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Report: Data drives marketing value

BY Dan Berthiaume

Indianapolis – Almost eight-in-10 (78%) marketers report feeling pressure to become more data-driven, but only a little more than a third of companies (36%) say they routinely use data-driven marketing to customize messages and offers, in order to improve customer experience and campaign performance. Teradata’s Data-Driven Marketing Survey 2013 also indicates within two years more than 80% of marketers will have implemented or begun projects that automate data quality, performance management and marketing workflow processes.

Teradata views data-driven marketing as the combination of collecting and connecting large amounts of data, rapidly analyzing it and gaining insights, and then bringing those insights to market via marketing interactions tailored to what’s relevant for each customer. Other data the study revealed about the state of data-driven marketing includes:

  • Nearly 50% of marketers agree that data is the most underutilized asset in their organization, with less than 10% saying they currently use what data they have in a systematic way.
  • Seventy-one percent of marketers say they plan to implement a big data analytics solution in the next two years.
  • Just 18% of marketers say they have a single, integrated view of customer actions, yet it is one of marketers’ top priorities for future improvement.
  • Seventy-five percent of marketers who try to calculate their return on marketing investment (ROMI) encounter problems, mostly in the lack of system integration.
  • Forty-two percent of marketing executives agree that integrating the cross-channel customer experience is a top priority.
  • Nearly 65% of marketers agree that silos within their marketing department prevent them from having a holistic view of a campaign across channels.

The Teradata Data-Driven Marketing Survey 2013 was conducted through a blind online survey of more than 2,200 marketers worldwide from individual contributors up to top executives between March 8 and May 4, 2013.

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J.C. Penney names Kraft exec as senior VP marketing

BY Dan Berthiaume

Plano, Texas – J.C. Penney has named Debra Berman as senior VP marketing. Berman previously served as VP marketing strategy and engagement at Kraft Foods Group since 2009.

"Debra Berman is an enormously talented marketing executive, and her desire to join the J.C. Penney team is a testament to our brand and its potential," said Myron E. (Mike) Ullman III, CEO for Penney. "Her broad experience and success as a marketing strategist for major consumer brands make her the ideal leader to help us continue to reconnect with our core customer through effective promotions and campaigns that will increase excitement and loyalty now and over the long term."

Berman will report directly to Ullman and serve on the Penney board. Prior to joining Kraft, Berman spent nearly five years as strategic planning director at DDB Advertising, and before that held senior strategy planning roles at Sterling Brands, Young & Rubicam and Swander Pace and Company.

"There is huge opportunity to remind America’s families why it is so great to shop at J.C. Penney while attracting new customers to the brand,” said Berman. “This can be achieved through targeted campaigns that creatively highlight our unique and authentic combination of style, quality and value. I am eager to begin working with Mike and the entire team to restore J.C. Penney’s place as an iconic destination for customers for important occasions and all the times in between.”

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Judge rejects class-action claim against Wal-Mart

BY Dan Berthiaume

Bentonville, Ark. — Judge Charles R. Breyer of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California has ruled against a request by plaintiffs in a gender discrimination suit against Wal-Mart who were seeking certification of a class-action suit against the mass merchandise giant. Referring to a 2012 Supreme Court decision about limitations on class-action suits, Breyer ruled that the individual situations of the plaintiffs are too different to be grouped into a single class-action suit.

“Plaintiffs’ proposed class suffers from the same problems identified by the Supreme Court, but on a somewhat smaller scale,” Breyer wrote in his decision. “Indeed, it is revealing that there is no particular logic to the precise scope of the class Plaintiffs now propose. They picked three corporate regions covering a smaller area than the rejected national class, but nothing in Plaintiffs’ evidence shows that those three regions are actually different from any other Wal-Mart regions along any relevant dimension. Rather than identify an employment practice and define a class around it, Plaintiffs continue to challenge the discretionary decisions of hundreds of decision makers, while arbitrarily confining their proposed class to corporate regions that include stores in California, among other states.”

This decision is the latest blow against female employees who have been trying to file a gender discrimination suit against Wal-Mart since a compliant was initially filed in 2001. That complaint was later classified as a class-action suit for more than 1 million Wal-Mart employees across the country but was struck down by the Supreme Court in 2011. Plaintiffs have attempted to refile the suit as class-action litigation at state level in several states, with a rejection in Texas in October 2011.

“Walmart has had a strong policy against discrimination in place for many years and we continue to be a great place for women to work and advance,” the retailer said in a press release. “The allegations from these five plaintiffs are not representative of the positive experiences that hundreds of thousands of women have had working at Walmart.”

Attorneys for the plaintiffs have not yet commented publicly.

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