Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Flint Brenton, Elizabeth White, Cameron Van Orman

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Microservices Expo, @BigDataExpo

@CloudExpo: Blog Post

Data Analytics For Rebranding By @Sisense | @CloudExpo [#BigData]

The Data that Drives the Marketing Funnel

Any CEO will tell you that marketing is an essential part of running a successful business. After all, without demand and lead generation there will be no sales; if the product isn't selling, all the brilliant innovative technology in the world won't make even the slightest difference and the company will eventually go under.

However, it won't be too much of a stretch to say that marketers are generally an underappreciated, often misunderstood species within technological organizations. I will claim that current analytics tools might allow marketers to "rebrand" themselves, and prove their true value to the organization in a clear and undisputable way.

Remind me what you do around here...?

Unfortunately, the marketing department is still frequently seen as a mysterious, somewhat foreign element, particularly in technology companies. It seems that employees from other departments, especially those who are not in management positions, are unsure what it is that Marketing does, and how it fits in with the organization's goals and overall strategy.

As someone who has been working in senior marketing positions in tech startups for more than a decade, I am more than a bit familiar with this issue and was not at all surprised to read the results of this studywhich found that 80% of CEOs don't trust their CMOs. I believe the problem lies in some basic differences between the way typical marketers work, and mostly how they communicate, compared to their developer counterparts. However I believe this bridge can be gapped, and that recent developments in data analytics technology hold the key to this.

Words People vs. Numbers People

Most people who work in technological companies are decidedly ‘numbers people' - both by nature and by training. They're used to thinking in figures: how long does this code take to compile? What is the measurable improvement in performance? Amorphous concepts such as "brand awareness", which are difficult to measure and difficult to translate to actual numeric value.

Marketers, on the other hand, typically don't come from a background in engineering or exact sciences, but from a variety of other fields. They are usually what you might call ‘words people' - who feel a stronger connection to creative verbal communication than to Excel spreadsheets. There are many who don't shy away from crunching some figures, but more often than not it has yet to become a second nature for them.

This is why, right off the bat, there's a communication problem: marketers and developers simply don't speak the same language. This is not to say marketing professionals are less results-driven; it simply means they might have different ways of envisioning and expressing the results they want to reach.

Are Digital Marketers Any Different?

Perhaps you're reading this and thinking this kind of presentation is outdated: after all, in the world of digital marketing, "data" is a revered concept. Everyone's talking conversion rates, bounce rates, ROIs - and almost every marketing effort is measured and quantified. So is this new age of marketers actually more akin to tech developers?

I'm not so sure that's the case. Ask any marketing manager or CMO if they're data-driven, and odds are they will answer with a resounding yes. Then ask them: well, how many decisions have you made today, based on data analysis? My guess is you'll get some much vaguer responses.

More Data, Less Data-Driven

While today's digital marketing professional is absolutely entrenched in data - from Google services (Analytics and Adwords), Salesforce, automation software and many other possible sources. But a lot of the times, this data is examined only in retrospect, or used as a "decision support-tool" to support decisions that have already been made on a completely different basis; very few times it is actually used for decisionmaking on a daily basis in the tactical and operational levels.

The reasons for this can be quite diverse. However, one of the crucial factors impeding marketing professionals' adoption of a truly data-driven approach is the fact that they do not see themselves as technical, and often shy away from complex calculations, coding or scripting.

So while they can generate basic reports using their existing platforms' reporting interface, they have no real ability to combine data from different sources, to get a centralized view of data coming from different marketing channels or examine the data in real-time, as different marketing efforts take place. The amount of insights they can glean from all their disparate data is accordingly low.

Using Technology to Adopt the Analytical Mindset

So how can this conundrum be solved? How can we get marketers to start talking in numbers, to use data to justify and communicate their decisions?

One option would be to hire a more technical marketing department, i.e. staff it with people who have the technical know-how needed to crunch all this data themselves. However I believe the non-technical crowd has much to offer in terms of creativity and a fresh perspective which would be a shame for any company to miss out on.

Luckily, advancements in business analytics software can provide similar results, without having to replace your marketers with dedicated data analysts. These software tools allow business users to skip the messy spreadsheets and formulas and view their data in one central, graphical and non-threatening dashboard using visualizations and graphical widgets.

While I myself come from a technical background, I've found that today's analytics tools have made my life much easier - I no longer rely on endless Excel files and hand-generated Salesforce reports. Instead, I simply need to log in to by business intelligence platform and can examine and explore data from all my different marketing channels, in one place and with minimal effort.

Hence it is my opinion that modern business intelligence software presents an opportunity for marketers: it makes being data-driven that much simpler and even, dare I say, fun. This is a chance for marketers to start making sense of all the data they're surrounded in, and to actually start using it to show their true worth to their organization. This is the only way marketers can conquer the hearts of the tech companies they work for - in essence, to rebrand themselves as essential.

Want to learn more about data-driven marketing? Join Saar for his upcoming webinar:The Data that Drives the Marketing Funnel to discover:
  • How to access data from multiple sources to get immediate insights
  • The most effective reports and dashboards for marketing executives
  • Practical KPIs to determine strategic strengths and weakness
  • And more...
  • Join now!

    This article was written on January 12, 2015, and originally appeared here.

More Stories By Saar Bitner

Saar Bitner is the VP of Marketing at SiSense, the award-winning business analytics software that lets non-techies easily analyze and visualize big data sets from multiple sources.

