and 36
percent said their company "faces a shortage of analytical talent." That
61 percent of respondents said "no good data was available on which to
make decisions" is striking, given the terabytes of internal and
customer-related data available at most organizations today. It's also, of
course, indicative of the sad state of data management inside organizations.”
I also came
across this very interesting blog by Business Intelligence expert Steve Bennett
to Steve, here are the top 10 signs that you need to improve your
organisation's analytic capability:
- You have to wait longer
than a day for either IT or your business intelligence department to
make/change a report for you.
- Across the organisation there
are more than 100 requests pending for reporting /dashboard
/scorecard changes waiting for a specialist to deliver them.
- When you attend meetings,
there are multiple numbers being quoted for the same thing - and
you don't know which of them is correct.
- When you talk about
fundamental things like transaction, account, balance
or available stock - and you discover that the person you are
talking to is using the same words but means something different to
what you mean.
- You can't get
an instantly understanding when glancing at a
report/dashboard/scorecard and what it is telling you.
- The commentary is larger
than the automatically generated report.
- The report is not
generated automatically but is a handcrafted labour of love by either
yourself or one of your staff, or you spend hours trying to locate the
right data and then have to consolidate it manually into Excel.
- It takes longer than 5
minutes to view a new report.
- You can't access the
report when and where you most need it.
- There are hundreds of
reports available to you but you don't trust them and you spend time
trying to manually validate key numbers.
The key to making analytics matter from a business
context is to embed it into your day
to day business processes. Till you do that Analytics will be a nice luxury,
used more to justify decisions that the “gut” seems to support! How do you
embed it into business processes- we will talk about that another time!
India has had a huge mobile revolution and for so many
years the game has been only about “acquisition”. But now I feel the tide may
be shifting and smart marketers in this business will need to do more than just
launch “fantastic advertising” to be able to grow revenues. We now have quite a
few new entrants. Do Co Mo has just launched with its 1 sec pulse strategy
which will probably further drive down industry revenues by 10-15 % if others
also adopt it. And to top it all one may even see “Number portability” in the
near future in the Indian Telecom business.
So the need to “protect revenue” is probably more real
than ever before in this industry.
Rajesh Jain has an interesting take on this: Here is what
he says…”So, what should be the entry strategy for a new mobile operator in a
saturated circle (near 100% penetration) like Mumbai? This effectively means
that instead of trying to attract new users the focus has to be on switching
users.” He goes on to add “New operators tend to either talk of network or try
and come out with aggressive voice plans. I think the network quality is a
given - all seem to be the same. Voice plans typically tend to attract the
lower segment. What the new operators need is the upper end of the spectrum -
and they have to get these users to switch from their existing service
provider. For that, the focus will need to be not as much on Voice, but VAS and
Check out what Rajesh has to say about this on his blog
However with the maniacal focus on “acquisitions” in this
business, are telecom operators ready with thoughts around how their marketing
needs to change to face this challenge! Given the rich customer data that
exists in this business the first change needs to be to move from traditional “right
brained” creative thinking led Advertising to “left brained” analytical
marketing. To make this happen you need to start creating an “evidence based”
culture within marketing where you start to use data to make key marketing
decisions. Also you need to move from looking at the data like a “rear view
mirror” to a situation where you start to do “predictive marketing”. This
requires a whole new mindset and sometimes I believe it is very difficult to
create it afresh in an existing company and some of the new operators are well positioned
to create this orientation right from the start. What you need to do is create
a marketing function which is able to “make the data talk”!!
We believe the following are critical
- Get creative about your data. Bring in critical information about bill value, types of
calls made, service usage, services acquired in the last six months,
period balance outstanding, etc. Data from call centers and Customer complaints can also be included to help predict churn.
- Do not be limited by what is in the Datawarehouse. Sometimes you need to look for key information from any
other source as well. Akin has this very interesting take on how you need
to look at Multi channel information to truly make your analytical models
work. Here is what he says: “ If someone is thinking
about switching would they not likely be coming to the web site and doing
something on there that deviates from their usual click behavior? Might
they not be checking available promotions or upgrades or ways to strike a
deal?” Check out more on this at http://www.multichannelmetrics.com/online-offline-integration-for-retention-marketing/
marketing-fascinating idea! It does sound completely new for “growth markets”
such as Asia where the marketing focus is still predominately on acquisition and
“push based marketing”. When you are getting hounded by spam mails,sms &
getting called by pesky telemarketers at odd times, it does seem like a breath
of fresh air to seek participation from the consumer! I could choose to not get
hounded by any of the push marketing stuff!
I first read about this on Ron Shevlin’s blog:
“A new marketing organization has been formed that you should take a
look at it. It’s called the Participatory Marketing Network. The
Participatory Marketing Network (PMN), an organization that helps marketers
transition from push and permission marketing to participatory marketing. The
PMN is the brainchild of Michael Della Penna, who was a pioneer in the email
marketing field as one of the co-founders of Bigfoot Interactive, and more
recently, was Chief Marketing Officer at database marketing firm Epsilon.
According to its web site:
Over the last 50 years, we have seen marketing evolve from “Push
Marketing” to the “Permission Marketing” concepts popularized by Seth Godin.
More recently, industry experts have proclaimed the coming of a new marketing
model “Participatory Marketing,” and while their definitions may differ
slightly, their concepts are united in their recognition that:
1. We are in the midst
of another paradigm shift that calls for new solutions that recognize and
embrace consumer control and empowerment.
2. The Internet and
technology have fundamentally changed consumer and brand interactions forever.
3. To succeed and
build trust today, marketers must advocate for consumers and make them an
active and willing participant in the promotional conversation.”
Our take at Cequity:
- In India, we
still see that regulatory efforts like “Do not call” registries are not succeeding.
You cannot push regulation and expect it to get “responsible marketing”.
Marketers just find loopholes.
- This kind of
marketing will work when marketers see how it can give them ROI. There is
no other way!