Data Driven: 2 of the Latest ‘Innovations’ Driving Data
Big Data arrived a few years ago and represented an upheaval within something established, namely the scale of data available on any given marketing event. The sheer volume of data has been a shift demanding innovation on the process side of analytics. More cheap storage, faster speeds and a new generation of pivot table Jedi have arrived to manage the data metamorphosis. Much has been written and discussed on these innovations. A more recent and less noticed transformation in the data analytics world has to do with the actual content analyzed.
Customer transactions and marketing data are giving way to a new universe of data around 1) human behavior and 2) a convergence of marketing and financial data. Let’s explore these two latest examples of data-driven “innovations.”
Behavioral Data and Neuroscience
Surveys have been around since well before the first pivot table. While the most common perception of surveys is around customer service content, what is innovative today are surveys asking questions around human behavior. This type of data is being used to define customers’ path to purchase in a very complex omni-channel world. All brands struggle to solve the attribution challenge, and surveys are powerful tools to use in tandem with more scientific rules and reporting.
When we tally up the orders that each marketing media claims as driven by their budget, it usually adds up to more orders than a given campaign generated in total. A customer may have received an email, clicked through a search term and maybe even received a direct mail piece in the same 30-day period before making a purchase. Rules have to be put in place when reporting on marketing data in order to account for the overlap in media attached to a given order.
In addition to the usual order of data driven analysis, asking customers in a survey about what shopping channel influenced their purchases can validate the rules in place for attributing orders to marketing media.
Using probabilistic samples with margins of error of at least 95 percent confidence level is still the standard for actionable survey results. What is new and innovative today is that surveys and the resulting analytics are now being used to interpret and validate data-driven results and helping to make allocation decisions for marketing investments.
We’re also using technology to image the brain, and that has proved what marketers have always believed but could not scientifically validate … until now. Purchasing behavior is based on unconscious feelings. By crafting survey questions properly, we can now have more confidence in how people respond to questions about what is most important.