Data-Driven Thinking" is written by members of the media community and contains fresh ideas on the digital revolution in media.
Today’s column is written by Marcus Tewksbury, global vice president for product strategy at Experian Marketing Services.
CMOs are still addicted to impressions. It doesn’t matter if they appear in banners, emails, 30-second spots, above the line or below it.
This seems counterintuitive to everything we read about big data, targeted ads and customer-centricity. Yet there is still a gulf between rhetoric and action in our industry. The proliferation of data has given us the ability to target audiences more precisely based on demographics, purchase history or behavior, but we want to do that at mass. Therefore, impressions are still our currency.
Marketing in a digital world requires that we strive to improve the customer experience and deliver a quality interaction every time, rather than just focusing on quantity, reach and volume. If the quality isn’t right, the volume can actually bend performance back into the negative. Doubling down on the old “at mass” techniques, regardless if they are data driven or not, just exacerbates the situation and creates noise that reinforces how little the brand knows or cares.
With the digital proliferation forever altering the equation between marketer and customer, the customer is now in control. CMOs seem to acknowledge this shift in power but have yet to move on from their formerly successful, volume-driven strategies. We need to give our CMO partners tangible steps for breaking their addiction and moving from the age of digital marketing to the age of marketing in a digital world.