How Do You Make Marketing Decisions?

How do you plan your print and multi-channel marketing campaigns? Do you trust your intuition? Or do you rely on data to inform your decisions about the most effective way to approach your customers and prospects?

According to a study written by The Economist Intelligence Unit and sponsored by Applied Predictive Technologies (“Decisive Action: How Businesses Make Decisions and How They Could Do It Better,” 2014), executives and senior managers use a range of strategies, including decisions related to marketing. Does one of these categories describe you?

Intuitive (“I primarily use my intuition in making decisions”) 10%
Collaborative (“I seek to collaborate on decisions as much possible”) 32%
Data-Driven (“I collect and analyze data as much as possible before making a decision”) 42%
Empirical (“Where possible, I develop hypotheses and perform tests before making a decision”) 17%

What’s interesting is that, while the plurality of respondents say they rely on data during the decision-making process, they still highly value their own intuition. Even when data is readily available, 73% say they trust their own intuition. Among the data-driven decision-makers, 68% still agree with that statement.

What do you do when the marketing data contradicts your intuition? Let’s say the data tell you that yellow envelopes are most likely to boost response rates during slow periods, but whenever you’ve mailed using purple envelopes, you feel that you get the best results. What then?

You test it! Create a series of A/B tests to see what approach is the most effective at reaching your particular audience. In the case of the envelopes, you might find that both the data and your intuition are correct. Certain envelope colors may boost response more at certain times of the year, for example, around certain holidays, or for certain audiences only.

Need help analyzing and testing your data to develop the most effective mailing campaigns?  Let us help! That’s what we’re here for.