Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Impossibility of Marketing Analytics Software

One of my friend showed me this picture (above picture) and praised web analytics industry. With it, he had complain about Marketing Analytics geeks. His take was, the web analytics softwares put the results very well and Marketing Analytics people don't have any good software at all. He was actually comparing apple with orange, the two can not be compared at all.

I am a big fan of Google Analytics and it has fascinated me a lot. It has very good graphics and it is damn user friendly. It has rightly shown the necessary web metrices necessary there.

Why don't we have some Marketing Analytics Software in that line? The question went on me for some time.

Probably, the results, as good as this one, will make life easy for Marketers. But this is easy if the results to be shown are just the straight data insights. And this is done by almost all leading Marketing Analytics vendors. The predictions and segmentation results may be quite difficult.

I am finding it very hard to distinguish the proposed Marketing Analytics Software from the CRM solutions already available. Most of the data insights are shown in all good CRM solutions, and Whatever Marketing Anlaytics vendors do now, is the more sophisticated modeling and analytics works, which are more customised for a company or a portfolio. The market segmentations are also done for special marketing campaigns or for portfolio management requirements. This makes it hard to generalise. And data security is the other issue. No one will want his data to be used for building some Marketing Analytics Software, as it will expose him to his competitors. To add more problems, the data giving will be a regular task as the validity of data expires quite frequently.

Telling this all, I have made my views clear that I don't see any possibility of specialised Marketing Analytics Software. But developments are happening on building specialised tools for each Marketing Analytics activity like Segmentation and Other Analyses. MA will thus grow, but always remain a external analytic consulting work or the internal analytics team's challenge. It will need man hours all the time.

What is your take in this matter? Please share your views in comment.


John said...

We do!!!

Our NEW company just released a tool called modelQED - let me know if you want a trial to see exactly what is out there.

It will take some man hours but my take is that leaving it to consultancies is dangerous. btw - Google analytics is reporting software - not analytics in the sense that it does nothing but report dynamic data. WE believe that analytical software is different - it does unique things with raw data to help generate insight.

Le_Plan said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting on the same. I would certainly want to know more about ModelQED. Please do share with me.

I agree with you in saying Google Analytics as a reporting software.

But I am finding hard to agree on next point of yours. Analytics is always done in two ways - product based and consulting. I don't know why you feel consulting is dangerous. Consulting is the best way to get other's expertise with lower investment.

-- Bhupendra

John said...

Sorry - the point i made wasn't clear. I was trying to suggest that organisations need to take some responsibility for marketing analytics in house. External Consultancies have a valuable part to play in helping develop new techniques and methodologies but for marketing analytics to become a more valuable proposition, companies are going to need to have some in-house expertise. The CPG companies have known this for a while (think Kraft, P&G etc) and others are catching up quickly.

Le_Plan said...

John, Thanks for making your point more clear.

I however find difficult to agree with you in building internal Analytics team for marketing analytics. It is always good to have internal teams from HR management to Operations, It management to Analytics; but every team added take some time from the higher management. This is the reason why different processes are outsourced from large business houses.

I have seen a trend in mature companies. For all process, the channel starts with consulting, grows inhouse and again outsourced later. May be the examples you have shown are moving from stage one to two.

I would say, it all depends on how the higher management want to grow. There are few who prefer diversification to have all works internally done to save recurring consulting cost, while others prefer to save time and remain focussed on their core business area. Marketing Analytics, like all other process may grow both ways.

-- Bhupendra

John said...

I agree that Marketing Analytics can grow both ways - i.e. be done in house or be outsourced.

Given that the marketing function is at the heart of revenue generation, I can't think of a good case for not keeping a very close eye on it. In many ways, it strikes me that marketing should be the last and not the first outsourced function.

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