Monday, January 16, 2012

The Marketing Analyst Owner's Manual

January 2012 Book Review

Data-Driven Marketing

The 15 Metrics Everyone in Marketing Should Know

Mark Jeffery

In a lot of cases metric based books can be cumbersome, extremely academic and challenging to follow.  This is not one of them.  Mark Jeffery clearly understands the value of creating a framework for application.  His book helps remove the mystery from marketing and connects it to metrics any CEO or finance department could appreciate.  Jeffery demonstrates the differences between what he calls “leaders and laggards” in marketing.  From what I can surmise, it’s primarily establishing a disciplined method for tracking and demonstrating the value marketing brings to the table.  The stats on the differences between high performing companies and the latter are staggering.

“low performers invest 4 percent less than the average on marketing overall, and the high performers invest 20 percent more than the average in marketing.”

Research like this makes it clear that there is a big gap between high and low performers and why some companies cut marketing staff/budgets anytime the economy starts to soften.  This shouldn’t be the case, especially if marketing was demonstrating its value.  Jeffery also researched the differences in marketing budget allocation between leaders and laggards.  Understanding these differences were almost as valuable as the 15 key metrics he outlines.

He covers the typical obstacles companies face when establishing a disciplined data-driven marketing culture, but even better, he gives advice on how to overcome these obstacles.  I love this tip on grabbing attention and getting a seat at the decision-makers’ table: “start small and get the quick win.  People around you will notice.  Then get the next win – this builds momentum for change and influencing others, building your credibility and stature within the organization.  People want to be on the winning team, so create a buzz around what you are doing and show how good things happen when you follow the principles of data-driven marketing.”  I know I’ve seen this work first hand.
Most of the book focuses on the 15 metrics and in some cases can get pretty meaty in formulas, but Jeffery always gives examples and Excel templates for application.
Following his summary of the first 10 classical marketing metrics, Jeffery writes:  “as I conducted more survey-based research, I realized that in marketing it is better to be approximately right than exactly wrong, and I started to appreciate the value of qualitative data.”
I think it’s also important to point out that this was one of the best books I’ve read on how to maximize “Return on Marketing Investment” from the Internet (Website, search, social and traditional display advertising).  His findings and formulas are covered in his final 5 metrics.
He touches on the importance of maintaining a consistent, continuous and timely process for colleting research.  Without it, we may continue to invest in a dog of a campaign or miss a chance to accelerate efforts in more successful one.
The book ends with a simple outline for implementing a successful Marketing Campaign Management (MCM) process:
  1. Invest in (select) the campaign
  2. Manage (execute) the campaign
  3. Capture (measure) the value
  4. Feedback (adaptive learning)
Toward the end of the book he writes: “The significant finding is that organizations that have four MCM capabilities have better firm performance relative to competitors.  And a key insight is that metrics and keeping score (monitoring) are one of the critical capabilities.”
Data-Driving Marketing should make a great reference book for any CIO, Marketing Manager or Marketing Analyst.
I had to give this book “Geek Approval.”

The Fightin' Analyst Book Rating:

out of five stars