I recently spoke at the ADSCON about data science in advertising. We had a really interesting conversation as we delved into the role of intuition in data. Much of the promise of Big Data is that intuition and guesswork is dead but that’s not the full story really. Good use of data is critical to making better decisions, but intuition based on good experience is important as well. That’s because you need to have a good sense about what’s worth understanding and what to look for. Many analysts just don’t know that so you can’t just bring in a data scientist and expect great insights to magically appear. Marketing experience and intuition is still a critical factor in making the science of marketing potent.
That intuition and data needs to be focused on customers but marketers need to move beyond analyzing the transaction to analyzing the journey. This requires a much broader viewer of how the customer behaves along their entire journey to get a better sense of where “leakage” occurs, ie. those points where you lose a potential customer. It’s a much more sophisticated way to look at the customer and goes beyond standard media mix modeling that many rely on.
How are you using data to better understand your customers’ journeys?
[Image, MrFarber, Flickr]