Customer Intelligence Can Drive Irrefutable Marketing Accountability

Would you classify your marketing organization as "highly accountable"? What I mean is, are you always able to accurately measure the true business value of your marketing efforts, and do your senior leaders trust the results? If you're like most marketers, the honest answer to that question is a resounding "no". Proving the business value of multichannel marketing is getting progressively harder—and more important—because:

  • Traditional marketing measurement practices are rooted in stable but inflexible tactics that leave marketers ill-equipped to keep pace with the real time nature of channel digitization.
  • CFOs wield ever-more influence over marketing budgets, which is driving your CMO to lean harder on you to measure business results with scientific rigor.
  • Your customers are in control; uncertainty and unpredictability are the norm; and marketers that can't adapt appropriately are doomed to fail.

This is where you come in. I believe that Customer Intelligence professionals are remarkably well positioned to address these challenges head on, and improve marketing accountability across the enterprise. Why? Because you sit at the cross-section of unfettered access to mountains of customer data from a dizzying array of online and offline sources. "Big data" as the recent article data, data, everywhere in The Economist puts it, is big business. CI professionals are right in the middle of it all helping firms capture customer data, analyze it, measure business results, and act upon the findings.

Our latest research entitled The Marketing Accountability Index (client access) uncovers 40 best practices from highly accountable organizations. We grouped these tactics into four high-level categories as follows:

  1. Organizational alignment
  2. Cross-functional business processes
  3. Value-based metrics
  4. Transparent communication of results

Check out the full report for more details, including a self-diagnostic test that will help identify your relative strengths and weaknesses. As always, let me know what you think here on the CI blog—or better yet—track me down in Los Angeles next month where I'll be co-hosting Marketing Forum 2010. Hope to see you there!


Who's monetising customer data - that's the question

Our latest experiences in Europe are, companies are loosing track on 'customer intelligence'. In the urge to cope with the web 2.0 revolution, companies are handing out digital customer data for free to third parties like internet advertising firms and 'social media' websites in gigantic volumes. At the managing toplevel nobody really is aware of what's going on - but to our point of view a lot of companies are on the track of loosing control over mountains of customer data.

The biggest mistake newspapers ever made was to start publishing content for free on the world wide web. Earning money with original contant nowadays almost is impossible, other than via advertising. A lot of companies are making a strategic failure of the same dimension now with their valuable customer data.

So our central advice on web 2.0 communications for the coming year is: keep or bring back customer intelligence under control, start monetising your digital data.

We're interested in marketing managers, consultants and companies willing to share their views and experiences on this topic !