We frequent the McKinsey* Insights & Publications website. You’ll find a section dedicated to Sales & Marketing with a range of research and thought leadership pieces. We found an article titled “Views from the front lines of the data-analytics revolution”.
You should read the full article*, but we’ve captured some thoughts below in the context of Oracle Marketing Cloud and how this information impacts or can support Modern Marketers.
This past October, eight executives from companies that are leaders in data analytics got together to share perspectives on their biggest challenges.
All were the most senior executives with data-analytics responsibility in their companies, which included AIG, American Express, Samsung Mobile, Siemens Healthcare, TD Bank, and Wal-Mart Stores.
Their backgrounds varied, with chief information officers, a chief data officer, a chief marketing officer, a chief risk officer, and a chief science officer all represented. We had seeded the discussion by asking each of them in advance about the burning issues they were facing.*”
The top five questions asked of these executives were:
- Are data and analytics overhyped?
- Do privacy issues threaten progress?
- Is talent acquisition slowing strategy?
- What organisational models work best?
- What’s the best way to assure adoption?
There responses were grouped into 5 areas.
1. Data and analytics aren’t overhyped – but they’re oversimplified
As an example, building a profile of your customers buying history can provide Oracle Marketing Cloud with a micro level of data that you can use to personalise communications over time and even predict future purchase patterns. The prediction is achieved through Oracle’s Sales Cloud CRM and enhanced when integrated with Oracle Marketing Cloud.
Companies need to operate along two horizons: capturing quick wins to build momentum while keeping sight of longer-term, ground-breaking applications. Although, as one executive noted, “We carefully measure our near-term impact and generate internal ‘buzz’ around these results,” there was also a strong belief in the room that the journey crosses several horizons. “We are just seeing the tip of the iceberg,” said one participant. Many believed that the real prize lies in reimagining existing businesses or launching entirely new ones based on the data companies possess.”*
2. Privacy concerns must be addressed – and giving consumers control can help
There are a range of ways Oracle Marketing Cloud customers can share specific data they hold that could be deemed “personal” by their prospects or customers. Consideration would need to be given to how that data is accessed, however the Oracle Marketing Cloud PURL (Personalised URL) could be one way to provide people access.
Our analytics leaders were unanimous in their view that placing more control of information in the hands of consumers, along with building their trust, is the right path forward.”*
3. Talent challenges are stimulating innovative approaches – but more is needed
It’s difficult for Oracle Marketing Cloud to help with the hiring of the very specific skill set outlined in this McKinsey article. The quote below outlines some of the complexities executives are facing and some of the solutions they’ve discovered.
A widespread observation among participants was that the usual sources of talent—elite universities and MBA programs—are falling short. Few are developing the courses needed to turn out people with these combinations of skills. To compensate, and to get more individuals grounded in business and quantitative skills, some companies are luring data scientists from leading Internet companies; others are looking offshore.”*
4. You need a [centre] of excellence – and it needs to evolve
If your organisation has a Centre of Excellence, it’s something the CMO or their representative should be involved in and have an understanding of what’s taking place. A careful understanding of the data Marketing can access and also possibly able to supply to core data warehouse, will enable…
Our participants agreed that it’s worth creating a [centre] of excellence only if you can locate it in a part of the company where data-analytics assets or capabilities could have a dramatic strategic impact.”*
5. Two paths to spur adoption – and both require investment
Over time Oracle Marketing Cloud Marketers will build a profile of their known and unknown contacts. The data captured represents two key areas:
- Profile data – is a compilation of information like a person’s name, company name, address, job title etc.
- Behavioural data – is a collection of data showing the Digital Body Language of your known and unknown contacts. This behavioural data provides insight into the expressed and implied preferences as people navigate your various digital assets.
McKinsey found the adoption of technology as one of the major challenges for executives:
Frontline adoption was the most important issue for many leaders. Getting managers and individual contributors to use new tools purposefully and enthusiastically is a huge challenge. As we have written elsewhere, companies simply don’t invest enough, in time or money, to develop killer applications that combine smart, intuitive design and robust functionality.”*
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*SOURCE: McKinsey & Co.