“Analytics has always been part of the marketing plan, but with so many options to reach targets these days—such as e-mail, Internet and direct mail—companies are seeking methods that are faster, more reliable and proven to improve response rates,” said Ray Kingman, CEO of Genalytics. “Genalytics has been focused on targeting consumer prospects, and now business prospects—by using our technology—can do the same kind analysis in days or hours rather than months or weeks.”
Genalytics is one of many companies training its focus on simplifying data analysis for marketers, so that they have easy-to-use tools to better target customers.
This wasn’t always the case. The technology has traditionally been complex and expensive.
“A lot of it has to do with the fact that tools are more accessible and more available today,” said Dave Frankland, a senior analyst at Forrester Research who focuses on the direct marketing industry.
“You go back even five years ago and you had to be an SAS programmer to run a query. So marketers were forced to send requests to their IT department, and those answers [typically] took two weeks,” he said. “Today, tools are accessible to anyone with some data dexterity, so marketers can query databases themselves. It greatly reduces the cost.”
AnalyticsIQ, another analytics provider, announced last week that it has also debuted a new product: ResponseIQ. The product helps direct marketers identify and score the highest potential responders to marketing offers.
Google is yet another company driving the trend toward a simplified process for analyzing data. The search leader announced in May that it released a new version of its enterprise-class Web analytics product. The new version included a redesign and additional features such as e-mail reporting, customizable dashboards, improved map display and simpler language.
Meanwhile, Wiedemann & Lomasney, a new marketing services holding company, is looking to simplify the analytics process on behalf of its clients.
Last week it introduced a new analytics product called Brand Interaction Personas, under its UMarketing marketing services organization. The company said it gives marketers a sense of the attitudes, behaviors, motivations and interaction preferences of current customers and prospects. UMarketing CEO George Wiedemann said that is accomplished through a consultative approach.
“The function that is missing most [among marketing service providers] is the consulting function,” he said.