The Four V’s of Big Marketing

Just as Big Data emerged as the term that described the use and benefits of unparalleled access to information, Big Marketing has emerged as the term that defines a high performing marketing organization, with people and aligned process and technology to easily adapt to changes in the business and technology environment. Understanding Big Marketing is key to persevering in an environment that has gotten so large and so multi-dimensional that it can no longer be managed by traditional mindsets, thought process or tools.

The Four V’s is a commonly accepted framework used to describe the dimensions of Big Data. We can use a similar approach to explain the current, complex state of marketing: the challenges of managing in an environment encompassing increasing globalization, competition and management scrutiny coupled with an expanding number of data inputs, organizational and systemic silos, and the driving need to deliver and prove results.

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The Four V’s of Big Marketing—volume, velocity, variety and value—go a long way in explaining the basics of our field’s most recent—and unparalleled—overhaul:

Volume: A Lot Needs to be Done

The breadth of activity expected to be generated by a marketing organization keeps growing. Marketing organizations establish ever-more ambitious quarterly or yearly plans. Enterprises in all industries must manage an ever-expanding number of campaigns, programs and tactics across widely varied media and channel types—all within projected (and unyielding) budgetary and fiscal restraints. The work piles up … and the ability to manage it isn’t always keeping pace.

79% of 1700 CMOs surveyed believe the level of marketing complexity will be high or very high over the next five years. But only 48% are prepared to cope with it, according to IBM’s recent Global Chief Marketing Officer Survey.

Velocity: No Stopping the Need for Speed

How fast can a marketing team bring offerings, ideas and innovations to market? Developments in new media channels and consumer-driven markets (and among those competitors who seem to have cracked the code on moving fast) require marketers to communicate within a much shorter timeframe than a decade ago—often in real time. Last year marketers counted on 24 hours to formulate response to customers, prospects and the market as a whole. Today, they have less than two.

42% of online US adults are always addressable, according to Forrester, a number that’s soaring (last year it was 38%) and that supports the need for lightening-speed action and response.

Variety: A Plethora of Options

Effective management of campaigns across a wide spectrum of media types—both mass and more personalized interactions—using eight, 10 or more access points—is de rigueur. While traditional media is still relevant, new social channels allow (and require) marketers to personalize efforts based on behavior and psychographic data available on consumers and buyers, engagement that necessitates increasingly sophisticated use of data.

Just 6% of CMOs believe their organizations excel at engaging customers across multiple platforms; Only 19% report having fully integrated digital media into their marketing mix with proven models for measurement, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit’s most recent CMO survey.

Value*: How Much Is It Worth?

With the growth of capabilities that businesses now have through technology and Big Data, marketing organizations are increasingly required to prove their value to the business. The maturation process has taken marketers past measuring marketing performance through just campaign metrics—they’re now required to assess the total cost of marketing infrastructure, operations, as well as impact on the organization as a whole.

50% of 2,200 marketers surveyed by Teradata in 2013 cited proving the effectiveness of the department’s activities as one of their top challenges. The same report notes 75% of marketers surveyed report challenges with calculating ROI.

*Unlike in Big Data where veracity of data is key (and the fourth V), in Big Marketing it’s the resulting value of marketing content that is most critical … thus the alternation to the four V framework in this context.

The 4 V’s of Big Marketing give us the platform to evaluate the shift in today’s marketing, to start talking about it, to understand what it means and to take action. Improving and expanding marketing capabilities … making processes more efficient … using technology to increase the effectiveness of marketing. Marketers stand to gain significantly by engaging in this important conversation.

Join the Big Marketing conversation: What V presents the biggest challenge in today’s Big Marketing environment?

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