Our Customer Excellence team led two round tables hosted by the Executive Global Network (EGN). Together with a group of more than thirty Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) and Marketing Directors in The Netherlands, they discussed how both Business to Business (B2B) and Business to Consumer (B2C) organisations can create value with data. Read on to discover the insights from the B2C discussion.
Why is data-driven marketing in B2C important?
There is a lot of evidence that becoming more data-driven gives an organisation a competitive advantage and drives down costs. The first steps on this journey for an organisation are the intrinsic motivation to become data-driven and a shared belief in the potential of data to increase customer and enterprise value, efficiency, or agility in responding to market dynamics.
The aim of data-driven marketing is to become customer focused and tech-enabled, in that order. Data science allows organisations to better understand the market, including its customers and their needs. For example, we worked with a global meal kit delivery company that generates large quantities of textual customer feedback for analysis. This data contains a lot of rich information that product management and other departments like customer service and operations should act on.
However, before we implemented the right data science techniques, it did not always provide actionable insights. This was due to the unstructured nature of open text feedback. We built a Natural Language Processing model that categorises the feedback according to the organisation’s needs, automatically assesses the sentiment, and derives the subject in question for hundreds of thousands of reviews.
How do you prove the value of your marketing investments?
B2C organisations and marketeers often struggle with proving the value of their marketing investments through full funnel measurements. This includes both the bottom of the funnel comprised of the quality and value of the customers and conversion, as well as the top of the funnel comprised of brand awareness.
Many marketeers agree that the bottom of the funnel is already being done well because it is easily measurable. However, measuring investments in brand awareness at the top of the funnel is something marketeers have typically always struggled with. To gain value from these analytics and develop the best methods of measuring performance, input is required from both data analysts and marketeers.
At ADC, we believe there is no standardised way of measuring brand awareness. Instead, a combination of various methods together with mixed-media modelling and experimentation is preferred. This is known as “Triangulation”. When several different models deliver the same outcome, it enhances the validity and credibility of the findings.
How can you address the organisational challenges of balancing creativity and data analytics?
We sometimes hear from our clients that they fear that taking a data driven approach will lead to a loss of creativity in customer excellence and marketing. At ADC, we operate under the belief that creativity and data analytics do not need to be separated. CMOs who are successful in intertwining these skills within their organisations will be the future leaders. However, this is often challenging to balance, particularly with departmental divisions between creative brand marketeers and performance marketeers.
Most of the B2C organisations at the round table mentioned that their employees with data analytics and data science skills worked together in a centralised data intelligence hub. However, they did not have data scientists integrated in their marketing teams. In order to have marketing employees and data science employees inspire one another and truly collaborate, a more integrated way of working is required.
To achieve effective integration, employees should follow the “T-Shaped” approach. This ensures that they have excellent knowledge and skills in specific areas, while also possessing general knowledge and skills that allow them to work collaboratively with other departments.
How do you become a data-driven B2C organisation?
At ADC, we start from the perspective of the overall business strategy to consider how becoming a more data-driven business can contribute to the organisational objectives. By following a four-step approach, we effectively determine what value an organisation wants to create with data and how data science can help achieve an organisation’s strategic goals. The four-step approach is as follows.
- Discuss how the primary use cases can contribute to the strategic objectives
- Discover the best-suited types of analytics for the project
- Examine the accessibility of the internal and external data
- Analyse the availability, quantity, and quality of the data