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Picture: 123RF/perfectpixelshunter
Picture: 123RF/perfectpixelshunter

An analysis of data provides an objective, numbers-based tool to inform brands about consumer behaviour and preferences. However, gut feel and a level of human experience can bring an element of empathy into the marketing mix – something numbers often can’t provide.

This raises the question of just how brands should create concepts that earn consumer’s attention while respecting their privacy. And should we be training up-and-coming-marketers to love what they do and use their gut instead of purely data? Or vice-versa?

A recent Future of Media Online Event, in partnership with TymeBank, The MediaShop, TBWA\SA and Arena Holdings, put the spotlight on how much weight should be put on data versus gut feel when it comes to building outstanding brand marketing campaigns and how to apply owned data in a way that is creative, strategically effective and legally sound.

Lindile Xoko, chief revenue officer at Primedia Broadcasting, pointed out that 85% of current advertising fails to have an enduring effect and does not meet the 8% attention threshold. Given this failure, the role of data is to ensure that the right message gets to the right person at the right place and time to help them make an appropriate purchase decision. Gut feel, or instinct, he added, helps to provide context and to ensure that the message is understood and useful.

A combination of informed gut feel and data helps marketers to understand their consumers better, said Linda Appie, head of marketing at TymeBank, adding that there is no one-size-fits-all approach. Pointing out that marketers are responsible for large budgets, she said there was no room for error, particularly when it comes to big-tickets items such as a TV commercial.

David Uribe, regional head of data for Central and Eastern Europe, Africa & Middle East at TBWA, explained that the agency makes extensive use of data and testing. While advertising used to be predominantly gut driven, the industry no longer has the luxury of relying only on gut feel. Data, he said, helps advertising to be more precise, specific and effective in less time and at a lower cost.

In response to a poll asking whether gut instinct or data is more important when developing a marketing campaign, 66.7% of respondents said data is more important than gut feel.

When asked how much their company invests in data, 76.5% said the investment was under 50% of the budget, while 23.5% said it was over 50% of budget.

The Future of Media would not be possible without our sponsors TymeBank, The MediaShop, TBWA\SA, The FM Redzone, Arena Holdings and Arena Events. To watch the full discussion, click here

The next online event, ‘What does the metaverse mean for brands?’, will be taking place on July 21 at 10am. For more information, or to register, click here.


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