Gain Theory, the global marketing foresight consultancy, today announced the appointment of Russell Nuzzo as Global Head of Attribution and Marketing Technologies.
Nuzzo will spearhead Gain Theory’s innovation strategy helping clients solve marketing effectiveness challenges by leveraging business intelligence analytics and marketing technologies.
Formerly Head of Digital Analytics Services at GroupM, Nuzzo led the company’s proprietary Attribution solutions. Understanding media drivers at a granular level and informing media investment decisions is central to Nuzzo’s expertise. Nuzzo has delivered Multi Touch Attribution solutions on behalf of brands such as Target, P & G, Volkswagen and Dell.
“Russell is a rare and precious find in the data world,” said Manjiry Tamhane, Global CEO, Gain Theory. “He possesses deep analytics acumen as well as the ability to clearly articulate recommendations and actions that drive business benefit. It’s this unique ability to translate numbers into actionable intelligence that is core to Gain Theory’s offering and invaluable to our clients. We couldn’t be more pleased to have him on board.”
The appointment of Nuzzo is the latest example of Gain Theory’s commitment to building faster, smarter marketing effectiveness solutions that deliver business results.
Nuzzo holds a Masters of Science and Bachelors of Science in Economics from Auburn University. His career has seen him hold multiple senior Analytics roles across Wunderman, RAPP Collins and MediaCom in North America.
“I’m delighted to be joining Gain Theory,” says Nuzzo “Both the team and client base are fantastic and there is huge scope for game-changing analytics.”
REGISTER FOR PREMIUM CONTENT AND UPDATES
As marketers, many of us start our careers mastering our craft and learning the art of marketing, advertising and communications. A few years pass and we start managing teams, and with this comes the development of new craft: balancing the needs of the day-to-day job whilst inspiring our colleagues and team members to help them achieve their full potential.
Then, there’s leadership – not just leadership of large marketing teams but leadership within the organisation, flying the flag for business growth and the ability to inspire everyone with a vision that will rally the troops towards a common goal. Unfortunately, that’s not a skill that is directly taught but, it’s an area where most of us want to be successful.
However, the path to becoming a marketing leader presents inherent challenges which can, in part, be progressed if we have honest, uncomfortable and brave conversations around the topic with peers and leadership experts.
With this setting in mind, the Marketing Society and Gain Theory partnered to host a dinner for marketers in Delhi, India addressing two topics:
- Marketing leadership
- Challenges and pain points around measuring marketing’s value
Our 20 high-calibre dinner guests spanned a range of industries – banking, telco, tech, retail – and passionately took part in the conversation. The opinions expressed were lively and arguments were passionate – there was no place to hide for those lacklustre in opinion.
The table was set and by god, the conversation was going to crackle throughout the evening.
Find the Value Creation Zone
To set the scene, Thomas Barta – a marketing leadership author and speaker – spoke about what it takes to drive business impact and career success based on research of over 8,600 leaders in 170 countries worldwide. He highlighted 12 specific ‘marketing powers’ that help mobilize your boss, colleagues, team and yourself. Amongst many inspiring insights, some of the truths that resonated with us are:
- Marketing is often perceived as a cost, the ‘fortune teller’– with little tangible value attributed to efforts, specifically value defined in business metrics that impact the bottom line
- Many marketers spend time on things that don’t really matter to the business
- You have to find the ‘value creation zone’ – projects that matter to your CEO and your customer. Where the two overlap should be your point of focus.
- Spend time getting commonly agreed metrics in place, to validate marketing contribution to the business
- …and articulate marketing value in business KPI terms
Mad Scientist Effect
When it comes to focusing time on the right things to become a marketing leader, a few bemoaned the ‘Mad scientist’ effect where many spend time following the latest shiny marketing toy which, in the end, distracts them from becoming a leader. One marketer said, “you need to heavily prioritise what you take to your CEO/CFO/CIO.”
However, the lesson is simple – when it comes to investment in innovation, test and learn and rather than wait to sell in change, just get on with it prudently under the radar with small portions of budget. One marketer at the dinner said, “Cypher off an amount of investment in your annual marketing budget for innovation and see this as ‘under-the-radar’ investment.”
