As I have progressed in my career, I have found my most marketable and useful skill to be analyzing and utilizing data.  With the power of the internet, and the continued push to the “Internet of Things,” the amount of information available is overwhelming. So much so, that managers and executives don’t have the time or ability to focus on specific data sets. I highly recommend that young marketing professionals take the time to hone their skills in gathering, analyzing, and making sense of data. Everything from web analytics to business intelligence. Creative will always have a part in marketing, but every person in a marketing department thinks they are a stunning creative. Data analysis, when done correctly without bias, stands on its own. After all, true marketing professionals understand that advertising is just one small piece of a complex puzzle.

Without further ado … 


One of my favorite quotes for humor value. 


One of the toughest things to do with analytics is creating a narrative that is easy to understand for colleagues and executives. Obviously we know that visuals are important, but it takes more than that to get the type of buy-in you want. When deciding which pieces of data are the most meaningful, start from the end and work backwards. What am I trying to achieve? What does the audience need to know? 


I hear this guy was pretty smart. At least that's the word on the streets. But seriously, without the data to support a decision, too much is being left to opinion and chance.  Why risk it? Test and Retest. 


A quote from Arthur Conan Doyle in one of his many Sherlock Holmes novels. This fits in with the previous quote as well. Information is a building block for business. Marketers should not only join the data revolution, but should be leading the charge. 


This is why it is important for marketing professionals to improve their skills in data analysis.  It takes time and skill to determine which pieces of data are meaningful. But this process of boiling down data into consumable chunks is imperative for getting buy-in across an organization. 


This guy won a few wars. I hate to compare web analytics to European wars, but you get the point. Napoleon probably would have been more successful with the wealth of information available today. 


This more specifically relates to the importance of using big data to guide company decisions on the web.  The tools available are amazing, and there are very few things that cannot be effectively tracked digitally.  Sure "big data analytics" is a somewhat ambiguous term, but even small business owners can get their hands on an overflow of information using free tools like Google Analytics. I live in Ohio. There are deer littering the sides of highways in Ohio. Keep that in mind. 


One of my favorite quotes. I'm sure you have heard of Arthur Nielsen, one of the great innovators in the area of data gathering.  The truth is, if you aren't using data appropriately your competitors probably are.  You can only avoid dramatic landscape shifts for so long. Come to play or get off the court.