How do you define success for data-driven marketing programs?

I often have been wondering off-late how does one define success for data-driven marketing programs - the reason being tons of hours are spent in understanding data, organizing data, cleansing the data make it ready for analysis and then time taken for building insights by analysts, getting organization-wide buy-in into the insights and developing a roll-out plan, measuring them etc.

The opportunity I see with all this, is a need to clearly define how is a company benefitting with all of this is increasingly becoming critical. No amount of insights & discovery is worth its weight in gold till it becomes actionable and value is returned in dollars for them. Also, another important question is how do such programs get more investments to provide more value year after year? I also don't see this being driven from one corner or department while participation from senior management teams and other departments is critical for its success, adoption and growing investments.

Interestingly as I got thinking about it, I got something from my archives which had an interesting reference to how to define success by Pat LaPointe.

He has got a lovely definition of defining success. Here's the forumula according to him which may be worth looking at:

MNPV Formula for Success

It is a simple summation of all experiences of transforming insights into action and the value it created divided by the number of resources consumed to get this value and this is raised to the power of perception!

From my experience, I agree with him that the hard part is transforming the insights into action in any company. Also, perception of quality plays a critical role as enterprise-wide buy-in is critical for such programs as they need collaboration from other departments like sales, customer service, IT, channels etc. So, continued success of such programs must be exponentially raised to the perception and alignment of metrics & hence the value each of them get from such initiatives.

Would love to hear any other method of measuring sucess of data-driven marketing programs.

Alex Bogusky's Consumer Bill of Rights

In an increasingly digital and social media marketing eco-system, companies and marketers need to be conscious and respect the rights of consumers. The fact that marketers need to be transparent, authentic and set transparent engagement rules using the data and information they capture or hold is becoming more and more critical. Alex's consumer bill of rights is an interesting place to start thinking about this. He outlines the following rights that marketers must respect:

  1. Right to safety
  2. Right to be informed
  3. Right to choose
  4. Right to be heard
  5. Right to service

What other rights do you think is important?

Empowering customers in India - Indian privacy law set to change landscape

India is gearing up for enhanced privacy laws that protects customers. This can be a landmark legislation that can have lasting impact on consumers, data protection, data sharing and use of personal data & information. 

India has a not been privacy friendly state. Data sharing and exchange is done freely and hence it is not suprising to find personal information being freely available for a few cents. The proposed act or legislation seems to be all encompassing and can have a lasting impact. Take a look at some of the recommendations:

  1. Currently, in India there is no legislation for protecting the privacy of individuals for all information that may be available with private entities. The legislation proposes to bring this to force.
  2. Choice and consent of the indvidual before his/her personal information is collected
  3. Information should be used only for the purpose it was collected
  4. The individual should have access to his/her information at any time. He/she must be enabled to update or correct the information
  5. Data controller would be transparent in his working as regards to the collection of personal data
  6. Data controller is primarily responsible for its safety and use

The framework proposes:

  • All forms of identifiable data be protected against under the right to privacy.
  • It goes on to define what is personal data -..."to be able to identify a person, information need not necessarily be objective identification such as a person's name, but can be subjective information such as the opinion that a person is a "reliable" borrower or that a person is "expected to die of a terminal disease". It is also important to bring all personal information within this definition regardless ofthe format in which the information is stored."
  • It also extensively takes into consideration Indian context - Aadhar program that uses biometric information
  • Explicit consent or even approval from a regulatory authority may be required to be obtained to collect sensitive personal data.
  • Processing of data in an automated manner must be avoided when it affects the vital interests of the data subject.
  • The data once collected must be deleted after achieving the purpose for which it was
  • Privacy impact assessments to be conducted by independent authorities in the form of
    transparent audits, for the protection of personal data.
  • Appropriate measures to protect the data of Indian citizens that are processed outside the country.

I believe this is going to have far reaching implications on how private entities hold data and process data. Also, information available on the web and information shared in social media will have to undergo scrutiny, as this personal data today is being used for commercial interests by many of the entities like google, facebook etc.

I have attached the approach note paper Download Aproach_paper.

I would love to hear comments, feedback and implications on this proposed law. And how marketing in India needs to adapt to this new environment.