Adapt and Adopt or Get Left Behind: Automation in Marketing Analytics

With the arrival of ‘AI’ and automation, analytics tools are evolving. They are bringing new and exciting capabilities that will enable marketers to make better, faster decisions. Marketers need to adapt and adopt or they may get left behind, writes, Daniel Shaw-Dennis, SVP Global Strategic Marketing, Yellowfin .

The marketer’s life is hectic and the sheer volume of data is making it even crazier. There are terabytes of data pouring into marketing databases from multiple sources and you are supposed to stay on top of all the metrics to start, stop, and tweak campaigns in real time. But it just isn’t possible with most of today’s traditional business intelligence (BI) and analytics tools.

With the arrival of ‘AI’ and automation, analytics tools are evolving. They are bringing new and exciting capabilities that will enable marketers to make better, faster decisions.

Also Read: What Is MarTech and How to Become an Expert at Marketing Technology

This is what the data volume looks like

According to , by the year 2020, about 1.7 megabytes of new information will be created every second for every human being on the planet. That adds up to the equivalent of about 2.3 hours’ worth of YouTube footage being created per person per hour.

The same source also estimates the accumulated digital universe of data at around 44 zettabytes by 2020. But what is that? Just one zettabyte (ZB) is approximately the same amount of data as standard quality movies played non-stop for 48.5 million years. Then multiply that by 44 and you’ll get somewhere near our digital universe as of next year. Mind-blowing.

As you can imagine, this raises many challenges.

Challenge 1: The daily data supernova

You’ve heard of a supernova-it’s when a star, like a sun-sized Big Bang, explodes and propels all its matter into space at speeds of up to 18,000 miles per second.

Well, all the data that’s multiplying and flowing across networks is kind of like a supernova. If you asked your intern to search through even one year’s worth of non-stop YouTube footage (or 20,586 GB) to find a single pull quote, they would be drowning in data (and you’d be upsetting HR). But we have to handle far, far more data than that each month and find useful insights inside that deluge that help you target the right audience with the best message at the correct moment.

How do you sift through that much data to find your insight? If you are relying on dashboards to show you meaningful insights, you will struggle. You need more granular, more informative insights faster.

Challenge 2: The limits of the BI dashboard (the current paradigm)

Terabytes of data are never going to be wholly and sufficiently represented even on numerous dashboards with multiple tabs. Dashboards were originally conceived for monitoring progress, so they display aggregated data and simpler views. Yes, you can drill into the detail, but how are you ever going to discover the gold when you have such a huge volume of silt to pan through?

Another challenge with searching for insights is the fact that the most valuable insights are often the ones you aren’t aware of. So even if you can do a Google-like search on your data, you could still be missing the most vital information that could drive change in your processes. You need to leverage the machine that trawls your data for you to spot the outliers, trend changes, and more.

Challenge 3: My kingdom for a data scientist!

Data scientists are a rare resource and they are in increasing demand. Businesses rely on them to delve deeper and interpret data which, in turn, should drive change in the business. As reported in Forbes, the demand for data scientists in the job market will soar 28 percent by 2020. However, since approximately 39 percent of data scientist positions require graduate degrees, the rate of qualified candidates hitting the market is constrained even more by the years of extra education required. We need to automate data work if we are to keep up with the demand for insights that drive business action.

The solution: Automation

With all the talk we hear about automation and AI, we should be seeing those capabilities in the mar-tech space, particularly when it comes to analyzing data. Business intelligence is transforming and can automate the hunt for marketing insights too. Here are four possibilities available to marketers now through automated BI.

Real-time analysis

BI is evolving beyond the dashboard and rapidly reducing the time-lag it takes to navigate from dashboard to analysis to consensus to action. Automated BI can analyze the data as it flows, in real time. It can discover and surface the most important changes as they happen so you can identify spikes and drops, volatility, trends, or step changes instantly.

Insight personalization

The AI and machine-learning-based automation is smart, recognizing your interests and needs. Based on those, like a good detective, it will serve up insights you may not have thought to search for, correlate its findings with other patterns across all your data sets, and interpret what it means for your business, and deliver its findings to you with explanations and context.

Impartial interpretation

BI automation will also help reduce human search bias from your analytics insights because it doesn’t choose a single course of investigation – it can investigate multiple data sets for the same change types. In fact, it will be able to generate and share its insights based on a much broader view than any single user has. BI automation can generate a “universal truth” the company should be able to use going forward.

Reducing the margin of human error

Advanced BI automation goes a long way to ironing out the wrinkles in the system caused by human error-errors the user is hardly aware of. Assumptions, shortcuts in logic, ingrained opinions and beliefs, misperceptions, and misinterpretations – the machine doesn’t have this pre-disposition.

Also Read: 5 Marketing Automation Best Practices for Better ROI in 2019

Better insights brings better business results

The BI platforms that are ahead of the game, leveraging the machine with automation, are changing marketing. They are helping marketing teams, and whole businesses, grow faster, be more efficient, and be better at giving customers what they need when they need it-which is incredibly exciting.

Your action item is to be on the lookout for-and be ready to adopt-these automated BI engines as they hit the market. They can help you keep pace with other early adopters of the new generation of analytics and get ahead of the slower competition so you reach your audience first.


Article by channel:

Read more articles tagged: Marketing Analytics