Math and metrics are no substitute for great brand experience

by Tony Fannin, President, BE Branded  |

Ever notice those who are in online advertising hardly ever talk about getting the messaging right? Mostly what they talk about are the metrics and the math of online marketing. Now, I agree metrics are important. It is a way to test and improve your messaging, but most of these digital companies have no clue on how to create a brand message that really connects emotionally. I believe too many tell clients all you need is high traffic and they can get you there though technology alone. But, what often happens, is once they drive traffic to your site, visitors look around about :05 seconds and then leave, giving you a bounce rate of 78% in under 1 minute. Then these digital companies claim they did their job. In a way, they did. They never promised your customers will stay on your site. That’s not their concern because that can’t be automated or turned into an algorithm. If they really were true marketers, these digital companies would be equally concerned about the messaging and brand experience your visitors would have while on you site. Maybe reducing your bounce rate to 45% and having your customers stay more than 1:30 minutes. Which would you rather have, 20,000 hits a month, but a 78% bounce rate or 12,000 visitors who stick around longer than 2 minutes?

Another point is the neurotic need of knowing ROI. ROI is not wrong in itself. Where many marketers go wrong is they often measure the wrong things. They only track the metrics that a particular digital company offers, but don’t really know if that truly drives their success. Just because you can measure it, doesn’t mean it has any meaning to your business success. Every company has a different driver that is the key to their success and it’s not always about bottom line sales, web site hits, or gross revenue. These are some of the numbers, but most of the time, are not the true metrics that drive your success. Often, revenue and web hits, are a symptom of the real reason why customers are buying from you and visiting your site.

Messaging and brand experience isn’t something that can be automated. Tested, yes, but not reduced to math. There is no computer that exists in the world that can predict human behavior, because we humans are not logical when it comes to shopping. (It is the reliance on computer algorithms that contributed to the housing crisis on Wall Street.) We buy emotionally and use logic to justify. In reality, it’s the brand experience and messaging that helps a company last long enough to be great. If you are always dependent on math and metrics, you will always be chasing and never really establishing who you are as a brand. As a result, you’re commodity fighting a price war over pennies.

Now, technology is a wonderful tool and has helped give us greater insights and control over our messaging, but it is not a substitute for creative genius, brand experience, and being relevant to their lifestyle. Math and metrics can not replace connecting with your customers in an authentic, human approach. In an ironic twist, these digital companies have commoditize themselves since they have reduced themselves to algorithms which are being automated more and more. On the other hand, developing a creative approach in how you are going to deliver a better brand experience and a more relevant messag is a human endeavor, not an algorithm. No technology yet has been able to predict what is important to us humans on a consistent bases.


About Be Branded

Tony Fannin is of President of BE Branded, an integrated marketing firm who helps clients BE Somebody to their customers. If you aren't somebody, then you are commodity.

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