As we’ve posted before (see, for example, 1, 2), measuring marketing’s return on investment is both important and difficult.
Now, according to B2B Marketing, the situation is changing:
“The old perception of marketing as an immeasurable dark art whose benefits could not be quantified by mere numbers seems to be over. In its place, the new imperative is ‘marketing as science’, where any marketer worth their salt will be able quote brilliant ROI figures for past and future campaigns.”
“While it’s understandable that there should be a desire among marketers to show that investment in their department is having a positive effect on the bottom line, it’s also undoubtedly true that lots of practitioners are still struggling to do this. What’s the problem? Are marketers’ ROI formulas outdated? Are situational differences disrupting the playing field? Are businesses measuring marketing contributions in the right way?”
Click the image below for some solutions related to better measuring marketing ROI.
As we have posted several times before, big data analytics are here to stay and growing in importance. [See, for example, 1, 2, 3, 4.] Nonetheless, big data analytics are not simple.
According to eMarketer:
“Companies’ increased customer focus, demand for business growth and expansion, and the need to keep up with competitors are all fueling big data adoption, according to industry sources. In a February 2015 study conducted by Vanson Bourne for CA Technologies, improving the customer experience (60%) and the need to get new customers (54%) were the leading factors driving the need for big data projects, according to IT managers worldwide. Increasing top-line revenue growth (46%), entering new markets (42%), keeping up with the competition (41%) and outpacing competitors (34%) followed. May 2015 polling by 2nd Watch found similar results. Here, U.S. IT and business execs cited identifying new areas for business growth or product strategy (33%) as well as areas for operational efficiency and cost savings (28%) as the top drivers for big data plans, followed by better understanding customers and improving the customer experience (25%).”
“However, challenges related to skill sets and poor technology arise when it comes to actually implementing big data. Among 2nd Watch respondents, data quality issues, outdated infrastructure, and a lack of internal expertise were the biggest hurdles to execution.”
Click the chart to read more.
Even though, a company’s sales personnel are typically viewed as part of the marketing function, there are also differences of opinion and sometimes conflicts between marketing and sales. Instead, mutual respect and cooperation need to rule the day!
As Hadar Duek observes for HubSpot:
“In my job, I chat with marketers very often about what problems they’re facing. One of the most common issues I hear about is lead flow — a marketing department generates hundreds of leads per month, but many of them aren’t closing. Nobody knows where to turn. Sales points fingers at marketing. Marketing points fingers at sales. They both shrug, unsure of how to proceed. To get the partnership running effectively again, there are three things I recommend marketers start doing with their sales team.”
1) “Provide sales training on how inbound leads are different. Many sales reps are trained to aggressively go after leads who will close ASAP — and ignore the ones who won’t. When I was in sales, I did the same thing. If a prospect wasn’t ready to send in a purchase order in the next week, I was onto the next lead. With limited time and an endless universe of opportunities, I had to prioritize. This mentality needs to shift when your company is generating inbound leads. Just because someone became a lead by downloading an E-book doesn’t mean they are ready to buy something immediately. On the other hand, they may very well be a great fit for your company down the line.”
2) “Develop a feedback loop between marketing and sales. How often have you seen leads go sales, receive follow-up, and then fall into a black hole? In my work with HubSpot customers, I see it all the time. This is a huge missed opportunity. To prevent this lack of communication, set up a way for sales to pass leads back into the nurturing funnel based on what they learned in the initial qualifying conversation. They like pink? Put them into the all-pink text E-mail nurturing campaign. They like chocolate sandwiches? Put them into the E-mail nurturing campaigns with lots of chocolate sandwiches.”
3) Set up regular meetings between marketing and sales. Some marketers pass all leads directly to their sales team and others only pass over the ones that meet criteria they determine as ‘sales qualified.’ For the latter group, if sales is passing back a lot of leads, this indicates the criteria for transitioning a lead needs to be tweaked. Look at examples of leads that were passed back and what about their criteria missed the mark. Set up a meeting to review these examples.”
Click the image to read Duek’s full article.
Self-driving cars are in the late stages of testing in the United States. Besides safety issues, consumer skepticism, the regulatory environment will have a major impact on how quickly and widely that self-driving cars make it in the market.
Given that self-driving cars will/may be sold in the very near future, we need to better understand where the marketplace will be headed. Recently, McKinsey’s Michele Bertoncello and Dominik Weewe published a thought-provoking view of self-driving cars: “Ten Ways Autonomous Driving Could Redefine the Automotive World — The Development of Self-Driving, or Autonomous, Vehicles Is Accelerating. Here’s How They Could Affect Consumers and Companies.”
- “Industrial fleets lead the way.”
- “Car OEMs [original equipment manufacturers face a decision. Automakers worldwide will likely define and communicate their strategic position on AVs in the next two to three years.”
- “New mobility models emerge. While OEMs are developing autonomous vehicles, a variety of other transport-mobility innovations are already hitting the road.”
- “The car-service landscape changes.”
- “Car insurers might shift their business model. Car insurers have always provided consumer coverage in the event of accidents caused by human error. With driverless vehicles, auto insurers might shift the core of their business model, focusing mainly on insuring car manufacturers from liabilities from technical failure of their AVs, as opposed to protecting private customers from risks associated with human error in accidents.”
- “Companies could reshape their supply chains.”
- “Drivers have more time for everything. AVs could free as much as 50 minutes a day for users, who will be able to spend traveling time working, relaxing, or accessing entertainment.”
- “Parking becomes easier. AVs could change the mobility behavior of consumers, potentially reducing the need for parking space in the United States by more than 5.7 billion square meters.”
- “Accident rates drop. By mid-century, the penetration of AVs and other ADAS could ultimately cause vehicle crashes in the United States to fall from second to ninth place in terms of their lethality ranking among accident types.”
- “AVs accelerate robotics development for consumer applications.”
Click the chart to read the full article.
According to a Tech Marketing Priorities study by IDG Research, “native advertising, social media, and video are what’s ‘hot’ in marketing today. Find out what areas marketers will be spending their marketing dollars over the next 12+ months. This IDG Research survey was conducted of global senior tech marketing leaders providing insights into key marketing priorities for 2015 and beyond.”