@CloudExpo Stories
Join IBM November 1 at 21st Cloud Expo at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, and learn how IBM Watson can bring cognitive services and AI to intelligent, unmanned systems. Cognitive analysis impacts today’s systems with unparalleled ability that were previously available only to manned, back-end operations. Thanks to cloud processing, IBM Watson can bring cognitive services and AI to intelligent, unmanned systems. Imagine a robot vacuum that becomes your personal assistant th...
SYS-CON Events announced today that B2Cloud will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. B2Cloud specializes in IoT devices for preventive and predictive maintenance in any kind of equipment retrieving data like Energy consumption, working time, temperature, humidity, pressure, etc.
Today traditional IT approaches leverage well-architected compute/networking domains to control what applications can access what data, and how. DevOps includes rapid application development/deployment leveraging concepts like containerization, third-party sourced applications and databases. Such applications need access to production data for its test and iteration cycles. Data Security? That sounds like a roadblock to DevOps vs. protecting the crown jewels to those in IT.
Many companies start their journey to the cloud in the DevOps environment, where software engineers want self-service access to the custom tools and frameworks they need. Machine learning technology can help IT departments keep up with these demands. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ajay Gulati, Co-Founder, CTO and Board Member at ZeroStack, will discuss the use of machine learning for automating provisioning of DevOps resources, taking the burden off IT teams.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cedexis will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Cedexis is the leader in data-driven enterprise global traffic management. Whether optimizing traffic through datacenters, clouds, CDNs, or any combination, Cedexis solutions drive quality and cost-effectiveness.
SYS-CON Events announced today that NetApp has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. NetApp is the data authority for hybrid cloud. NetApp provides a full range of hybrid cloud data services that simplify management of applications and data across cloud and on-premises environments to accelerate digital transformation. Together with their partners, NetApp em...
Is advanced scheduling in Kubernetes achievable? Yes, however, how do you properly accommodate every real-life scenario that a Kubernetes user might encounter? How do you leverage advanced scheduling techniques to shape and describe each scenario in easy-to-use rules and configurations? In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 21st Cloud Expo, Oleg Chunikhin, CTO at Kublr, will answer these questions and demonstrate techniques for implementing advanced scheduling. For example, using spot instances ...
Why Federal cloud? What is in Federal Clouds and integrations? This session will identify the process and the FedRAMP initiative. But is it sufficient? What is the remedy for keeping abreast of cutting-edge technology? In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Rasananda Behera will examine the proposed solutions: Private or public or hybrid cloud Responsible governing bodies How can we accomplish?
SYS-CON Events announced today that Ryobi Systems will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Ryobi Systems Co., Ltd., as an information service company, specialized in business support for local governments and medical industry. We are challenging to achive the precision farming with AI. For more information, visit http:...
Cloud-based disaster recovery is critical to any production environment and is a high priority for many enterprise organizations today. Nearly 40% of organizations have had to execute their BCDR plan due to a service disruption in the past two years. Zerto on IBM Cloud offer VMware and Microsoft customers simple, automated recovery of on-premise VMware and Microsoft workloads to IBM Cloud data centers.
SYS-CON Events announced today that mruby Forum will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. mruby is the lightweight implementation of the Ruby language. We introduce mruby and the mruby IoT framework that enhances development productivity. For more information, visit http://forum.mruby.org/.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Mobile Create USA will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Mobile Create USA Inc. is an MVNO-based business model that uses portable communication devices and cellular-based infrastructure in the development, sales, operation and mobile communications systems incorporating GPS capabi...
Cloud applications are seeing a deluge of requests to support the exploding advanced analytics market. “Open analytics” is the emerging strategy to deliver that data through an open data access layer, in the cloud, to be directly consumed by external analytics tools and popular programming languages. An increasing number of data engineers and data scientists use a variety of platforms and advanced analytics languages such as SAS, R, Python and Java, as well as frameworks such as Hadoop and Spark...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Enroute Lab will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Enroute Lab is an industrial design, research and development company of unmanned robotic vehicle system. For more information, please visit http://elab.co.jp/.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Nihon Micron will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Nihon Micron Co., Ltd. strives for technological innovation to establish high-density, high-precision processing technology for providing printed circuit board and metal mount RFID tags used for communication devices. For more inf...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Suzuki Inc. will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Suzuki Inc. is a semiconductor-related business, including sales of consuming parts, parts repair, and maintenance for semiconductor manufacturing machines, etc. It is also a health care business providing experimental research for...
IBM helps FinTechs and financial services companies build and monetize cognitive-enabled financial services apps quickly and at scale. Hosted on IBM Bluemix, IBM’s platform builds in customer insights, regulatory compliance analytics and security to help reduce development time and testing. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Lennart Frantzell, a Developer Advocate with IBM, will discuss how these tools simplify the time-consuming tasks of selection, mapping and data integration, allowing devel...
SYS-CON Events announced today that N3N will exhibit at SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. N3N’s solutions increase the effectiveness of operations and control centers, increase the value of IoT investments, and facilitate real-time operational decision making. N3N enables operations teams with a four dimensional digital “big board” that consolidates real-time live video feeds alongside IoT sensor data a...
Today most companies are adopting or evaluating container technology - Docker in particular - to speed up application deployment, drive down cost, ease management and make application delivery more flexible overall. As with most new architectures, this dream takes significant work to become a reality. Even when you do get your application componentized enough and packaged properly, there are still challenges for DevOps teams to making the shift to continuous delivery and achieving that reducti...
Mobile device usage has increased exponentially during the past several years, as consumers rely on handhelds for everything from news and weather to banking and purchases. What can we expect in the next few years? The way in which we interact with our devices will fundamentally change, as businesses leverage Artificial Intelligence. We already see this taking shape as businesses leverage AI for cost savings and customer responsiveness. This trend will continue, as AI is used for more sophistica...