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There’s More To Marketing Than Analytics & Efficiency

June 18, 2019

businessman at desk in-basket full of charts graphs data analytics he's putting Z's boring output in out-basketblank vertical space, 24 pixels highYou hear a lot about analytics these days: how brands need
to use “the numbers” to create content and advertising campaigns.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

It’s supposed to make you more efficient: analytics tell you what worked and what didn’t, so you can create more of what worked.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Sounds logical– what’s not to like?blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

I’m not going to argue against analytics. It’s useful to know what’s resonating with your target audience. You’d be foolish to ignore that information.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

But numbers aren’t the whole story. If you follow them slavishly, you’ll limit yourself to what’s worked before. You’ll shy away from breaking new ground.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Without consciously thinking about it, you’ll be more averse to risk, more apt to play it safe– and that’s the biggest risk of all for a brand.blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

Ogilvy UK’s Rory Sutherland writes that data doesn’t always reveal the truth.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

What looked like gender bias in admissions at UC Berkeley, wasn’t. Aggregating the data produced a false impression.blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

We have a modern, faux–scientific assumption that all information is good — and amassing more of it makes it better. Yet averages and aggregates often conceal more than they reveal.

Business and government decisions are now made by people high up the information chain, who… only have access to information in aggregate form, with all the salient discrepancies made invisible by the act of combining it.blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

we assume all information is good amassing more makes it better but averages aggregates often conceal more than they reveal Rory Sutherland Vice Chairman Ogilvy UKblank vertical space, 24 pixels high

Tricia Wang helps brands discover growth opportunities hidden behind their data.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

She talks about the importance of people’s stories, the emotional context, how people make sense of the world.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

She calls this information “thick data”: the sticky stuff
that’s difficult to quantify.blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

Ms. Wang warns about quantification bias: valuing the measurable over the immeasurable.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

She says thick data (the human, derived from small samples) has to inform big data (the numbers, derived from large samples).blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

To have impact, numbers need stories, and vice versa. You need both to get a true picture of what’s really going on.blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

Thick Data often reveals the unexpected. It will frustrate. It will surprise. But no matter what, it will inspire. Innovation needs to be in the company of imagination.blank vertical space, 32 pixels highnumbers need stories vice versa thick data will frustrate surprise but inspire innovation requires imagination Tricia Wang tech ethnographerblank vertical space, 32 pixels high

Innovation, imagination, risk. They’re all linked. To succeed, brands must embrace all three.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Analytics, data, numbers: they’re helpful, tidy, and… safe. They come in a nice neat box, and they’re good to have.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

But brands need to take risks and make creative leaps. They need to think outside the box.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Data needs to inform the creative, but it’s just as important for creatives to inform the data.
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About Mark: I’m an illustrator specializing in humor, branding, social media, and content marketing. My images are different, like your brand needs to be.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

You can view my portfolio, and connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Questions? Send me an email.blank vertical space, 40 pixels highRecommendation testimonial for Mark Armstrong Illustration from Echo Surina, former Managing Editor, Arizona Home & Design Magazine

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