Balancing the Spinning Wheels
One of our guests pointed out that whilst we try to become leaders, marketing is under immense pressure to answer a multitude of questions. Who are our high value customers? How do we cross-sell across category? How do we invest in innovation? How can you deliver and exceed customer experience?
Then there is the tug of war between short term results and long-term effects of marketing activity.
There is no other department being asked such a range of questions.
One solution offered was to balance the expectation of these questions, how they ladder up to business objectives and agree metrics by which to measure them.
When the conversation shifted to the trend that marketing initiatives and budgets are getting the last slot at the board meeting, there were a number of empathic nods around the table. There’s an expectation for marketing to come into the Board meeting with the fun campaigns, the pretty pictures and talk about softer metrics which don’t resonate with business language used in that forum.
One marketer said we need to ‘de-glamorise marketing’ and present the numbers that ladder up to business key performance metrics. Once you do this, the Board will start to lean in and take notice of the value that marketing brings in. Marketing can then start to be perceived as an investment that has tangible impact on the P & L instead of being perceived as a cost.
Marketing Value – Challenges & Pain Points
Manjiry Tamhane, Gain Theory’s Global CEO shared some insights from an independent research commissioned earlier this year with CMOs from brands representing over $1.9bn in advertising spend. The research revealed several marketer challenges and pain points around marketing measurement. A sample of quotes from the research were:
- “Can’t agree on which few metrics to measure or focus on”
- “Too many data points = paralysis”
- “We are making observations versus true insights into what’s driving the business”
- “Still too many silos in our organisation and not enough sharing between the data scientists and marketing”
- “We need one source of truth, a True North, that will drive our metrics and resulting insights”
- “No agreed method for cross media attribution”
Many of these quotes resonated with our dinner guests but on the last point,
one senior marketer pointed out that Marketing Attribution – understanding which marketing investments are working, in real time – is a real challenge and there is no common standard. There’s a need to understand which tech platforms to invest in, education around the topic and a need to invest in the right skillsets.
Metrics – the Cornerstone of Success
Metrics were a recurring theme, underpinning most conversations during the evening. Thomas pointed out that agreement on the key success metrics takes time, it might even take a year, but is worth investing the time.
“Ask sales what is meaningful to them in terms of metrics and work hard to satisfy and if not exceed this” said one marketer. Another said “It is your job as a marketer to set expectations. Satisfaction is ultimately about managing expectation and matching that with the right delivery”.
What we learned
As W.B. Yeats once said, “Education is not the filling of a pot but the lighting of a fire.”
Whilst the take outs listed above are all immensely helpful to our journey in becoming leaders, W.B. Yeats’s quote rings particularly loudly in relation to our dinner in Delhi. Mostly because the fire that was lit that evening through honest, uncomfortable, passionate and brave conversation led to the education of all around the table.
This article was originally published on The Marketing Society site.
Market Mix Models, where one focuses on a single KPI like sales volume, are an extremely powerful technique and especially useful at disentangling the key elements of all the marketing levers that are available – price, promotion, advertising and so on. Add in some enhanced granularity – modelling CPG by SKU and retail account, for example – and the technique becomes even more powerful.
But even the best models report back that an impact on your single KPI could not be found for some parts of the marketing mix.
This is not because these initiatives don’t have any impact. It is more to do with the naïve measurement approach that is adopted by some marketing mix professionals.
Now, I’ve long been a believer that any marketing activity should ultimately be assessed on its ability to drive sales and profitability. Else, what’s the point in it? But the way it does this and the time period over which it works does not have to be as simple as “engage customer base with social media in week 1 and see sales go up in week 2”.
We’ve had the path to purchase more than a century. Let’s be smarter about using it.
In the modern era of digital media, instant response and online purchases, we are the first to admit that the path to purchase is changing. But it is still key in building our understanding of how brands interact with the ecosystem which they inhabit. Marketers use path to purchase to plan their campaigns. Modelers, who are responsible for assessing the effectiveness of campaigns, should start using it too.
And when we talk about the path to purchase , we’re not talking about simple linear stages that a customer goes through; becoming aware, interested, then desiring your brand and finally taking action and purchasing. We doubt this was ever really the case. It is hard to see how it’s the case now. Stages are blurred and marketing can affect none, one or even all of the stages. What’s more important is that some marketing channels won’t have a direct effect on sales at all, but will help to build the effectiveness of other levers.
