Archive | January, 2013

Demystifying Marketing Metrics

Challenging and highly competitive business environments. Channel proliferation. The need to prove and improve marketing ROI.  Budgets on the chopping block. Perceived primarily as an expense, Marketing executives face many obstacles. One of the only ways to avoid being “sliced and diced” is to generate measurable value and demonstrate Marketing’s impact on the bottom line.

As a marketer you’re always measuring something – even if it’s only whether you are on-budget, or the number of emails you distributed and their open, click through or bounce rate, or website or social media metrics. Or taking one step up the ladder, perhaps you’re measuring the number of new qualified opportunities and the cost per opportunity you delivered to the sales team.  These may be exactly the right metrics for your organization.  Or maybe you need metrics that help determine marketing’s contribution to share of preference, customer loyalty, or the rate of adoption of a newly launched product.

You have the right metrics only IF they answer these C-Suite’s questions:

  • How is Marketing impacting and contributing to the business
  • What is and isn’t working
  • Does the data enable course adjustments?

If your metrics don’t answer these “So What” questions, do not pass go; do return to the drawing board. You may have made some huge investments in tools thinking that they will produce the metrics and dashboard you need, but holding on to what’s familiar, easy, or a sunk cost may not get you where you need to go.

Demonstrating what you are doing to move the needle for your company is a critical part of the equation.  There’s no escaping it.  Savvy marketers are embracing new skills and adding analytics to their capabilities in order to prove the value of marketing.  They speak the language of business and know how to translate marketing jargon (opens, downloads, registrations, likes, etc.) into results and language that is meaningful to the executive team.

So while it may take some work, it makes sense to invest the time to create a set of metrics that will serve you better.

Here are three steps to get you started:

  1. Achieve Alignment. From a decade’s worth of research, we have found that the number one practice of best-in-class marketers when it comes to proving the value of marketing is alignment.  Lean teams and resources combined with today’s breakneck pace and channel explosion makes it easy for marketers to become tactically oriented.  Best-in-class marketers focus on making sure their marketing objectives are tightly aligned with business outcomes and developing strategies and associated tactics to deliver on these objectives.  Unfortunately, every year we see numerous marketing plans that are really just dressed up tactical plans with output-oriented metrics.  These plans fail to deliver on C-Suite expectations.  So take the time to approach things in the right order.  “First things first” as Covey says, and the first thing is to have clarity around the business outcomes.  In addition to business targets such as revenue, margin, market share, etc. business outcomes include the strategic initiatives that the organization must achieve in order to realize the business targets. Once you have this clarity, develop measurable customer-centric marketing objectives aligned to the business outcomes.  We highly recommend that your marketing objectives clearly show how Marketing will impact customer acquisition, retention, and growth in order to drive revenue, market share, and customer equity targets.
  2. Build your data chains. By starting with the business outcomes and measurable marketing objectives and then creating the strategies and tactics you will be able to create the data chains that connect marketing activities and investments to business results.  For example, a data chain might be:  <new product revenue:><new product adoption rate><marketing-generated opportunities win rate:><marketing generated qualified opportunities ><marketing generated conversations from campaign Y<<X#  qualified opportunities/webinar or event  at $Y/opportunity>.  This chain shows the relationship between the qualified opportunities from a series of marketing tactics and investments (webinar and events) associated with a particular campaign, marketing generated customers, and revenue for a particular product.  Data chains enable marketers to connect outputs with outcomes.
  3. Select your metrics. There are so many things marketers can measure that it can be hard to decide which ones matter.  Remember, the metrics you choose to report to the C-Suite need to answer their “So What” questions.  The data chains help identify how marketing tactics, objectives and outcomes relate to each other, what data elements you will need, and what if any analytics will be required.  Once you have all of these components you can select the relevant metrics.  Marketing metrics should capture marketing’s impact and contribution in at least these areas: customer acquisition, customer retention, customer/brand equity, competitive position, and operational efficiencies and financials.

The Power of Social Media

Social Media has led to a change in power within the marketing landscape and organizations need to be prepared. Not only consumers but also different kinds of interest groups (e.g. activists) find each other and create common grounds to be shared and discussed using ever changing channels. By increasing in size and sentiment, interest groups gain influencing power and become more and more relevant for the organizations they relate to.

For those organizations to be in control it is important to have policies and online strategies in place but as the social environment is highly dynamic and as it may be defined more by topic rather than by use of certain channels, a standard approach probably is not the way to go and you will have to find out what works for you and your specific situation.

This report by Useful Social Media and Ethical Corporation contains case studies from companies such as Coca Cola, Nestlé, Shell and Unilever which may help you to define or finetune your own social strategy.

Now Hiring: CMTO

Job requirements: Analytical, creative, number driven and tech savvy. At least 15 years of experience (senior management level) in product management, sales management, distribution channel management, marketing communications, advertising, promotions, pricing, market research, customer service, corporate communication, campaign management, supplier management, loyalty programs, database marketing…and the list continues.

And this is only for the CMO back in the old days. Curious about what your job will look like in the near future? Have a look at this infographic by John Koetsier on

A Marketer’s Lifeline

Corporate marketers find themselves in increasing challenging environments characterized by too many demands and too few resources. An annual survey by Saepio showed that a more efficient internal workflow is regarded as a top benefit by marketing managers, just ranking below brand control, speed to market and campaign management.

