Why Activating Data is The Key to Customer-Centric Marketing

August 6, 2013 — by Dave Reed

recent poll by the CMO Council and SAS revealed that 80% of marketers and 88% of IT professionals consider customer-centricity a main priority. But while the two parties are aligned on the goal, achieving it presents multiple challenges. Obviously, data is the key to building customer-centric strategies, but marketers need to understand the best course to leveraging the data they have to build customer-centric marketing programs.

Part of the solution is to shift from assumptive marketing to deductive. Historically, we’ve been assumptive.  Our use of data in marketing would start and end with assumptions based on relatively small data sets: demographics, some in-store data and the results of focus groups. From there, marketers were able to extract high level attributes about what we assumed was our audience. Our next step was to take this profile and try to find our audience in media, whether that meant buying a page in Good Housekeeping to reach suburban moms or buying a 30-second spot on CSI Miami to reach 25-35 year old men. But while we may be able to reach our audience in this way, we certainly don’t have enough information to tailor our marketing. There’s no way to ensure that the messages we serve will be relevant or welcome to consumers– there’s simply not enough data.

It’s time to start leading with deductive marketing. We have so much data available to us now, we no longer need to rely on assumptions. We can build customer-centric, deductive marketing approaches by activating the data we have about who our consumers are, as well as where they are and what they’re doing. There’s no need to assume that everyone matching a certain demographic profile will behave the same way; not only are they likely to respond differently, but their responses will change whether a message is received at home, at work, on mobile, or even depending on time of day. Marketing technology can better deal with massive amounts of data to more precisely understand how audiences differ. This means we can go beyond simply reaching our audience – we customize messages to their experiences in real time, based on a myriad of data points.

By activating the data we have about our audiences, we have the ability personalize their experiences with our brand’s messaging – in real time and at scale.

To learn more about MediaMath’s solution, click here.

Dave Reed

Dave Reed is Managing Director, EMEA at MediaMath, where he manages the company’s European, Middle East and African business. Dave has been at MediaMath for six years, and previously held roles as Chief Information Officer and Senior Vice President, Strategic Solutions. During his time at MediaMath, Dave has managed the MediaMath engineering team, developed technical solutions and worked with MediaMath’s largest clients to advance their strategic marketing objectives. Prior to joining MediaMath, Dave was founder and president of Xonos, Inc., a software development firm specialising in eCommerce and web applications. He architected and developed systems and processes to optimise marketing and business operations for clients such as Motorola, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, AT&T and the NFL. He has developed platforms for display marketing, product customisation, just in time production, business intelligence, and marketing databases while building and managing onshore and offshore development teams. Dave holds a B.A. from Yale University.