Our solution is Integrated Marketing Response. There is no preconceived shape to the path to purchase – it is an atheoretical approach that allows the data to tell her own story. And instead of focusing on a single KPI like sales, it examines as many KPIs as required to derive a holistic understanding of the marketing ecosystem.
The strength of this approach is that you no longer need to make excuses as far as measurement is concerned – blaming the inability to measure something on esoteric technical or data concerns. There may not have been a direct effect on the end goal from some marketing stimuli, but then it probably wasn’t designed with this in mind. Does anyone seriously believe that a company that succeeds in boosting its re-tweets by 10% will see a corresponding increase in sales at the till? Well, perhaps – if it is communicating a huge discount. But we don’t need to rehash arguments about what short termism will do to your brand health and profitability.
Instead it is quite likely that these tweets will feed into some intermediate stage that may in turn feed into sales. Let’s look at a simple example:
Diagram 1 shows a stylized example of an IMR ecosystem. Caveat that while Gain Theory’s experience suggests that there are similarities across brands, each IMR is bespoke to a particular client and brand. We can see from the schematic that some marketing initiatives have a direct effect on the end KPI (increased sales) while others are purely enablers, working with other stimuli to make them more effective.
To summarize, if you run an MMM analysis, the marketing ROIs will be based completely on the direct effect. If you run an IMR the marketing ROIs will be based on both the direct and indirect effects. This holistic view of marketing performance will lead to greater understanding of the impact of all touchpoints, as well as enhanced efficiencies within budget setting and allocation.
This approach is not theoretical: it is a proven success across retail, CPG, pharma and tech brands.
The raison d’etre for the majority of Market Mix Modelling agencies is to calculate the marketing return on investment, or MROI. Gain Theory takes a different approach – knowing the ROI is nice, but does little to solve the pain points of our customers –how to optimize marketing investment, the allocation between media channels and to ensure that all touchpoints are working coherently.
As one Marketing VP recently said in an independent CMO survey: “MMMs provide some insight into making better investments, but that is still fairly one dimensional”.
Because we start from a different position – dynamic improvement rather than static reporting – our approach is also different.
The common approach to media impact
By far and away, the most common approach to estimating the impact of media is to use an ad stock. This may largely be seen as taking the ratings that your target audience had an opportunity to see and then decaying them. Using a decay allows the media to be tested for an immediate effect, as well as an impact over the medium and longer term.
Now, this approach is fine if you are only concerned with identifying the ROI.
But it says nothing about wastage and it gives little insight into weekly phasing or even where diminishing returns begin to set in. This is because a rating has little definitive to say about the chances of your target audience hearing or seeing an ad.
Ratings are a trading currency. Nothing more.
Consider a simple example. What do 20 TV ratings actually represent from a viewing perspective? It could mean that 20% of your target audience have had an opportunity to see (OTS) one exposure. Or it could mean that 10% are at 2 OTS. Or some other combination. On its own, it is impossible to say. As ad stocks are based on this rather ambiguous metric, they have little to say about the level of reach or frequency required to drive improvements in your ROI.
Our tried and tested AdModel approach is much more forward thinking and considers five key parameters that provide key information for all stakeholders.
- Effective Frequency
How many exposures need to be seen to trigger a response?
- Recency Frequency
How many exposures need to be close to the purchase?
- Recency Window
What do we mean by ‘close’ – a week? 2 months?
- Memory Decay
How long is the exposure remembered?
Is there repeat purchase?
The fifth parameter – Habit – describes the long term impact of converting new users – basically a measure of trial and repeat. They may be completely new to the brand, or they may be existing users for who marketing has helped them discover new opportunities for use.
Going beyond ROI to help marketers take action
Identifying the first four parameters defines the budget required, the phasing strategy, and optimal investment. For example, knowing that for your brand consumers need to see 4 exposures, 2 of them in the last 7 days throws up a completely different approach than if consumers just need 2 exposures, just 1 of which can be seen anytime within 2 weeks of the purchase decision.
