The Advertising Agency CEO and Marketing Data Analytics

I recently had a couple of conversations about the increasing use of marketing data analytics in advertising, design and, of course, digital marketing.

A Big DUH!

The conversations led me to a DUH! A Duh! I am sure you are living through.

Data rules marketing these days (good or bad) given where we are in 2019 marketing. But, these conversations also delivered agency warning signs – and an opportunity.

The opportunity? Agency CEO’s and managers better learn how to use and discuss marketing and advertising data analytics with their current and future clients. I mean, really be able to sound smart.

I’ll tell you how below. But first, some marketing data analysis related insights from people who talk with clients all day long.

1. The Association of National Advertisers

Michael Donahue of The Association of National Advertisers pointed out that every size agency must make the use of advertising data analytics an integral part of their work. Period.

2. Ad Age

Lindsey Slaby in my recent post, “Ad Age Small Agency Podcast”, said the following — followed by my thoughts:

Lindsey: So we need to have the people at the top of some of those agencies that understand what data and analytics really means. It’s not putting one person in a corner to go work on this. Right? So I think that consultancies have really learned, and they’ve always played a part in looking more at the business in terms of revenue and bottom-line profitability, and they get in there and they have access to that information, and now they’re simply saying, “Well, now that we know all this about your consumer, which is so important, and the data, and what they’re listening, and what they’re talking to, and what they want from us, we would like to connect that to the actual advertising and create a benefit station.” And that makes sense to me.

PL Thoughts: The main point here is that in many agencies, especially in ‘creative/full-service’ agencies, management and staff do not fully understand a client’s complicated/complex sales spectrum. Much of today’s sales process is rooted in understanding, processing and leveraging consumer and market data. Unfortunately, in many agencies, data management has been relegated to a back-room function. Because of this, we have a bunch of agency leadership that simply is not schooled in data management and therefore in understanding the entire sales funnel.

Consultancies get this and deliver on the deliverable that they, and their MBA-fueled staff, are schooled in sales-oriented, high ROI solutions.

Agencies that rest on the singular idea that they deliver cool creative and a barrage of content ideas is not a very strong, stand-alone concept.

The Solution: Go To Columbia, Wharton Or Columbia

I am sure that sitting in the corner office, or even out in the sea of open office desks is not where you will get an in-depth understanding of data analytics. I think that this is a subject for proactive agency management. I know that the new consultancies eating big agency lunches get this.

Here is a good idea… Three online schools offer courses in marketing analytics. YO CEO: Why not take one of these courses and you can then tell your clients, future clients, and staff, that you now seriously get marketing analytics.

Head over to edX and see what Columbia, Wharton and Berkeley offer.


Want even more learning? Let’s talk about growing your business. I mean how to build a real sales and agency management plan.

You are in a hurry, right?

Contact me now and take me up on my impossible to refuse 15-minute Vito Corleone offer. 


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