Friday, April 3, 2009

What the Prius can teach about B2B Marketing Analytics

Anyone who has driven in a Prius is aware that it is an interesting experience, different than in most other cars. However, can it really teach us about B2B Marketing Analytics?

I think the answer is yes.

If you look at the dashboard of the Prius, it has some interesting data. Mainly, it shows you your energy consumption, and your gas mileage in Miles Per Gallon. The data is right in front of you, and continuously updated.

It is interesting in that there are no compensation plans, MBOs, or commission structures associated with your gas mileage, but every Prius driver will report the same effect - you change your driving habits. Just by having the metrics in front of you, you feel compelled to do the behaviours that drive the number in the right direction; accelerating gently, not driving too fast, braking slowly.

This works in B2B marketing too. Socializing metrics can drive behaviour, regardless of compensation plans and MBO objectives associated with those metrics. If your marketing organization does not share, socialize, and discuss metrics on campaign response, you may be surprised at what happens if you do.

We all react naturally to seeing metrics in front of us on our behaviour, and much like in driving a Prius, if we see that our marketing campaigns are not influencing buying behaviour, are not driving inquiries, or are not guiding leads to become marketing qualified leads, we will likely stop those activities.
Many of the topics on this blog are discussed in more detail in my book Digital Body Language
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Lindsey @ SearchEnginePPC said...

This reminds me of a recent announcement for a future project to allow homes to monitor their power use in real time. Such a great idea to bring the metrics right to the people who can save the most energy.

Google Power Meter

Kevin L. Richardson said...

Measure it and change will come. Amazing how that still holds true and yet we keep venturing away from this simple yet powerful thought. Thank you for bringing it back to our attention.

Lanny Rootenberg said...

You used an interesting analogy between the Prius and B2B marketing. This also talks to the relevancy of the data that should be on the dashboard. Many dashboards contain data that does not 'connect' with the users needs and in so doing will find it difficult to influence a change of behaviour. It has to start with a definition of what is required and how this will benefit the user.

Steven Woods said...

Agreed, the data has to be relevant, certainly. However, layering on too many carefully designed comp plans on top of the metrics can sometimes overthink the problem.

Matt Massey said...


It's an intertesting concept and has merit for larger enterprises for sure.

I would challenge you and say that if I were to go to one of my customers and highlight "behaviour change" metrics - I'm sure they would be interested but then immediately ask how that translates to the bottom line.

I believe larger enterprises can afford the luxury of building value around behaviour changing/socialization metrics but the SME companies(sub 100 headcount) are much more bottom line focused and want more immediate, tangible metrics that result in qualified customer opportunities.