Why Modern Marketers Need to Do More Than Just “Love Data”

As I wrote in a a post last year, we’ve entered the era of using data to tell stories. Natalie Zmuda’s article in last week’s Ad Age, “When CMOs Learn to Love Data, They’ll Be VIPs in the C-Suite,” did a good job of explaining the other side of the data coin –- using data to inform and power marketing programs. Marketers haven’t been lacking for data; instead, the issue has been about how to contextualize the information and how to separate the truly important from the irrelevant.    Read More →

Storytelling in the Age of Data

Today, as always, a big part of successful marketing is about telling stories that resonate with customers and business prospects. What’s changed is that the method for telling those stories is increasingly becoming based on data. In fact, Google recently started publishing a book (with companion website) on that very subject.

Ask yourself: where has the Internet created real value? It’s mainly been in data analysis. The technology platforms for social media, music downloads, movie streaming, ad serving, and site analytics all generate huge amounts of data. Buried inside this data are valuable business insights, if you can tease them out and package them in a way that people understand. In fact, it’s this move towards data insight and analysis that may end up saving some old-school industries. The New York Times in particular does a nice job showing how the 2011 federal budget is allocated and spent. It’s a lot easier to be shown how much money is tied up in non-discretionary spending than to be told about it, and it foretells the role our most important newspapers may play in the future.    Read More →

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