In their recent whitepaper, Saepio shows that increasing the efficiency of marketing operations via marketing asset management can be a powerful way to save time, to save money and to get more out of resources, thus “breathing life back into marketers”.

Find the full blog and Saepio’s whitepapers here.

Selecting Marketing Technology

Over the years we have executed, coordinated and evaluated numerous DAM and MRM software selection processes.

What we have experienced is that in many “first wave marketing software selections” ( = limited experience with marketing technology and not replacing existing marketing software) , it is often the IT department or procurement department coordinating the selection. Criteria are often related to server requirements, security and price.

In these instances the business criteria remained very high level and even with a scorecard the outcome might be dubious. The business needs to have a thorough understanding of the business problem and the functional requirements overcoming those problems.

Jacob Morgan, co-founder of Chess Media Group, a management consulting and strategic advisory firm on collaboration, created a handy list of 8 evaluation areas which help you allocating the different selection variables to the correct stakeholder.


Make sure the different stakeholders in your marketing technology project deliver their part of the criteria and don’t let it solely turn into a IT or procurement show. Also make sure you have somebody in the team who knows how to gather proper business requirements. It is time and money well spent.

Read the full article on software evaluation criteria here. Pick your long list of vendors here. If you believe you can work on the business requirements after the selection process click here.



Sync with your peers at the ADAM 2013 event

This year, ADAM Software’s annual event named Sync!, is to be held in Ghent (Belgium) on the 30th of January, and one week later in New York on the 7th of February.

Every year, the ADAM event brings together industry experts and ADAM Partners, customers and prospects to discuss how developments in media and marketing technology are changing the enterprise. This year, the focus of the event is “community”.

It’s a place to meet, to think, and to Sync! on ADAM innovation, the future of marketing technology and to exchange ideas with other thought leaders. Customer cases are scheduled from Philips, Viacom and Komatsu.

Tip: don’t leave the event without demanding a box of Belgian chocolate.

If you like to attend Sync!, you can register here: Ghent | New York

True Colors

What do your brand colors tell you about your business? And how unique are your brand colors? Do the colors evoke the consumer response you aimed for? This infographic by Marketo brings you the insight.


Everybody Wants to Improve, Nobody Wants to Change

Successfully implementing marketing technology is not a trivial task. Besides the possible limitations of some technology itself, it is often the potential user who holds the key to success. It is all about adoption. Not only adoption of the tool, but also adoption of the change. People normally can use some guidance to make the switch to the new situation and you might be surprised to see how you can establish this with some simple but great concepts.

Of course the management of the company, or the business owner of the marketing technology project, can use the “carrot & stick” method -rewarding or punishing people for correct or incorrect behavior- but there is more to the game. One method which clearly explains “Why Change is Hard” and how you can establish change is called Switch. The video below shows you why. We love the book, we love the method and we see it work in our daily projects.



Global MRM Market Predicted to Grow With 14% per Year

The Global Marketing Resource Management market is predicted to grow at a rate of 13.9 percent over the period 2012-2016, according to the analysts of TechNavio.

The main driver for this forecasted growth is the need to improve market responsiveness and the emerging cloud computing market. However, to be able to reach this growth potential, there is a challenge to keep implementation costs under control.

TechNavio’s report, the Global Marketing Resource Management Market 2012-2016, has been prepared based on an in-depth market analysis with input from industry experts. The report covers the Americas, and the EMEA and APAC regions; it also covers the Global Marketing Resource Management market landscape and its growth prospects in the coming years. The report also includes a discussion of the key vendors operating in this market.

The MRM vendors mentioned in the report are IBM Corp., SAP AG, SAS Institute Inc., Teradata Corp., Orbis Global (Infor), BrandMaker GmbH, MarketingPilot Software LLC, Vyre Ltd., Kodak Co., Saepio Technologies Inc., Code Worldwide, PTI Marketing Technologies Inc., BrandWizard Technologies Inc., Elateral Ltd., Direxxis Inc., Capital ID, and Adnovate Holding B.V.

Key questions answered in this report:

  • What will the market size be in 2016 and what will the growth rate be?
  • What are the key market trends?
  • What is driving this market?
  • What are the challenges to market growth?
  • Who are the key vendors in this market space?
  • What are the market opportunities and threats faced by the key vendors?
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of the key vendors?

You can purchase the full report for $2000,-

5 Lessons Learned in Site Retargeting

At Software Advice, we’ve spent the last two years experimenting with site retargeting. When we decided to go into retargeting, we decided that we would do research on vendors and strategies ourselves and learn along the way. While we already had some experience with pay per click advertising, which was useful, we had to learn the quirks of managing retargeting campaigns through trial and error.

Like most online marketing, it’s been an iterative process and one that we’ve slowly refined along the way. I’d like to share five tips that we learned first-hand by managing our retargeting campaigns ourselves.


1. Decide Which Vendor Fits Your Needs
There are a lot of retargeting vendors on the market–and as site retargeting continues to grow in popularity so too does the number of vendors to choose from. In our view, selecting the right vendor for your business largely boils down to the level of control that you desire.

There are two broad classifications that site retargeting vendors fall into:

Read More…