Agile, data-driven marketing is all the rage. It was one of the lead themes at last month’s MarTech conference where marketing leaders from brands like Mozilla and Oracle (and Beckon!) took the stage to talk about how agile decision-making and more frequent optimization is good for the business and a source of competitive advantage. But the value of this iterative, transparent and data-driven marketing approach has only been a hunch—until now.
We wrote a few weeks ago about the powerful results from recent Forrester research commissioned by Beckon that quantifies the benefits of using Beckon. If you haven’t already read the report it’s worth a read. But, outside of the benefit of using Beckon, the research breaks new ground to validate a bigger concept. It makes a business case for agile marketing.
The Forrester study proves that agility—continually testing and learning, focusing on iterative strategies and breaking the habit of year-long planning cycles and ‘hope & pray’ marketing—means faster business growth. Think about it like this:
If you have $20 million in discretionary marketing spend, one option is to plan how to spend it all on January 1, put the wheels in motion and execute against the plan all year. At the end of the year, you can look at what worked and what didn’t, and improve your marketing next year. As a result, you get a 2% bump, say, in marketing ROI the next year. That’s a little like annually compounding interest.
The other option—the agile marketing option—is to put your marketing into play January 1, and optimize continuously all year long. Each week, shift from lower performing creative to higher performing creative. From high cost per lead publishers to more efficient publishers. From messages with low click-through rates to messages with high click-through rates. Each week you have a chance, then, to get that 2% improvement in your marketing ROI. By the end of the year, you will have achieved improvements, on top of improvements, on top of improvements, that add up to BIG improvements in business performance. That looks a lot more like continuously compounding interest. It’s also one of the “best metaphors for expressing the value of agile marketing” according to Chief Marketing Technologist, Scott Brinker.
So what is the key takeaway? Our customers don’t just allocate marketing budgets at the beginning of the year and hope for the best. They make their marketing dollars work harder by testing, reallocating and optimizing as they go. And that’s something we can all work toward.