Big Data: New Analytics or New Decisioning

There is a lot of talk about big data technology these days:

Data Management…How do you possibly store, manage and derive intelligence from the flood of transient data and sources, online, offline, and market-level data? Analyzing volumes of data and types of data can be daunting for those not proclaimed as high-level data scientists. Big data is a new way of exposing flaws in how marketers make campaign, program, brand, market, and financial decisions.

We are a product of our own success. The industry has masked scale problems and hidden behind terms like “attribution” or “optimization.”  The challenge is, we have the same amount of resources we had last year, and while data science technology has advanced and everyone’s in the cloud (or their heads are), decisions have not gotten easier to make. It’s not about big data, or the cloud, or even analytics, it’s about making decisions faster.

Traditional Data – Redefining the Problems

Consumers and businesses are transforming how they consume information, what they expect from brands, and a protocol of connectivity to a brand. The marketing and advertising functions need to transform, but the true transformation isn’t about solving problems, it’s about redefining the problems.

So, what is the real problem?

Velocity is the problem. How do you slow down enough to go fast? The old cliché of “fail faster” is true, but I always presumed that meant you didn’t know what to fail at in the first place. I prefer the phrase. “Be smarter in how you fail.”

Enter the new age:   Connecting departments, connecting channels, democratizing decisions, and maintaining a culture of rapid decisioning.

Is it about tools? YES.

Is it about richer analytics? YES.

Is it about infusing a new speed and accountability in your partner organizations that provide services to you today (call that the supply chain)? Yes.

New Analytics or New Decisioning? Looking Ahead…

Big Data Analytical Marketers

You get paid for results, period! In order to do this, you must have several things in place. For one, you must have the ability to track what’s important — not everything, but what is critical to making decisions.  You must be able to control to some extent the consumer experience. If you feel like a victim of another channel, remember point one — you get paid for results, so negotiate your success. You must have the ability to optimize and streamline things that work, which brings in a new discipline of interpreting insights from a variety of forms. Thinking cost-effectively, you must be able to reconcile every last action/expense from a financial standpoint. Think eCPM, not CPM, think customer lifetime value, not conversion.

New Decisioning – Democratize Decisioning

What does democratize decisioning mean? It simply means there are levels in the company that owns decision rights for different decisions. Everyone doesn’t always get a decision.

You must enable similar decisions to be made in similar ways (governed), but with the creativity of an open market. Some marketing organizations are set up better to isolate decisions internally, but at the speed, this market is changing, democratization will have to extend to your supply chain (partners, vendors, agencies).