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Planning Analytics vs. Day-to-Day Executional Analytics

Kerry Guard • February 10, 2014 • 4 minutes to read

It was just one of those amazing conversations

MKG uses x+1 for all our programmatic media buying and data management platform (DMP) needs on behalf of our clients. They're transparent, have little down time and end up delivering great results for our clients.

Last but not least, they really like analytics

Last week we had the opportunity to chat with William Sears, x+1's VP of Solution Architecture, about two different types of analytics that the marketing industry sees to date.

I've summarized our conversation below to show off the highlights of our conversation.

Insight #1: Planning Analytics vs. Daily Execution Analytics

Our conversation started with me asking Bill how he saw analysis in today's world of real time media bidding and cross-channel marketing.

Bill broke analytics down into two category:

  1. Planning Analytics: Planning analytics is synonymous with creating a high-level, business results analysis strategy. Examples include three year projections or using predictive analysis using tools like Lev.ers or Palantir. Think about 'the big picture' of measuring marketing results.
  2. Daily Execution Analytics: This is the day-to-day number crunching and algorithm writing. It is very much in the weeds. Have $5 left in your daily advertising budget? Great! What levers can be pulled to most efficiently spend that budget.

Bill noted that advertising technology companies like x+1 excel at daily executional analytics; the minutiae of analysis, while service partners like ourselves (marketing agencies) tended to excel at the planning analytics side of things.

Insight #2: Connecting the Dots Between Planning Analytics vs. Daily Execution Analytics

Bill's next insight in our conversation may have been his most important:

"How do you connect the two?"

In other words, how do you connect the day-to-day minutiae of 'here is what levers we are pulling on a per second basis' and connecting it with the bigger, business-level road map that outlines what marketers need to achieve.

Hint: Sometimes, you need an objective third party to manage this relationship. Let the ad tech partners battle it out in the trenches every day, but having an objective measurement partner whose sole purpose is to help establish, measure and communicate results to keep the business on track.

Definitions of connecting the dots across the three items mentioned above include:

  • Establish: Otherwise known as creating a measurement strategy. This includes a systems audit, and meetings with senior-level stakeholders that establish buy in on the strategy, what is being measured and how results will be relayed within the organization.
  • Measure: Measurement step is essentially a never ending QA process. Are all the systems reporting accurately back to each other? What inconsistencies are we seeing? Additionally, this is the point where analysts identify trends and begin to put together 'the big picture'.
  • Communicating Results: Presenting to senior level staff? That normally dictates a presentation; large, cascading photos with huge numbers and line graphs to show results. Serving up results to marketing managers? That tends to dictate a more granular definition of what is happening in the trenches.

Insight #3: "The Chef Goes Shopping"

Have you ever gone to a really nice restaurant and done all the shopping in advance for the chef?

Yeah, right!

Bill made a great comment when he said The Chef Does All His Own Shopping.

The same advice goes a strong measurement strategy: The planning analysis partner needs to 'do their own shopping' to help serve the client's analytics needs.

For example, this partner could use the establish, measure and communicate approach, this partner uses numeric outcomes to act as the guide rails for a strong analytics strategy.

What did we miss?

Our team speaks with Bill on a regular basis; what topics did we miss out on?

Type any questions you have about our conversation in the comments section below and we'll be sure to answer any Q's addressed to our team as well as those directed at Bill and the x+1 team.

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