OK, there are probably a lot of events that can compete for first place – But this one is pretty legitimate.
Our insatiable appetite for more data, better data and new data has made it impossible to be an effective marketer without the right tools and information.
The best marketers pork out on data long after the Cookie Monster has begun to regurgitate his sugary treats.
So, what happens when the data-driven marketer is denied access to information within his or her own organization?
What kind of harm is unleashed onto the marketer’s nefarious soul – And the effectiveness of their campaigns and initiatives?
Let’s start by delving into one of our favorite relationships: Sales vs. Marketing.
Anyone that works in marketing or sales is familiar with the old feud between the two departments.
Even though this never-ending battle can result in great amusement for the rest of the company, it has sent more than a few executives to an early grave – I’m sure of it.
And it has an additional consequence that is even graver. ☺
Seriously though — aside from the finger-pointing, name-calling and the thinly veiled desire to fling rabid bunnies at the other side – failing to share critical data delivers the biggest hit.
Neglecting to distribute data turns the marketer’s job into a futile attempt at competency.
Now I’m not saying that marketers don’t commit the same sin, or that it’s even intentional, but without the necessary information the results that the sales team craves will never materialize.
Let’s say, for example, that your sales team has a list of specific prospects that they are targeting during a particular campaign. And the existence of the document holding this information is NEVER revealed to the marketing team.
This will make the data-driven marketer want to cry. Let me outline a few reasons why:
1) They have a vague idea of their target audience – or they might even be targeting the completely wrong group.
2) They successfully produce buckets of leads that the sales team wrinkles their noses at.
3) Their leads yield poor results and are deemed as “useless.”
4) The sales team huffs about the unbearable working conditions and fail to secure any commissions.
5) The sales team quits.
6) The marketing team gets fired because of their crappy leads.
7) The company realizes that they cannot survive without their marketing and sales teams and files for bankruptcy.
Moral Of The Story: Bad things happen when you try to make marketers work out of a broom closet with no data.
The dynamic between the sales and marketing teams is an easy target for this topic, but it is not the only area where data gets partitioned off.
The cube life has become a familiar part of the work experience for many of us. We have grown used to clacking away on our keyboards and sometimes forget that there is a whole world on the other side of the cubicle walls.
This is a problem. For many reasons, but the one that I will focus on involves communication.
How many eight-hour workdays have ended with the realization that you haven’t spoken to a single person?
Do you even know where the other departments are located? Or where the people that you are supposed to collaborate with spend most of their time?
Not only are the different departments segregated, the people within them may not speak with each other for days at a time. Outside of the scheduled meeting environment, we hesitate to initiate contact, involve ourselves in the social scene in our workplace – And more importantly, we fail to gain access to the data that drives our marketing strategy.
Life before Google made it difficult to gain access to data outside of a classroom or library. Life after Google has made us forget about the data that is held within the humans that put it online.