There is a real challenge for marketers to separate out meaningful signals from the noise so as to turn raw data into usable information. To then make use of that information for effective campaigns and strategies is just the next step in that contest.
Data is one of the main driving elements in modern marketing, and having access to marketing technology can certainly help clear out the noise. But, Opher Kahane, CEO of Origami Logic, adds another element to the data marketing challenge – timeliness.
“While marketers have access to data like never before, much of the data is not available to them in a timely manner so it is very difficult for them to make data-driven decisions that truly have an impact on campaigns while they are being executed,” Kahane told Marketing Dive. Adding that the challenge for marketers is handling the large volume of marketing signals they receive each day and then being able to transform those signals into insights in a timely manner.
Answering the 'What happened today?' question
Kahane said there are elements of digital marketing that aren’t really being delivered on, including timely, holistic, cross-channel visibility, context and execution.
“There has always been a promise around digital marketing that revolved around the ability to use data to make decisions like never before. In our work with large brands, however, we have seen that the complexity, and rate of change, of digital marketing is outpacing their ability to get ahead," he said.
Specifically, Kahane offered two basic issues that have made it "very difficult" for marketers to answer the "What happened today?" question:
- "First, digital marketing has created an ecosystem of data silos. Every marketing organization uses a variety of marketing platforms and services – advertising networks, social platforms, email services, etc. Each of these platforms and services creates a data silo," he said.
- Second, he added, "the volume of marketing signals that are being sent on a daily basis is extremely large. Every time a user interacts with a marketing asset – whether that is by clicking on a website or a search ad, by ‘liking’ a social message, or by watching a video – a signal is being sent."
The goal is being able to measure all of these marketing signals across various silos and turn them into insights. And this is where the timeliness aspect comes into play. Lacking access to insights in a timely manner, marketing organizations haven't been able to make decisions during the campaign's run, "which ultimately affects their ability to maximize business results," Kahane explained."
That being said, Kahane said answering the “What happened today?” question is a realistic goal for marketers. Doing so begins with a focus on measuring marketing signals, what Kahane described as “the harvesting, refinement and analysis of information" that streams in from various systems and platforms. Then from there activate insights from those signals through things like alerts, notifications and dashboards. What is crucial is to have a measurement foundation in place.
"Ultimately, marketing signals measurement allows marketers to achieve the goal of knowing what is happening every day," he said.
In terms of the near-term, he believes it is possible for all brands to standardize their signals measurement in a holistic, timely, automated manner.
“We are at the beginning of an exciting phase in terms of the evolution of data-driven marketing. By investing in marketing signal measurement, brands like Visa, Cisco, Intel and JCPenney that have been managing global digital marketing for years are finally realizing the true promise of data-driven marketing,” he said. "They are able to know, every day, what is happening across their marketing activities, which allows them to continually improve performance and drive more comprehensive business results."