Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Data's cool, but sometimes you just have to go with your gut.

Digital marketing mediums have been terrific in helping us gather all that terrific ROI info and stats. And I'm the first one to want to do everything in my power to get our client's tangible results or sales from the marketing communications we produce. After all, it's their very real, very hard-earned money that's being spent.

But there have been more than a few times these last few years when I dared to ask myself if we should be letting that data drive the process as though it's the end-all/be-all.

Does it sometimes feel like stats can be trusted as much as the rental car's GPS who left my husband and me at the end of a dark cul-de-sac in Connecticut a few years ago? I can still hear "her" voice saying that final sign-off after the myriad turning directions that just seemed wrong to my gut (the navigator) - "Please call an operator at 800... for help".

As creative thinkers, our job is to do our best to interpret the numbers with a balance of left and right brain. And you know what? Sometimes the right brain just has to win to really land on a key message or image that truly will resonate with targeted customers for the long haul. It may not make the numbers change overnight or cause a flood of "likes" immediately. But after a while, it makes an impression on the mind of the folks our clients are hoping to influence. It really does help them remember our client's service or product when that customer is actually ready to buy what they offer.

And that's a key in business-to-business marketing - which is a lot of what we do. It's serendipity if the targeted buyer is ready to do a complete overhaul of their plant's conveyor system or move their corporate headquarters on the days they see the campaigns or websites. But more than likely, if it's on their mind when they do see our work, the message will resonate.  And our clients will be remembered when it's time to say "go".

Adam Kleinberg who runs an interactive ad agency (translation - has access to lots of data) recently dared to share this type of message in Advertising Age. Check it out.

Can I get an "amen"?
Or do you think I'm off-target?

But be prepared - if you think I'm off, then I expect to see the data to prove it!