Can marketers see into the future? Some would propose this theory since it’s their job to anticipate what kind of challenges and opportunities will be ahead for clients and share advice for them based on these educated guesses. Krishen Iyer, the owner of MAIS Consulting, truly loves being able to confer with his clients. If it’s a normal day, he tries to interact with as many as he can every morning to find out what’s on their minds, and then spend the afternoon trying to help solve any challenges they might be encountering.
Krishen Iyer is able to leverage personal connections, knowledge of entrepreneurial business skills, and plenty of current marketing tools to help every client see success. His clients are primarily in the insurance space, seeking help in how to set up their shops, how to get the word out and grow customers.
With more than 20 years of industry experience, he’s in a perfect position to offer these customized solutions for each client, including sharing his knowledge of industry trends and ways to measure success.
Here’s that “future” part again.
Like many marketers, Krishen Iyer makes his predictions based on past performance. This model generally works for most-forward thinking industries, such as the stock market, where analysts offer suggestions for investments based on individual companies and the market as a whole.
Of course, they use current events as a factor, but still base a lot on how a company has done in the past.
Essentially, it’s a guess but if done right, it’s an educated guess.
The same way of thinking is seen in marketing, where you can dive deep into get into all sorts of wonderful analytics and learn all about the performances of your customers. You can see which products are selling better, and use sales data to determine everything from the best time of year to have a sale to the best time of day to post a social media message.
Luckily, we have more tools to measure these before than we have ever before, which is good news for tracking campaigns as well as what evidence we can give clients to show the progress of whatever project they’re being assisted with.
But even with all these tools, Krishen Iyer says financial and marketing decisions are still a best guess and going forward with fingers crossed and good intentions.
Most of the time this works. But there’s also a possibility of a campaign falling flat even though it tested well and followed a formula that proved successful in the past. In the stock market, companies can collapse for other internal or external reasons, even if the past history gave all indications of good things happening.
So, if this is really our current reality of guesswork and assumptions, is there a way to do it better?
One current program is called Feedback Loop, which can break down marketing campaigns and avoid you having to assume that a campaign is doing well because it has in the past.
It essentially helps companies perform small-level testing of different elements of a campaign. Even if your team and the client say you like the entire campaign. Feedback Loop can pull out different pieces, create similar elements, and offer them for testing.
This allows more accurate feedback. And being able to identify and change elements without scrapping the whole campaign or going into a release blind.
Discussions about the software say it allows people to experiment with different pieces and get fresh data instead of relying on information further in the past.
A big part of this can involve looking at the UX/User Experience. This is sometimes looked at from a site design experience but doesn’t always make it into other parts of marketing. It essentially lets testers evaluate things like navigation, effort, and interest.
All these factors do have some subjectivity, but customers also might have some of these same feelings.
Besides the data that can remain extracted from these types of tests. This approach also benefits from another classic marketing principle: actually talking to people.
This used to be something that was a basic part of doing business. But more and more, some of these interpersonal dynamics have been replaced by electronic/digital tools.
Taking a moment to individually request and accept feedback can go a long way to providing better guidance on projects. It also builds relationships and could lead to more business and even referrals in the future.
So, we’re not saying throw away the analytic data and only talk to people. All of these are necessary tools in the marketing toolbox. And the “past performance data” can be useful. Especially if clients want to know what you’ve done. And what kind of response your past campaigns have received.
But the industry is also shifting to not just wanting to rely on past data.
Krishen Isher also has learned. How to rely on a blend of analytic data as well as traditional marketing methods of interaction. Including interpersonal communication.
He’s owned a variety of insurance companies over the years, so he’s learned the value of talking to people as well as discussing and analyzing paperwork. A big part of the industry includes the sales side. Which requires convincing clients. What products and services do they need.
Sometimes prospective clients will know exactly what they want. And others need more convincing – not just colorful charts about life expectancy. Although these are useful. What might be a more effective tool is getting a client comfortable. Educating them about the different options, and discussing a reasonable budget.
The relationship should continue as well. Including regular check-ins to see how the current mix of products is working. And if more or different ones might remain needed.
This is another way that clearly communicate and ask clients about their future. Can make more of a difference than just looking at the numbers of how everything did in the past.
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