Two ways analytics help maximize digital marketing impact

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In the last decade, CMOs have made great strides in elevating their stature. According to the latest SpencerStuart survey, CMO tenure has steadily climbed from 23 months in 2004 to 45 months in 2012. What are the reasons for this improved longevity? Marketers are becoming more strategic-minded, they're taking a more expansive view of their customer, and they're adding more sophistication and data-driven decisions in marketing campaigns and operations.

The swift adoption of mobile devices and the proliferation of digital channels have created opportunities for highly interactive, rich communications between consumers and brands. But those very same circumstances can be a double-edged sword as more consumers demonstrate little tolerance for irrelevant, ill-timed, and “creepy” communications.

Marketers may be on a positive trajectory as CMO tenure suggests, but the path is still fraught with uncertainly. CMOs are confronted daily with the challenges and opportunities of maximizing digital marketing, enabling dynamic multichannel interactions, enriching customer experience, utilizing marketing analytics, and—of course—harnessing Big Data.

These hot marketing topics are inextricably linked to each other, and also to the CMO’s ultimate goal of delivering sustainable business growth. To this end, CMOs must not lose sight of two imperatives for their marketing technologies:

1.      Ready accessibility to analytics

Marketers must be able to unleash the power of analytics throughout the marketing department and in all marketing processes (activities related to strategy and planning, campaign and interaction management, and customer experience management). Analytics, when highly accessible in a marketing system, allow marketers to create value for their customers, while giving businesses an instant edge for improving marketing performance and reducing costs.

For instance, marketing automation uses sophisticated analytics to automatically improve relevancy and responsiveness to individual prospects regardless of media or channel. Real-time analytics allow marketers to discover and react in real time to how consumers are interacting with your brand.

The upshot: greater agility; better targeting; personalized offers; coordinated campaigns; connected experiences.

2.     Alignment and accountability for growth

The analytics must provide ever clearer “line of sight” to revenue growth and profitability, especially as digital spend in marketing budgets continue to rise. CMOs must also insist that their enterprise-marketing platform enable a single point of marketing collaboration: one that aligns objectives, planning, and execution across various marketing roles in the organization for greater accountability.

A recent Econsultancy report indicated that 71 percent of businesses plan to increase digital marketing budgets. The average expected increase (of those increasing digital spend) is a significant 28 percent. The result: a higher degree of scrutiny by the C-suite for digital. Analytically powered marketing platforms provide more transparency to marketing personnel and helps the entire organization align resources to objectives, streamline production processes, track budgets and expenses, and improve overall collaboration.

The upshot: better collaboration; greater control of marketing spend; stronger marketing investment decisions - especially in digital; more CMO credibility among C-suite peers.

In the final view, marketers need demonstrable business results in their quest to maximize digital marketing impact and deliver sustainable growth. Are you evaluating your marketing technologies through the twin lenses of analytics accessibility and marketing accountability?

To learn more, please start by visiting the Digital Marketing Resource Center and discover why digital marketing requires the agility and collaboration enabled by analytics. Please share your thoughts, and as always, thank you for visiting!

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About Author

Wilson Raj

Global Director, Customer Intelligence

Wilson Raj is the Global Director of Customer Intelligence at SAS. His responsibilities include collaborating with industry leaders, customers, alliances, sales, marketing and product teams to establish, evolve and evangelize SAS’s growth strategy for analytics-driven marketing capabilities.

With twenty years of experience in multiple industries, Raj has built data-driven brand value, engagement, and loyalty through expertise in integrating advertising, digital marketing, social media, multi-channel relationship marketing and public relations. He has held global leadership positions in marketing at Fortune Global 500® companies such as Microsoft, Novell. Medtronic, Philips, Ameritech (now AT&T Midwest). He also advised C-level executives on digital strategy while at Publicis and also at VML and Wunderman—as part of Young & Rubicam Group at WPP.

Raj is frequently quoted in global media outlets and major industry publications such as Adweek, CMSWire , CNBC.com, CRM Buyer, DM News , eMarketer, InformationWeek, MarketingProfs,, ZDNet, and more.

Raj holds a B.A. in English and an M.B.A. from Brigham Young University, and a Certificate-in-Education from the Institute of Education in Singapore.

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