By Udit Joshi
Over hundred content items including articles, news pieces, research reports and social conversations have been used to write the content only of this 900 worded article. Imagine a marketer responsible to decide the annual strategy for a brand. She or he will be seen skimming and scanning thousands of content items available all over to get it right. What if, it is a new market entry? Or what if there are biases and misconceptions about the market? The key to that ‘magic in the madness’ is, Marketing Intelligence.
Not knowing the relevant trend(s) can be devastating to a brand/category. It is getting difficult to beat the clutter to swiftly and accurately decide between the critical and non-ROI driven decisions. Imagine a company choosing unwisely on behalf of the consumer and focusing its efforts around proposing services that are popular or in vogue like the Bitcoin, Ethereum and other digital currencies as payment options, instead of the more utilitarian and humbler options. From Startups to even established brands, many companies have made serious business inaccuracies. Among the hundreds of brands that lacked clairvoyance are the popular, Kodak, BlackBerry, Forever 21, Google Pixel, Ambassador Cars, Kingfisher Airlines and more.
A marketer’s superpower!
Marketing Intelligence enables a brand not to err by using machine intelligence to visualize massive amounts of text-based data to make the most informed predictions and guidance. The software goes through conversations expanding into new locations and demographics over time, assessing traction through social amplification, and predict shifts in tastes, politics, and influence. Using big data and advanced algorithms marketers can be up to date on all the major events, relationships, sentiment, key people, and terminology in any industry – in less time than it would typically take to locate a static industry report. It gives the brand manager an advantage in three critical areas: competitive intelligence, market landscapes and trend analysis.
It is data that helps us better understand our company or industry from a foreign eye, by aggregating and analysing data around company profiles, news portals, blogs, academic papers, news articles, patent applications, social media, job-site reviews and more. It allows us to gain an advantage over the competitors through analysing comprehensive statistical metrics including the SWOT, visual maps and social listening.
The last time a client asked us for a Brand Intelligence report when their founder spoke much more than required at a live public speech. It was only when this crisis happened that the brand realise its brand health and equity. To get an answer to such complicated questions, the brands need to come up with real time observations and insights. Online Reputation Management is only the tip of the iceberg. The Marketing Intelligence software employs next generation artificial intelligence to cite empirical insights. Marketers can now accurately:
- Gauge brand health, equity and perception
- Understand top competitors’ upcoming business strategy
- Study the direction where the industry is headed
- Identify media sentiment on the brand along with their level of engagement
- Detect apt Key Opinion Leaders and plan viral campaigns much in advance
- Conduct product innovation and research as per market trends
- Realise strategic risk and M&A analysis
The Indian scene
India is an exciting market going through a phenomenal digital transformation. The potential of marketing intelligence however, isn’t fully realised by firms here. MarTech, which applies to harness technology to achieve marketing objectives, is estimated to be a US $120 billion opportunity globally. In the large Indian market, it only stands at US $100-150 million. Only about 30% of the marketing technologies are being leveraged, as per the Hansa Cequity’s MX Report 2020. There is a huge opportunity for a differentiated marketing experience to evolve and impact the last mile.
Traditionally, a brand campaign development exercise is disorganized despite the ‘advanced online intelligence’ access. Brand Managers rely on their agencies for any creative ideation which may not bear any viable qualification. It is based on perception, assumption or client’s demand, which may not be the business problem in the first place.
They aren’t realizing that the consumers have moved ahead in the chain. The old tactics have been copied by competitors making these campaigns not only redundant and obsolete, but annoying to consumers.
Crafting Data-driven decisions
A comprehensive marketing intelligence offers pragmatic insight and it shows the brands new ways to connect with consumers. Carrying out a machine led marketing intelligence, reduces our time and scope of error helping us focus our time and resources on the core agendas that are ROI driven.
With data-driven decisions, brands can capture themes, content strategies and storylines to interact and gain traction with target audiences real-time. Further this practice enables them to know what is working, what isn’t and why. They are able to ensure brand health with advanced operational acumen. Analyse and stay alert to trends as they happen and diminishing a scope of crisis as they happen.
Indian markets have grown from the metropolitan to the non-metros and the rural in a big way. There will be natural barriers as much as language, community practices, consumer sentiments and consumer behaviour and trends. Not all marketers brainstorming at the conference room may have the acumen to take charge of the opportunity. We do have a great demand lurking and a huge potential for Marketing Intelligence. Armed with Marketing Intelligence, our marketers will know the turf pre-hand and make a big win before the competition does.
The author is Integrated Marketing Specialist at Topline Consulting Group.