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We hear the jargon at every conference: predictive, programmatic, personalization, lifetime value, DMPs, right-message-right-person-right-time and so on. Little wonder then that marketers get discouraged—those desirable end-states often seem so far from where the organization is today. Too often the gap between untrusted data and real decision-making seems insurmountable. And marketers revert to the old-fashioned way of doing things: by gut. Or at least so it is suggested in a recent survey by The CMO Survey (pdf).

Marketing Technology Explostion
image source: v_alex, iStock photos

Everyone knows there’s no shortage of data being collected about customer interactions with digital properties—and plenty of other (sometimes off-line) data as well. Most of it remains segregated and unused because the technology needed to integrate the data in meaningful ways is not adequately deployed.

Data Activation is about waking your analytics data from its siloed slumber and connecting it to other data (and systems) you already have. In order to achieve “predictive” analytics, you need to have reliable data, make sure it’s integrated with as much additional data as possible, and connected to a real-time technology that allows you to build audiences and target them with pre-loaded messaging. There are lots of moving pieces here, and like many successful efforts, success depends on starting at the beginning and working through each detail carefully while keeping an eye on the goal.

This requires a skillful combination of strategy and tactics: the ability to define desired outcomes for the business, and the technical ability to execute each collection-point and integration along the way.

With the right people and the right plan, you can execute a repeatable process, using the right platforms, to get to an advanced state of data activation. Or, you could go to one more conference and listen to more jargon while your competitors become more agile every day.

For a lively discussion of data activation, a list of pre-requisites needed before data can be activated, and a data activation case-study please view our on-demand webinar: Activate Marketing Data, Drive Revenue — How to Deliver on the Promise of Digital Analytics.

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