Planning on norms, benchmarks and experience can lead to some serious inefficiencies. Let’s look at the following simple example.
The base plan from the agency seemed OK – continuity was deemed important, and running with a broadly constant level of weight. However, the AdModel tells us that, to trigger a response from those active in the market, we need:
Using this insight we can deliver a 30% increase in the ROI. Based on science, not hunch.
As you can see, some big improvements in efficiency, just by understanding how media is working for you. And this is for just one channel – the same efficiencies can be seen across the media and marketing mix.
This approach has been tested across all verticals and across all continents. If you want to move away from reporting just an ROI to dynamically improving your marketing investments, it’s time to rethink your approach.
Through Q1 2017, the major talking point in marketing, especially in the U.S. and U.K., was brand safety. This is a challenge which has existed for years, but two events caused a brighter light to be shone on the issue.
First, Marc Pritchard of P&G called for more transparency in media buying, honestly admitting that he did not know where and how some of his advertising was being used. Second, a front page on the Times, a U.K. newspaper, revealed that some of Britain’s top brands were being seen alongside unsafe often highly explicit and violent content, setting off a chain reaction of brands boycotting platforms like YouTube.
Since then, as we would expect from marketers, there has been a lot of chatter. But is online brand safety the only issue here?
The short answer is no. The main issues in digital marketing are still viewability, robots and bad measurement, all of which have their roots in short-termism. Here’s why:
Let’s consider, for a moment, the type of people who would be consuming unsafe content for brands. There’s an argument that frequent viewers of this kind of stuff are beyond reproach to start with; if they already have such a low opinion of themselves, then who really cares what they think about a Jaguar XJ or Head and Shoulders anti-dandruff shampoo?
However, what is true is that this advertising is wasted, because if you think they’re contemptible enough to not care for their opinion, then you shouldn’t be advertising to them in the first place.
So this media buying goes into the waste basket, alongside non- or barely-viewed videos or display ads.
As an aside, let’s take a second example. Let’s say a German discounter takes out a full-page ad in a leading right-wing tabloid newspaper, which goes directly opposite a Brexit polemic. Suddenly, a 2 million-strong group of people will associate, consciously or unconsciously, this company which is not from Britain with the very closed-ranks Britishness of the Brexit tribe.
Which is more damaging to a brand? Two million people or a single loser?
But what does this have to do with short-termism? Short term KPIs, such as conversions, or clicks, or impressions or reach, can easily, and badly, be achieved with a spray and pray approach. This kind of approach often results in low levels of viewability and an unsafe environment — making it tricky to deal with.
A lot of companies use white or black lists — the difference being that white lists aggregate sites on which you can advertise; blacklists, conversely, identify which sites should be avoided. The challenge for blacklists is that bad sites continue to proliferate and, for whitelists, there will be some sites previously labeled safe which suddenly become unsafe due to some regretful content. Keeping both lists up to date can be a Sisyphean task.
And even if the buying is against a specific audience, be it demographic or behavioral, showing no care for which sites the content ends up on, or where on that site it exists (i.e. if it’s viewable or not), is going to get you into trouble.
The bigger picture
This is why brands should focus beyond short-term, easily measurable metrics, and into the complex but ultimately more rewarding world of long-term payback. Remember, not everything that can be counted counts.
The best brands are those which are salient, different, and meaningful; the best brands outperform the market. No brands achieved salience, difference or meaning by having un-viewed or bot-viewed advertising, or by being in unsafe environments.
The real concern for advertisers should be about how to change hearts and minds of consumers by telling a great story to the right audience. Brand safety is only one part of the puzzle, and when advertisers are trying to measure payback, they need to look at the whole picture.
Read the original article here.
In February 2017, the Warc Media Awards took place to recognise comms planning which has made a positive impact on business results. The fast-paced change across the media landscape is having seismic shifts on communications planning. As a result, some of the most pioneering thinking occurs at this stage of the process.
Through these awards, Warc captured communications planning best practice, showing how brands, their media agency partners and media owners are using new tech and platforms to help meet business objectives. The awards recognise brands that are getting the most out of their collaborations, as well as showing how data and analytics are revolutionising communications planning in real time.
In recognition of Gain Theory’s authority in data and marketing effectiveness, Jon Webb Managing Partner acted as a judge on the ‘Best Use of Data’ category alongside a mixed jury including Sital Banerjee, Global Head of Media at Philips.
This category sought to recognise the role of data in an effective communications strategy and saw numerous entrants from leading brands globally.
Here are Jon’s insights from his judging experience –
The top entrants within the “Best Use of Data” awards were very strong, with the papers submitted making a strong and clear link between how insights from data can play a fundamental role in driving additional value from media and marketing campaigns. It was good to see that the successful entrants placed as much emphasis on using the data to tell a compelling story around the path to purchase as much as on more complex issues surrounding programmatic. And for those entrants who weren’t successful this year, there were some clear guidelines…
- Make the data a fundamental part of the story, not tagged on as either an after-thought or to justify pre-determined action
- Insights from data can be very simple as well as very powerful – the grand prix winning entry was a great example of this
- Some marketing initiatives take great courage to launch – using real time insights on customer feedback from social media is a great way of course correcting to stay on track
Overall the caliber of entrants were high and I have every confidence that next year the bar will be raised even higher.
Grand Prix –
Narellan Pools, Australia
Hindustan Unilever, India
Destination Canada, Canada
Royal Philips, China
Marking the 2017 International Women’s Day, Gain Theory – part of the WPP group – has just launched Lumena, a global female network, aimed at supporting its women and empowering them to become future leaders at all levels.
As part of the ‘Common Ground’ initiative, each of the large holding companies pledged to dedicate effort to one of the six United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals, with WPP choosing to focus on gender equality.
Lumena’s mission is to ignite the future female leader by amplifying her potential through training, networking, mentoring and coaching opportunities.
“Gender equality is not just a good cause, it’s good business,” said Manjiry Tamhane, Global CEO, Gain Theory. “It’s key to helping our people and clients achieve great things and crucial to recruiting and retaining top industry talent – giving us the broad skill set to serve our clients across all disciplines and locations. The more our company makeup reflects the diverse range of partners we work with and consumers they sell to, the more effective and successful we are in servicing them.”
Whilst Lumena is a female development programme, Gain Theory is committed to remaining an equal opportunities employer and many of the events run by Lumena will be open to men as well as women. It will include gender equality initiatives and raise awareness of unconscious bias in all its forms.
Lumena will also improve senior and management representation by providing more female role models, networking opportunities, improved policies for women and increased adoption of gender diversity best practices.
The initiative was conceived by Manjiry Tamhane, Global CEO and developed by female executives in each of Gain Theory’s regions: Marina Stuefer (EMEA), Kavya Madhava (APAC) and Courtney McDonough (NA).
If you are interested in speaking at a Lumena event please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
In a world where you have so much choice, it’s hard to deny the desire for more.
This is especially true for consumers who according to a new study by Wunderman, want brands to actively demonstrate “they understand and care about me” before they consider purchasing.
Marketers are primarily focused on developing consumer loyalty to their brands, but the data shows that brands now need to demonstrate their commitment to serving the consumer and exceeding their expectations every day.
The study conducted in partnership with Penn Schoen Berland surveyed 2,000 people in the US and UK. With the findings consistent across ages, genders and geography, 79% of consumers surveyed said that brands must actively demonstrate ‘they understand and care about me’ before even considering a purchase. So what can marketers do to demonstrate their commitment, and stay one step ahead?
- Setting New Standards
Historically, marketers focused on developing customer loyalty to their brand, but consumers now have new expectations. In a generation where everything is only a click away from a phone, brands need to adapt quickly, understand consumers’ needs and respond to those needs every day, to show that they are committed every step of the way.
- From Building to Serving Customer Loyalty
Consumers want to feel valued, but it is no longer about just sending over a promotional coupon. Marketers now need to commit to serving customers, every day and at every point in the relationship. The key here is delivering needs, as loyal brands.
- Data-Driven Approach to Understanding Expectations
By looking at data, marketers can not only understand the consumer’s perspective and expectations, they are able to serve the right messages and experiences consumers need, at the right time. Here, insight turns into action.
Whereas exceeding expectations is the new norm, brands now thrive by not only seeking loyal customers, but understanding that customers are real people, who yearn to be cared for.
Check out the Wantedness website here.
Digital marketing channels today are divergent – search, video, social, display, email, mobile – the list goes on. Marketers have a myriad of options to choose from to reach consumers to hit KPIs. But the biggest challenge is understanding which digital media work best…and how to optimize those.
The holy grail of many brands today is establishing which digital investment gets the credit for delivering a conversion event. Where should we spend our money? What can we cut from the budget? How? When?
As more media is bought digitally, more data is produced and with that comes an ability to measure effectiveness at a granular level.
The future is increasingly connected and for some big digital advertisers, requires the right measurement solution.
Digital Attribution can provide the right measurement and optimization solution. But you need the right tools and conditions to do so and what’s more – it’s not for everyone.
We have compiled an 8 Step Guide to Digital Attribution to help navigate marketers through the subject and understand whether it’s a journey they want to embark on.
The 8 steps are:
- Significant Digital Media Spend
- A Clear Online KPI
- A Skilled Team of Data Scientists
- The Right Purpose
- The Ability to Optimize Quickly
- The Right Data Set-Up
- Unified Digital Tracking
- The Right Methodology
You can read the in depth article published in AdMap, by downloading the article on the top right hand corner of this page.
Visit our digital-attribution.com website to view the video.
Matthew Chappell, Partner at Gain Theory, attended the IAB Video Conference: Thinking Differently in London on Wednesday 16th November 2016. Here are his thoughts from the event:
Halfway through AOL’s session, Mark Milling asked the audience to put up their hands if they’d seen the new John Lewis advert. And then hold them up if they’d seen it online first. And then keep them held up if they’d seen it on TV at any point in the last week.
The only people who didn’t have their hands up to start with were probably asleep following lunch. Almost all of those who had seen it had seen it online first. Only seven people in an audience of 600 had seen it on TV at all. Seven.
Online video is no longer the future – it’s here. But how do we make the most of it? And, as the question posed by the conference title asked, how do we think differently?
First, a look back. In the early noughties, when digital was emerging, brands talked about how much money to invest in digital. Then, they talked about how much to invest in specific channels. Now, with the biggest digital channels we need to be asking how we allocate spend within them and how we create content that fits – what is the right message at the right time to the right people?
This is especially pertinent in video. In the past, brands put their TV ad online and that was that. Now the opportunities are limitless. Indeed, according to Millward Brown the average consumer spends 65mins a day watching video on mobile or tablet (vs 61mins on TV). There is vast potential attention but brands need to capture it quickly.
Two of the best sessions, from Facebook and Google DoubleClick, focused right in on this.
The Google DoubleClick session, run by Atossa Vaziri, discussed three different types of video content: meal, snack, bite. Sometimes you want a three course meal, or a three minute brand video; sometimes you want a snack. Sometimes you don’t even have time for a snack, just a bite of your friend’s cake. At different times you have different needs, and video advertising can and must reflect this. For example, on Facebook mobile, 98% of videos are watched in portrait (according to Jonathon Milne, CrO Celtra), most with the sound off. Advertising in this circumstance should probably be bite or snack sized, not a four course French dinner.
Ian Crocombe, from Facebook, also discussed three different ways of telling stories and capturing attention. He started with the old fashioned TV ad: a 30s build to a climax, with the brand displayed at the end. In the online video world this is flipped on its head, you show the brand and the punchline first, before exploring further in the next however many seconds. There is a third way, by which a brand pulses impact, humour, and emotion throughout the video, such as in the McDonalds example from Brazil, below. This is a fascinating way to grab attention and hold it for a long period, in this case 1min 45s.
Both told the same story in slightly different ways, but the takeout is the same. As demonstrated by Lucy McHenry from Twitter, Nielsen have shown that there is little correlation between video length and engagement. However, 81% of videos which drove high engagement had a hook in the first three seconds. And most good videos were optimised for sound off.
The main goal for advertising is still to capture attention and engage with consumers. There are many ways to do this, and for some brands this might not be video. The great thing about any digital media is its agility – the ability to test and learn quickly, fail fast and move on.
What we learnt today is that more brands than ever are willing to do this; to think differently on how to use video to improve their marketing effectiveness.